I just got around to watching Friday’s webinar by Optaros about Alfresco in the media industry. In it, Bob Fitzpatrick highlights three major points regarding how to increase online revenues:
- Increase user engagement with your content
- Extend the reach of your content
- Enable API access to your content
As a prerequisite though, companies should be converting their content into assets that can be managed centrally. In so doing, content can be easily related to other content and then be syndicated, retrieved by third parties, or composed and presented to users.
In addition to the aforementioned strategic goals, companies should strive to deliver on them in an efficient manner. According to Bryan Spaulding, this means building a system with a Media Service Architecture that scales and enables exposure to PCs, mobile devices, and TVs. And don’t forget to instrument your system such that feedback can be obtained to enable reporting and thus tweaking of the platform. Jeff Potts reminds us that Alfresco and Optaros can be levaraged to get you there faster via their awesome capabilities.
What is interesting to me about all this is the different approach to the problem. At Ringside Networks, we focused on the “beefy middle”, as Shaun Connolly so eloquently put it. In a nutshell, this meant enabling social interactions in the context of existing web sites with existing users and content. Restated in terms of a Ringside customer’s objectives, those three goals might look like this:
- Increase user engagement with your web site
- Increase the reach of your company/brand
- Enable API access to your site’s social capabilities and/or users
In the Alfresco/Optaros case, the underlying premise is that content is of the utmost importance, and that people will pay to enable their users to interact with your content, or better yet to advertise around your content. In the case of Ringside, it was all about identity and interaction on your site amongst your users, with new eyes sourced from various social networks. SocialPass is taking yet another approach, which brings people to your site, regardless of where they came from. Either way, people would pay to bring users to their web sites.
I think the best of both worlds can be achieved. There will be some shops that won’t be positioned to re-architect their content management systems, and will pay to bring new users to them. Hopefully their advertising revenue will more than offset the costs of customer acquisition. Other shops will be well positioned to capitalize on their content via a solid Media Service architecture. Finally, there will be shops that do both. I can imagine the NY Times online syndicating images, videos, and stories, providing API access, and serving photo galleries and videos along side related stories with personalized SocialPass conversations involving Facebook users, MySpace users, E-Mail invitees, and Twitter invitees all on the same page with integrated ratings and persistent comments. This is nirvana!!!