Making the Marketing Switch: Transitioning from Multimedia to Transmedia

Multimedia is a term that has been synonymous with the Internet for quite some time now. Many people utilize the concept of multimedia, which is defined as using, involving, or encompassing several media forms, in their marketing plans.

This is nothing new. We cre
ate something and post it to
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, post it on our websites, etc. But lately there has been a shift in this pattern. Instead of posting something to all of your company’s media outlets, it is being posted to only one. For example, you decide to offer a 50% off coupon for your product or service, so you post the special offer on your website. Instead of choosing the multimedia route and posting the coupon on Facebook, Instagram, Flickr and the company blog, you decide to only have the coupon on your website and use those other media outlets to bring people to your website to get the coupon from there. This is a very simple form of transmedia.

In order to better understand transmedia we must know that it begins with storytelling. The print way of telling stories is by reading the beginning, middle, and then the end. With transmedia consumers can jump into a story at any point and be informed of different elements along the way. In this way the consumer takes a participatory role by deciding when they want to start a story. That is another component of transmedia, participation.

Movies, comics, games and other media forms are mixed for consumers to control and form a story. They must participate for the story to keep going and they also must make choices to control the outcome of the story. With transmedia, consumers uncover different aspects of a story through different media.

Movies, TV shows and books that have obvious story lines have best utilized transmedia, but that doesn’t mean your company can’t tell it’s own story. The 50% off coupon could be a result of a new employee ordering too many of one product. That part of your story can be told on a completely different media platform, like on a Facebook post for example.

Another creative way to bring a story into your marketing strategy is to have a scavenger hunt. You could hide images or photos on your Facebook, Twitter, website, Vine application or on any of the other media outlets for your consumers to find. Finding all of the items on the scavenger hunt could result in a prize at the end for the consumer. This idea engages your consumer and can help them learn even more about your product or service.

Be creative with your company’s story and find engaging ways to tell it across different media platforms for a successful transmedia marketing strategy.