Internet and digital technology are causing huge disruption in media spaceThe forces which are undermining traditional media – 100s laid off from newsrooms etc – are feeding companies, NGOs governments all kinds of organisations as they take control of their own stories.We have been saying for some time now that Every Company is a Media company. But less is said about what that means – what’s entailed, what are the consequences for organisations developing their own direct digital channels? Owned media as its called?One consequence is they have to understand the media habits of their customers and stakeholders. Engagement is not a one way process and too many companies still see content as a simple marketing channel. That wont work.Need to raise the game of non media companies in the world of communications….as transition from analogue to digital, static to interactive, accelerates those on the winning side need to show the innovation, creativity insight and expertise that their customers demand and expect. Because if nothing else digital is raising expectations – of customer service, of quality, of accountability – and of brand engagement too.
Contentdetermines how people spend their time. It can teach, inform, entertain, advocate, sell. With traditional advertising – it’s the end of the conversation. Digital content should start the conversation. Content continues the conversation, engages consumers, earns attention.Published content means Portals, entertainment, news/info, lifestyle, company websites
Published articles, videos, photos. DOES NOT inlcude home movies or partypicsDoesnot include messages about content – only those that share it.Content is social – that’s how and why it starts and feeds conversation and engagement. Social is no longer the enemy of traditioonal media – its distribution and marketing for traditional media as well.
First, there's information and, increasingly, people overload. According to Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, every two days we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003. Naturally much of it is digital and social in nature, according to Schmidt. The explosion of information has been a blessing for our business. We have more places than ever where we can tell ours client stories. Some of these are new in that we control that content completely. However, it's also been a curse because, all the while…
Attention remains finite.According to studies, the average user spends under 20 seconds on a web page and they only read 20% of that page. What's more 57% will never return. So even though content proliferates, our time and attention continue to remain finite. This means that it's going to be harder to land on people's screens in the three-to-five time mix that we know from our data is optimal for trust and behavior change. Tablets and smartphones don't make this easier. They make it harder since the experiences tend to be more immersive and the consumer is also more mission oriented.How do people decide what to consume? There are all sorts of criteria, but this environment will make Brands more important than ever in my view. Trusted brands that deliver value will flourish. But they have to ensure they are trusted and they deliver value….How?
On a more optimistic note, if there's one constant in a world of change it's this: as a society we continue to love stories. However, technology is constantly changing the art and science of storytelling.. Stories aren't going away. What's more they help us connect and break through the clutter. But we too need to evolve how we tell stories and create the means for them to be retold by others.
There’s a lot of talk of Transmedia storytelling at the moment. It just means ensuring your story, your content palys across multiple platforms so it can be found and is consistent wherever and however it appears. Hollywood knows this. They are creating experiences that follow the consumer across screens and formats to ensure they remain engaged. Many of these are social. Games are driving movies now – probably more than movies are spinning off into Games. James Cameron Avatar 3D, last of human senses (talkies, colour …)Rob Stringer at SonyThe news media too, meanwhile, has embraced innovation and a multi-platform and a search-driven mentality to ensure their content has a longer shelf life on Google.
Transmedia really means a 360 degree approach stemming from a core idea. Multi purpose, multi-platform from the core of a single galvanising idea – delivering cost effective, multi channel, reinforced message.Of course, if you own all of these channels, that’s reasonably straightforward. But most companies don’t.
Which brings us to what Edelman calls the Media Cloverleaf. Four distinct forms of media in the modern ecology all with their own characteristics, opportunities and challenges. But any content or campaign has to find a way of palying across all of them (or as many as possible) if it is to be effective.The four spheres of media include: the Traditional Media (our bread and butter); Hybrid Media - a new group of up-starts that have a social/digital DNA, are entrepreneurial, disruptive, yet are media companies; Owned media - companies and brands who leverage content, sometimes they are not our client’s sites but partners or third parties; and Social Media - digital embassies inside some of the world's largest communities. Transmedia storytelling leverages each of these spheres at the right time and place to generate maximum awareness. Sometimes this means we go in the front door (traditional media) and guide the story into other spheres. But increasingly, however, we can be risk-takers and more efficiently start the narrative in one of the other spheres by going in the side or the back door. Im going to focus particuarlarly on OWNED media – which is what makes every company a media company.It means that all sorts of companies are having to get into Content production for the first time. The press release is no longer sufficient, it has to be increasingly video or info graphics
The most revealing data from the study, which the company provided to us and which may appear on its site soon, is that having a video is one of the best ways of showing up in the top results at Google.The chart below shows up videos are by far the most found results in Google, with image content a distant second:What Wins In Google Universal Search? Videos, Images & Google!Jul 28, 2011 at 2:16pm ET by Barry SchwartzinShare245 Searchmetrics has conducted a data analysis on what type of content appears most often in Google Universal Search results, as well as which sites are most visible in them. Video and image content wins, as does content hosted on Google’s own properties.Universal Search Loves Video, ImagesThe most revealing data from the study, which the company provided to us and which may appear on its site soon, is that having a video is one of the best ways of showing up in the top results at Google.The chart below shows up videos are by far the most found results in Google, with image content a distant second:After video and image content are map results, news, books, shopping, images and then blogs.The key point here, if you want to be seen in Google Universal Search, do video!
