Imagine being able to connect someone talking about your brand on Twitter to another person having a similar discussion on Facebook or YouTube in a controlled, brand-sponsored environment.
That’s the draw of thisMoment, a new software platform that has drawn Lionsgate Pictures, Heineken, Gillette, Kohl’s and most recently Summit Entertainment, which is using thisMoment’s technology to power a social media push for The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, the latest in the hit Twilight franchise.
Last week, Summit gave fans of that film the opportunity to log on to sites on Facebook, MySpace and YouTube that provided a consistent user experience across those platforms that combines all the chatter in one place. (It’s not possible to set up a site on Twitter, but the sites integrate a feed of user comments from the site that’s based on the mention of certain key words.) Also, thisMoment makes it easy for users to upload their own pictures and video across multiple platforms.
Aggregating and being able to control, to a certain extent, the content of the chatter helps studios harness the so-called Twitter Effect that can determine a movie opening’s buzz and its box office performance. Also, thisMoment provides real-time metrics on those social media discussions. “ThisMoment’s platform is not only giving us new ways to connect all of the Twilight fans from across the Web, but it’s also allowing them to engage with each other in unprecedented fashion,” said Jack Pan, evp, marketing for Summit Entertainment. “We’re excited about the opportunities it provides.”
ThisMoment launched in 2008 as a consumer-centric site providing an online repository for photos, video and comments related to an event (hence the name), but CEO and co-founder Vince Broady said that the platform wasn’t getting the adoption it needed to make it a business.
The company then shifted gears and focused on marketers, who were interested in aggregating and controlling social media chatter around their brands. “It gives the brand total control over what appears in the channel,” Broady said. “Brands are able to present their content and promote what they want to promote.”
Broady said a brand could use thisMoment to power its homepage. So far, no one has, though. Kohl’s used the platform for a limited-time promotion “Raise Your Receipt” contest that let consumers share stories about how much money they saved shopping at the retailer. (Winning entries got $100 Kohl’s gift certificates.)
If the idea of aggregating social media streams into a brand-sponsored site sounds familiar, that’s because it is. Mars’ Skittles brand worked with Agency.com last year to rejigger its homepage as a feed from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Because the chatter was unmonitored, users began posting prank messages on the site. After a year, Skittles backed off from the experiment.
Jeremy Daly, director of digital planning at Euro RSCG, worked on the Skittles site and said that thisMoment’s element of control will likely make brand experiments on the platform more successful. “The big difference is you have a lot more control,” he said. “It’s really important to make sure people aren’t posting things that are inappropriate.”