For those that are not familiar with Razorfish, we’re a digital agency that focuses on creating experiences that build businesses. These are a few of our recent projects…
The research question we posed to ourselves
And what we found is that content needs to be free. Digital content needs to be free to go where and when people want it most.It has to be mobile, and it has to be social.
Of course, the reason digital content has so thoroughly changed the playing field is that it no longer has to be tied to a physical container.
Magazine publishers are constrained to a certain number of pages – and they MUST fill those pages.
Take, for example, the BBC. This is an interesting case because, although they have been doing broadcast news for a long time, they never did print journalism. They first published text-based news on the web and never had to work out all the details of the print production process. So here’s an article on their website…
But it also appears in many other digital channels: content aggregators, different devices, different social services. They have to be aware of how their content gets to all these places and how their audience engages with it once it’s there.The story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/10168684.stmMobile version of the story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/mobile/business/10168684.stm
We focused on these three areas of challenge/opportunity.[Explain them]
But we found that, for the most part, publishers need to transform the way they approach their business. The key to success in the digital realm is going to be developing new products and services that continue to align with the brand’s core value while providing unique, meaningful experiences to your audience.One of the first steps in that transformation, is making the content they create more Nimble. So, how do they go about doing that?
In the course of our research, we spoke to decision makers at several media companies that we feel are doing interesting things in the digital realm. [quickly run through them?]
Primarily, we found is that, what really makes content nimble, what makes it possible to quickly and easily take advantage of new opportunities, form new partnerships, or develop products for new platforms, is to create content that is well-structured and has rich metadata – making it modular, well-defined, and ready to create useful relationships to other content and data. So, beyond HTML and RSS, there are other things that can be done to add meaningful structure to content, and there are tools that can be used to help add useful tags and metadata to content. And the more of this that you can set up in the publishing process, the better prepared you will be to invent new content products and partnerships. Now, we’re going to walk you through an experience to demonstrate some of the concepts and principles covered in the report, and then we’ll talk about the underlying technologies behind it.
Removes the guess work so systems can interpret data
Add structure + metadataDevelop new products more quickly & easilyContent management tools that incorporate a wide range of structure and metadata capabilities Create and publish content encoded with semantic markup and meaningful metadataNot necessary to understand all the underlying codeStreamlines the publishing processMakes it faster, easier, and cheaper to bring new content products to marketExamples: Open Publish, Jiglu Insight
Streamlines the process of tagging content by extracting concepts on a pageSuggests a set of consistent tags for each piece of contentContent producer approves or rejects each suggested tagExamples: OpenCalais, TextWise, Tagaroo
You may have noticed that Yahoo, Google, and Bing have all begun displaying useful information right in the results. They do this by using rich metadata embedded in the pages to highlight specific kinds of content. There are tools that add semantic markup to the content that will help take advantage of these new display features, or validate existing markupExamples: Google Rich Snippets Testing Tool, Inbenta, Semantify
A web of connections between equivalent conceptsKnown IDs become a tool for translating any set of IDs
Enhance content with linked dataImport additional information, assets, services, and user-generated contentImprove SEOObtain additional data and content for application developmentData set may already include map to other desirable data and services
Enhance existing pagesIdentify key conceptsPlace assets and information on the page or link to relevant offsite contentVideo, images, user-generated reviews, tweets, Wikipedia entries, etc. Allows producers to create rich pages without spending a lot of time manually searching for related assets.Examples: Apture, Evri (?), Headup, NewsCred, Zemanta
As a content producer, being nimble is about quick adaptation and preparation for future opportunities
We need to go further than XML, RSS
What will content publishers be doing differently?