In turning a company into a media company, we are really trying to editorialise the brand.Of course every brand has its own values and character, its own DNAWhat do those values look, feel, sound like as editorial content? As video, graphics, a white paper, a podcast? Not good enough to just put content out there – the work of content farms. It just adds to the clutter and noiseEngaging content, that people will want to spend time with, requires thought and purpose. I call Content the Creative Expression of strategic purpose and core values. It has to have a purpose – and that purpose has to be the heart of the brand. Apple – CreativityNike – CompetitionHarley Davidson – FreedomDisney – MagicThese determine the characteristics – and the value – of the content. Also, one reason why advertising business is chainging so rapidly. Ads used to be what sat between programmes – t he moment to go and make a cup of tea or turn the page. Today, brands are seen to provide editorial value. My kids have a very different relationship with their favourite brands from me. They are willing to surrender some privacy and personal information in exchange for a deeper sometimes tailored realtionshipo with their favourtie brands. Which is companies like Red Bull and Diageo have roles overseeing content development and production. And of course in the digital world, there is far more data available to help determine where ads or where brands can be most effective and how people choose to engage with them. Content and digital comms can be expensive and needs to be paid for – so perhaps its good that predictions about the global advertising market suggest digital advertising is set to grow from 10% of the total to more than 50% in the next five years – accelerating the disruption and transition from old world to new. Uvs an empty measure. Engagement metrics needed and on the way.Asd part of this…There is a merging of the commerical and editorial imperatives. But this only reinforces the need for companies – driven by commerical imperatives – to learn some editorial ones too.So, four principles of Owned Content, or what companies need to do if they want to be effective media companies
First: transparencyDoc Searls is speaking elsewhere today I think. Its over ten years since he co-wrote the Clue Train manifesto showing how markets are becoming smarter. His co-author David Weinbereger a year or two ago coined the phrase: “Transparency is the new objectivity”. In the world of News, whreim from, traditinally objectivity was what made the public trust you. News orgs would lay aside bias to produce content that could be trusted. For all sorts of reasons that doesn’t work in the digital age. Today, transparency is what drives trust. Openness about who you are, your motives your interests. So, as Edelman learned some years ago and other agencies have since fallen into the trap, if you are sponsoring bloggers to talk about your brand, it better be clear you are paying them. Or when its discovered your trust and credibility will nosedive. I believe in editorialising brands that much of their content can stand alongside trad media with the same credibility – but it has to be transparentEg Health sector.
2 – what I call the publisehrs mindset is what most non media companies find most difficult to adopt or grasp. Sometimes it can lead to a restructuring or re-organisation of the whole companyThis is about stopping seeing content as purely a marketing channel, and start thinking of it as the value you provide customers…so as with any product you have to understand what they want – and how when and where they want it.A publisher produces the books he thinks will sell, the books his customers want to buy – not just what he wants to sell.Understand what about your brand can be transformed into content in a way that will engage and pull people back in a highly competitive environment requires a new set of skills. That;s why broadcasting, my old industry, doesn’t just have producers, and distribution. It has developers, commissioners, research, planning scheduling, and more. It’s media planning on a grand scale needed within companies. Curation, aggregation, third party linking – provides value to the viewer or user. What issues do you want to OWN? What do you want to be the must go place for? How do you do that? Not by a one way communication, or corporate voice.
3, updatingLast week a client said they had put one video up two months ago and no-one was looking at it. Why would they? If they’ve seen tit once and there is nothing new? Static website – text heavy, seldom updated. Dead. NoticeboardLive website, video, graphics, fully socialised, updated daily or more. Alive. Conversation.Skills needed to deliver content on a regular basis framed in the right way. Internal newsroom?As well as manage conversation, moderate, curate – to nurture.
Finally – back to Transmedia impact. What drives content, your narrative, around the four sections, leaves of the clover?Search and content, particularly visual content. SEO becomes increasingly important – understanding what your public searches for, which may be expressed differently.Embedding – linking feeds conversation.Transparency, Publisher mindset]UpdatingFindable and sharableJust four basic principles to make any company a media company. It gets more complicated – but that’s a start.
When every compani is a media company
“When every Company is a Media Company...”<br />Richard Sambrook<br />Chief Content Officer<br />
People spend time online with Content<br />2<br />Source: Nielsen/Aol survey 2010<br />
Content is Social <br />23% of social media messages include links to content<br />27,000,000pieces of content are shared per day<br />Messages about a specific industry are twice as likely to contain links to content<br />More than half of those include a product or brand name mention<br />3<br />Source: Nielsen/aol survey 2010<br />
Across all forms of media- a 360 degree expression of a great idea<br />TEXT<br />VIDEO<br />Video<br />Text<br />TV<br />Radio<br />RADIO<br />TV<br />CONTENT<br />Print<br />On-line<br />WEB<br />PRINT<br />Mobile<br />Audio<br />MOBILE<br />AUDIO<br />8<br />
Transmedia Storytelling Spans The Media Cloverleaf<br />HYBRID<br />TRADITIONAL<br />SOCIAL<br />OWNED<br />