Aug 3, 2010

Film is so much more than celluloid

I got the chance to spend a day last week with some very clever people working in Transmedia at the Melbourne XMediaLab. It's easy to think with the way marketers are connected these days that we are across most things in no time at all.

We couldn't be more wrong.

I was excited and surprised to see that particular media industries and pockets of the world are using emerging and traditional media in concert to devastating effect and shaping... [clash of cymbals] THE FUTURE!!

The Future!!

Here are just some of the developments, projects and approaches that got the hairs on the back of my neck standing up:

Demand Media and trending words

It's so simple and such an elegant idea. You monitor trending words across all online media, create content based on these words and then hang ads around it. It's that easy. Gavin McGarry from Jumpwire Media in NYC showed me how entreprenuers are using the model, and teams of scruffy copywriters, to mould (what he calls) the future of content.

Video is king in 2013

Predictions are that 64% of mobile content in 2013 will be video.

News sites, social platforms and other media are already groaning with as much video as they can find. As bittorrent and apps like Vuze show us, if you are not creating video content as a priority today you will be further and further behind your competition tomorrow.

Stuff like 'Ask Shane' will be how we share, learn and communicate. It still is the new media.

Product beta in advance

As the film and gaming kids know, if you have a great idea that will go to market, start talking to your audience now. Use everything at your disposal to create the environment that your product will be launcehd into. Why try and mould the market and sentiment toward the product post-launch when you can do it months or years beforehand?

Here's an example from the pre-marketing for The Dark Knight shared by Lisa Gray from The Feds

Fucking A.

Sharing content for nothing and making money in the process

Jarod Green, the creator of Beached Az and head of The Hansomity Institute shared his model for creating ace content, sharing it with your mates and making a return to keep things ticking along. His self-deprecating NZ patter did not conceal the fact that this guy is super-smart and he can work the model well.

For Beached Az they spent about $16 (NZ), shared it with their mates and then saw it take off from there. After a million views on Youtube they decided they should draw out some $$$ from it.

They now create content and share it for free, seed it properley and then collect revenue from merchandise, selling the product on to TV and rolling it along. They re-invest proceeds in their next 'free' project.

Easy (if you're good).

The content around your product can be more popular than the product

James Franklin from Pixeco gave a great account of how their transmedia around one documentary release created unexepected 'heros' in the campaign. PR and media was a huge part of the pre-buzz for their film The End of the Line.

Amazingly, they found one of their widgets that helped people determine which fish were sustainably fished and OK to eat had 750,000 users in no time. Be useful and relevant to people with your content and they will reward you. The film did OK too.

Your phone will organise your life

You thought it already did? Pleased with your iPhone 4 or HTC Desire?

Think about a time in the near future where you won't be inputting into your phone but the reverse.

Imagine your phone organises your day, your clothing, your food, where you go, what your car and house does... everything. The technology is available and phones will be at the front of technology that fades into the background and does more for us while being less obtrusive.

 Morgan Jaffitt loves this stuff and you can bet he'll be making it happen here in Oz.

Immersive media strategies are the way forward

And not just for film. If you think we're clever for working across multiple channels here in Australia we have nothing on what they do in the U.S.

Jeff Gomez, the CEO of Starlight Runner showed me how transmedia in the States is creating deeply immersive worlds around stories such as Avatar, Tron and Pirates of the Caribbean. In essence the story told by any good film is only a part of what can be explored.

With the technology, media and audiences orbiting around projects we can tell stories for generations, not just for a season at the Multiplex. If you have something to share with an audience, something they can help build on, all you need to do is create the parts that fit and watch the audience/users put the pieces together in new and amazing ways.

So, I have a head full of new ideas and some projects I want to try them on. THE FUTURE!! is what we make so...

What are you going to make today?

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