In its quest to make online video more interactive, easy to maintain, and ultimately more useful for businesses, Boulder, Colo.-based FlixMaster announced today that it’s changing its name to Rapt Media.
The company originally targeted its platform at both enterprises and mainstream users, but it quickly found that its audience was more experienced than it expected. As FlixMaster, it developed a platform that made it simple for businesses to put interactive video on the web and play it across devices (the company just announced support for the iPhone and Android).
“We thought video could be more than what it was … we wanted to facilitate the adoption of this technology,” said Erika Trautman, Rapt Media’s founder and chief executive, in an interview with VentureBeat. “What changed was the people who adopted it the fastest were really people who understood media — they were media professionals … right now it’s not the people who are shooting video with their cellphones.”
Trautman tells me she began to notice a shift in the way FlixMaster’s customers were using its tools about a year ago, which spurred on the idea for a rebrand. “We realized pretty clearly there was a disparity between what our website was communicating and how our customers were using us,” she said.
When it comes to rebranding advice for other young startups, Trautman points out that companies should try to make major changes before it becomes too expensive. Most young companies just focus on getting a unique domain name, which limits their choices (and has led to all of those annoying vowel-less Web 2.0 company names).
Rapt Media raised $1.1 million from Golden Seeds earlier this year, bringing its total raised to $2.2 million.
“This is bigger than video,” Trautman said. “It’s about integrating video with the web and all of the media and all of the content that we deal with online.”
Below, check out a short interview with Trautman at our MobileBeat conference a few weeks ago:
VB's research team is studying web-personalization... Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.