Social media challenging the old media business models

There are quite a few media business (revenue)
models which come in different classifications and structures, but I
find this diagram
organized by Paul Bradshaw
most suitable to discuss the subject,
mainly because it is very clear, informative and well structured.

(Source: Paul

Most of the models like advertising, affiliates, premium (“velvet
rope”) services have been tried and work pretty well under certain
circumstance , but  “Social value” model hasn’t been explored that much
or hasn’t been considered as a valuable enough on its own.

According to
Paul Bradshaw , “Social value” model revenue is generated through social
interaction by brand community (in the form of donations, support or
spin-off). Actually it is often dismissed as very mystified and unclear ,
because social value is quite difficult to measure.

But the times are
changing. I think with social media going mainstream, personal branding
growing bigger and bigger and evolving monetary systems online  –
“social value”  model can be the next big thing. I was thinking about it
for a while and after short brainstorm came up with this model how it
could be implemented in the real world:


Consumer pays directly to author.

Social media is all about disintermediation. Therefore, it is is quite a
straight forward model, but if developed it would present a real shift
in consumer’s perception – paying for the content when you don’t have to
? Madness? No! It would be all about the social status and personal
brand building!

It could be very attractive idea for bloggers who already have well
established personal brands and maintain their own platforms. In order
to implement this model the author would have to provide superior social
platform where the relationship building with the community would have
to be considered as main priority. According to Paul Bradshaw people
never paid for ‘content’; they paid for a package and a service that
included content – “They bought a newspaper (brand), not ‘the news.” In
this case the newspaper would be a personal brand which would have to
provide best social engagement possible. The personal branding  would
have to work both ways – not only author would have to get paid for well
developed brand and top content, but consumer would have to receive
some social points back as well. Lets say consumer could leave his name
and contact details on the contributors list or virtual good system
could tweet automatically that a person just made a reward or donation.
Also, this model could work really great in B2B environment as the
parties are much more aware about mutual benefits of marketing and
social interaction .

Consumer pays the author – author pays the media platform.

Author sharing revenue with the media company – basically paying money
for the platform to speak (or to be heard).It may sound ridiculous, but
this model could be very attractive for less established writers who has
interesting ideas but have no strong background to support them or have
no capabilities/resources to build their own platforms.

In order to implement this model the two conditions would have to be
present – strong media brand and qualified but not well known writer.
Young writers would be interested to have their material published on
big platform for greater audience in return sharing their revenue with
the media platform. Furthermore, the media platforms would be interested
to maintain their brands and attract good journalist/bloggers because
of advertising dollars they would bring – specialized and engaged
communities created under big brand could be well targeted.

The outcomes.

If these models are implemented the outcomes would be quite dificult to
predict. It’s clear though, that the personal branding and community
building would gain major importance in the media strategy. The content
would improve and there would be less “noise” in media in the long term,
because of “natural selection” process.  The  big media brands could
concentrate on their core capabilities managing the talents rather that
content production itself. Who knows maybe one day we will have our
X-Factor of media?  “In my dreams I have a plan If I got me a wealthy
man I wouldn’t have to work at all, I’d fool around and have a ball”. –
and that would be the song to sing for the audition, just the wealthy
man would be the author who brings wealth with the valuable content  and
community. Nevertheless, the most important change would be that the
consumer  finally could be a king, it would be able to influence,
participate and gain from the process .

So what do you think about it? Please share your thoughts whatever
they may be.

Here is the list  of top articles analyzing the new media business

Making money from journalism: new media business models

What does the “Media Business Model” mean? (by

The Freemium Business Model: Anything There for the

Giedrius Ivanauskas, the researcher of Social Media and Augmented
reality, is a social media marketing expert that really gets the point. He blogs on Social Media Today and on his own blog Social
Media Citizens
 (that you can follow on Facebook here). Giedrius is also an administrator of the Social
Marketing Forum
and its Facebook
. You can follow Giedrius via Twitter here.

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