The World Economic Forum called 2020 a “watershed year for the media and entertainment industry”.

It’s not as if these industries weren’t already in a state of flux in the face of ever-increasing digital imperatives, and consumers empowered by vast choices and a strong social voice, but the advent of the Covid-19 panemic certainly hastened many businesses’ pivot to digital.

“Consumers and advertisers are shifting to digital channels, expecting greater value for their time and money, and raising the bar for customer experience. Competition is intensifying and access to granular user data will be key for success,” the WEF reported in the white paper from the World Economic Forum Platform for Shaping the Future of Media, Entertainment and Culture.

“Business models are evolving to accommodate a new class of consumer creators and hybrid monetisation opportunities. Platform companies are drawing increasing scrutiny from regulators. As these dynamics play out, a new framework is needed to understand how media companies will create value in the future.”

Not just that, but companies were faced with new ways of working too as workforces across the globe started working from home. And they had to do it fast. Brett Morris, CEO of Nahana Communications Group, wrote in the Journal of Strategic Marketing that if you’d asked him in January how long it would take to move the entire organisation to remote working, he would have “given a typical corporate answer. Something like, “By the end of the year” for no good reason other than we place arbitrary emphasis on the end of the year as an inflection point…

“And yet in the context of the current crisis, we were able to do this in two or three weeks. That comes down to the fact that we had some very creative people, applying their critical thinking and solving problems in a time frame that we would never have thought possible.”

With billions locked in their homes, media consumption was always going to change, and the media, marketing and entertainment sectors with it.

The truth is that the coronavirus pandemic swiftly and decisively pushed businesses into changing the way they operate. Almost overnight, they had to pivot from one way of doing things, to finding solutions and innovations for a vast range of issues brought about by lockdown.

In the first episode of The Media Lounge, panelists will tell their stories on how their companies pivoted to operating in a constantly moving environment. What were the successes, the challenges and the pitfalls, and how will this impact on their future operations? Have they changed the way they work forever?

The Media Lounge host, the urbane and media-savvy Donald Mokgale, will chat to Primedia Outdoor’s Peter Lindstrom; e.tv managing director Marlon Davids; Brett Lindsay from EVA powered by Brave Channels; Tractor Outdoor CEO, Simon Wall; creative digital agency Conversation LAB’s Uyanda Manana, and Arena Broadcast’s Vernon Matzopolous on how they navigated and overcame the challenges associated with the Covid-19 Pivot.

Join us on 7 October at 10am.

Register here.