Sunday, December 10, 2006

Digital Q rating and Advertising, Part 1

Main Entry: Q rating
Function: noun
Etymology: quotient
: a scale measuring the popularity of a person or thing typically based on dividing an assessment of familiarity or recognition by an assessment of favorable opinion; also : position on such a scale.

This is the definition according to the Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary. In high school, the popular kids were the ones who had unique attributes (aesthetics, intelligence, athleticism, etc..) giving them greater influence over their peers. Basically they had a higher Q-rating than the geek or goth kids. But within each group there was the most popular kid or leader. With the nerds or geeks there was the smartest one, with the cheerleaders there was the prettiest one, with the jocks the most athletic one, you get my point. Depending on the popularity of the group, compared to the other groups, the greater the influence on the main student body. The group with the highest Q-rating would have the greatest influence and within each group there were also Q ratings as to who has the greatest influence over that particular group.

The relevance is that the higher your Q rating, the greater your following and the sphere of influence you have. Part of the success of web 2.0 sites such as Youtube, Digg, and Myspace is their high digital Q-rating, where they have aggregated a high number of individuals due solely to the viral nature of their sites. They have developed the "coolness" factor, similar to the popular kids from high school that everybody wants to hangout with or be just like. These sites have become the vehicles creating internet stars in both the online and offline world, the best example is the aspiring actress from the lonelygirl_15 phenomenon who has made the cover of Wired, was in and on MSNBC, and in the NY Times twice because her Q-rating was so high from her Youtube posts. The directors behind lonelygirl_15 are also being offered similar director related opportunities in Hollywood.

The majority of user-generated content is nebulous but this is the fairly interesting phenomenon of these social networking sites--the content is completely driven by the users. The conversations and discussions of content is made through the use of comments, posts, blogs and then repeats itself on and on. It’s a fairly interesting direct democratic process and it obviously working since social websites are now considered a viable business model.

Continued in Digital Q rating and Advertising, Part II

No comments: