Mun2

Keepin’ It Sticky: Tips for Engaging Fans Online & Mun2’s DIY Episodes

Posted on June 13, 2007. Filed under: continuing the conversation, DIY, engaging fans online, Mun2, stickiness factor |

I love Mun2’s DIY episodes ‚̧

A girl, a robot. Problems, solutions. How-to, doo doo. Airs weekly on The mun2 Shift.

Keepin’ It Sticky!

This franchise is a perfect example of a network capturing the audience with interesting content and nurturing that interest online. I hate using the phrase “continuing the conversation” but it definitely applies here. Emotional engagement is cool and everything but that devotion only extends so far if once your audience visits your website, they are limited to only watching the same content over again.

A Skit Called: Why Your Network’s Website is So Un-2.0 that it’s Embarrassing

Me: I just saw this cool piece on air. I think I will go to the website to see if there’s more info.

*goes to website*

Me: Wow, I get to watch the same package all over again. Nothing else? Additional exclusive content? No. A related written piece? No. Can I comment on the video? No. Can I find fans of the same episode and chat with them? No. Is there a way to get to related videos? No. Can I share my video/photos from the event? No. Can I download the episode/share it with friends on my ipod/mobile device? No. Wow, can I at least get an embed code or at least a screengrab to blog about this? No. … Um…. Can I digg it? No? Well eff this site!

FIN

If your audience bothered to go online after watching an aired piece, give them something to talk about! Let’s break down Mun2’s Stickiness Factor a little and raise some questions while we are at it:

Stickiness Factor Test for Mun2’s DIY Franchise

Synchronization

Step 1- Episode airs and package appears online

The DIY episode online includes a “Robot Breaks It Down” feature that provides more in depth information to supplement the easy-to-follow web/tech tips that are served up in each aired DIY episode. Hmm! Sticky? Yes!*

Q: Is this process synchronized? i.e, When each DIY episode airs is the extended content online by the time the package is over?

A: I don’t know. But, I hope so. It would make sense to assume that if I am really psyched about getting free ring tones, after the episode is over I may just hop on my computer and try to find the package. It would be nice if it was already there with the supplemental content. I got thangs to do, and if the site doesn’t have what I am looking for at that moment, I’m going to Google it which takes me away from your site, which is bad.

Search ability

Step 2 – I go to the site to find related content.

Q: How easy is it for me to get to DIY episodes on the Mun2 website?

A: Unless I’m a regular fan, it’s a little tricky. All “original” episodes are included in the Candy area. Within Candy, there are 4 areas: Looks, Original, Pix, and IDs. DIY falls within the “Original” category, but unless I’m a regular visitor to the site I am not going to know that. Once you are in Original, the different franchises are not broken up into categories. All the episodes seem to be listed chronologically, which is no use to me if I am searching specifically for all DIY episodes.

Suggestion: Their “Originals” hub should have the franchises displayed individually, with the option to “view/search all” but the original page should be broken up by franchise. You should be able to visit the main page of each franchise, and see all episodes listed. Within, the “all originals” search result you should be able have different options for search (franchise name, tags, date, etc).

NOTE: When you are watching a specific DIY episode, it does include an area for “More Episodes of DIY”. The “originals” area would just be more user friendly if there was a way to view all DIY episodes on the same page (the same for all the franchises for that matter)

Audience Interaction

Step 3 – Fan has watched the segment on air/online and read the featured/supplemental content. Cool! Now I want to say something about it. Let me get my interactivity on!
Can I? Hmm! Yes, I can!*

Commenting – Yes. Viewers can comment on all videos.

Site/Audience Interaction – Mun2 moderators often/regularly reply to viewer comments. This leads to more commenting, more information shared, more emotional engagement. Score! Mighty Sticky.

Mobility – Yes. Viewers can email to friends, download the episode, subscribe to the RSS feed, and embed. All of this mobility information is provided within one inch of the border of the video frame, which is my personal test of how user friendly you are about sharing your content.

