IMHO: Cloud Content Distribution is a Game

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What’s your honest opinion about popular songs, games, movies and television shows? The media that drives our entertainment industry relies on our interaction in order to see success, and a new tool taps into those opinions on behalf of media marketers. Former Sony Music Chief Executive Don Ienner has created IMHO Media as a social media player that incorporates advertising, games and content distribution, all for the sake of holding consumers’ attention.

The IMHO media player, currently in private beta, combines media consumption, sharing and marketing in one tool. Designed to fit into social media outlets as an application, the IMHO media player pulls content from the cloud and becomes a portable representation of a person’s interests and relationships. The more active a user becomes within their IMHO media player, the more prowess they have to market to their friends.

The marketing, of course, is more like a game. The more a user interacts with their player, the more they’re able to earn points. Ads themselves are an integral part of the IMHO player and user experience, as you can set the level of ads you want. The more ads on your player, the more potential you have for generating revenue. With each accomplishment in the IMHO “game” you earn redeemable points and badges. The IMHO player isn’t entirely different from the system we’ve seen with Meebo or Glue.

It’s the marketing potential that we really need to pay attention to here, as IMHO has already teamed up with Nutsie for its beta testing and media player distribution. A partnership such as this would offer branding opportunities for Nutsie and artists being promoted through its service, with IMHO acting as a remote means for interaction. As IMHO acts as an app on platforms such as Facebook, its approach becomes the means by which others (i.e. Nutsie) can access end users.

The idea behind IMHO isn’t entirely new, but it is inclusive of many methods that have been attempted and employed by others, even to this day. Rhapsody, for example, is focused on music but has a similar desire to become accessible to users in as many places as possible. As IMHO already has the ability to tap into social media outlets, surely mobile and set top boxs are on the to-do list. Creating access points across networks and devices appears to be a major goal for IMHO, as it grants monetizing opportunities for brands as well as users.

Advertising in this manner is becoming rather popular for social networking and mobile apps. Turning everything into a game is a tactic used by location-aware mobile apps such as Foursquare and Gowalla. I imagine that IMHO is looking to move further into the location-based realm as it launches its full version some time this spring, granting even more marketing opportunities for those brands involved in partnerships for content redistribution. I think this would help IMHO to provide the multi-access points it seeks, while incorporating other variables for its social sharing and recommendation options. Until then, you can check out the beta preview here.

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