Unruly / Blog / Here Are The Top 10 News Stories Of The 2015 Digital Content NewFronts

Here Are The Top 10 News Stories Of The 2015 Digital Content NewFronts

During the past two weeks, 33 media brands and digital upstarts made presentations at the fourth annual Digital Content NewFronts marketplace.

More than 250 stories about the event have appeared in Google News during the past fortnight.

Since no one can read them all, here are the top 10 news stories of the 2015 NewFronts:


1. Are Multi-Channel Networks (MCNs) Becoming Multi-Platform Networks (MPNs)?

According to Advertising Age, a lot of Multi-Channel Networks (MCNs) – including Collective Digital Studio, Fullscreen, Machinima, StyleHaul and Whistle Sports – hosted their own NewFronts presentations for the first time this year.

Why? Although these online video companies still manage large numbers of YouTube channels, their businesses are more oriented around the stars behind those channels, whose audiences also span Facebook, Twitter, Vine, Instagram, and Snapchat.


2. 68% of Marketers and Agencies Anticipate Increasing Video Ad Spend

According to the IAB’s second annual “Digital Content NewFronts: Digital Video Spend Study“, 68% of marketers and agency executives expect to see their digital video ad budgets increase in the next 12 months.

This optimism comes hot on the heels of a strong uptick in budget allocation to the medium by brand advertisers, who have increased their commitment to digital video by a whopping 90% from spring 2013 to spring 2015.


3. BuzzFeed Pitches Virtues of Short-Form Video Sharing

According to MediaPost’s MediaDailyNews, BuzzFeed introduced a new research product called PROUD, an acronym for Process of Optimizing and Understanding Network Diffusion. It’s a tool that BuzzFeed has developed to dive more deeply into the world of Internet file sharing, particularly where BuzzFeed editorial and video content is concerned.


4. Hulu Says Hello to Jerry Seinfeld, Goodbye to the Plus

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Hulu might be a digital platform, but its pitch to ad buyers at the 2015 NewFronts was that the brand is all about TV. A big part of the company’s presentation focused on its library of exclusive TV programming, including new additions Seinfeld and Fear the Walking Dead.

Hulu also announced that the company will just be “Hulu minus the Plus”.


5. YouTube Ads Don’t Support YouTube Videos, Says John Green

According to Re/code, John Green, a novelist and videoblogger, told advertisers at YouTube’s Brandcast event, “Here’s the part that should worry all of you: for the most part, everything my brother and I have done, we’ve done largely without advertising. Crash Course and SciShow are funded mainly by viewers who voluntarily donate to support the shows through Patreon. And DFTBA Records provides more revenue from merch than we’ve ever made from ads, not just for us but for dozens of creators.”


6. Coca-Cola is for Sharing

As reported by AdWeek, Unruly’s US president Richard Kosinski explained how Coca-Cola’s “Grandpa” video ads got an 8 percent share rate. “Ads that are emotional are twice as likely to be shared,” he explained.

7. Defy Media’s Video Skewers the NewFronts

As reported on The Wall Street Journal’s CMO Today blog, DEFY Media released a video on YouTube poking fun at the 2015 NewFronts.  Honest NewFront Trailer – Defy Media” was inspired and created by the company’s Screen Junkies, who are known for a series of movie-mocking “Honest Trailers.”


8. One in Four U.S. Adults Watches Original Digital Video Programming

According to the IAB’s “2015 Original Digital Video Study,” 24% of the American adult population, an audience of 59 million strong, is turning to original digital video programming at least once a month. This marks an uptick of 13% over last year’s audience size of 52 million.


9. Endemol Beyond Promises More of Everything

According to Adweek, Endemol Beyond promised more of everything in 2015: more make-up tutorials by Michelle Phan, more pranks by PrankvsPrank founder Jesse Wellens and Vine champion Brittany Furlan, and more Pitbull. President Will Keenan told attendees that the company’s “core value” is storytelling.


10. The NewFronts Go Legit, But Will Advertisers Buy In?

Finally, MediaShift on PBS takes apart the NewFronts, including the presentations by Yahoo, Vox Media, and Vice, on this week’s episode of the Mediatwits.



Greg Jarboe


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