MTV celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2016 as the world's biggest entertainment brand as well as the most widely distributed television network, reaching almost 650m households in over 160 countries around the globe. The channel's achievements are considerable. It completely transformed the nature of popular music during the 1980s and 1990s, arguably even more influential on that medium than the introduction of the compact disc or the iPod. It is also one of only a handful of media properties of recent years which has transcended its original format to become something close to a lifestyle brand. According to consultancy Interbrand, MTV is still one of the world's most valuable individual media brands (though it slipped to second place in 2014 behind Discovery Channel). Yet it began as simply a cheap way of filling a dead slot in a regional US cable system. How did it manage to come so far? And perhaps more importantly, how much further does it have left to go, now that it competes with even more nimble online rivals? A sharp decline in MTV's viewing figures is just one of multiple problems facing parent Viacom in 2016.
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Adbrands Weekly Update 3rd Sept 2015: Ads of the Week "Tagline Here". MTV broke this totally weird and utterly cool spot for itself by director Benjamin Dickerson during the VMAs last weekend (and it was a lot nicer to look at than Miley Cyrus's tongue). Is it an ad? Or a parody of an ad? Who knows, but it's hypnotically awesome, and features a succession of extraordinary images that will bury themselves in your brain for the rest of this week.
Adbrands Weekly Update 5th Mar 2015: Viacom announced plans to take on streaming services Spotify and Deezer with two new digital music and video services branded under its widely recognised MTV brand. MTV Trax launches in the UK in a partnership with local mobile provider O2, and offers a daily selection of the 100 hottest music tracks as selected by MTV staff, downloaded automatically to users' phones overnight for a subscription of just £1 per month. MTV Play is a similar concept for music videos, and is being tested in selected European markets including Germany.
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