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October 25, 2007

Beyond Media & INTENT MediaWorks Join Forces

Reaching 320+ Million Users and Delivering 50+ Million Downloads Per Month

Beyond Media and INTENT MediaWorks today announced that they have joined forces by merging to create a new venture that will provide the most advanced and comprehensive solution available for digital media distribution.  

The combined entity will provide media and entertainment companies, artists, and advertisers with an integrated marketing, discovery, e-commerce, and business intelligence platform reaching more than 320 million consumers each month.

The new company’s integrated distribution platform will initially power over 1.5 million music and video files, having separately enabled content owners to facilitate over 140 million audio and video content downloads in the past six months.

“Beyond Media and INTENT MediaWorks independently have been at the forefront of complimentary aspects of digital media distribution for several years,” said John Kupice, Beyond Media’s chief executive, who will become CEO of the new company.

“Through this merger, we are combining the best technologies and resources to enable content owners and advertisers to do far more than securely deliver digital media via the Internet. Now they will be able to essentially capture the emerging market of new media marketing, discovery, and business intelligence – eliminating all guesswork from digital media distribution.”

The new company, which will officially debut Monday during the P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA at Digital Hollywood Fall, will specialize in helping both content owners and advertisers utilize real-time user data to more effectively target market segments around digital media consumption, assisting them in tapping into the greatest demand among consumers, monitoring activity across multiple Internet channels simultaneously, and creating deeper engagement opportunities for building brands, driving sales, and creating ad impressions.

With the newly merged entity’s offerings, content owners will be able to track market demand across their entire catalog or a specific file – from terrestrial and Internet radio play to Internet search-and-discovery across the most popular file-sharing networks. Content owners can utilize the company’s real-time market intelligence to target content to consumers based on location, demographics, content interests and past discovery and purchase behavior in order to improve campaign performance for new content or monetize the long tail of their catalog.

“The merger of Beyond Media and INTENT MediaWorks creates an exciting opportunity for content owners and advertisers,” added Tim Hogan, Founder of Beyond Media. “Our customers will now have the ability to create custom-branded storefronts that support live streaming and traditional downloads, integrated advertising, e-commerce, affiliated content and business intelligence capabilities to create unique customer experiences. For example, content owners can broadcast a live concert to a custom-branded media player, providing the opportunity to buy concert tickets, downloads, and merchandise directly from the player. With our new offering, the content itself IS the new storefront!”

“Content owners and advertisers are often at the mercy of publishers regarding how their content is presented and marketed across various channels,” concluded Andy Cooper, President of INTENT MediaWorks. “To complicate matters, monitoring and tracking the performance of new media across many different digital distribution channels can be difficult and void of any meaningful or actionable information that can be used to create a relationship with the consumer or to improve the reach and revenue opportunities for the content owner. Our newly created platform will enable content owners and advertisers to control the user experience – maintaining consistency across all Internet channels, and creating new ones in the process.”

Report from CEO Marty Lafferty

Photo of CEO Marty LaffertyWe are thrilled to introduce the newly merged entity formed by the combination of Beyond Media and  INTENT MediaWorks at the P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA Marketing Conference this coming Monday, October 29th.

A special session focused entirely on this extremely exciting new venture will be moderated by Tag Strategic’s Ted Cohen at 1:45 PM in the Hollywood Ballroom at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel.

Featured speakers will include the new company’s CEO John Kupice, Chairman Tim Hogan, and VP of Business Development Joey Patuleia. Joining them will be Chris Lighty, CEO of Violator.

Among questions that will be answered: What new capabilities does this combination of Beyond Media and INTENT MediaWorks represent? How will the new company embrace the increasingly consumer-driven new media space? What plans does it have for packaging content to drive viral marketing and socialized consumption? How will the new company integrate P2P streaming and with ad-supported models? And… what will the new company be called?

