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The 3D Network Model

The major difference between the 2D and 3D media models is that there's no longer a linear model on which to base results. In traditional media, results are measured by the content consumed on a network. The value of the network is its ability to provide the content to the consumer, but the content itself generates the revenue. The content makes the network valuable. In the 3D world, the network should generate the revenue; without it, there's no access to the content. The network gives the content value. On the Internet, the participants—portals, e-commerce sites, information sites, et al.—determine what their piece of the overall network is and how to value it.

The 3D Network Assessment

The Cooper Smith 3D business model assessment was designed to analyze and understand the current Internet environment and to gain senior-level business management commitment. The requirements for a successful 3D Internet content site are as follows:

  1. Ability to create content.

  2. Ability to distribute content.

  3. Ability to leverage content.

  4. Ability to manage content.

Items 1 and 4 have been the "traditional" source of value to Internet companies using a 2D model. Items 2 and 3 are the result of a 3D media approach.

Organizational Issues

Business Issues

Process Issues

Creating content internally and adding content externally

Cost of creating content and offsetting that cost through audience consumption

Content creation and management systems; exporting internal content, importing external content

Lack of a Content Librarian function

Costs associated with archived content becoming the "inventory" of the future

Data storage for information, text, and services; this problem becomes enormous for media and entertainment-based content

Silos of technology

Culture and technical barriers; every content provider has its own way of doing things

Lack of operational policies and procedures, particularly since distribution currently relies on telecom and cable structures not yet standardized

Roles and responsibilities not clearly defined

Poor communication between 3D partners

Lack of a process to market, sell, and distribute content services

Cooper Smith's System of Content Management

After compiling and analyzing the data, it was clear to us that the next step was to design a workshop that focuses on the organization, people, and process issues.

Four Steps to Building a Three-Dimensional Internet Content Business




What kind of content am I creating and for whom? Is content information, entertainment, or a transactional service?


How am going to distribute my content? Will it be passive, relying on consumers to come to me? Or will it be proactive, reaching my consumers by either "on-demand" technologies or through current 2D distribution channels?


Can I leverage my content with distribution partners within both the 3D and 2D realm to augment their information, media, and services, as well as their content augmenting mine?


How will I manage my content? Will my content be created internally or externally? This will, of course, determine the most efficient way of management, although once content "comes aboard," whether through internal or external sources, it becomes internal content and should be managed as such.

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