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How does advanced metadata help TV and media businesses?

Written by: Zuzana Brigantová, A happy intern two months into a Business Development internship at Simply.TV

Simply.TV is providing top-quality metadata, created with much love and joy. As much as we enjoy it, the question is: How does metadata help companies, and what is it good for?

Looking at the origin of metadata: Metadata is per definition “just” data about data. A nice complement that does not play much in importance and is difficult to use on its own and isolated. However, metadata that is interconnected in a broader context has become an integral driver of almost every system. There is no exception when it comes to content creation and the entire industry of TV viewing. At Simply.TV, we love the challenge of connecting every piece of this gigantic puzzle into meaningful use cases for our customers - so they can easily find what they are looking for.


Maleficent featuring Angelina Jolie, Disney movie 2014 in images for TV metadata supplying
Visual variations for Maleficent, Disney 2014

Simply.TV is, like several other EPG and TV-listing providers, offering core metadata like descriptions, images, episode and season information, and technical metadata. What is unique about Simply.TV is the focus that dedicated and expert teams have on advanced discovery areas such as sports, kids content, and keywords. We take care of all the extra metadata work for these areas and can help your company launch a sports and kids universe effortlessly.

Our innovative keyword space allows you to create endless universes and content carousels on your platform, like users know it from the best and most popular streaming platforms in the market (Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video). These UI and UX's are all made possible by extended metadata. So let me elaborate more on how advanced metadata plays a role and what is behind it.

Metadata editorial interface showcasing Maleficent, Disney movie from 2014 featuring Angelina Jolie. Amongst other elements, it includes the core metadata fields of description, title, production year, production country, genres and cast & crew. Metadata description in several languages is also provided.
Editorial interface showcasing various data fields

Importance of comprehensive metadata

The media industry (slowly) starts to understand that metadata is an absolute core element for creating a better customer understanding of the available content. Simply.TV's deep assessment of pain points for both operators/MVPDs and viewers' allows the specialists to focus on providing metadata that truly matters. For local, national, regional, global content. From movies to series over documentaries and entertainment to sports and live airings. That is why we are the best in what we are doing.

The secret sauce of great user experience: Metadata.

Metadata is essential for filtering and sorting any different kind of content. Just because it is a romance movie, it does not mean that you are interested in all kinds of romance movies. Therefore, we tag every piece of content into:

  • Characteristics - major and minor themes similarities – e.g. princess/castle, kingdom/royalty

  • Mood - the feeling and intensity of the content, so each program can be matched up against the viewers’ individual preferences

  • Generic metadata - specific data such as duration, setting, country

Our metadata is sourced from reliable sources and processed by experienced editors. 100% consistent metadata should be in place to ensure a sound experience on the customer platform and Simply.TV’s metadata embodies that.

Being an innovative and disruptive company, our data points are also interconnected. Our keyword tagging system allows customers to identify program relationships.

Personalized collections can be created based on keyword combinations and program similarities, supported by keyword weightings. Going the extra mile, we are adding more and more specialized keywords that enable the creation of more customer-centric collections.

Good Metadata = Valuable, quick and desired content = Simply.TV

TV Metadata keyword tagging for Maleficent, Disney 2014. Recommendations are also suggested, for internal purposes. The metadata keyword tagging is divided by: characteristics, mood, setting, period and audience.
Maleficent, Disney 2014, in-depth keyword tagging

Which role does imagery play in successful interfaces?

Todd Carter said – “Images are the new currency online.” And he was very right!

For new programs or those with less familiar titles, images become the important first impressions that often lead to the selection of a program.

A good image should be informative and emotion-evoking. Our editors make sure the showcard images in our system tell a story to your audience. Just by looking at the showcard image, a user can instantly tell the program’s theme and starry cast. We also prioritize attention-grabbing and emotion-evoking images. We do this to deliver a WOW visual experience to convert regular watchers to loyal viewers.

TV Metadata images on Maleficent, Disney 2014. High resolution images are being showcased including 1920x1080, HD images, as well as other formats and sizes including PNG logos. Images metadata are coming only in HD quality
Editorial interface showcasing the different image types

What I have seen and learned during the past 2 months is that Simply.TV cares about all of these small details that are making the true difference for great UI/UX - it might be something that the normal user of Netflix or Disney+ is not aware of because most data elements are created with the same science that we at Simply practices. But turning to traditional TV platforms, there is still a lot of work for them to step up their game.

So if your company wants to stand out in your market, let us talk.


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