Media as Interface

Wherever you turn these days people are talking about how things are becoming “smart.” Smart planets, smart appliances, smart ads… The “cloud” is allowing humanity to attach data to objects and new tools are allowing us to access and interact with that information. RFID, augmented reality, visual search, sub-audial synchronized apps are all examples of how we access that data layer.

Advertising impressions are also objects that are increasingly linked to the data layer. Each ad instance is attached to more information, more functionality, and more intelligence about to whom it is being shown.
By definition a medium is an intervening layer. In the communications industry, we have used media to provide a layer of information between the consumer and a brand. But in the era of the connected cloud, media is no longer a layer. Media is an interface. It is a control panel. Media is software.

In fact, I would argue that the Software as a Service business model is based on monetizing the audience’s attention via advertising revenue models rather than licensing fees.

Making software is a different craft than making ads. User experience design is a different craft than media planning. The organizations merging those disciplines are poised for success as Media becomes Interface.