Ownership of our media is something that I have been exploring and researching. As I was reading Techcrunch, I found these videos. Todd Bonnewell took to the stage to share his thoughts…that we must reclaim ownership of the content and media we create.
Todd Bonnewell took to the Disrupt Hackathon stage and hacked the 60 Second Pitches with his own pitch. This stage is typically for individuals to share new apps or concepts, but instead…he had a message for the audience of hackers, not for the judges.
The video you see above is a 30 second advertisement being played in movie theaters across the region. But this is just a small portion of a bigger project enhancing the Clemson Ring Experience.
We produced a 3 minute video sharing stories of the Clemson Ring, all brought to life through illustrations and animation. I worked with a wonderful graphic artist/animator Josh Stolz bringing these stories to life.
The script came from Joe Sherman’s “There is Something in These Hills” written in the 1970’s. Mr. Sherman was the Executive Director of the Clemson Alumni Association and wrote this piece of prose based on his reflections of Clemson. We used this selection, altering just a bit to bring it into present day context, because we felt he accurately described the Clemson Experience and also painted a beautiful image of Clemson through his words. What better way to connect the stories of Clemson to the people that live this experience daily.
I hope you enjoy the video above and look forward to sharing more down the road. To learn more about the Clemson Ring Experience, visit the Clemson Alumni Website to watch and read more…or CLICK HERE.
To read the whole selection from Joe Sherman, CLICK HERE.
Many times I get the call to consider working on a project that needs to be completed in less than a month…and the only focus for project is for an event. I always spend time meeting with the folks to listen to the project. We spend time thinking through the goals…but I have lots of questions and thoughts for everyone involved to consider.
Typically I like to work on projects that are more than just “emergent care”. What do I mean, the project has to have more than just the immediate “focus”. Many times I find the project only solves a small portion of what really needs to be communicated. I like to work on projects that have long-term thinking and provide long-term, residual value to the audience. More than just one production that solves a short-term problem.
I am a business person and I am not-only try be a good steward of the resources provided to complete the project at-hand, but also be mindful of the content that is created beyond the production. I like to put together a comprehensive plan that leverage’s the stories that are captured.
Let’s Think Beyond:
I am a strategic communicator and the first thing I like to do is consider the overall communications plan from two perspectives: the campaign and the organization. I like to understand how this production fits into these plans. Why…because we are telling stories and we are capturing lots of content that *can be* used beyond the project. We probably use 15% of the content captured in the final production, that is 85% left over that is quality content…stories that can be used in other initiatives.
I like to think about the audience. There are many audiences within this particular project and across the organizations communication initiatives. I like to think…what audiences would connect with the different content we capture. What is the most compelling content from an interview we conduct and how can each response to a question fit into a bigger part of a communications plan.
I like to think delivery. We live in a digital communications era where sharing and consuming content has become a vital part of our daily lives. Let me share a few statistics:
From Edelman Digital: “In 2012: 56% of consumer web traffic was video, YouTube users watched more than 36-billion hours of video and online video was the fastest growing ad format (up 55%).”
We are watching content and consuming content through out the day. This content is helping us make decisions from the car we buy, to the physician we choose. But, also….this content cannot be consumed unless it is shared with a community. How about that 1%?
The 1% Concept:
This One Percenter concept is based on research from Jackie Huba’s book, Citizen Marketers. She discovered “that the most highly engaged particpants in a community make up a tiny percentage of the overall customer base but are vocal passionate evangelists who bring new customers into the fold through word of mouth.”
If you have wonderful content, wonderful stories to tell…why not leverage all 100% of that content to engage the most loyal fans…your 1%. This is why I believe that Content is KING. Yes…the stories we capture have more than a shelf life span…they are valuable stories to be told and used beyond on little event, one little campaign, one little production.
These stories are connections…emotions…words of advocacy. They do not deserve to be put on the shelf and used down the road when you think it might be appropriate. We should leverage all 100% of the content captured in a production to engage that 1%.
I want to work with people who want to do more than just one production…I want to work with people that want to treat their all their content as prized possessions, stories to be told beyond the one event, the one project, the one production. I want to help people capture and tell stories to create more than a movement…I want to work with people to create a series of movements over time…advocating using all the stories we capture.
This past year, I completed a project for Clemson Letterwinner’s Association telling stories of the 2012 Hall of Fame inductees. One of the inductees was Karen Ann Jenkins who was recruited by Coach Tribble, but also played for Coach Jim Davis.
