Transmedia Business Models

Brian Clark, CEO and founder of GMD Studios, talks about Transmedia Business Models

Brian Clark says ‘that the next wave of innovation in transmedia storytelling is going to be about business models rather than storytelling forms’.

Business models from the point of view of a creator, a storyteller, a person whose goal is to make a living making a story.

Five key challenges to making a model that works in the modern media age:
1. FUNDING: Where am I going to get the money to make this?
2. RETURN: What do the funders expect to get back for that funding?
3. SUSTAINABILITY: How am I going to pay my personal bills as a storyteller?
4. AUDIENCE: Is there an audience for what I want to make and who are they?
5. PROMOTION: How will get this work out to this audience?

If you look at some of the issues hampering innovation in the new forms of storytelling there’s no better place to start than where the money is. Models to consider:

1. Patronage through patrons and sponsors. BUT the transmedia movement has no traditional system to be excluded from, and the traditional system is the patronage model.

Ten alternative business models from other media movements that provide some inspiration to other entrepreneurial storytellers.

2. No Budget

3. Grassroots or “D.I.Y. ethic”

4. Research & Development arms from large companies

5. Fan Incubation

6. Fan Funding

7. Ticketed (paying) Events

8. Marginable Arbitrage (buying low in one market to sell high in another eg infomercials)

9. Audience Developed Products ie co-creators (as seen in Crowdsourcing)

10. Infrastructure Play

11. Venture Capital

Conclusion: New Models will emerge through entrepreneurial innovation. Two factors – grassroots entrepreneurial risk taking and well financed companies looking to take more limited risks with bigger piles of money – will inevitably influence and reinforce each other.

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