Deloitte rolls out media and tech predictions for 2013
Zan Chandler's insight:
I'm not a fan of predictions per se but since we are talking about the very, very near term (in terms of foresight or futures thinking), I am sharing this article on Deloitte's media and tech predictions for this year.
Despite the popularity of smartphones and tablets, the PC is still king because of large screens and comfortably sized keyboards. Voice and gesture controls aren't going to challenge the standard remote control due to unreliability, impracticality and physical effort.
Over-the-top services are expected to be more beneficial to broadcasters and distributors than "pure play" services. Given the stronghold the cable and satellite distribs have on the content creation, broadcast and distribution, we probably won't be seeing OTT services serving up much of the popular and fresh content.
Global shipments of smartphones are expected to surpass a billion units.
Today we’re thrilled to announce that more than $100 million has been pledged to film projects on Kickstarter. This is a big milestone for independent filmmakers and this new way of filmmaking. How big?
Zan Chandler's insight:
If you are thinking about using crowdfunding services to fund aspects of your production, here's some info from Kickstarter about the projects that have been funded (pledges and totals collected).
Indefatigable in their desire to find larger and larger audiences for their film, Adam Bhala Lough (Bomb the System, Weapons) and and his co-director Ethan Higbee have been self-distributing The Upsetter: The Life & Music of Lee “Scratch” Perry for what feels like an eternity.
Zan Chandler's insight:
Not every filmmaker will want to take on the huge task of self-distribution. But if you want to, there appear to be more and more precedents from which to draw inspiration.
The article, written by Brandon Harris, highlights the distribution journey for The Upsetter and touches on two emerging forms of revenue related to self-distribution:
- distrify.com and it's revenue sharing affiliate program where 10% of sales generated from sharing via social media go back to the initial paying viewer. I like this because it leverages behaviour that is a natural to us as humans - sharing what we like with friends and family.
- Vimeo's tip jar - where viewers can opt to compensate creators for their work. Tipping is not uncommon to many cultures as an expression of a good experience.
The final paragraph hits an important point for me.
“The old fashioned models will still be there should we want to utilize them,” says Lough, ... “however this is the future and I recommend all filmmakers from here on out carve out the rights to distribute their own films digitally through their websites and social media pages.”
I look forward to the time when every filmmaker is be able to distribute their work from their personal or company websites and social media.
What we call "brands" are just promises of an experience ... and content will help you shape that promise.
I've been having more and more discussion lately about the idea of filmmakers AND films being brands, each in their own way. If brands are promises of an experience and content helps to shape that promise, then it's not a stretch to see how individual films are expressions of a filmmaker's brand. Or a way to experience the creativity, vision and artistry of a filmmaker.
Walt Disney Imagineering Research and Development will soon launch phase one of its new ‘Living Worlds’ program in which it seeks to engage ‘innovative storytellers willing to push the limits to create fully immersive worlds ...
Speaking after Vancouver's Merging Media, Starlight Runner president and CEO Jeff Gomez, says he feels "Canada is ahead, in the number one position, simply with regard to the fact that funding and other incentives are being furnished to projects that are required to be spread across multiple media platforms.”
That luminaries such as Gomez look to Canada with with envy is a good thing. I agree an incentive system that encourages new ways of telling stories is a plus. However, I also agree that while funders have begun to encourage film and TV producers to produce across multiple platforms, many indie producers have still thinking with a "mono-media" (a transmedia friend thinks I might have coined a new phrase) mindset. For me this is the bind of government subsidies. They were created for very specific reasons - to build an industry and create homegrown content - and they've been very successful at that. However, the industry has become very adept at working this system and very few are keen to try new ways of thinking and creating.
The Canadian independent Film and TV production scene has a great opportunity to take advantage of the incentives and environment that exists here. Will they stick to their old ways or will they learn some of the skills and mindsets that are indicative of the new millennium?
"When we talk about a company’s brand, people’s minds usually jump immediately to that company’s logo. No argument there: A logo is a vital element of how you communicate your brand. A logo is the visual representation of who and what you are. But your logo is just the beginning of your brand...[it's] one-way communications. You are showing or telling, but your audience is not actually experiencing your brand."
