Spiffing! It's always rewarding when I feel like we're breaking new ground for and with a client ... it's doubley rewarding when that new ground has been opened up with an integrated, powerful and downright brilliant feature of the Webbler - paid for digital asset management. At Tincan towers we've been putting some solid effort into this feature and we're stoked about it's potential to open up new income streams for our clients.
Perfectly suited to micropayments for virtual goods, broadly speaking it allows ANY digital asset (essentially any file) to be sold as a product. Files are only visible and/ or downloadable AFTER the user makes a payment (through the appropriate payment processor - at the moment this means Worldpay).
We've recently deployed this feature for the National Theatre's NT Live initiative - which offers a high quality Digital Programme for the 'London Assurance' broadcast in June 2010 (all for the quality price of £2).From a quick scoot around the usual suspects (for example Southbank Centre, Royal Opera House, ENO, Royal Shakespeare Company, Wales Millennium Centre) our work with the NT is marking them out as breaking new ground - definitely within the theatre sector and probably within the wider arts/ cultural sector.
New income streams are always tricky (to come by, develop and sustain) but at a time when funding in the arts and cultural sector is under attack (read swinging cuts), new income streams developed from content you already have and control could be more than silver lining, it could be gold dust. Both in terms of intrinsic potential value and generated income but also in displaying value for money, forward thinking and justification for what funding there is.
The process for offering and managing paid-for assets is relatively straightforward. Offer the digital asset as a product with relevant details, background info and marketing spiel and a nice easy to click 'Pay Now' button.
Once the user has decided to purchase and has paid then they receive a confirmation ('Thank You') email containing a token-based unique URL.
There are various configurable elements to this new killer feature. You can tailor the 'Thank You' email (Subject and From fields), you can have a single sitewide price which can also be overidden on per product basis and the token-based unique URL has a configurable time limit (or expiry) setting (the upshot being that you can control how long the user has access to the digital asset).
For the NT Digital Programme users are paying for a digital (Flash based) download but further use and application of this feature is extensive - other digital publications (eBooks, image galleries) could be offered for sale online. Video and/ or audio can be offered on a pay-per-view basis with users only able to watch the video/ listen to the audio after they've paid (you could even offer them a free-trailer or preview).
For any organisation with sellable digital assets (ie. digital assets which have an intrinsic commercial value that users would be willing to pay for) BUT which are locked away (eg. on hardrives and cannot be sold online, integrated into your website) then this offers a perfect opportunity to realise a new online offering and income stream. Potentially an opportunity too good to be missed.
Get in touch if you want to know more.