By providing a Mun2 flickr stream, Mun2 allows viewers to check out behind the scenes photos from the DIY shoots, and comment on those as well. Sheeit! This site is so sticky I need to wash my hands ūüėČ

NOTE: My only suggestions would be to make the flickr stream/feed a little more accessible. When you are within a DIY episode, there is currently no visible way on that page to the flickr stream link and related images. Also, each franchise should have their own set within the flickr account for easier accessibility.

The “It has a certain je ne sais qua” Factor aka Keeps Them Wanting More

Step 4 – Ok, I’ve done everything I possibly can with this segment. I’ve watched it, commented on it, downloaded it, embedded it on my MySpace page, emailed it to my mama, checked out the behind the scenes photos. Now what? How could my user experience possibly get any better?

Mun2’s je ne sais qua Factor for DIY:

What the hell are you talking about Daniela? Je Ne Sais Qua Factor? Are you high? No, I am not. I don’t use drugs (not since my teens, anyway).

What I mean is that you shouldn’t put a lot of energy into developing a catch-all guaranteed increase-your-stickiness technique that you can throw at all your content. You should individually assess each piece of content and ask yourself, how can I (with this) increase the level of audience participation? Sometimes the answer works for a lot of content, sometimes it works for one thing in particular. That is ok. In fact, it’s a good thing.

Often, you will not be able to fully anticipate all the results of this newly introduced functionality. It’s like a pandora’s box portal to… who knows what? Scared? Don’t be. Just because you can’t predict everything that will happen when you introduce something on a site, should not prevent you from doing it. Go with it, see what happens. Modify it as needed, and trust that your audience will definitely let you know what they like and do not like — if you let them do it. Embrace criticism, it is your friend.

In this case, the Je Ne Sais Qua Factor turns out to be: “ASK THE ROBOT FOR HELP”

Ok, I know that a question form seems really simple and not that exciting, but it’s actually smart on several levels. DIY is a franchise about providing the audience with cool tech/web tricks that increase their quality of life. So…

1 – It only makes sense to allow viewers to submit their questions, and to use selected ones for future episodes.

2 – The data provided can be used for future DIY related poll results (if they choose to do this), which allows the audience to see what other viewers are interested in learning about in an organized/aggregated display.

3 – An open portal of communication between audience and content entity is essential to the successful structure of not only future DIY episodes, but also for measuring the tastes and interests of your audience. It’s free market research yo.

Summary

In conclusion — synchronization, search ability, user interaction, Je Ne Sais Qua Factor– All essential elements to successfully engage your fans online and to Keepin’ It Sticky, demonstrated through Mun2’s DIY franchise.

Questions? Comments? Hit me.

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Cross-Site Video Syndication Issues – Can all your channels play in your RSS?

Posted on June 8, 2007. Filed under: Beet TV, blip tv, cross-site video syndication, jetset, maven networks, Mun2, video in rss |

If you are a subscriber to Beet TV‘s rss feed, you have probably noticed that they publish video on several platforms.

Both Google Video and Youtube channel embeds play within RSS reader windows (I use Google Reader and Bloglines).

Back in May, Beet TV indicated they were going to start doing more cross-site video syndication, and today posted a blip TV channel embed. Fine, but the problem is that you cannot play a blip tv file within Beet TV’s current rss feed.

With WordPress, if you have Full Text set on your feed options, and your feedreader supports it, then the video will show there too… So…

Jetset also uses the blip TV player and their segments don’t play within the feed either. It is a little annoying to have to open an entire other window just to watch video from a blog/vlog that posts video on a regular basis. Their sister vlog, Rocketboom, does not use blip tv (that I know of) but share the same problem — you can’t watch their video in the feed. You have to open another window outside of your rss reader.

Splashcast plays in RSS feeds, as does dailymotion, Revver, video egg, and brightcove. What’s up with Blip TV?

