Temporal Content (and Advertisements) Need Expectations

By definition, the unique quality of temporal content (i.e. content that takes time to consume, like audio/video, either streamed or downloaded, either user-generated or “produced”) is that it cannot be easily scanned to quickly assess its value (like written content can). Rather, the consumer is required to listen/watch to the content in its entirety to fully appreciate the value contained within.

This fact leads to many consequences, but an interesting one is how it affects the need to set expectations about the content before it’s consumed, especially if it is ad-supported. Ads in temporal content (especially those which cannot be skipped) provide one more hurdle, one additional point of friction, which must be overcome to entice the user to consume it.

So in a future where media is microchunked, freed, syndicated, and monetized, the role of setting expectations about what is contained within temporal content becomes even more important. Accordingly, meta-data attached to that that content, whether is community-generated meta-data or producer generated, should increase in value. In other words, perhaps the more free temporal content is able to roam, the more we want to know about where it came from, who has consumed it, and what they thought of it. We want to know what to expect.

Just a thought…

David Beisel

David Beisel is a co-founder and Partner at NextView Ventures. He has been focused on early stage Internet startups his entire career, both as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist. As an investor in the digital media space, David was most recently a Vice President at Venrock and previously a Principal at Masthead Venture Partners. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, David co-founded Sombasa Media, an e-mail marketing company best known for its flagship product BargainDog. Sombasa was successfully acquired by About.com where David served as Vice President of Marketing. David holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an AB in Economics, magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Duke University. He also founded and leads the Boston Innovators Group, an organization which holds quarterly entrepreneur events drawing a thousand attendees.

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