We all love stories, from our earliest childhood. We love fiction books, TV series, films, etc. But what we love even more is when our favorite series is enriched by other parallel productions. This is what we call transmedia, which we explain here in 4 points.
Transmedia, also known as transmedia storytelling, refers to the practice of creating narrative content across different media, while varying the content to suit each medium.
It goes further than cross-media, which consists in developing the same story across several media. Transmedia offers a complementary story on each medium, in a participative and immersive way.
The Marvel franchise is a perfect example of transmedia. Numerous heroes, each with their own story, come together in a common universe. And all these stories can be found in a wide variety of media: films, comic books, TV series, video games…
The film and television industries were the first to adopt transmedia production strategies. In a highly competitive market, this is an excellent way for them to immerse fans in a universe and build loyalty to their original creation.
To promote its Game of Thrones series, the American network HBO has built up an entire narrative universe across several media. She imagined an interactive experience involving all 5 senses, and involving fans both on the Internet and in real-life locations.
Some transmedia devices, such as alternate reality games (ARGs), are very popular for boosting audience engagement through gamification mechanisms. In these games, fans are encouraged to work together to solve puzzles linked to the fictional universe, in a way that is both reflective and playful.
Alternating reality games arouse curiosity and rally the fan community around a single universe.
The cultural industries have clearly grasped the advantages of transmedia storytelling, which enables them to :
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