Milyoni, the social commerce solution provider for the entertainment industry has just secured $11 million in Series B financing led by Oak Investment Partners, with participation from existing investors ATA Ventures and Thomvest Ventures.

Milyoni specialises in ‘social entertainment’, adding pay-per-view video streaming functionality to Facebook pages of movies, TV shows, bands and sports teams.  This allows entertainment brands and franchises to offer – and monetize – VIP fan-experiences on Facebook such as special fan cuts and fan features, live streaming of events, games and concerts, live social interaction with stars and commentators and fan quizzes.  For example, Universal invites fans of yesterday’s Oscar winning movie The Beginners to rent the movie on the movies’s Facebook page, offering extra social features – quizzes, chat, commenting and tagging favourite scenes with Likes.

As we’ve argued before, we think there’s a natural fit between social commerce and the entertainment industry because

  • people love to talk movies, TV, music and sport
  • word of mouth buzz drives revenue
  • fans are willing to pay extra for enhanced experiences

If there’s a danger, it’s that media companies make the same mistake initially made by retailers trying to sell in social media; simply giving fans access on Facebook to what’s available elsewhere won’t work.  It’s pointless, futile and ultimately disrespectful to your fan.  The key to success is to make the fan experience in Facebook exclusive, unique and compelling.  Convincing movie studios, sports franchises, event producers and music labels to use Facebook to offer exclusive, unique and compelling fan experiences will be Milyoni’s big challenge.

It’ll also be the key to a healthy ROI on that $11m.