CONSCIOUS MEDIA THINK TANK
The top-thinkers of the entertainment industry are meeting in March 2018 for a groundbreaking, inaugural, invitation-only think tank to discuss and plan —
“The Future of Conscious Media:
Return on Inspiration, Insight and Investment”
Conscious Media is…
programs that “uplift and entertain.” Oprah Winfrey
stories with an optimistic story arc that show behavior matters. Show indications of forward progress… based on the belief that change is possible, thereby empowering people to take action… encouraging positive transformation… motivating people to co-create a more positive world. Michelle Gielan
for an audience that’s ultimately optimistic, it wants to experience an inspirational world, an altruistic world.David Linde
content that uses alternative modes of thinking – integrating spiritual, experiential and contemplative ideas with methodologies drawn from modern science – to explore and understand the human condition and ways in which individuals can align their spiritual, emotional and physical beings to live in harmony with themselves, others and the planet. GaiaOnline.com and Sparks & Honey
consciously crafted using timeless tools to create a specific uplifting, expansive, transformative affect upon the consciousness of the audience. Pamela Jaye Smith
entertaining and uplifting content that encourages audiences to think mindfully, choose consciously, and create wellness in their life Kate Neligan
film and television that has something to say about humankind and what right action is. It shows us where we’re living and, hopefully, how we can live better, live together, and, ultimately, love one another. Mark Harris
investigates phenomena, shines light into the darkest corners of society, researches the mysterious aspects of our existence and brings forth the brightest methodologies for personal development and sustainability. Regina and Scott Meredith
March 23-25, 2018 – Downtown Los Angeles, CA
Using the Future Search process, 64 top entertainment industry professionals, across eight stakeholder groups, are gathering to create a robust future for conscious media which is beneficial, entertaining and profitable.
There is high-demand for positive, conscious content. Audiences are ready. Profits are standing by. Now is the time for the industry to work together mindfully and strategically to support and maximize this lucrative and exciting opportunity.
IT IS OUR MISSION TO MAKE THIS COLLABORATION HAPPEN.
CONSCIOUS MEDIA INFO & STATS…
Conscious Media is a huge market worth billions --
- In the 2010 LOHAS Journal (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability), it was stated 1 in 4 American adults are consumers of goods and services focused on health, the environment, social justice, personal development and sustainable living worth approximately $290 billion. Up from 50 million in 2000. Similar numbers were discovered by Worldwatch Institute According to more recent statistics, 100 million American consumers are hungry for this content. That is nearly a 1/3 of the population! Compare that to the 111 million of viewers who tuned into the last Super Bowl. The market is even larger when factoring in Europe and Asia.
- The website Soul Pancake, recently sold to Participant Media, has over 8.8 million social media fans and 1.7 million YouTube subscribers who have clustered around SoulPancake since it was launched in 2009.
Conscious Media is a growing market --
- The 2013 study by GaiamTV and Sparks & Honey stated, “The Conscious Media explosion will continue to accelerate over the next five years as social and cultural patterns and scientific and technological advances expand audience interest, and the marketplace responds with more compelling content.“
- In 2015, Richard Cohn, Owner of Beyond Words Publishing and Distribution, said, “The audience for self-help and spirituality books and films has grown as people have begun looking for a more meaningful life experience.”
- Illuminate Film Festival’s attendance has grown 160% in two years to 4500+ attendees.
- OWN network is growing. In 2015 Q4 it brought in 500K+ W25-54 viewers, up +24% vs. YAGO.
- Studies show that over 35 million people in the U.S. practice yoga today, up 76 percent in the past four years, and another 80 million aspire to practice yoga,
- Documentary “Awake: The Life Of Yogananda” become a mainstream hit, grossing over $1.5 million through the support of the ‘conscious’ community.
- In 2015, the scholar of religion, Hugh Urban argued that New Age spirituality is growing in the U.S. and can be expected to become more visible: “[M]any would call New Age a form of ‘spirituality’ rather than religion. … According to many recent surveys of religious affiliation, the ‘spiritual but not religious’ category is one of the fastest-growing trends in American culture, so the New Age attitude of spiritual individualism and eclecticism may well be an increasingly visible one in the decades to come”.
Conscious Media is profitable --
- From the AFM 2016 report titled, “What Types of Low-Budget Films Break Out?” looked at over 3000 profitable low-budget ($500K-$3M) films over a 15 year period, and determined there are four “niche” audiences “large enough to make for a very profitable market, if you can reach them. The “faith-based” film audience stands out. Having a very clear idea of your audience is the first step to making a financially successful film.” They defined “faith based” to mean, “Validating, Feel-Good Religious Films. The strength of these movies isn’t necessarily their quality so much as the message; they deliver to an audience that is interested in what they have to say.”
