Mark Cuban is an American businessman, investor, and philanthropist. In 2011, Cuban launched AXS TV, the premier destination for live events, breaking news, and as-they-are-happening trends in the worlds of pop culture, music, fashion, and entertainment. Mark is also the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Landmark Theatres, and Magnolia Pictures, as well as a “shark” investor on the television series Shark Tank. In 2011, Cuban wrote an e-book, How to Win at the Sport of Business, in which he chronicles his life experiences in business and sports. You can follow Mark on Twitter - @mcuban.
By Chris Borchert
AXS TV is about music and to a lesser extent pop culture. We feel strongly that with the great sound on HDTVs and the picture quality, and the passion people have for music, it’s finally time to make music a primary TV experience. WE want people who love music to watch AXS TV.
Who is behind AXS TV?
It’s my baby, with some big time help from AEG, Ryan Seacrest and a ton of great people.
I’m like a lot of people, I’m passionate about music as well as sports. We had been broadcasting live concerts on HDNet, which was great, but I wanted more. I wanted more music discovery and to expose great acts to a wider audience. It is far easier for us to reach people on TV than it is to reach online, so we rebranded as AXS TV with a focus on music and the goal of being 100% music in the future.
When you stream online it’s very, very expensive for any but maybe 10 bands to draw an audience. You have to spend a ton of money and do incredible PR work in order to get people to stop what they are doing and go to your site and watch. And if they do, it’s pretty tough to get them to commit to tie up their PCs/devices to streaming the show. People want to do other things with them.
With AXS TV we have a built-in audience. We can throw things on in the middle of the night and get 100k viewers. That’s a huge online show. So we have a built-in advantage. People still love to watch TV and a concert on AXS TV looks and sounds great and lets you use your mobile to interact with everyone else watching the show.
TV is real time and so is Twitter and other social media, so it creates a unique social experience. When we broadcast a live concert, we have people at the concert tweeting, the band tweeting and people watching at home, all tweeting and talking to each other. It’s a unique experience that you can’t get anywhere else.
People now watch TV with a mobile device. Always. So it creates a unique dynamic that we try to take advantage of to create a unique experience.
We have a show, AXS Live, that is on 5 days a week that has a daily segment where we introduce new music. We are in the process of creating new shows in just about every category that will include new music. And there are a lot of bands, that while they may have great followings, may not be known to all of our viewers. So we can put on a live concert for a band, get a great audience and have a percentage of them listening to the band for the first time. So all of our concerts are music discovery as well.
First, MTV and VH1 long ago stopped being music channels. As far as Palladia, it’s a great channel, but it pretty much is exclusively MTV/VH1/CMT left overs. It’s content that is recycled. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s not breaking any new ground.
Our biggest challenge really is getting the word out. Once people try us, they love us.
Yes. Stay tuned.
We can keep on increasing the number of live events we do, and that is exactly our plan.
Check out Switchcam.
Remember that you have to figure out how to create revenue and make sure your costs are lower. Simple concept, but for some reason it’s not always obvious to the music biz.
And for any bands/artists out there, feel free to email me. Mark@axs.tv, we want to know about what your band/act is doing. I can get you to the right person.