Sunday, April 27, 2008

Brand Immersion: Particle Theory

I've been watching Ted Talks lately and am fascinated by the discussions of particles and particle theory. Tonight I heard Amy Tan speak about particles of truth and Brian Greene speak about particles (vibrating strings) that make up the universe - possibly the universal theory.

So I started thinking about universal theory and have begun trying to apply it to the idea of content and its relationship to the brands that sponsor it (advertising). This got me to thinking about the value of media, media properties, and massively distributed content. I've written a little bit about this in a few blog posts and in comments on other blogs including Jeff Jarvis' Buzz Machine.

Jeff recently wrote, "...I think newsrooms will need to be organized around topics or tags or stories because the notion of a section is as out of date as the Dewey Decimal System (hat tip to David Weinberger). Stories and topics become molecules that attract atoms: reporters, editors, witnesses, archives, commenters, and so on, all adding different elements to a greater understanding. Who brings that together? It’s not always the reporter or editor anymore. It can just as easily be the reader(s) now."

To which I responded, "...your observations of the press-sphere should also be a wake-up call to the publishing side of the business who have not yet embraced the vast opportunity associated with “particle theory”. When publishers realize that they are not selling “the page,” “the book,” or “the Web site” but the particles of content themselves, it will become clear that returning to profitability depends on their ability to create systems, processes and selling techniques that match advertiser supported revenue streams to content particles and not necessarily to the curated, branded environment [of a media property]. In this new model that fully embraces massively distributed content everyone wins. Advertisers associate their messages and brands with content that is most relevant; consumers encounter brands in context with content; creators (publishers) monetize not only their own distribution network, but the organic distribution network (long tail) of the content eco-system; and the long tail of distributors (the eco-system) gain some shared financial benefit for propelling the content particles to a broader audience."

As I think about this further, it seems that massively distributed content involves the breaking apart of media as we've traditionally viewed it. Instead of only monetizing blocks of content (media properties) where that content may be valuable for a fleeting time to the few who visit that place, value can be created or extended as the content breaks away from its bounded space. As content becomes an individual particle it can travel to, and live in many places. It can travel with bits of extremely relevant branding, advertising or sponsorship. Or it can attach to new places that have branding, advertising or sponsorship most relevant the fans of the new place.

To determine the value of content particles, I've started to line up a series of assumptions:

1. Content particles may extend active life (engagement or consumption) for longer periods of time.
2. Content particles reach more people over time.
3. Content particles ultimately reach more highly targeted audiences.

I'll be refining this theory over time as I continue to explore ways in which I consume content, desire to consume content, use content in my forays into the social Web, and observe my friends do the same.

What do you think?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Brand Immersion: Do and Do Some More

This gem from Wieden Kennedy London for Honda makes me proud to be a Honda owner. Its sweet, straightforward, inspiring and makes you think about Honda as a neighbor, a friend, and an instigator that you want to hang out with. Bravo to Tony, Kim and the gang in London for continuing the good work they started with Honda Grrrrr.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Brand Immersion: The Life of a Freelance Consultant

Thanks Linda Ziskind for uncovering this gem!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Brand Immersion: Bringing Ideas to Fruition

My friend Tamara Giltsoff from OzoLab passed on her copy of The Next Issue to me the other day. In it I found this short, rather poetic piece from Malcolm Poynton to be quite inspired...

Lost and Found
Challenges bringing ideas to fruition in a rapidly changing and unpredictable environment include: finding people naive enough not be be afraid; finding others experienced enough not to screw it up; finding people who know what questions to ask; finding others who know what questions not to answer; finding time offline to think; finding time online to explore; finding constants in an ever-changing space; finding ways to change the constants; finding open-minded clients; and finding ways to open clients' minds then, having found enough to make progress, remembering to ensure that everyone gets lost in the infinite fun of this golden age."

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Brand Immersion: Tivo your YouTube

Reuters reported, on 12March that the lines between television and the computer continue to blur as TiVo engages in a partnership with YouTube to deliver Web videos directly to people's TVs.

I can't quite get my head around exactly how this will work yet, or what the revenue model will be. But I know that there are YouTube videos I'm excited to watch and share on a bigger screen.

What truly excites me about this partnership, however, is the recognition by both YouTube and Tivo of their primary mission as information distributors - without boundaries.

Brands that recognize the power of massively distributed content, beyond their traditional boundaries, will reap great rewards. More specifically, attaching revenue directly to content (particles), not only to a Web site or magazine (place), dramatically expands revenue potential. Good content particles become massively distributed and consumed, and the revenue associated with this content particle increases in tandem. Advertisers and sponsors are able to pick and choose their content particles to create more relevant associations between their brand and their message and the content itself. It winds up being a winning formula for the publisher, distributor, advertiser and consumer. And that's just plain good business.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Brand Immersion: A Wish for World Peace

In December I first wrote about Pangea Day and shared their call to action - make a film that can change the world.

The thesis: What if everyone in the world watched the same film at the same time? How would it transform us? How would it unite us?

Now, in a mere 36 days, we'll see the fruits of that labor. On May 10, 2008, at 6:00 PM GMT (2:00pm EST) millions of people from all over the world will come together to share a program of short films, talks and music, broadcast on TV, the web and mobile phones around the world.

People all around the world are becoming Friends of Pangea Day, hosting large and small viewing parties to share this four-hour program of films from around the globe. You can be part of it.

Attend an event in your neighborhood or create and host your own event.

Pangea Day was conceived by Jahane Noujaim, a visionary documentary film maker (Control Room and It is the result of Jahane's Ted Prize winning wish for world peace.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Brand Immersion: Welcome to the social

From: akispicer, 1 week ago

Just caught up with Paul Isakson's Blog and found this fantastic primer on current trends in social networking. This SlideShare from Fallon planner, Aki Spicer, covers his thoughts on 10 Trends Marketers Should Know About Social Networking. It was delivered at the agency's Brainfood lunch and was broadcast live across several social media platforms so that anyone could watch if they were so inclined.

If you've got comments or thoughts, be sure to leave them for Aki over on the SlideShare or on the Fallon Planning blog post.