Having proof of concept and market is very important for business stability and success.. if you simply produce a solution that people do not need or will not buy then you technically do not have any revenue generating programme.
In this question you should try and provide examples of surveys and research… try and include statistics and data collected to provide further evidence.
Online & Retail
I have currently 2 clients one is contracted to a year working with us with a fee of £24,000; the other client uses us on a part time basis.
I have also worked all the way up through industry for the past 5 years and have seen the benefits of marketing correctly through working at Red Bull.
The research I have done to prove customers are interested in video-book apps falls into three main categories: experience from video series’ produced through my career, anecdotal evidence from research meetings with publishers and trends in the app/book market.
1. Experience from video series’ produced through my career
Prior to founding The Loop, I set up and ran Ember Television, one of Birmingham’s largest video production companies. We found that what worked best for our clients, especially the blue chip clients or those in the investment sector was when we created content that was of use to their target customers, or that chimed around a particular niche interest of the targeted customers’. ‘How to’ and tips videos were especially popular – and the SensibleInvestment.tv project we worked on and led is an example of this. Tips on how best to invest money were popular with users, because it is purpose driven, providing value to the target market.
Worldwide searches for ‘how to’ videos have steadily grown since 2007 (http://www.google.co.uk/trends/explore#q=how%20to), with ‘how to draw‘ being one of the most popular terms. Video-book apps will take this ‘how to’ phenomenon one step further and consolidate and focus the information into one simple product – a video-book app.
2. Anecdotal evidence from research meetings with publishers
Since moving to London I have met with several publishers about the concept and business model around it. Here’s a summary of their feedback;
Quercus: The move to books being published solely on digital mediums is inevitable and to be embraced. With the right business model around it, there is money to be made from previously untapped revenue streams. It is unlikely, however that this will ‘just happen’ within Quercus – someone will need to actively approach management with a proposition that works both creatively and in terms of business.
Launch 48: Launch 48, before being acquired by investor Mark Hales was a business events company. However, they are now using their market traction and following to incorporate digital publishing into their business model, which will increase their scalability and profitability. Video is core to this: a mobile-ready video portal with business inspiration and advice will be a key, paid for offering to their customers. The Loop is Launch 48′s video partner, providing all of their content for 2012/2013.
Wall Street Journal: Another client, The Wall Street Journal, have significantly increased their video spend in the last year, releasing a video app and a Samsung Smart TV app. The Wall Street Journal are an example of a publisher consolidating their video content into an app form, in order to increase scalability.
The Independent: The Independent are currently not using much original video due to budget constraints, however Jim Cusick, Political Corespondent, has said to me that if it were funded in a sensitive, non-obtrusive way by brands that they would use it for lifestyle and features. The audience have an appetite for it, but within a funding mechanism behind it, good quality content remains unfeasible.
Techfluff.tv: “For us, branded content gives our audience a real sense of trust around our editorial content – it enhances it. This directly engages our readers by providing validity to our stories. Our USP is video: it gives us a unique position in the online blog community.”
CNN: Business Development Manager, Hannah Musisi described the current video landscape in publishing as ‘full of promise’, however ‘currently lacking in quality content’. Knowing how to package and monetise content is key.
All publishers above who I have spoken to have agreed that brand funded, consolidated video content with a good user experience is key to grasping the opportunities that rapid change in publishing provides. This is what The Loop will provide.
3. Trends in the app/book market
Here are some links to information about recent book apps and video-book apps which have been successful, proving the consumer demand for this type of content.
UsTwo/Puffin’s Whale Trail: http://techcrunch.com/2012/03/19/what-does-penguin-have-in-common-with-a-whale-a-publishing-deal/
“On Android, it’s currently making £1,500 in sales per day”
Touchpress/Faber & Faber’s Wasteland: http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/appsblog/2011/aug/08/ipad-the-waste-land-app
“The Waste Land iPad app earns back its costs in six weeks on the App Store”
Touchpress/Faber & Faber’s Solar System: http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/appsblog/2011/aug/08/ipad-the-waste-land-app
“Solar System has generated around $840,000 (£514,000) of gross revenues since its launch”
“Enhanced ebooks, says Malone (author), provide “the opportunity to bring all this stuff to life in a way that you could previously only do on TV”.
Sales over the last 3 years since I started have increased consistently as recognition and followers have increased.. with limited edition runs I have found that there is a high impact and demand for my designs.
Sales in the ‘hoodlinks’ store in Lewisham and online and at events, the fact that the brand challenges the normal is a factor that comes into its demand and potential reach for a larger market.
Training & Education
Apart from the above initial research, a survey carried out on 100 students on the main costs during university and the results suggested:
Of the 100 students surveyed:
There is a lack of real practical education at the moment, Organisations that currently off this as a service are not providing these aspects (eg Practical Financial Education). Most focus on being employable and confident but this only tip of the iceberg.
For example 63% of 14-18 year olds think they will need to repay their student loans after graduating and in 2011, more than 118,000 people signed an e-petition calling for compulsory financial education in Schools (Source JSA)