Archive for April 29, 2010

media is the new wordprocessor

Pound for pound I’m the best to ever come around here
Excluding nobody
Look what i embody
The soul of a hustler i really ran the street
I CEO’s mine
That marketing plan was me
And no i ain’t get shot up a whole bunch of times

Earlier this month, Tom Foremski provided notes on why every company needs to become a media company. Much of his thesis was based upon the demise of “mass media” and how companies need to devise the skills of media companies in the brave new emergent world.

You see the major thrust of the presented argument is focused upon new considerations in the marketing approach.  I do not disagree with the points raised, although filling the vacuum created by the demise of “mass media” remains the holy grail of most valley startups. Tom has only presented part of the story. I think there is a more profound change coming…

Why every company really needs to be a media company is because every company has moved beyond just office documents. How many of you remember the days when companies had office typing pools full of typewriters, replete with carbon paper and rubber erasers.

Then whiteout was invented!

Then came the departmental wordprocessor.

Then came the personal wordprocessor…

How many of you had a typewriter in your youth, and can therefore appreciate the profound changes of wordprocessors on business?

Guess what? Today’s ‘wordprocessor’ paradigm shift is digital media, and that is why companies need to become media companies. Not just for the PR/marketing opportunities presented by the interconnectedness of what new web-enabled mediums promise, but for the fact that in addition to documents, spreadsheets, pdfs, presentations… companies now need to manage video, audio and other multimedia files. They need to store them, manage them, search them, archive and back them up. They need to convert them, provide bandwidth for people to use them and provide access to that content in a timely manner. They also need to determine usage patterns so that they can store them on cheaper storage, enable them to be available over the internet via a corporate VPN, check copyright usage and ensure that no one steals them… they need to do this to a budget.

Sound like a media company? I think so. Or, at least the operations side. Then there is creating the content, and then there is the secure distribution, and then there is ability to leverage it for PR & marketing.

I do not disagree with Tom, but I also find complete agreement elusive, and the simplistic perspective presented in the thesis marginalizes the real reason. Humans in companies need to communicate concepts to both their customers and staff. And the most effective communications mechanism is rich media, the richest, and hardest to manage, being video.

I absolutely agree with Tom that “Every company is a media company (EC=MC) is one of the most important concepts to understand”. However, we need to extend our understanding multi-dimensionally.

Tell me it isn’t so… I’m listening.

April 29, 2010 at 1:00 am Leave a comment



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