So I have 3 Cross-Site Video Syndication Related Questions, in case one day I decide to syndicate myself all over the web:

– Can services like Maven Networks, who provide a tool to simultaneously publish on multiple sites, also provide an automatic handy service that notifies you when your video embeds are/aren’t viewable within their rss feed?

– What’s the point of subscribing to a video channel’s RSS feed if I can’t watch it within my RSS reader?

– Is Beet TV’s/Jetset’s problem incorrect markup or is it a problem for Google/Blip TV to solve?

PS: Mun2, did you know your videos don’t play in your RSS feed either? Grrr! ūüôā Oh well. I already visit their website every day anyway. But hey – I had to mention it.

Handy Links

What is MRSS

Video Search to Go – How to put your video searches into a podcast

edit: I understand that the aforementioned feeds (except for Beet TV, who still doesn’t offer a working video podcast feed ugh) are optimized for video podcast subscribers. However, if text consistently accompanies your video it’s silly not to assume that people will also subscribe through their RSS Readers, and will want to be able to view the video while they are reading your text. Within the same window. Gracias.

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Mun2 Response to WTF #2 – Mun2’s random gay diss

Posted on March 1, 2007. Filed under: feedback, Mun2, WTF |

Jose (Director of Mun2 Digital) says:
March 1st, 2007 at 8:50 am Hey Daniela,

It was great to read your post and know that you‚Äôre enjoying our clips. Let me clarify: in the case of RBD, the word ‚Äúgay‚ÄĚ was used repeatedly by the audience in reference to a group that is perceived by many of them as very plastic ‚Äď moreso than the Backstreet Boys ever where. Moreover, that clip was an audience question round-up: we literally cited the audience‚Äôs words.

I do take your concerns about using the word gay in the ‚ÄúSpirited Away‚ÄĚ review seriously. My opinion is that this review is so obviously over the top, so ridiculous in every way, that whether we used a fat joke (as you suggested) or a joke about effeteness (as we did) they would be interpreted as inane, childish jabs.

You’re not going to find support for homophobia in our content and I encourage you to keep me to that pledge.

best,
Jose

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thank you Jose, for taking my concern/question seriously. I have never considered any of Mun2’s content to be homophobic,¬†and whether or not I agree with Mun2’s public acceptance/usage of “gay” as an appropriate jab (childish or not), I¬†still love¬†Mun2.

~ Daniela

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So friends, to keep this entry completely “gay”¬†AND¬†put¬†things in perspective, did you hear about the “that’s so gay” lawsuit?

excerpt:

But school officials say they took a strict stand against the putdown after two boys were paid to beat up a gay student the year before.

…We have to be aware how words and action are connected. If you attend a school where no one corrects your usage of gay as a putdown, and the very students who use this term end up beating the crap out of a student, isn’t the school being negligent to not try to educate their student body on what hurtful language is?

The lawsuit by the girl’s parents¬†is just proof of failure on the school’s part to take preventive action (through education, discussion) in the first place.

this sums it up for me: [excerpt]

A confusing set of terms
Derogatory terms for homosexuality have long been used as insults. But the landscape has become confusing in recent years as minority groups have tried to reclaim terms like “queer,” “ghetto” and the n-word.

In recent years, gay rights advocates and educators have tried teaching students that it is hurtful to use the word “gay” as an all-purpose term for something disagreeable. At Berkeley High School, a gay student club passed out buttons with the words “That’s so gay” crossed out to get their classmates to stop using them.

Rick Ayers, a retired teacher who helped compile and publish the “Berkeley High School Slang Dictionary,” a compendium of trendy teen talk circa 2001, said educating students about offensive language is preferable to policing their speech.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

I intended, and still intend, for this personal blog to share my interests and information about my creative projects. There is definitely a slant towards new media/social media going on in most of my blog posts, but sometimes (like this entry and the last), I am going to bring up issues that are important to me that might be a combo of new media and politics.