It’s very clear that this newly merged entity will be a digital media distribution company with the capabilities to uniquely help media and entertainment companies, artists, and advertisers to utilize real-time market data to target, deliver, and measure digital media content more effectively.

Their advanced business intelligence tools will be able to provide content owners with a 360 degree view into content consumption across terrestrial and Internet radio, P2P file-sharing networks, and web portals.

The new company will also provide content owners and advertisers with a powerful, reliable distribution channel for streaming and presenting new media and advertising through label, artist, or advertiser-branded storefronts.

Please join us all on Monday for this first-ever – and now historic – market event being held in conjunction with Digital Hollywood Fall.

P2P now represents the largest unexploited revenue generation opportunity in the world. And advertising is the best way to monetize this growing channel.

The P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA is a must-attend event for advertising agencies, online ad networks, sponsor companies, content providers, P2P application distributors, solutions providers, and service-and-support companies – and all other parties interested in profiting from the realization of the file-sharing marketplace to its fullest potential.

Plan now to attend this Marketing Conference focused totally on developing advertising revenue in the emerging P2P distribution channel and social-networking environment. The entertainment and telecommunications sectors are increasingly turning to P2P for its enormous cost savings, greatly increased efficiencies, and potentially higher security than competing online distribution technologies.

The 10/29 P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA – at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel – presents leaders of this rapidly emerging high-growth industry from around the world. Please click here for the full agenda and click here to register. Don’t miss the first-ever P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA.

Your registration for our combined offering of both events represents a $239 savings over rates for these events individually. Please click here to register now. Share wisely, and take care.

The Dawn of Social Computing

In May 2007, Facebook announced Facebook Platform, a new, super-efficient viral distribution channel that allows third parties to distribute applications, digital content, and services directly to Facebook's 40 million users.

Apart from being able to reach users using a new channel, developer partners are free to monetize their content how they want and they do not have to share their revenue with Facebook.

Now that the implications of this are sinking in, shockwaves are spreading out across the technology landscape.

One implication is that Facebook Platform represents an important step towards a platform for social computing, which is likely to result in the emergence of new service categories and new companies which could be as large as Facebook, or even larger.

In a similar way to how Adobe Systems has built its business on top of a platform for 'PC computing' (supplied by Microsoft), so a platform for 'social computing' could support similar-sized companies who will define the new service categories within the social software market.

A new report explains what Facebook Platform is and what it offers to developers, service providers, and brands. Particular attention is paid to the platform’s role as a new, super-efficient distribution channel for digital content and services.

The report then explains how Facebook has managed to greatly improve the efficiency of a conventional viral distribution process throughout a social graph by cleverly embedding several ‘viral booster’ mechanisms deep inside the user experience. The report then explains why and how others can benefit from this effect by re-engineering their own social graphs.

The report next identifies four major limitations of Facebook Platform by analyzing the gap between what the platform currently offers and market demand that will increasingly come from developers, niche social networking sites, Internet websites that include social networking features, and others whose businesses are based on social graphs.

Next, the report explains why and how this demand would be best fulfilled by a new platform for ‘social computing’ that worked across multiple social networking platforms, like those offered by Facebook and MySpace, and different types of social data. The report explains why Facebook and MySpace are unlikely to be able to perform this role themselves.

The report concludes by examining some of the implications of an open social computing platform.

A Tipping Point For Social Media Advertising

 Excerpted from Online Media Report by Joe Marchese

A cultural tipping point, a concept given definition and made famous by Malcolm Gladwell's phenomenal study of cultural epidemics, The Tipping Point, is the point at which an idea reaches a critical mass within a society, and in effect gains its own momentum.

Engineering cultural tipping points through marketing and advertising has long been the goal of brands for their products. Historically, the most prominent way to engineer cultural tipping points for brands has been through purchasing people's attention on their preferred media sources (television, magazines, radio).