I think this is probably one of the last interviews captured on camera with Coach Tribble. It was such a treat to watch the interaction between Coach Tribble and Karen Ann Jenkins…Coach and Player.
I hope you enjoy this story and see the type of relationship Coach Tribble had with her players. Also…here is a great article by the Orange & White about Coach Tribble. CLICK HERE to read the story!
It is time…time to take ownership of our media. What do I mean…well, we have to take ownership of all our media properties and not allow outside forces to have control of our message.
A few weeks ago, Greenville Hospital System rebranded and became Greenville Health System. They put together a great strategic plan to “flip the switch” on March 18th. Literally the evening of March 17th, all websites owned and operated under their umbrella lost their individual identities and took on the new web look as Greenville Health System. All social media properties took on the same look across the whole system.
This took lots of preplanning, pre-creative design, and lots of code work…so over a six hour span…all became one. GHS went from a house of brands to a branded house in a one night switch.
This is taking ownership of media…except one little detail did not come together as “planned.” In all honesty, it was hard to foresee this small situation. On that Monday, the day of the switch, television stations across the region began playing their beautiful, new television spots sharing the new branded message.
Lots of time, effort, and resources were invested in the creation of these beautifully produced televisions spots. But…GHS was not the first to share these spots on the social space. A few days later, the video production company released these spots on their company YouTube and Facebook outlets.
As I watched the newsfeed…my heart sank. I asked myself, why were we (GHS) not the first to share these spots from our social outlets. How does this happen? Is it really a big deal? Is there someone to blame? I have no idea if we should get upset or even bothered over something like this? Or…do you get excited that the production group is proud to share your message. And guess what…they did a wonderful job on the production…here is a link to one of the spots and they are beautiful (btw they were shot with a Red Camera).
What Can We Learn?
In a perfect world, this is how I see this “should” have happened (this is based on my limited knowledge of planning behind the production of the television spots):
1. When the production company is contracted to help create and craft television spots, the contract should reflect ownership of media assets. Specifically, who owns the rights to the content and how this content can be shared publicly.
2. Companies/Organizations should require all production companies to provide final media assets to them for all electronic distribution. What do I mean, all television spots should be provided and ready for distribution on all media outlets from television to online at the same time.
3. Coordinated release schedule should be created and implemented. This plan stipulates the days and times when each outlet will release these elements from television to online. These should be a coordinated effort between the production company, agency, and organization. So if the television spot is scheduled to be released on YouTube the same day it is released on television, the “traffic” plan should detail this plan along with who needs to be involved in this distribution. Usually the organization is the only one who has access to their social outlets.
4. YouTube and social share is just as important as the television release. This was proven with the Audi commercials from the 2012 SuperBowl. Audi released the 30 second spots on television and YouTube at the same time during the 2011 Super Bowl. This created the opportunity for social share…the television spot had a hashtag #solongvampires … so when people watched on television, they went to YouTube to find the video then tweeted it out using the hashtag. Within the first week after release, this created over a million views on YouTube and many million impressions on Twitter.
5. Production company’s social outlets (like YouTube) should not be the place where an organization’s television spot calls “home” and are first released. Why…because the production companies are not the owners of the branded message. The branded company/organization has the right to capitalize on the digital impact of the television spots, especially since it represents their branded message. The television spots should live on the organization’s branded video social outlet (like YouTube & Vimeo).
6. Production companies should make it standard practice in their agreements stipulating who owns the rights to this content, which includes (but not limited to) social media/digital media outlets.
7. Companies/Organizations should make sure their production agreement stipulates the branded organization reserves the first right of online distribution. The organization should be the first to share, then invite production company vendors to share (only after the organization has publicly released).
8. THIS IS IMPORTANT – the production company must share the video from the organization’s YouTube/Vimeo video outlet. SEO is important in this game of digital brand equity.
What can we learn from this? Owning our media is important. Now a little disclosure…I work with GHS. I do not look at this as a critique of GHS but more of a learning experience that should help us plan for the future. Who would have thought that the production company would be the first to share these spots online *and* would it be a big deal? We learned…this can happen and will happen again if we (as digital strategiest) do not plan accordingly.
I learned something from this experience. I must be more diligent when putting together social/digital distribution plans. I will also make sure I write better contracts/agreements with my production clients.
For GHS…they do not want others to leverage their brand, their message, their digital equity. It is important to applaud production companies for sharing the work they create. We want them to share…but it should not be at the expense of the organization’s digital message.