- While, of course, skewing towards Christian content Movieguide.com’s 2015 report said this about more mainstream but conscious or positive content, “Filmmakers have a better chance of reaching the Top 10 and Top 25 if they keep strong and very strong negative, non-Christian, anti-Christian, amoral, immoral, or false content out of their movie. In fact, filmmakers and movie studios are twice to four times more likely to reach the Top 10 or Top 25 at the Domestic Box Office if you eliminate these negatives and accentuate the positives. And, finally, filmmakers generally will make more money in the Top 10 and Top 25 lists if they keep such negative content out of their movies. Clearly, this is what most moviegoers (and most non-moviegoers for that matter) want to see from Hollywood and the Entertainment Industry: Good conquering evil, Truth triumphing over falsehood, Justice prevailing over injustice, and Beauty overcoming ugliness. Most people also would like to take their whole family, including their grandparents, to the movies more often.”
- Additionally Movieguide said, “movies with strong or very strong negative content still can’t match the financial success of movies with strong or very strong positive content.”
- Also in the Movieguide.com’s 2015 report, “In many countries around the world, American movies fill up to 15 or more of their box office Top 25 lists. It’s common to see family-friendly, morally uplifting, and redemptive entertainment take at least five of the top ten spots, even more in the bigger, more cosmopolitan countries and in the booming Chinese and Indian markets.”
Other Conscious Media markets are growing and healthy --
- Using books as a trend to based market size and interest, based on Nielsen Book Data’s most recent 2015 report self-help books was one of the four top growing genres at 15% from the previous year.
- Self-improvement represents a $10 billion per year industry in the U.S. alone. In addition to high revenues, self-help also has a high recidivism rate, with the most likely purchaser of a self-help book being the same person who purchased one already in the last 18 months based on Rodale Inc., a publishing company.
- Americans spent $9.84 billion annually on self-improvement books, CDs, seminars, coaching and stress-management programs–13.6% more than they did back in 2005, according to Marketdata Enterprises.
- The New Statesman’s Barbara Gunnell forecasts a secure future for positive psychology, noting that “never has an age been so certain that it deserves not just freedom from distress, but positive well-being” and that “the worried well with a belief in their right to feel good are a lucrative market.”
- From Forbes in 2009, “The hot growth area–up nearly 11% in the last year, to $527 million–includes “holistic institutes” (think the two Chopra Centers, run by alternative-healing guru Deepak Chopra) and “training” companies (such as Dale Carnegie Training, a professional-instruction franchise that aims to hammer home the principals of the author’s best seller How To Win Friends and Influence People).” Foretelling a forecast of 6.2% average annual growth rate.
- Large similarly-themed conferences like IONs, Wisdom 2.0 (3000 people from 25 countries), and Science and Non-duality are consistently sold out.
Conscious Media increases conversion rates and positive feelings about brands --
- Happiness researchers Shawn Achor and Michelle Gielan found out that, “People who read positive news stories come to associate those feelings with the surrounding advertisements and the brands they represent. In one study, readers were 24 percent more likely to purchase a product if its ad was juxtaposed with a positive news story than a negative one. They were more likely to remember the ads, too.”
- Buffer reported, “Positive sentiment in your social media updates and in the responses to your brand leads to a positive reputation.”
Conscious Media makes a product or service more viral --
- From Michelle Gielan’s “Journalist Manifesto”, “A seminal study conducted at the Wharton School of Business found that while people do share negative stories, they are significantly more likely to share positive, emotional stories. Researchers Jonah Berger and Katherine Milkman from the Wharton School of Business at my alma mater, at the University of Pennsylvania, looked at what makes content go viral. They analyzed the most shared stories on the New York Times website over a three-month period and found that viral content follows three rules: Positive content is more viral than negative content, emotional content reaches more people, and people prefer sharing practical, useful content. Of the three dimensions, a news story’s positivity was most predictive of sharing behavior. Highly positive, emotional content was most likely to be shared and go viral.”
- Hubspot’s Dan Zarella’s “found in particular that negative remarks including sadness, aggression, negative emotions/feelings, and morbid comments were correlated with accounts with fewer followers. For accounts with 8,000 followers, negativity appears in less than half of one percent of their remarks.”
- AdPushup reported about Journal of Market Research’s whitepaper proving that negative emotions have an impact (“Anger” – 34%). But positive emotions have the right impact (“Awe” – 30%). “…Looked at another way, when both the percentage of positive and negative words in an article are included as separate predictors (instead of emotionality and valence), both are positively associated with making the most emailed list. However, the coefficient on positive words is considerably larger than that on negative words. This indicates that while more positive or more negative content is more viral than content that does not evoke emotion, positive content is more viral than negative content.”
Conscious Media is preferred by audiences --
- As reported in Wired, during Facebook’s news feed experiment in 2013 they “found that seeing positive posts influences people to post positive updates, seeing negative posts influences people to post negative updates, and that an absence of emotion on their News Feed leads them to post less overall…. The researchers noted that the effect of less posting was slightly stronger when users were fed fewer positive updates, suggesting that Facebook users become less engaged when content on their feed becomes more negative.”
