Potential Implications of Transmedia on Marketing Organizations

The implications of transmedia in education and entertainment are in the process of being explored, experimented with and critiqued.  I think we’ve just begun to explore the implications on business and marketing practices.

There are three major forces colliding within most marketing organizations: BIG data (it begs to be said in caps), marketing technology and media fragmentation.

Transmedia helps to solve the the problems associated with media fragmentation by providing a cohesive narration that is optimized/developed for each media space.  Big data and marketing technology provide the infrastructure to ensure targeted and timely delivery and mapping the value back to marketing ROI.  Each system works together, but the skills required for each system are generally VERY different: creative vs analytical vs systems/process thinking 

Marketing departments in big companies (may) be able to functionally support these systems. But smaller companies will need to outsource.  This leads to the question – which should you outsource vs which should you own?    Will a marketing eco-system develop where specialists in these systems work on a for-hire basis, and the business marketing departments simply work as marketing project managers?  And if so, do they start calling themselves marketing producers?

Lots of questions.  Please discuss 🙂

 

Is Transmedia Marketing Just Another Marketing Discipline?

I love this blog regarding marketing disciplines: http://apowerpoint.blogspot.com/2009/06/10-marketing-disciplines-defined.html.  The blogger – Anthony – categorizes and defines 10 marketing disciplines (e.g., social media marketing, email marketing, etc…)  

I appreciate his pithy definitions and basically agree with his view of these activities as “disciplines” which leads to the obvious question: is transmedia marketing another marketing discipline?

The answer is “no, unh-un, not a chance”

Transmedia marketing is a philosophy (view or theory) that unifies and creates the underlying framework that enables the addition and rapid iteration of new marketing disciplines: marketing strategy, organizational structure, operational workflows and marketing metrics. 

To think of transmedia marketing as just another discipline misses the point of calling it “trans” – meaning it goes across all media.  Transmedia marketing is about breaking down the silos, not adding another one.

Transmedia … is it an Adjective or a Noun?

Steve Peters does an amazing job of capturing the current state of transmedia definition, and ends his blog with a request:  “stop using transmedia as a noun…”

I agree and will comply with Steve’s request!

Transmedia as a noun is too broad and unwieldy.  Rather than communicating a concept or intent it actually obfuscates and “un-defines”.  However,   when used as an adjective it brings focus and clarity.

Here is why transmedia as an adjective feels so right:

Transmedia marketing – marketing a brand/business across multiple platforms and media

Transmedia storytelling – telling a story across multiple platforms and media

Transmedia franchising – distributing a story across multiple platforms and media

Ba-da-bing: point made.

Here is a link to Steve’s full article.  It’s well worth reading: http://www.stevepeters.org/2011/05/18/what-the-hell-is-transmedia/

Students' Union Committee, 1964

Transmedia Marketing – a Definition

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about transmedia marketing, and have come up with the following definition: weaving your brand or organization’s story across multiple platforms and media.

This definition resonates for 3 reasons:

“Weaving” implies a pattern, a vision of the end-result and interconnection.  Too much of marketing is conducted in silos, and focused on specific campaign objectives.  We should be focused on creating a unified, interconnected brand experience.

“Story” – if I hear (or say) “content” one more time, I will be forced to pinch someone.  “Content” is simply the components of story.  If you have no story, don’t bother creating content.  Content is not the goal, it is the vehicle.  ‘Nuff said.

“Platforms and Media” – in marketing we use terms like “channels”, “media”, “markets” yada, yada, yada depending on which marketing discipline you practice (communications, product marketing, etc…).  The term “platform and media” takes the conversation down to the digital bones and makes room for all existing and emerging marketing tools  – traditional and digital, social and static, analog and interactive.

Having the definition is useful in developing the parameters of what’s in, what’s out and where to start.

Of course, starting is the hard part 🙂

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