Q&A With Rapt Media's Erika Trautman

Rapt Media CEO Erika Trautman started out in the industry by running her own Emmy-Award-winning production company, Outlier Films, and also worked as a documentary filmmaker.

“I’ve been a writer, producer, editor, and director in the past, so I have a true appreciation and understanding of the importance of online storytelling as a way to engage and communicate. Rapt Media was created as a result of my frustration and disappointment with online video’s inability to rise to its full digital potential,” she explains.

Here’s more from Trautman:

Charlene Weisler: How exactly does Rapt Media work?

Erika Trautman: Rapt Media is a cloud-based platform built and hosted on a global content delivery network that enables video to be viewed on desktop, tablet and mobile without downloading an app.

Charlene Weisler: How do you do that without an app?

Erika Trautman: Our HTML5 video player, along with our patented encoding technology, allows us to serve branching videos with clickable overlays to mobile devices without using a native app….Viewers are invited to click/tap content within the video that lets them create their own personalized experience based on their individual behaviors and preferences.



Charlene Weisler: Do you capture any data regarding consumer usage? If so what do you collect?

Erika Trautman: Our custom data analytics platform helps marketers track content performance in real time based on robust user data including unique plays, total repeat viewers, average viewing time, total nodes (content areas) viewed per session, total video plays per user, and total number of times a link-out was clicked during a viewing session.

Additional demographic data including country/location, device type, operating system and browser are also provided along with consumer/viewer insights from the content areas that are driving the highest level of engagement (nodes viewed and average time viewed).

Charlene Weisler: How has the activity of storytelling changed in the past few years? Are there truisms that stand the test of time? Anything different today?

Erika Trautman: The foundation of effective storytelling lies in the emotional connection created with the audience, and that vital component still remains true today.

What has changed, however, is the way those connections are being made through emerging content formats. Passive, linear storytelling mediums do not allow the audience to engage dynamically with the content, restricting everyone to the same experience.

Interactive storytelling creates the opportunity for engagement, allowing the audience to personalize content consumption based on their individual preferences and unique interests. Marketers are also able to collect valuable insights that help them better understand which storytelling elements are resonating with the audience.

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