- Frac.tl Marketing declares, “Over 60% of survey respondents prefer content that’s positive, with “amazement,” “admiration,” and “joy” being the emotions they feel the most when consuming content of their choice.” And “positive content gets shared more frequently than negative content. There are certainly exceptions, but you’re best off creating content that leaves a smile on your readers’ faces.”
- In their “Content Engagement by Generation” white paper, Frac.tl did a survey of over 1,200 people, they found, “‘If it bleeds, it leads.’ It’s a classic rule for any journalist, but is it truly what your audience wants? Our research indicates otherwise, with respondents preferring to read good news over more depressing stories. Over 60 percent of each generation believe words such as ‘amazement, ‘admiration,’ and ‘joy’ describe how they feel most often for the majority of the content they consume. In contrast, less than 20 percent of each generation identifies feelings of ‘apprehension,’ ‘sadness,’ ‘anger,’ or ‘disgust’ with their preferred content. An interesting note: Baby Boomers and Millennials share an affinity for news that elicits feelings of ‘surprise’ and ‘amazement’ while Gen Xers prefer content they can ‘admire’ or “trust.’ Tip: If you want your content to resonate with multiple generations, make sure its main takeaway is something more lighthearted than disheartening. The Generational Content GapFinding: Preference for the Positive.”
- In “Why Certain Emotional Combinations Make People Share”, Frac.tl surveyed 400 people and asked them to record their emotional responses to 100 of the top images from Reddit’s r/pics community. Each image had gone viral, with thousands of upvotes and hundreds or thousands of comments on Reddit, plus at least 1 million views on Imgur. The 10 most common emotions reported by our survey participants were positive, with happiness, surprise, and admiration being the top three emotions. Negative emotions were reported far less than positive emotions. Hate, reproach, and resentment were the bottom three emotional responses.”
Conscious Media has impact --
- The LA Times reported, “When “Will & Grace” premiered on NBC in 1998, few expected it to become a cultural touchstone or a ratings success. “Ellen” had gone down in flames after blazing a trail for out gay characters on TV, and there was skepticism that a sitcom about a gay man and his female best friend could speak to the heartland. But the show went on to be a huge hit for much of its eight-season run, winning 16 Emmys, and is often credited with making Americans comfortable with “the gay next door.” This past spring, Vice President Joe Biden told “Meet the Press,” “I think ‘Will & Grace’ did more to educate the American public than almost anything anybody has ever done so far.””
- The Global Media Center for Social Impact contributes to a growing body of literature that demonstrates the power of storytelling to move viewers to action, change viewers’ minds, and prompt viewers to incorporate new information. Impact studies from across the country and around the world reveal that TV health storylines can have significant impact on viewers’ knowledge, attitudes and behavior:
- Numb3rs (CBS): 10.3% of viewers were motivated to become organ donors after seeing an organ transplantation storyline on the show Numb3ers (Morgan et al., 2009; Movius et al., 2007).
- The Bold and The Beautiful (CBS): Viewers who watched an HIV storyline on The Bold and the Beautiful in Botswana held significantly less stigmatizing beliefs about HIV than non-viewers (O’Leary et al., 2007). In the US, an HIV-related dramatic climax on The Bold and the Beautiful resulted in the largest spike in callers to a CDC HIV-AIDS hotline that year (Kennedy et al., 2004).
- Law & Order: SVU (NBC): Viewers of a 2010 storyline on rape in the Congo had increased knowledge regarding immigration, asylum and sexual violence, more supportive attitudes toward global health policy priorities, and increased discussion of global health issues (Murphy et al., 2012).
- 90210 (CW): 11.9% of viewers reported scheduling a doctor appointment to talk about breast cancer risk after seeing a BRCA gene storyline on the show 90210 (Rosenthal, Buffington, et al., manuscript in preparation).
- Grey’s Anatomy (ABC): Over 8 million viewers learned for the first time how to prevent maternal to child spread of HIV from a single episode of Grey’s Anatomy (Rideout, 2008).
- TrueSpark states, “Extensive research has also proven that exposure to [negative imagery] causes an increase in teen aggression, underage drinking, and adolescent sexual behavior. But… exposure to pro-social content in media causes youth to have more positive social interactions, show more altruistic or more responsible behavior, exercise more self-control, and develop or maintain fewer stereotyped views of others.”
Conscious Media helps you have a good day --
Consider this new study by Arianna Huffington and Happiness researchers Shawn Achor and Michelle Gielan which states, “Individuals who watched just three minutes of negative news in the morning had a whopping 27 percent greater likelihood of reporting their day as unhappy six to eight hours later compared to the positive condition. While on the other hand, “those who watched transformative stories reported having a good day 88 percent of the time.” The researchers followed up by saying the unhappiness is connected to lower performance and a higher likelihood of depression.