WSJ Ad Revenue Down 10%–(WSJ) The year-over-year decline in ad revenue is attributed to the shift in media consumption from print to digital. CIQ: Fortunately the WSJ has long experience with its online product. We wonder if they will find it necessary to make the online product free.
If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Advertise– (Business Week) Skyrider and MediaDefender are startups based on the following premise: Every time you try to shut down a peer-to-peer file sharing endeavor, a new one springs up. Therefore, these companies are developing technologies to stream advertising into P2P file-sharing activities. CIQ: The technology responds to P2P searches, delivering copyrighted content that is ad sponsored. We think this is a great way to monetize this seemingly uncontrollable space.
RSS 2.0— A new company, Divvio, Inc. is “developing a service that automatically finds audio, video, and, eventually, text, on your favorite subjects. Then it weaves these clips together to create personalized multimedia channels that are updated each time you sign on.” CIQ: We think this kind of smart, multimedia “push search” is great idea. We would like to see choose-your-own-advertiser technology wrapped into it.
Unilever As Content Producer–(Ad Age) Unilever Exec says brands have to think digitally. The company administers digital IQ tests to its brand people. It also continues aggressively in the content-development space, with upcoming Dove webisodes produced by Penny Marshal. CIQ: Interesting that a brand, not tranditional content producer, is the one to recognize and fill the gap in online video content: Almost none of it appeals to women.
Order & Organization Begins in Online Video Space— (NYT) An internet startup, Next New Networks, with execs from MTV and Nickelodeon, will launch niche-type video websites on topics like home improvement, fashion, comic books, and cartoons. CIQ: We believe this kind of niche content with short-form video is the future.
Kids Cheat on MyPenguin–(Chicago Tribune) This site is a Second Life for kids where they get a virtual penguin and igloo. They waddle around, chat with other penguins and play games, which earns them virtual cash to fit out their igloo and dress their penguin. Now they can download cheats to get cash more quickly. CIQ: A similar story on Wired discusses they way people can artificially boost stories to the top of aggregation sites like Digg.com. Looks like click-fraud for the UCG world.
Marketers: Blogs Need Packaging–(Ad Age) Marketers are lured by the idea of blogs. They’re hot, and seem to inspire passion among consumers. But the content is uneven, and the platform hard to control. CIQ: Interesting that there are now media companies who are guiding blog buys for marketers.
Print Philly Inquirer Digest Mimics Web Site—(NYT) In an effort to deliver news on the run, the Philadelphia Inquirer and sibling publication Daily News have come up with a short, color print digest that looks a lot like their web sites. CQI: Would this be better as an email newsletter?
New Survey: TV Networks Don’t Understand Digital–(Ad Week) According to the 360i report, networks use digital media to promote shows, but do not integrate these marketing efforts. Nor do they integrate the various content efforts that support shows. With the result that “fans of network shows get lost when shifting from various channels,” like blogs and fan sites. CIQ: The current owners and producers of content are some of the most behind in online skills. They must hire it or acquire it, then make cultural shifts to integrate it.
That’s the opinion of Ed Kim, interactive guru now on Unilever’s Slimfast brand. “2007 was the year of the consumer,” says Kim. But the next move will be where marketers create a more structured context in which consumers can participate.
He cites J&J who is launching a documentary, essetially transforming from Pharma into Studio. Also Dove. “What Dove did was to give consumers teh tools and the contect,” says Kim. The Dove campaign allowed users to contribute their own video or use a set of pre-defined movies to develop their personal commercial for Dove Cream Oil.
Kim also sounds a jaded note on the constant pursuit of the next hot thing. “For marketers,” he says, “HTML is so last year. This year it’s all about video and UCG. Next year it will be something else.” He reminds marketers that user-generated content has been around for years. “Diet brands have been doing it for decades. It’s call ‘success stories.'”
Authors Gain Audience Through Podiocasts–(NYT) Snubbed by publishers or frustrated that books take so long to produce, many authors are developing a fan base through podcsting their books. CIQ:The book industry has been nearly as slow moving as the music industry, (though nowhere near as vile.) Their protection: The book is a perfect piece of technology. Which is absolutely true. But, an iPod is awfully nice as well.
Netscape Founder Provides Community Toolkit For Free— (Washington Post) Andreessen’s new company called Ning will soon release a free toolkit allowing users to build a social network with a few mouse clicks. CIQ: The idea is that people will launch highly tailored social networking sites, away from the rabble of MySpace & Facebook.
Electronic Trading for Ads–(CNET) The four A’s has an effort called “eBiz for Media.” Also, eBay is looking to enter the space, connecting sellers of ad inventory with potential buyers in an electronic auction. CIQ: This is a great solution and much needed advancement in a business that is still done the old fashioned way and lacks transparency.