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Hbo’s 5 rules for success.

August 25, 2010

Everyone knows that HBO is the standout brand in the world of television, but what yardsticks does it use to protect its brand and maintain its lead.

Vanity Fair spent some time with Michael Lombardi to understand the secrets of the network’s success, based on the article, here are HBO’s rules for success.

1. Work with the best:

“We really have the good fortune or the smarts to do
business with the right people,” he says, “because, as much credit as
we’d like to take for those nominations, they really reflect the talent
we do business with.”

2. It’s all about the writing:

“We start with an unmitigated respect for
writers and the written word. You can talk to any film or television
writer and hear their experiences both in the big screen and smaller
screen universe, and they’ll give repeated examples where they feel like
their voice got muzzled, muffled, muddled by input, rather than
supported. What we’re looking for is writers who have a distinctive
voice, a unique perspective, a strong story-telling sense, to let them
do their best work.”

3. HBO isn’t like everyone else
:

We’re not a place that develops by consensus or by committee… That’s why
we don’t ‘focus group’ our shows. That’s just not the business we’re
in…. We’re not looking to be shows that get the biggest number of
eyeballs in the world, we’re not selling ad space.”

4. Stay ahead of your competition
:

We’re not a place that develops by consensus or by committee… That’s why
we don’t ‘focus group’ our shows. That’s just not the business we’re
in…. We’re not looking to be shows that get the biggest number of
eyeballs in the world, we’re not selling ad space.”

5. Quality is everything:

in essence, the HBO formula could probably be boiled down to, “It’s
the Script, Stupid.” Or as Lombardo more eloquently put it: “The first
mantra here has always been quality … not number of eyeballs, not the
flashiest show. Quality. And that’s held us in good stead.”

Posted by Ed Cotton

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