The value of content will lie in being able to provide a desired product or service, not just the content itself.MLB has a free iPhone app with some functionality, but also has an app available for purchase, with premium content such as live streaming audio, video, and pitch-by-pitch coverageA variety of different services, for different devices, for a range of pricesSubscribe to team alerts, Player alerts, or get a day pass alerts $.99MLB.com At Bat - $14.99
eMarketer benchmarks its US online advertising spending projections against the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB)/PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) data, for which the last full year measured was 2009; online ad data includes categories as defined by IAB/PwC benchmark—banner ads (static display), search ads (including paid listings, contextual text links and paid inclusion), rich media, video (including in-stream, in-banner, in-text), classified ads, sponsorships, lead generation (referrals) and e-mail (embedded ads only); excludes mobile ad spending.
New opportunities for high-value advertising will include unique approaches that use the digital content itself.Media industry and advertisers can collaborate to create ads that are more engaging, relevant, and ultimately more effective.
Ads that are contextually relevant to the content can be more engaging and ultimately more effective.Fairly broad matching
A little more specific…Analyzing content pages for message, context, or mood, and inserts relevant adsCreates highly desirable ad inventoryAudience targeting, without the privacy concerns of behavioral targeting
Semantic ad targeting tools include protection against unfortunate term-matching.
Partner on product development – Either license your content to a developer for a fee, or share in the proceeds of the product they develop with your contentAffiliate partnership – More accurate matching of links to contentValue-add – Offer free content that drives sales of paid services, products, or devices.Reduce costs – Use tools that help automate parts of the process. Make production processes more efficient so you can produce more content, in more formats, often with a smaller staff.
Create unique modes of interaction and the optimal types of experiences for each platformContent must be nimble in order to: Reduce development time for current and next generation devices Anticipate the needs of platforms that don’t even exist yet Make everything seamlessly work together
Track Twitter, social networks, blogs, discussion boards, content sitesTrack a brand, industry, domain or topicWith semantic capabilities:more accurate relevancesentiment analysis Track ongoing stories and audience reactionExamples: Imooty, Inbenta, Lexalytics, Tattler
For the sake of this concept demo, we’ve focused on fashion-related content and features, but these principles could easily be applied to other domains.While this concept demo may include some elements that content providers are doing here and there, what we want to show is how all these elements can come together and leverage semantic principles and technologies to create a rich, new content products. [Hand off to Paul][Reinforce the idea that making content nimble is what’s required in order to quickly & easily develop new products and partnerships.]
The first step is: You have to ask yourself what your business is really about. If you come from traditional publishing, is your business about producing a certain kind of product, for example, a magazine, or is it about having the knowledge, the access, and the expertise to share the kind of information and insight that your loyal audience is looking for, in whatever form suits them? Too many businesses are deeply tied to the limitations set by the physical form of the content they produce, and this impacts their organizational structure, their production process, and the form of the content they produce – even down to the length of an image caption. Even businesses that have begun to move into digital will find themselves continuing to do things in a way that made sense for traditional publishing processes, but are now just holding them back. Often people can’t even remember why they do things in certain ways, or on certain schedules, but the traditions have got them stuck in a rut.
Like a mix of Homepage, RSS, and Facebook wall – your personal content stream about fashion. The concepts represented in this experience could be applied to be any number of subjects: general news, entertainment, travel, sports, automotive, consumer electronics, pet grooming, etc.We start the experience with a mosaic of fashion content aggregated from industry, publisher, blog and social sources... A fashion reader’s conduit for news, events, perspective and new looks and their platform for collecting, sharing and shopping. More than just something a person reads, it’s a major part of their lifestyle, delivering value to your audience beyond just the content itself. Publisher sponsors can define baseline content sources, and readers can add other suggested sources to personalize their mosaic…Point out: Content sources (magazine, blog, social), Social (most popular by friends), Lookbook (personal and shared), partnerships between content, services & vendors
… and can filter content to suit their interests at the moment, fine tuning what appears in that stream. Semantic relationships allow for content discovery via rich filtering on semantics that have been added by editors, automated tagging, and reader contributions. Point out: Seasonal Filters, Fashion Filters (Runway <> Street, Dress <> Casual), Social/Location Filters (My Friends <> Everyone, Near Me <> Worldwide)
Within an article, readers are contributing by tagging - in addition to editorial and autotagging - helping deliver the content, and of course, sharing to further distribute the content experience and the publisher’s brandPoint Out: Share, Tag, Add to Lookbook
Specific key topics (mostly evergreen) are identified in the content for further exploration Point Out: Designer, Photographer, Event Topics
Readers can explore key topics in topic hubs either as a tangent in support of the article content or as a full content experience in itself. Can promote older, archived content that can be newly relevant.Point Out: Designer’s Influences Using archived content – supported by metadata but managed by editors, for example: “see his first show” Using content from other sources
Within an article and in the mosaic we saw earlier, there is opportunity to promote relevant premium and paid-only content to the readers, accessible via micro-payments or existing customer subscription relationships. This can also be driven by semantic relationships, showing up automatically on any content where it’s relevant, and displaying a different kind of promotion if the person has already paid for access.
