Tadcast might be the ties that bind. Bind video creators to revenue streams that is. You see they believe that all videos should be able to have some sort of product placement and to that end they have challenged video creators to create videos with products in them. But more on that later. First let's take a look at Tadcast itself.
Tadcast looks at itself as the place where advertisers who have product they want to promote will post their specifications for the placement. They outline things like what the product is, what kind of requirements they have for proper placement and of course how much they're willing to pay.
The video creators browse Tadcast, find a product that they can incorporate into their videos without looking like they are creating a hardcore advertisement (the site uses the wording organically incorporate) and when the video is done they submit to Tadcast.
Now on to the. Since Tadcast is still relatively new they need to show the advertisers the value of the system. Thus they have challenged content creators to come up with the best product placement in their videos. The prize is a cool $5000 for first place. Second place comes out smelling like roses and gets a copy of Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium (whew, that's like $300 per word with a $1,699 value), three months of free IMDBPro and other product donations that have yet to be specified exactly.
Really it's not a new concept. Product placement goes all the way back to the early days of film and television. Who sees a can of Pepsi or a Coke logo and doesn't think "I wonder how much they paid for that placement" in today's top films. I always thought that this would be a good way to make money and is no different than a podcast that starts with "This podcast sponsored by XYZ Corp" or the Digg guys talking about and showing what they're drinking during the old Digg Nation show. What really surprises me is that it took someone this long to apply this idea to online video.
Products available for use in the contest videos include Sweetriot (chocolate covered cacao nibs ), Zildjian and Honest Tea. If you're interested in submitting then you had better hurry as it's only on until 25 May 2009.
Aside from the contest and a totally generic WordPress login there's not much to Tadcast as present. There's no marketplace to browse what's available. There's no social networking aspect of the site. In fact at present there isn't much of anything aside from a contact form for advertisers that are interested in the service. So I guess no one can really say the service I launched at present. There really is nothing launched except for the contest. As a video creator the service has potential, but only in way of the contest right now.
But the IDEA is intriguing. As I said earlier I am amazed that it took this long for it to get done. Really this should have been the most basic form of advertising and monetization of online video ever. With YouTube videos receiving millions of hits how could someone not have realized that sticking products in them would have been good. Think how rich that Numa Numa guy would be now had he been getting paid to dance around with a bottle of Coke in a Ford T-shirt with a Mac Truck Hat on...
Seriously, I love the idea and I look forward to Tadcast opening full bore and the torrent of product placement-supported ads to rain down upon the eyes of online video viewers worldwide.