Recently, I've been having more discussions with filmmakers about the value of understanding and expressing their brand. While they have thought about their brand in terms of their company name or the type of films they make, few seem to have thought consciously about the experience their audiences have with their brand. This has been less of an issue in the past as most filmmakers have had limited experience interacting with the viewers of their films. However, today, there are so many ways for audiences to interact with filmmakers and their products. I know it's a bit of a weird idea, but given how much effort filmmakers put into creating the best viewing experience of their films, why not take it one step further and design a an informative, engaging, enlightenting and delightful experience of their brand.
Can audiences easily find your work? Can they share trailers with their friends? Can they easily hold screening parties? Can they see your research or development process? Can they contribute to it? Can they see what you are working on next?
Now that there are more and more ways for audiences to interact with the makers of their favourite films, filmmakers have a great opportunity to shape that experience in ways that reflect who they are, why they make films and why audiences should come back for more.
"One of the benefits of transmedia storytelling is its inherent need for collaboration. Few people are experts in all platforms or ways of telling stories. Sure, filmmaking is already a collaboration between many creative minds, this is true. But building a compelling storyworld that engages audiences in ways that are natural to a given platform requires content creators to work together in a different way"
Mediawave.tv is an online bulletin for screen content creators. Online business models and monetisation strategies - news, analysis, case studies, expert opinion.
Tail, meet dog: Time Warner Cable is currently sending a mailer to internet-only customers, suggesting that they should upgrade their broadband speeds for a better Netflix experience and offering to throw in a whole year of free TV as a bonus. How about some TV with your Netflix? Time Warner Cable’s latest mailer to Internet-only customers. Why is this remarkable? Because not too long ago, cable companies viewed TV services as their main money maker and broadband as an added service. The Time Warner Cable offer doesn’t just turn this model on its head, it also puts the focus squarely on Netflix as one of the main reasons people would want fast internet access. Of course, Netflix has been blamed by some in the industry as a reason why people would cut the cord and go internet-only in the first place. For these cord cutters, an ad like this may actually be a smart thing: Instead of making them feel like they’re subscribing to an expensive TV bundle, Time Warner Cable is putting the emphasis squarely on Netflix, a service Internet-only users likely already enjoy...
While technology is reshaping the storytelling landscape, enabling audiences to contribute more significantly, once again, to the storytelling experience, I noticed a lot of reluctance among some of those in the film world to exploring the new world of stortytelling.
I think it's interesting that Tribeca, known as a film festival, has expanded it's perspective to talk about storytelling. This move has opened them up to considering how the future of filmmaking might involve. Perhaps they recognize that "transmedia" is not just a fad and has the potential to radically change storytelling on audiovisual and other platforms. I wish some other film festivals were as exploratory.
It's worth checking out Tribeca's Future of Film blog to see the avenues they are exploring.
Cultural organizations like theater companies, orchestras, and art museums are using the internet, social media, and mobile apps to draw in and engage audiences, provide deeper context, and disseminate their work beyond the stage and the gallery...
Zan Chandler's insight:
Nice to see that these arts orgs are recognizing that social media and other digital technologies not only aid in promotion and fundraising but can also enhance engagement in the arts, bring in new audiences and push the boundaries of what's considered art.
Thanks to the folks at Transmedia 101 for bringing Jon Reiss to town for a masterclass that was insightful and engaging. Here's hoping the filmmakers who attended find interesting ways to put his ideas into practice.
"With Meograph, you can create what co-founder and CEO Misha Leybovich calls "4D storytelling" through a simple interface that lets users add images, video and text to a story they want to tell. It's free.
Today if you have a story to tell, you can publish a video to YouTube and write a blog post about it, but it starts to get funky if you want to add a lot of photos or tell how the story evolves over time. Meograph lets you create and share interactive stories that combine video with maps, a timeline and links, filling in that often missing context of where and when."
The future of movie storytelling has more to do with the technology outside of the movies than within, according to one transmedia expert, who says that we should expect stories to be revolutionized by modern technology in the same way that the printing press changed everything.
