CommonSense Blog

Bob Dylan Releases Music Video for 48 Year Old Hit – Blazes Trail to Future of Branded Content Development Models

By Damion White | Nov 26, 2013
Like a Rolling Stone Music Video Wrap Up

Rolling Stone deemed Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone” the greatest song of all-time

Last week [NOVEMBER 22 2013], Bob Dylan released an official music video for his 1965 hit, “Like a Rolling Stone.” It is the first-ever music video released for the song; it’s creation part of a recent promotional push for the upcoming commercial release of Bob Dylan’s 47-Disc Box Set.

Like a Rolling Stone is regarded as a timeless classic amongst music critics and it embodies the spirit of what is most iconic in contemporary American music. Rolling Stone Magazine recently deemed the Dylan tune, greatest song of all-time.

I can’t confirm or deny if RS’ editors are partial to Dylan’s song title, but I am certain that the music video is unlike any we have ever seen before.

It is a first-of-its-kind interactive music video – native to online – that allows web viewers to “flip channels.” Each of the several channels feature imagined stars and characters of faux television programs, lip-syncing Dylan’s lyrics in time with the song, even as viewers ‘flip’ through the lineup.

The video was launched via Dylan’s website, and was first shared externally with Mashable, garnering coverage from the online media titan. There is no functionality to embed the video, but watch it here.

Oh… And, yeah… Welcome your glimpse into the future of content development and distribution.

After watching the video just once, I knew that, inevitably, this would mark the initiation of a new standard in online engagement, coming soon to a content development strategy near you. We’re at the precipice of tectonic shifts in how brands and their agency partners innovate content paradigms and how audiences will (want to) experience media overall.

Content creators who are ill prepared to innovate and, or to disrupt present models will likely suffer, if not worse.

It’s worth noting that in this particular example, the director, Vania Heymann’s creative vision is the key developmental attribute. It’s not always easy to see the writing on the wall – to envision scalability – when dealing with intuition and creative genius. But… What can be read ‘between-the-lines’ here is that a new norm is on the horizon for content creators; we will be forced to intelligently align innovative technologies, creative design expertise and advanced analytics insights across content strategy and distribution models.

This, and all that it implies, fit squarely within the context of W2O’s models in content strategy and development. We believe that great content inherently resonates with audiences in multiple dimensions. Content that fits this mold captivates and galvanizes audiences by creating emotional and psychological connections, holistic in nature and that extend beyond the sum of its parts. Whether it comes down to unforeseen “wow-factor” technology (like in the Dylan video), a tactile experience, an emotionally affective message, etc., we can always identify multiple levers at play when observing content that makes a major impact.

The next step in this evolution will be marked by the rise of content creation models that innately create resonant touch-points in multiple dimensions and that establish a level of predictability with respect to measurable outcomes. W2O Group has already begun innovating content creation models in this way, primarily through the alignment of its content, media + engagement, creative design/UX and advanced analytics practices.

Contact W2O Group to find out more.

Hypothetically, imagine if what I’ve described became the basis of an integrated content distribution framework. In that context, might it be argued that brands dealing with segmented audiences (e.g. regional product/service models) would add value, at-scale, by gaining the capability to surface an interactive content engine with an analytical approach at the core of its design (e.g. Nextworks’ Content Capsule)?

Brands challenged by audience segmentation would benefit greatly if they were better equipped to efficiently create and distribute content, and if they could ensure relevant content effectively cut across audience segments without causing core messaging decay. Therefore, it seems safe to say that a viable solution to this problem could rest upon content development models that apply advanced analytics to identify resonant factors across audience segments, and that innovate distribution technologies allowing users to self-select relevant content  and, or that implement software intelligence for surfacing content based on user attribution.

This possibly represents a means by which brands could aggregate content and audiences – even segmented audiences – around centralized content hubs. How might something like this affect brand P&L? It looks to change the game if brands become empowered to consistently and predictively circumvent pitfalls inherent to communicating with segmented audiences.

What impact would it have if organizations were able to multiply the impact of distributed content, while simultaneously reducing the breadth of infrastructure needed for content development and distribution altogether? The implications go on.

If we mostly agree that the world is becoming more integrated, and not less integrated, then content models that innovate technologies for interactivity and that rely heavily on digital analytics insights to drive strategy and distribution seem central to a plausible vision of the future. We, inevitably, will have Bob Dylan to thank for starting us down the road of the former.