We’re delighted to be working with Eefje Op den Buysch, Head of the Fontys Transmedia Storytelling Lab and Hille van der Kaa, professor of the professorship of Media, Interaction and Narration at Fontys School of Applied Sciences in the exciting and much needed area of audience engagement as it applies to transmedia storytelling.
Below is Eefje & Hille’s “flyer” for their talk at the Conducttr Conference where they’ll be presenting their findings. Our plan is to incorporate this work into Conducttr so that we present a meaningful dashboard with actionable insights rather than a simple series of charts. More of this later!
How do you measure transmedia?
What metrics will help transmedia producers better understand, compare and contrast the impact of a transmedia story?
In this research we analyzed existing engagement models and added the insights of twelve leading transmedia experts in attempt to come closer to a final solution.
Measuring engagement means placing audience size into a broader context of how the transmedia production is actually performing. Stakeholders in the production get to see where, how and when fan engage so that refinements can be made.
In this research we choose to focus on the goals of the storyteller.
We propose a model that can be used to create and give direction to a transmedia production team of writers and performers. Twelve leading transmedia experts evaluated this so-called ‘Toggle Switch’ model.
Toggle Switch Model
We see three important aspects of a transmedia production:
- the storyworld
- the individual audience member’s behavior in comparison to others
- the experience of the storyworld at various stages of the audience journey.
Audience members who interact with the world are considered to be engaged users. By tracking the behavior of individual users we can map how they discover the world and how they interact with it over time: each time a user touches something in the storyworld, we record it. By listing all these ‘points of interaction’ and structuring them into chapters, scenes and beats, we can track the journey and hotspots of engagement for individual users as they progress through the story.
The key benefit of our conceptual model is that the behavior of an individual user can be compared to others. In doing so, we can interpret the relative engagement of an individual user compared to others (as a ratio) at certain points of interaction (touchpoints, chapters, scenes, beats). By tracking the user journey the storyteller gets actionable insights on the behavior of that individual, but also on the behavior of groups of users.
Evaluating Toggle Switch Model
We asked twelve leading experts to evaluate the clarity, completeness, affectivity, applicability and benefit of our model. Amongst them are Sam Ford (Peppercomm, New York, NY), Dr. Pamela Rutledge (Media Psychology Research Center, Boston, MA), Bart Robben (Elastique, Hilversum, NL), Egbert van Wyngaarden (Transmedia Desk, Munich, DE) and Soraia Ferreira (UT Austin, Porto, PT)
Participants found our model interesting , allowing the ability to track both individual and overall journeys and providing the opportunity to adjust the strategy during the campaign. But they were doubtful that this model could measure real emotions. Based on the insights of our expert panel, we have improved our model and we are excited to share these results at the Conductrr Conference.
We aim to present an engagement model that can be easily integrated in the daily activities of a transmedia storyteller.
About this research
This research is conducted by Eefje Op den Buysch, Head of the Fontys Transmedia Storytelling Lab and Hille van der Kaa, professor of the professorship of Media, Interaction and Narration at Fontys School of Applied Sciences. 15 students at the Fontys Transmedia Storytelling lab run the interviews.
Fontys’ Transmedia Storytelling Lab was designed for the research and development of transmedia productions and their value in the digital age. The professorship of Media, Interaction and Narration aims to develop innovative media concepts. It puts focus on the influence of technology on storytelling.
Check out the PDF here
“This model is designed to be able to track individuals and in what way each person travels through the narrative world… It gives storytellers the possibility to understand which particular parts of the story serve the right purpose.” – Sam Ford
“It is a very clear way of starting to break down the transmedia experience. By looking at ways of measuring these multiple threads of behaviour to try and make sense out of them in a hole.”– Dr. Pamela Rutledge