If you’re a moviemaker whose primary focus is creating the best movie you can imagine, the current movie industry has some bad news for you: That’s not enough anymore. Speaking at this year’s Cross-Media Forum in the United Kingdom, Sean Stewart – whose Fourth Wall Studios has worked on creating interactive marketing for movies such as The Dark Knight Rises and AI: Artificial Intelligence – said that what is needed now are more filmmakers who want to create the best worlds they can imagine..
...Reflecting the nerd demographic seemingly at the center of blockbuster movies these days, Stewart’s talk was called “Storytelling V: The Audience Strikes Back,” and described the shifting relationship between audiences and fictions in a world where everyone has smartphones, tablets and access to the Internet. He cited a recent Google survey that revealed that 77 percent of audiences are dual-screeners – That is, using another electronic device while also watching television – and suggested that, in order to maintain a close connection with their audiences, storytellers will have to learn to spread their talents across various media....
"As the social media specialist at my last organization, we grew fans and followers from 400 to 40,000 in less than a year. "
Eric Tung outlines 14 things his company did to build the number of fans/followers. While he's talking about marketing in corporate setting, his suggestions can work easily, perhaps with a few tweak, for any filmmaker who is looking to build audiences for their projects and fans of their work.
Implement a few, or implement them all. Some, however, are key:
#1 Get executive buy-in. Well if you're the filmmaker, that should be relatively easy. However, you want to make sure your key collaborators are in line with your vision
#2 Set up a social media advisory council. If you aren't a social media expert make friends with a few and get their advice. Also make sure that all your key collaborators who are active in social media are all tweeting from the same page. See #1.
#3 Get local/get out: Get out and meet people. Is there a meeting place for fans of your genre? Where do people into the topic of your film hangout online and offline? At a film fest, get out into the line ups. Take photos, interview other festival attendees. Get in there and get engaged!
#4 Get them to stay. If you bring folks to your website give them a reason to hang around for a while. Better still, give them a reason to come back. Behind the scenes videos/photos aren't new but they can work. More info on your topic, process or journey. Ask questions?
#5 Blog, blog, blog. Related to #4, #7, #8, #9.
#10 Find influencers. Who's an influencer in your space? Find them, friend them, copy them, learn what they are doing right.
#12. Track. Track what you are doing so you know what impact your actions are having. What happens when you put up another video and tweet it. Which contests or games are successful with which demographics. What are the wackiest ways folks are finding your website?
Dr. Siobhan O'Flynn and Anthea Foyer, Canadian transmedia experts, have developed a wonderful resource kit with tons of great information including a series of case studies. If you are interested in understanding transmedia, multiplatform or convergent production this is a great place to learn the essentials. I particularly recommend this for mono-media producers who are contemplating a transition to more than one platform.
Fiona Milburn from Transmedia NZ interviews American indie producer Ted Hope, keynote at the recent Big Screen Symposium, about transmedia and the changing nature of filmmaking.
On moving forward into a new world of cinema, Ted Hope's comments below resonate for me.
"As with any new venture, we have to recognise that we're going to go down some wrong paths. In an analogue world, we're only rewarded for producing success. In a digital world, we can be rewarded for producing things that will evolve and be built upon later by others. We have to recognise that there is benefit in being productive. In the tech world, people are proud of the fact that they have launched many things, some of them failures. They have a way of working that rewards rapid prototyping: getting things out; learning from it; moving on to the next thing. This is a time for building on our knowledge and wisdom. It is not a time for just maximising revenues. We can't be afraid to fail (emphasis is mine)."
Who wins when the new wave of crowd-sourcing for theatrical distribution get more movies into more theaters across the country? We all do, says Scott Glosserman, the founder and CEO of Gathr: content owners, theaters, and audiences.
Sharing your scoops to your social media accounts is a must to distribute your curated content. Not only will it drive traffic and leads through your content, but it will help show your expertise with your followers.
How to integrate my topics' content to my website?
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Distributing your curated content through a newsletter is a great way to nurture and engage your email subscribers will developing your traffic and visibility.
Creating engaging newsletters with your curated content is really easy.