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Mashup Video?

Since the late 1990s, media producers have distributed raw, open-source digital content direct to consumers as a marketing and community-building tactic. One great example is AcidPlanet.com. Often as a pre-release promotion, record labels will distribute raw tracks in free loop bundles for people to download and use to create remixes. The resulting remixed versions of the songs are uploaded to a searchable archive that displays ratings, recommendations and comments from other remixers. More importantly, from a word-of-mouth marketing perspective, this personalized content gets shared through interpersonal networks of friends and family who are online and get remixed versions of an upcoming album release.

The BrightCove blog recently mentioned the upcoming NIN release where Trent and his gang are pre-releasing a GarageBand version of a track that can be remixed and distributed by his fans. The BrightCove blog entry asks a provocative question: “I wonder when we'll start to see video producers publishing their iMovie or Final Cut Pro source... In any event, another step towards the Remix Culture.” I think so. And, as I mention elsewhere, there needs to be an economic context that drives innovations like this.

There are at least four intersecting trends that seem to provide such a context: 1) low-cost video production and distribution; 2) fast growing broadband access; 3) new flavors of branded entertainment; and 4) clickable video.

A while ago, Wired had an interesting piece on mashups – remixers merging and melding songs to create new tracks. As a marketing and promotional tool, mashups can be huge. In the not too distant future, I believe we’ll see video producers releasing b roll footage, outtakes, and other cutaways for consumer to use to create and publish their own, personalized commercials – in essence, video mashups. New studies show broadband in 50% of American homes, and with low-cost video production tools and 37% of broadband users already regularly watching online video, it seems like just a matter of time before video mashups emerge as a marketing tactic. This seems especially true given the recent trends in branded entertainment. The trick will be for sponsors, or perhaps through affiliate and contextual advertising programs, to find a way to embed product placements in clickable video formats – much like ESPN and others are doing today, but from the bottom up, and not the top-down.

April 20, 2005 | Permalink


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In response to our posting on NIN releasing GarageBand source, Josh Hawkins discusses the question we posed on the future of video producers releasing their own source material. [Read More]

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