The personal is political, right? Happy Thursday ūüôā

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Today’s Links & WTF #2: Mun2’s random gay diss

Posted on February 28, 2007. Filed under: Linkage, Mun2, WTF |

I spent to much money at¬†Sephora¬†on¬†lotions and face junk¬†this morning¬†which has made me a combo of satisfied and guilty = saguilty. So the self inflicted punishment is limiting myself to my collection of links from last night, and another WTF. ūüė¶ Enjoy.

Linkage

1. ¬†Zooomr – Better than Flickr? Hm. Tell me, I’m to lazy to find out (yet)

Apparently the creator of Zooomr was only 17 years old when he wrote it, and did it in three months. I feel old, and slow.

2. How to track your roommate with frickin’ lasors

3. This chick loves Google more than you do.

4. Hate MySpace? Show them how it’s done!¬†Aw yeah, Ning is back!!

5. SXSW Panel on Web Companies 2.0 – pretty cool! I hope they liveblog/simulacast.

6. Film To Expose MTV, BET & VH1 РPublic Enemy’s Professor Griff makes an appearance in the film.

7. Bob Woodruff Reports: To Iraq and Back (Thanks, Monty)

8. This isn’t a link, but isn’t it awesome that Medieval Times’ hotline is 1-888-we-joust

????

WTF #2 ¬†Mun2’s random gay diss – Discuss

I love Mun2. They serve clever, original¬†content and have an active, diverse community/audience.¬† So having said that, being a fan and dedicated viewer, I think that when I come across things that seem a little sketch I should call them out and open up a space to discuss. So here we go…

(more…)

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Introducing Los Abandoned… *kinda*

Posted on January 25, 2007. Filed under: Bilingual Bands, china_poblana, Enjambre, Ismada, Los Abandoned, Los Super Elegantes, Manic Hispanic, Mas Maiz, MTV News, Mun2, Nacotheque, Perez Hilton, work, Zigmat |

Near the¬†beginning of September ’06 I pitched a show idea on bilingual bands, to feature Los Abandoned.

¬†I had discovered them in early August ’06 through doing album reviews for Urban Latino Magazine.¬†

The best thing about reviewing albums is free music (yay), and I probably wouldn’t have ever bought this album on my own. But I digress…

At the time that I¬†reviewing Mixtape,¬†I was¬†regularly attending the brainstorming meetings and bringing new show ideas each time. Since I had only been with MTV News for two months at that point, I didn’t think¬†my ideas¬†were being taken that seriously. So in October when I was told that my bilingual bands show had been green lit, I was more than a little psyched.

..Because of all the other projects I have been working on, it didn’t really occur to me until today¬†how long it has taken from the¬†time I came up with the idea to when they actually began¬†production on it. Multiple projects are in the works here constantly, so I figured it might have been lost in the shuffle despite the fact that people seemed to really be into the idea.¬† …But today Los Abandoned is being interviewed and their show is being covered at the Troubadour, and this along with other awesome¬†*surprises* will be included in the upcoming MTV News feature on Bilingual Bands.

I don’t want to give away what the show will cover (besides the obvious topic), but I will say that compiling research for this show gave me a lot more insight into the bilingual music scene, and I ended up discovering a new local favorite – ZIMGAT.

The lead singer, Monica Rodriguez, sings in both English and Spanish. This band rocks! I saw them perform back in December at the NYRemezcla launch party, which I attended to gain further insight into bilingual/latino culture. The crowd was dancing like crazy and although it was super dark, I shot footage that I plan on uploading someday ;P.

So, Los Abandoned will soon be reaching a much wider audience and it will be neat to hear back from viewers what they think about this band, and the bilingual music scene in general. Los Angeles and¬†Austin have thriving scenes but it will be cool to hear from areas that you wouldn’t normally think such a scene would exist.

After the jump I’m going to include some of the extensive research I did on bilingual bands (along with the NYC Latino alt music scene)… I think that the best part about researching anything is that although you may not use all the info you find, it’s great fun to learn new things in the process… (WARNING: copied and pasted from various emails in a disorderly fashion)

(more…)

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