Dijit/NextGuide Gives TV Networks a Reminder Widget

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really liking the TV guide features. Hence working on the NextGuide app, which took the TV guide concept up a notch.”

In NextGuide, you can search for shows, add them to your watch lists, and sign up for alerts when those shows are about to air. “Once we did that, it was a very simple twist of logic to take the technology and make it work in a more embedded, distributed fashion rather than just inside our app,” Toeman says.

“The big surprise is that we are not actually a B2C [consumer] company,” Toeman says. “We actually make tools for TV producers, movie studios, and entertainment websites to help them drive audiences to their content.”

Toeman expects a bandwagon effect to develop, as more and more networks see the “Remind Me to Watch” button on their competitors’ websites and realize that it’s “as easy to add as a Facebook Like button,” in his words. There are already plans to upgrade the reminder widget to allow people to request SMS text messages instead of e-mails, and to let them customize the timing of the alerts—to two days before a show airs, for example, or two hours.

But first Dijit needs to prove that its system can handle hundreds of thousands of users, all setting multiple alarms. “We can test it, but at the end of the day, when there is a new episode of Modern Family, people who expect to get reminders better get their reminders,” Toeman says.

The percentage of people who actually open Dijit’s reminder e-mails varies from the high 30s to the mid-50s, Toeman says. Those are astronomical rates for TV-related content. “I’ve never seen anything like it—it just shows how much people want to see those shows,” Toeman says.

The e-mails will be a good place to sell ads for shows that are thematically related to those that are about to air, he hopes. “If Network A is building a new show and they really want to reach out to fans of Show B, today they can’t do that,” Toeman says. “We provide some great tools. We have the exact audience measurements for who wants to watch what.”

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Wade Roush is a freelance science and technology journalist and the producer and host of the podcast Soonish. Follow @soonishpodcast

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