Warner Bros. Discovery has positioned a name change dropping “HBO” as preserving what’s special about the HBO brand. Paramount Global took a different approach with merging Paramount+ and Showtime by stacking the names on top of each other, so Paramount+ with Showtime would not lose either brand’s established appeal.
While the Discovery Channel has lots of valuable educational programming and Shark Week has become the undisputed Super Bowl of nature shows, the network has made some big missteps over the years, from portraying scripted segments as real, to pretending a guy got swallowed by a snake, to outright misrepresenting the views of real scientists in an effort to score big ratings for dumb programs. Discovery has also leaned more into reality TV programming and less into factual based educational shows.
The plan for Warner Bros. Discovery to loose the “HBO” name is the opposite of what they should be doing, over the last 20 years, HBO has produced some of the best programming anywhere in the world and the countless awards have highlighted that. When viewers see HBO, they see content that they can connect with, that they know the quality and story is unparalleled.
HBO Max leads the rankings in terms of concentration of award-winning content, with one in five (21%) decorated titles in its library. HBO took home the top Emmy Award for the sixth time in eight years on this year, dominating TV’s biggest night thanks to the darkly comic shows “Succession” and “The White Lotus.”
Diversification of Content: HBO has diversified its content offerings beyond traditional television series and movies. In recent years, they have invested in sports programming, documentaries, and late-night shows.
Expansion of Original Programming: HBO has increased its investment in original programming, resulting in a larger slate of critically acclaimed and popular shows such as “Last Week Tonight”, “Game of Thrones,” “Westworld,” “Succession,” and “Euphoria.”
Loosing the HBO name is about to be another misstep in the long list of missteps happening to Warner Bros. Discovery.