pl. me·di·a: A means of mass communication, such as newspapers, magazines, radio, or television.
The media industry has changed. The way media is delivered, the way we consume media has changed. It was not that long ago the majority of content was created by professionals and published by professionals, content was exclusive. Content created and pushed to our eyes and ears. A newspaper, magazine, television programme, website, everything used to be pushed and we consumed. Content is no longer pushed, today it is increasingly pulled. Digital technologies have changed the rules.
THE CREATOR AND CREATED HAS CHANGED. Content is no longer exclusively the domain of the professional. Content can be created and published by anyone. Barriers have been removed. Professionals still create and publish, but so do the rest of us. The quality has not dropped, the form has simply changed. Content used to be based on structure and format. Words came in paragraphs, broadcasts came in programmes. Today snippets are the norm.
We consume increasing volume of content in flashes; Words come in 140 characters, broadcasts in one and a half minute bursts. Content is increasingly distributed via text message, or through services like Twitter or Youtube. Consumers create content and comment on existing content. Sometimes this content or comment links to or refers to content created by professionals or published by professionals, but often not. Consumers now dominate in the content stakes, they are the lead in create and share. The balance of power has shifted. The creator has changed.
Snippets are summaries; what is going on, something that has happened, a headline, a piece of information. They create interest; desire to pull more linked to headline, subject, content, tone, language, need or even the creator. Snippets grab attention, or do not. Interest generated in a nano second, we both engage and pull more or we walk away. Choose to walk we are informed, stay consume and we become more informed. Our ability, or desire, to consume rafts of content is diminishing. Summaries are often enough; content succinct, messages stark. The created has changed.
So why does this matter?
Desire and appetite for knowledge and information is not waning, content consumption is exponentially growing. Digital technologies are seeing to that. The challenge for the professionals is to understand how to take advantage; how to create, package, promote their content. Get this right and there are riches to be made. A snippet is more than a headline – control the snippet – it is the new way of marketing and commercialising content.
Importance of mobile is increasing, the channel is set to become a primary content environment for the majority. Gearing content and commercial capabilities for mobile will be key.
(Image: Squashed Green golf ball creates chair designed by jean marie massaud truffle)