The previous online Program Catalog served for several years as a way for TBS to promote its available content in English to buyers and other stakeholders in and out of Japan. Building on the success of this online resource, TBS has added a wide range of new functions while greatly simplifying the user interface.
The new features and functions of the updated online TBS Program Catalog are as follows:
■ Multiple languages
Whereas the previous site offered only English, the new TBS Program Catalog adds Korean and Chinese. In addition, Google Translate is available to instantly convert the English version of the site into 80 different languages.
■ Featured content slideshow
On the top page, visitors to the new TBS Program Catalog will immediately see a slideshow of mini posters for featured content. These are recent programs of particular interest to overseas buyers. Clicking on the mini posters takes the visitor to pages with descriptions, trailers, and other information.
Featuring embedded videos from the network’s YouTube channel, the new TBS Program Catalog presents trailers and other videos for new dramas on the top page. Going forward, TBS will also be adding videos to the detailed information pages of older programs and soon visitors will be able to display a list of programs for which videos are offered on the site.
■ Enhanced search
The new Advanced Search function builds on the keyword lookup function of the previous site. Visitors can now search by category, genre, and production year, while the standard search function allows searching by title or actor names. The search results also include recommendations in related categories and genres.
■ Pop-up information
For the programs appearing in search results or overviews, visitors don’t need to go to individual detailed information pages to get basic information. Simply rolling the mouse over the program thumbnail brings up a synopsis and the options “For more details,” “Contact,” and “Favorite.”
■ Smartphone version
To meet the needs of visitors using smartphones, the TBS Program Catalog now offers a dedicated smartphone version. Users can now easily access and enjoy the site via PC, smartphone, or any other device of their choosing.
■ Enhanced social media connectivity
The updated site features many options for sharing articles and program information pages with others: Like or share on Facebook, tweet on Twitter, pin on Pinterest, and share on Google+, LINE, or LinkedIn. LINE is a communications smartphone app with a large number of users, particularly in Japan and other Asian countries, while the number of Pinterest and Google+ users also continues to grow in Japan and around the world. This enhanced social media connectivity is expected to have a beneficial effect on traffic to the TBS Program Catalog, increase its promotional effectiveness, and raise name recognition levels for individual programs.
■ Visitor subscription for early updates
A new registration system allows buyers and TBS content fans to create a login and subscribe to the site. Subscribers will receive new information before it is publicly posted on the site, helping pros stay in the know about TBS.
■ Leveraging analytics
Google Analytics reveals not only page views but also the number of visitors by country/region and time zone, page view and dissemination trends, and other site traffic information. TBS intends to use this data in promotions, marketing, and sales.
■ Enhanced news functionality
In addition to top page news, to better leverage news items and press releases, the new TBS Program Catalog adds a “Related News” section on each program information page, which gives visitors instant access to news content.
■ New content management system
Both desktop and mobile versions of the site are to be updated via a new content management system for faster and better information sharing.
■ Enhanced user interface
The user interface of the new TBS Program Catalog has been made as simple as possible. Even first-time visitors will find the site extremely easy to navigate.
Leveraging these new functions and improvements and connections with the TBS Global Business Facebook site, which has received over 400,000 Likes and Shares and considerable play on other social media, the new TBS Program Catalog will help TBS further enhance its ability to communicate globally about its content offerings, win more fans and enhance sales worldwide.
■ About Tokyo Broadcasting System Television, Inc. (TBS)
With over 40 years of experience licensing programming overseas, Tokyo Broadcasting System Television, Inc. (TBS) has distributed programs of all genres – dramas, anime, documentaries, formats, movies – totaling several tens of thousands of hours of programming in over 160 countries worldwide and has firmly established its presence as a major content provider in the global arena. TBS is one of the most innovative broadcasters in creating variety formats, having licensed nearly 200 localized versions with several thousand episodes being produced including global hits like America’s Funniest Home Videos, Takeshi’s Castle/MXC, Sasuke/Ninja Warrior, etc. Looking ahead, TBS aims to further raise its profile overseas by expanding sales around the world of TBS hit shows and take advantage of new opportunities in the digital market place.