Google has been struggling to get some money out of You Tube for sometime now, and a few days back,  introduced ‘Paid Search’ in You Tube. They appear on the right hand of the page and one small image and Google Adwords style text ads, as ‘Promoted Videos’. These link to the advertiser’s channel on You Tube itself, and sometimes to their homepage. You Tube has anyway been a fertile ground for viral campaigns. This should well work for branding, leads remains to be seen, since (unlike Paid search) users are only looking to be entertained on You Tube. On an aside, they also have a deal with CBS now to play CBS programs on the site, and Google TV advertising.

The latest monetising attempt from You Tube is click to buy. (via Marketing Pilgrim) If you happen to see a good music video on YouTube, and are wondering where you can buy the track, there are Amazon and iTunes links nearby to help you out. As of now, this works only in the US, but of course, this is only a start and Google will work on scaling this up for additional content and product partners, and international users. I wonder how this will affect the distribution model of sites that promote indie music? On another front, Facebook is plotting a move into the digital music business.

Meanwhile, closer home, Medianama recently carried a story of Landmark making a foray into online music sales, with a ‘pay per song’ model. I agree with the article and wonder how this model can work with piracy that’s so rampant. I wonder if someone would try out the Popcuts model, about which i’d written about earlier. Otherwise, mobile seems to be the only way for digital music.

While audio seems a tough place, there is definitey some action happening in the video space. Here’s a review of Moviemart, an online DVD rental company, and a report on the DVD rental market in India, on Trak.in. I also came across the news of Hulla’s release on BigFlix, simultaneously with its release in cinemas. I think Vivah was the pioneer in this.

With DVD rental companies getting their distribution in place, online video sharing sites figuring out revenue models, and DTH, with its ‘movie halls’, increasing its penetration, I wonder if we’ll see the simultaneous release of mainstream Bollywood and regional movies on DVD, DTH & online (a pay per view model) and cinema screens. I’ll be particularly interested in the online piece – a social angle to it by tying Bigflix with Big Adda, and involving movie communities to do word of mouth publicity, ‘invites only’ premieres and so on? Perhaps a virtual multiplex screening on Second Life later? :)

until next time, so many tubes..