Making Branded Content Ownable: Kutiman, Somebody Gotye Used to Know

Just when you thought “Somebody that I Used to Know,” Gotye’s radio pandemic was on its way out…

Just what’s so interesting? A few things.

Kutiman’s Thru-You Project
Gotye actually produced this himself, and posted it to YouTube earlier this morning. As I write this post, it’s registering just 303 views on YouTube, a result of automatic throttling/capping of views on Google’s part. I expect the video to explode fairly quickly, as it will certainly make its rounds on Facebook feeds, after an obligatory appearance on Reddit.

What’s more interesting to me, is what inspired Gotye: Kutiman’s Thru-You project, which made it’s debut in 2009, garnering 1.5 million views and a number of derivatives and copycats.

Digicultural Norm: Consumer “Ownership”
Kutiman’s creative spin on using other people’s YouTube videos to produce something of his own reflects a digicultural norm: Whether it’s moral, ethical or otherwise, “ownership” of digital content belongs to consumers.

While it might be the bane of the recording or movie industries, this principle is imperative to understand when developing and distributing content online. Ask yourself: “What’s so valuable about what we’re creating that will inspire consumers to go out of their way to 1) consume it, and 2) make it their own?”

Digitally creative consumers will often spend hours producing content like Gotye, which drives remarkable organic consumption and engagement. I wonder how many advertising dollars digital marketers would be willing to spend on views, visits, likes, shares and comments to even touch the number Gotye’s video will likely receive?

Edit: One day, almost half a million views.

Finally getting my act together

My sexah Twitter iconAfter innumerable false starts, I’m at it again.

A few friends suggested I start a digital marketing blog (or something like it) where I can explore and demystify the digital landscape – from emerging technologies & platforms to creative advertising & media tactics, digipop culture to performance measurement. The good, bad and ugly. Sometimes very ugly.

In the future, I’ll recruit a few of my industry friends to make guest posts. Also, I’ll add a few educational pieces to help those interested in learning the ways of the force.

To mark the occasion, I dug up a few pics of some of the first incarnations of my personal blogs (2001, 2002, 2004). Pretty pathetic. I was rather obsessed with Flash.

My favorite remains the entirely flash-based custom Alice in Wonderland theme, with images likely stolen from Getty. I remember spending an inordinate amount of time animating wisps of light to dance around the fairies and transparent smoke plumes from the caterpillar’s hooka. Check them out below:

One of my first blogs One of my first blogs My First Blog

P.S. Yes, I know I’m using a free WordPress template. To be honest, I haven’t coded since 2007, thus my skills are quite diminished. I’ll monkey with the template over time, though it certainly gives me more empathy for the good folk at MRM Worldwide who take care of GM’s global Web platform.