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Web Content Revolution December 29, 2006

Posted by Joanne KY Teoh in Trends.
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Web 1.0 saw new media companies going beyond traditional media by publishing content in real time with flexibility to change it on the fly.

Web 2.0 empowered users to publish their content in a mass way. This content revolution couples user-generated content with professional content and allow them to speak to enthusiasts in a given vertical.

As such, content is not only pushed to a broad audience, but also to a targeted group. As part of this strategy, they are also getting paid for their publishing efforts.

What’s so new media when a company buys up niche content? Well, such a company starts with niche vertical and adds a suite of proprietary new media tools that transforms the vertical into a fast-growing user generated-focused, community with unique and constantly refreshed content.

This model does things much more efficiently than traditional media companies. There’s no cost structure or approach to producing content, distribution or selling advertising. The company gets content from users for little to no cost. It leverages partners to sell ads and does not need an ad sales force. It also gets significant traffic from “direct navigation” through a portfolio of domain names.

In Web 2.0, it’s go big or go home! There is a great market opportunity to build the next generation media platform by combining domains, niche content properties and unique tools and technologies. Size and scale matters, and the capital allows the content company to secure a market leadership position quickly.

Many content companies are emerging, with a user-generated component. There’s a danger of too much content that is not vetted enough and not categorized well by vertical. The goal is to provide users with the best tools to express themselves, allow them to easily search and find what they are looking for based on the vertical they are interested in, and allow them to get to the most relevant content based on its quality as determined by other users.

What works? User generated content that allows users to express themselves and showcase their personality. User generated content that has lasting value.

Video content is one way that users express themselves. The wiki model is another component of providing users information. It needs to be combined with expert content and individuals self-publishing without the ability for the community to change. By combining all three, users get three perspectives on the topic they are trying to get information on.

Learn from MySpace about how to make online properties a hit:

Give users tools and incentives to publish and they will do the work for you. Understand and focus on the user. Launch features fast and often. Always listen to users and solicit their feedback.

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