It’s no exaggeration that the digital age has transformed how businesses and creatives connect with their audience. While print newspapers and TV ads can still facilitate this connection, new technologies present new opportunities. Social media, for example, allows users to form personal connections with businesses and brands that the one-way nature of print newspapers and TV ads preclude.
Print newspapers, TV ads, billboards — these are known as traditional media. They don’t rely on digital technology to connect with an audience.
New media, on the other hand, refers to platforms that depend on digital technology to communicate with an audience. In today’s nomenclature, new media can also often be referred to as digital media or multimedia.
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New media technologies attempt tocommunicate with an audience, whether it be general or specific.
Example: An internet ad tries to convey the benefits of a new product.
New media can allow users to comment, contribute and otherwise interact with pieces of media.
Example:A public encyclopedia that can be edited by users.
New media allows individuals to use the technology in their own specific ways.
Example: A YouTube creator can devote hours to develop eye-popping graphics for their videos.
New media technologies let people connect with each other around common interests.
Example: A social-networking site that brings likeminded individuals together.
New media represents the coming together of several different technologies.
Example: A smartphone combines a variety of digital media into one device, including newspapers, music, TV, radio, cameras and computers.
New media examples
Here are some examples of new media that you’ve probably seen before.
One of the most common examples of new media technologies, a website can help a business connect with customers by allowing them to learn more about the business, make an order or browse products. Having a website can also be a huge boost to brand identity!
2. YouTube series
There’s a reason this platform is so popular. YouTube allows creatives and businesses alike to produce and publish content geared toward a targeted interest while also inviting feedback from a larger community.
3. An online video game
When players connect online to slay dragons or fight aliens, they are, in fact, interacting with new media. These games connect people in sometimes globe-spanning ways while encouraging them to interact, collaborate and communicate.
New media careers
Like the sound of new media? Here are some interesting careers in the field.
Social media specialist
Overview:Social media specialists are responsible for a company’s public communication on social media platforms. This can include developing a general social media strategy as well as creating specific pieces of content.
Overview: Producers oversee the development, production and distribution of podcasts. This can include selecting talent and scripts, setting a budget and overseeing technical aspects.
National salary range: Producers earned between $36,070 and $184,660 annually as of May 2020, according to BLS. (This range includes producers in a variety of fields, including in media outside of podcasts.)
Education requirements: A bachelor’s degree in film or cinema studies, communication technology, theater or arts, or nonprofit management is typically required.
Job outlook: Employment for mobile application and software developers is projected to grow 22% between 2020 and 2030.
Overview: Copy editors oversee whatever a business publishes, from blog posts to press releases. This role can involve planning content, editing content for grammar and brand alignment, and approving final drafts of publications.
The salary ranges are not specific to students or graduates of University of Phoenix. Actual outcomes vary based on multiple factors, including prior work experience, geographic location and other factors specific to the individual. University of Phoenix does not guarantee employment, salary level or career advancement. BLS data is geographically based. Information for a specific state/city can be researched on the BLS website.
New media skills
Whether you’re just starting your career in new media or contemplating a career switch, here are a few skills that are worth honing.
We live in a data-driven world. It’s not enough to put out high-quality, eye-catching content if you don’t know how many eyes you’re catching. Analytics provide a path toward a better understanding of your audience and media strategy development.
Nearly every new media technology provides opportunities for data analytics. Google Analytics, for example, is commonly used to monitor traffic to a website. Social media platforms provide ample opportunity to analyze the performance of a post or an entire campaign.
When developing a new media strategy, understanding how audiences interact with new media is key. Some aspects of marketing strategy have remained the same for decades. Others have changed drastically.
Further, marketing skills can help you determine how to communicate with audiences across different new media technologies. Understanding the different types of digital marketing, and knowing how to effectively use them, is helpful in a new media career.
Photo and video editing
When working in new media, creating and sharing content will likely form a significant part of the job. This content forms entertaining and engaging connections with an audience. Proficiency in photo and video editing software can help make this content even more engaging.
In fact, good content can be shared across different new media technologies. A YouTube video can find its way into a Facebook post. An ad on the sidebar can guide a user to a company’s website. Great photos and video can help users make that click and form that connection.
As commonplace as it now is, new media continues to evolve and change. And that means more opportunities for people to create more and meaningful connections.
Degrees in new media
Does new media sound like an interesting career field for you? If you’re interested in getting started or learning more about how to incorporate new media in your current role, degree options are available to teach you the fundamentals and arm you with the necessary skills to pursue the above job roles.
Michael Feder is a Content Marketing Specialist at University of Phoenix, where he researches and writes on a variety of topics, ranging from healthcare to IT and everything in between. He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars program, and a New Jersey native!