The transmedia narrative is a type of promotional story where the story is spread across multiple platforms and media, with consumers participating in the process of realization and expansion.
The creation of this content aims to create participation, engagement and follow-up by users. Different stories are developed through media formats to broadcast unique content for each channel. An important requirement is that this content is related to each other through narrative synchrony.
For it to work, the user must go through the different platforms, investing time and participation to achieve a more meaningful experience.
History of the transmedia narrative
In the 70s and 80s, creators of telematic art did experiments on collective narration. With the explosion of internet use in the 1990s, numerous creators began exploring ways to tell stories that entertain the public using new platforms.
One of the first reviews of this type of narrative is made by Henry Jenkins in his book Convergence culture where he describes transmedia narration as a new aesthetic that emerged as a result of the convergence of the media.
The author considers this narrative as the art of creating worlds. In this same book, he calls convergence as the relationship of content across multiple media platforms and the intention of creating the journey that the audience is expected to make on the part of the different platforms.
There is no concrete follow-up on how to consume the content of each part of the transmedia narrative, but what is certain is that the more it is consumed, the more understanding there will be of the transmedia narrative. In addition, each medium prints a unique experience independent of the rest.
7 principles of transmedia narrative
Henry Jenkins defines these principles as follows:
Expansion VS. Depth
They are two related concepts. The expansion introduces new users to the narrative world, some of which will delve deeper. Spectator engagement will increase if you help spread the word.
Continuity VS. Multiplicity
Both concepts are related because the parts that make up the transmedia narrative do not have to be consumed in their entirety to understand a certain superior story, since they have independence from each other although they are related in some way, so they have elements in common.
Immersion VS. Extrability
Immersion means letting go in a new world, while extrability is the ability to subtract various objects, clothes, phrases or concepts to apply them to real life.
The interesting thing about this element is knowing how to build a world with certain characteristics that allows it to be expanded on different platforms, formats and supports.
This concept questions whether it is necessary to follow an order when wanting to enter the narrative. He suggests proposing content aimed at users browsing through it according to their wishes.
This element involves the possibility of giving the user the ability to take different points of view and perceptions of the characters that may or may not have the main attention.
The realization is linked to the role that the user takes in the product and how he feels about the universe.