What content needs to learn from gaming

There has been a fixed idea in the minds of content owners for a very long time now. It’s a “gating” mindset – the user needs to pay to enjoy the content BEFORE they’ve begun to enjoy it.

Gaming already learned this lesson. It’s a lot easier to get someone to pay when they’re already having fun. Of course you want to power-up after you’ve successfully surfed through a medieval castle in space (I made that one up).

In-app monetization changed everything for game models.

This is one reason trusted brands like Disney do better upfront in the gated model. They’re already a proven source of fun.

Asking people to pay before you’ve proven your value is tough. Ask me for money when I’m having fun.

Advertising: Native or Creative?

As so many brands struggle to get beyond digital display, we field a lot of requests for “native” campaigns.

Do you want native, or creative?

We just ran an amazing campaign for the Sims that was a wrap-around, overlay, 3-D effect page takeover. It’s an awesome campaign. It’s not native advertising. It’s creative advertising.

Native advertising is integrating your brand in such a way that it appears to live comfortably in its surroundings. It’s not invisible, but it fits in, just like you do in your home town. Native can of course be insanely creative.

Innovative new ad formats aren’t native, but they are creative. They stand out. They make a shout for your attention above and beyond their surroundings.

Both work – it’s just good to make the distinction.

Photo by Steve Richey.