Seventy-percent of digital leaders in the media and entertainment (M&E) industry are willing to accept short-term revenue losses to invest in long-term digital growth, according to a new EY report.

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“Leading M&E companies are already focusing everything they do around continuous innovation. But how do they sustain that leading edge?” asks Martin Lundie, EY partner and Canadian media industry leader. “Simply evolving existing products may not be enough. Success comes down to striking the right balance between short-term revenue sacrifices and the long-term benefits of a digital model. Those who adhere to customer demands for sophisticated digital models will come out on top.”

The report shows that 57% of M&E companies cite listening to customers and analyzing customer interactions as an important strategic priority in order to create lasting relationships with clients, and reimagine the products and business models that define them.

“Companies are undertaking digital models to provide customers with a seamless, anytime/anywhere experience. These models span everything from product development and distribution to customer experience, supply chain, profit models and risk management,” says Lundie. “They’re also using real-time social engagement and big data analytics to put the customers’ voice at the centre of their innovation.”

Read: Insurers must go digital, says EY

But operating in a digital world is not without its challenges. Even leading companies still wrestle with data reliability: 49% cite it as a challenge, and 39% say they are not yet obtaining insight from big data.

Those companies not yet in a digital leadership position say they are facing even greater big data challenges. Only 11% are employing second- or later-generation analytics. And, where 81% of companies who are digital leaders say they can integrate data from two or three channels to obtain a better customer profile, only 64% of other M&E companies claim that capability.

Read: Survive and thrive in a digital world

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