However, the new social media landscape has given rise to an interesting phenomenon. As advertisers and agencies rely ever increasingly on individuals to pass along their marketing message, the advertising and marketing messages themselves must now achieve their own tipping points within the social media communities in order for marketing and advertising to continue to be an effective tool for brand advertisers.

Additionally, the advertising industry, investor community, social networks, and countless ad networks wait with breath held (some anxious, some terrified, some frustrated) in anticipation of the advertising ecosystem's tipping point that leads to an epidemic of online branding. The idea being, the occurrence of such a tipping point in the advertising community will lead to tens of billions of brand advertising dollars shifting towards social media to effectively realign with people's attention.

I want to break the duality of advertising seeking its social media tipping point into two pieces. With the remainder of this week's article we will look at engineering tipping points as an execution strategy for advertising within social media. Next Tuesday we will look at the events that will likely precede and potentially indicate a tipping point for the advertising industry toward online branding efforts.

To be perfectly clear: Engineering a tipping point for your marketing message within social media and "going viral" are NOT the same. Going viral is simply the obvious, desirable end result of successfully engineering a tipping point for your marketing message.

It's easy to see why effective delivery of a brand's marketing messages within social media requires a tipping point creation strategy, once only the end goal for the brand's product. One need only examine the similarities between the adoption of a brand's end product and adoption of its marketing message in social media. First and foremost, the people who adopt/distribute your message in social media are the same people who purchase your products in the real world.

Secondly, success for both the product and the marketing message is voluntary adoption by a critical mass of people. Finally, as with brand products, people have nearly limitless choices when deciding what brand message to associate with. The similarities go on.

So once we understand the need to engineer the conception, packaging and introduction of brand marketing messages in social media as we would engineer a brand product, we can look for best practices.

First, we must create marketing messages likely to achieve adoption by a critical mass of people (see The Future Of Ad Creative In Pull Markets). A simple concept, but a new one for advertising, where the focus hasn't been adoption of message for delivery, but rather, the effect of the message once delivered, since distribution has historically been purchased.

Second, we must consider the value received by the person adopting the marketing message. This value can be the quality of the creative art work, the functionality the creative might provide (i.e. widgets) and/or the opportunity to receive brand products (see promotional budgets/contests).

Next, like great brand products, availability is a key success factor for social media campaigns. In the product world this might mean shelf space and logistics. In the social media world this means ease of message for adoption by critical masses of people and the ability to get that "adoptable" message in front of the right people to begin with.

Finally, there is the key tool for stacking the success of engineering social media campaign tipping points -- message delivery through mass media. Creating tipping points for brand products has commonly meant utilization of mass media. Creating a tipping point for your social media marketing campaigns requires tapping the same mass media outlets (yes, television will continue to support your social media campaigns until everyone has TiVo), but perhaps more importantly, you must tap the new mass media, the social network.

The new mass media are the MySpaces and Facebooks. The analogy here is this: when advertisers wanted to create a cultural tipping point for a brand product in the real world, advertisers worked with the pervasive mass media outlets of that society. When marketers and advertisers want to create a tipping point for their marketing messages within social networks, they will gain significant advantage by working with the pervasive mass media outlet of that society, the social network platform.

Coming Events of Interest

  • P2P ADVERTISING UPFRONT LA – Sponsored by the DCIA October 29th in Los Angeles, CA in conjunction with Digital Hollywood Fall. The industry’s premiere marketplace focused on the unique global advertising, sponsorship, and cross-promotional opportunities available in the steadily growing universe of open and closed P2P, file-sharing, P2PTV, and social networks, as well as peer-assisted content delivery networks (CDNs). 

  • Digital Hollywood Fall – October 30th - November 1st in Los Angeles, CA. Now at a new Location in the Grand Ballroom at Hollywood & Highlands and the adjacent Hollywood Renaissance Hotel. Digital Hollywood is the premier entertainment and technology conference in the country. Many DCIA Member companies will be featured speakers and exhibitors at this major industry event.

Copyright 2008 Distributed Computing Industry Association
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