There has been a lot of discussion on how the iPad/digital touch-tablet platform necessitates rich advertizing experience, but with semantics, this ad experience can also be matched with and relevant to the content stream of the reader. Leverage the opportunities specifically offered by digital content such as the ability to track, alter and personalize ads quickly and effectively. Audiences are more receptive to highly relevant services and advertising that augment the content experience. Point Out: Ad content changing based on content filters, etc
As opposed to regular contextual ads, semantic ad targeting tools include protection against unfortunate term-matching.The difference is in the degree of accuracy.
Back to the article, with any photo there is also the opportunity to explore related looks…
Related Looks present actual and similar clothes items that match the outfit in the photo as shopping opportunities with partner vendors -- publishing companies can charge affiliates to incorporate their links to related services with the content.If this were another realm of content, aside from fashion, different ecommerce could be offered. For example, with entertainment, it could be add to queue, buy tickets, CDs, DVDs, etc. For sports it could be buy tickets, merchandise, etc.This is also an opportunity to promote related services…Point Out: Shopping direct from Bloomingdales, Barneys <> H&M, J Crew, Similar Looks
As well as shopping, relevant partner services can be offered to the reader. Similar to the advertising, partner services can be matched with and relevant to the content stream.If this were another realm of content, aside from fashion, different services could be offered. For example, for travel it could be travel booking services.
And finally, Editors will become curators for managing digital content. Not only is the editor responsible for the content itself, but he or she also has to handle user comments, partnerships, dynamic content and integrated services.
A CMS content model that allows the creation of fine-grained yet self-describing entitiesGives publishers the ability to syndicate content at a granular level
Integration with standards based vocabularies makes content more portableEnables publishers to build content based products and services with partnersNeed to create new standards for industry specific vocabularies
Integration with standards based vocabularies makes content more portableEnables publishers to build content based products and services with partners
CMS tools providing Machine assisted/ auto-tagging capabilitiesPublishers benefit from efficiencies in content authoring, tagging and SE optimizationCalais offers tag suggestions for content automatically based on a relevancy score. Administrators may choose to apply only certain tags or apply them all.
Open data sets such as Freebase makes content more comprehensiveFacilitates the creation of content based products
You brand needs to enable transacting on Facebook, yahoo tv gadgets, HP printer appsIt’s definitely the year of the appRDF embedded content published from CMSCMS integrated with rich data servicesLeverage standards based taxonomiesXML, RESTFul Web Services
We’ve covered a lot of big ideas in this presentation, and we want to wrap up with a summary of the initial steps we think you need to take with your content and publishing technology in order to get there. Your content needs to be nimble. This will be the key to enabling your business to take advantage of new opportunities and create new content products.
There are three of us speaking today, so we’d like to start by introducing ourselves. I’m Rachel Lovinger, I’m a content strategy lead at Razorfish, and I wrote the Nimble report that inspired this presentation. [Each person introduce themselves]