Digital Media is About Influence, Not Income
Media influence has shifted, and we need to respond to the shift. We’re already seeing it in the giving patterns of traditional religious organizations, non-profits, and media ministries. While most would respond that they don’t have hard data to back up this assertion, I can tell you from personal experience there’s real sweating going on in many planning meetings at major churches, ministries, and non-profit organizations these days.
Right now, the digital media world isn’t about income, it’s about influence. It’s about immediacy and connection. While traditional media still makes the money and wields the power, a powerful new paradigm is emerging. Television may be the king of now, but digital media is the king of tomorrow. If you’re waiting for digital media to become cost-effective, you’re already being left behind. While traditional media is concerned about making money, the new digital pioneers are concerned about change. Get out there. Experiment. Invest. Create a platform and presence in the digital media world, because when the financial models start working, having a compelling brand in that space will matter.
Agree – Media is about emotion.
Even for traditional, is not their goal to influence folks through their emotions – just to influence folks to spend money with them (notice the number of TV ads which barely reference the actual product).
In the same manner, this influence can help folks in ministry. I recall a ministry ad shown recently for Celebrate Discovery – it showed a man sitting on a chair in shackles, with a bright light behind him creating a bright silhouette. He was struggling with the shackles. Ultimately very emotional, very powerful – much more so than someone standing up and saying "Need help with blah-blah-blah, come to a meeting this week.."
The barriers to entry are falling fast (if not fallen). You can create media quite easily, publish, distribute with tools geared towards less-than-expert users. I cover some media technologies in a post here – http://timgriesbach.wordpress.com/2009/01/29/interesting-video-technologies/
Also, I think there is a cultural shift away from delivering "perfect" media, to delivering "real" media. To take a lesson from software – deliver often, improve, redeliver. Take a chance, be real, it will be more effective.
Excellent advice! I’m right at this point now, but what I’m hearing is that I should play for branding and for the long haul.