Widgets. Remember those things, hailed as the savior of online media and sharing capabilities? Well, widgets haven’t necessarily gone anywhere, they’ve merely evolved and morphed into various socially aware sharing necessities, finding ways to become even more integrated with networks and sites through the provision of various platforms such as Facebook’s. But if you look at the widget industry overall, it’s vastly different from what we witnessed three years ago.
Now that we’ve figured out what to do with widgets and their features, we’ve seen a lot of companies shift their focus. Dijit is one of those companies which has grown with the current trends, able to keep up with changing needs for the mere act of sharing media on a professional or personal level. As we’ve seen with many other widget companies, the “widget” portion of Dijit is only a small part of the long term goal. Mobile is a huge next step for Dijit, as the CEO Eric Allen mention in our interview below:
Kristen Nicole: How did Dijit begin as a widget tool?
Eric Allen: The original concept is more about enabling users to crowdcast media (rich and text) across networks. The notion of the Dijit being your personal cable channel resonated with prosumers, who are now using Dijit to drive awareness for a wide range of content; from music and bands to items such as skateboards and musical instruments.
Kristen Nicole: As far as social networking integration goes, how does Dijit fare?
Eric Allen: Our Dijit’s have been installed on over 200 different networks or blogs over the last 3 months. The installs range from traditional social networks such as MySpace and Facebook to far reaching social networks in China like xianguo.com, amoeba in Japan. We’ve also seen our Dijit’s installed on avatar sites like Meez, photo sites like shutterfly, and commerce sites like Kaboodle due in most part to the commerce platform built into the product.
Kristen Nicole: You mentioned that you’re looking to expand Dijit’s feature set. In what ways are you looking to do so?
Eric Allen: We get called a widget company due to our original product release, which allows users to share their content via a widget; however, we just view this as a single access point for the user to access a personal media stream. We see the mobile space as being a core to our roll out strategy – we are seeing users create just as much content if not more from their mobile phones as compared to their PC.
It’s also extremely important for us to make sure the users “media stream” can represent time sensitive content or unplanned events which are typically captured with mobile devices versus a traditional camera. We plan to finish our integration with other utilities that give Dijit users a broader selection of content choices and not just limiting them to uploading personal content.
Lastly, since the launch of Dijit’s cross platform commenting feature, we’ve seen an increase in dijit usage by 800%. So, it’s pretty obvious that our users want to leverage Dijits for forms of micro-blogging, therefore greater integration with key micro-blogging platforms is a high priority for us, and we plan to launch new features around micro-blogging in the coming weeks.
Kristen Nicole: How is Dijit currently being monetized and what are your goals for future monetization options?
Eric Allen: We have several monetization models. Major movie studios and music labels currently use the Dijit as a micro-store front to sell digital media. So, we have a revenue share for all transactional content sold through our premium Dijits. We plan to launch a subscription service in the near future along with this service. We are also launching our ad network next quarter.
Kristen Nicole: For the consumer end of Dijit, how will broadening your target market help your company grow?
Eric Allen: What we find most interesting is how our consumers are broadening the use of our Dijits. We are noticing users creating several Dijits for several different uses. They might have one that’s digital commerce based, another that’s durable goods based, a personal Dijit they use to share personal media, and etc. So, we are growing by sheer awareness, but also we are noticing growth within our existing user base as they look at new ways to use our platform.
Kristen Nicole: You also mentioned that mobile integration is the next frontier for Dijit. How will this work?
Eric Allen: Initially users will be able to upload content to their Dijit directly from their mobile phone. Soon thereafter, we’ll also allow users to access the Dijit from their mobile phone. So, our goal is to enable users to be able to access their Dijit from either an Internet or mobile browser, giving users the ability to create, edit, manage their Dijit from both their computer and/or mobile phone.