The Way to a Consumer’s Heart is Through Their Feed

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The Social Web has changed the way we discover and share news and given an opportunity for advertisers to create content that matters most for consumers. But, not all content are created equal. Why …

The Social Web has changed the way we discover and share news and given an opportunity for advertisers to create content that matters most for consumers. But, not all content are created equal. Why are some content sticky and spreadable more than others, while other lie flat? Will Hayward, vp of Europe for BuzzFeed will share why EQ matters more than IQ on the Social Web and how advertisers and brands can inspire, engage and connect with users on a more personal level. Hayward will also explain how advertisers must adapt to a shifting media landscape as mobile and social converge and create meaningful content that encourages social sharing on the Web.

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  • How many people here DON’T know what BuzzFeed is, or ever visit the site.
    Congratulations - you’re probably the hardest working people here.
  • Thirdly, on a more positive note, if you guys can harness the social web and start getting people sharing and recommending what you are doing for advertisers, you will hit the jackpot. What we do for brands has a genuine impact on their business, in such a way that our rebooking rate is through the roof. We have the “good shit” advertisers want, and that is genuine word of mouth marketing at scale. My key take away for this crowd in this room would be - look at how we’ve worked with brands to create content that consumers love enough to share.
  • This is the website today - with over 130M unique users, we’re one of the biggest sites on the web. Only 1 in 4 of our audience comes directly to the site - 3/4 of our traffic is driven by sharing. I just got last months data and the mobile stat is now out of date - we’re now almost 60% mobile, which is something we’re really happy about.
  • original idea - bored office workers looking for distraction
    Bigger than any network
    if content is good and easily shareable
  • change to dogs who can’t handle it right now/Gifs guaranteed to make you laugh
  • change to dogs who can’t handle it right now/Gifs guaranteed to make you laugh
  • change to dogs who can’t handle it right now/Gifs guaranteed to make you laugh
  • So almost two years ago we hired Ben Smith as our editor in chief and started building out an investigative news team, a features team, a video team. And its done really well. And in the US, our animals content is now less than 10% of what we do, about 7%.
    In the UK, we set up our edit team about 6 months ago. And sure, we’ve focused on what some might consider core BuzzFeed content.
  • replace with photo of old computer connected to a phone
  • So we had companies like AOL and Yahoo grow to prominence and ultimately create the bubble of the late 90s
  • Google’s corporate pbjective is to organise the world’s information, and a functional view of the company is smart computers trying to answer human search queries.
  • When Google first rose to prominence, this lead to a huge realigenment of the web’s content, as some people built entire companies around the prospect of answering these queries. someone would search for how can I get rid of my slice and learn to hit a controlled draw,
  • If the disrtibution mechanism of this new age of the web is social, then we have to think what would make someone share this? And the truth is, there are a few different reasons people share things. People use their social feeds to show who they are, or perhaps more accurately, who they want to be. So - most people want to be funny. Which means posts about film posters that could be improved by Boris Johnson do really well.
  • The reality is, for all of us in the content creation game, the traditional roles of the journalist, the printer and the newspaper delivery boy no longer exist in their traditional forms.
  • Whilst tech has certainly created many new job functions, we’ve also seen a consolidation of some into this new breed of journalist. Across all your titles, your journalists are no longer just responsible for writing great words, but are now responsible for thinking about the format of the content and distributing it. We hire great journalists not just for their ability to create great posts, but also to think about how to deliver them to the consumer.

    And as this shift has happened in journalism as a result of the move to digital and the rise of social, similar forces are now acting on advertising.
  • So, now this revolution in content has come to advertising
  • There is nothing on this slide that anyone in this room doesn’t already now. The market value of delivering a marketing message online is significantly lower on desktop than it is in print. And as we all know, more and more of your consumers are actually coming thought to the content on mobile, where the perceived value is even lower.
  • And the solution is clearly not to just sell more banners! Can anyone in this room honestly say that this is something to be proud of? It took me less than five minutes to find this homepage, from a UK media publication that has a proud history of journalism. Those CPMs, this ad experience, are clearly NOT going to support a newsroom.
  • MTV is currently running a great campaign for Lucozade. People come through to MTV to watch music shows and reality TV - I’m sure that if they created a show called “Pimp my summer ball” without a brand partner it would do really well. But here they have created this as a clearly labeled brand partnership - there is no illusion that this is part of an ad campaign - yet it feels so native to the site that people are clicking and engaging with it.
  • This isn’t just for consumer brands - The Economist has always done great work for ad clients, looking beyond a core business in ad delivery to actually thinking what The Economist audience care about. People love the magazine and paper because it informs them about the cross over between business, politics and society. So a few years ago they partnered with Chevron to create Energyville, an online Sim city style game where users could control the energy mix of a city to see the economic, environmental and security impacts of their decisions. Once again - perfectly natural fit to the site, not masqueraded as editorial, and going way beyond just delivering an ad.
  • And at BuzzFeed, Milenials come to the site looking for content that they can enjoy and share with their friends. So for Oscar health, a new US health insurance company that wanted to specifically target young people, we created a post about diseases only Millennial’s get, such as Selfie’s elbow, with an obvious cause, the treatment for which is “try taking pictures of nature, or something”. We also have Filterthesia, where you spend hours scrolling through the different filters on instagram only to settle on the same one you always go for. And we also have “Explosive Twerkarrhea”, which looks like this, and the cause is simply listed as “Miley”.

    So the point is - all these companies focus on what the consumer is looking for and how they can help an advertiser create something that is contextually relevant. And this also helps totally differentiate an ad offering from a simple, transactionary buy.

Transcript

  • 1. @billyhayward
  • 2. everything has changed. everything is changing.
  • 3. Bad News What you are doing now will offer diminishing returns.
  • 4. Good News Harness social and there are HUGE opportunities.
  • 5. 130+ Million uniques monthly 75% of visits from social 50% of visits from mobile 60% are aged 18-34
  • 6. Bored-At-Work Network
  • 7. Nostalgia is Social
  • 8. Memes = Participatory Mass Media
  • 9. Memes = Participatory Mass Media
  • 10. Memes = Participatory Mass Media
  • 11. Memes = Participatory Mass Media
  • 12. 15 1970 2014 There is a New Leisure Section
  • 13. BuzzFeed Evolves With Social
  • 14. 3 Portals Search Social
  • 15. 20 AOL World View: Book them and they will come.
  • 16. 21
  • 17. Google World View: Connect people with the information they need.
  • 18. Facebook World View: Connect people with their friends, and give them the means to communicate and express themselves.
  • 19. Homepages Don’t Matter Anymore
  • 20. TechHasConsolidated SomeJobRoles
  • 21. Social Content Has Come to Advertising
  • 22. 30
  • 23. 31 Ad Rates Per Thousand Views
  • 24. 32 MUST RUN MORE BANNERS!!!
  • 25. 33 Content & Context
  • 26. 34
  • 27. 35 Nobody wants to hang out with this guy at a party.
  • 28. 36 Think of Content as a Gift
  • 29. 37 And... don’t do a Homer.
  • 30. Key Takeaways People love news and entertainment storytelling more than ever. The new distribution system of social has been built. Content is king (again)!
  • 31. Will Hayward will.hayward@buzzfeed.com twitter: @billyhayward