Five media start-ups to keep an eye on

It might be due to the improving economic outlook, or possibly down to technological innovations but the last few months have seen a significant rise in the number of news/media/content start-ups that have opened for business. Here are five that are well worth keeping an eye on.

Newzful is an interesting new company that bills itself as the provider of stats and data for brands and content marketing companies. Aimed largely at a B2B audience its pitch is basically that it delivers the data that can power blog posts, emails, magazine articles and more. Each week, Newzful mines hundreds of publications and the media for facts, stats, data and news which it argues will make brands look good to their customers and emails it to them. It is US based and the fees for the weekly email start at around $149 per year. It will be interesting to see if a UK company starts to offer a similar service.

Creatavist aims to tackle one key problem - how do you make it easy to create long form multimedia content and get it seen on as many platforms as possible? Its service enables writers and publishers to build their own multimedia stories which it then publishes in a very striking way on its web pages. It also makes it easy for that content to then be turned into tablet apps, ebooks and more. It is free to experiment with, but if you want to use it regularly there is a $10 per month charge. It costs more too if you want to use the platform to build your own iPad magazine type app. There is clearly a demand for publishers to be able to create web content like this and then it house on their web pages. Creatavist goes some way to enabling this to happen.

Rockpack is a new way of enabling individuals and brands to curate videos. The premise is simple - a user or brand creates their own Rockpack channel and then populates it with their videos no matter what their source (YouTube, Vimeo etc). The channels, which are then optimised for mobile and tablet, are striking to look at and easy to navigate. Rockpack is keen on working with brands and may provide an interesting opportunity for companies who have videos in a number of places - they can unify them on the platform easily - or need a more integrated video mobile strategy.

Ghost is billing itself as the ultimate blogging platform. It is designed to be simple and easy to use - and indeed it does have a very intuitive looking back-end - while delivering endlessly easy-to-customise, beautiful to look at blog posts and pages. The platform has been funded via Kickstarter and will be available very soon. You can sign up on the company's site to get more details about the launch. There have been a lot of blogging platforms in recent years that have ended up being mothballed - the most high profile of which was Posterous which was bought by Twitter and then shut down. Meanwhile Tumblr, which was acquired recently by Yahoo, has arguably become less brand-friendly due to the risky nature of some of the content that it hosts. It will be interesting to see if Ghost can fill what is quite clearly an obvious gap.

If you need to create an online community for your brand or organisation then British start up Pitchcom is worth a look. It enables owners to create a bespoke and customisable community platform for their fans or members. While Pitchcom promises that its platform can do anything that consumer facing social networks do it also has many additional features, such as easy to create and manage email lists, pay walls - by which companies can offer additional subscription content - and more. Ultimately the service is aimed at brands or organisations who want to target an existing community online and create new revenue streams from it. 

Posted by: CMA

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Posted in CMA blog
20thAug 2013

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