Happy Weekend! Digital Media Weekender is a collection of our favourite degital media news of the week from BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s paid research service.
STRATEGIES DIFFER AS NETFLIX, AMAZON, AND YOUTUBE COURT CHILDREN: Netflix, Amazon, and YouTube are making big investments in hopes of courting children away from kid-focused TV networks like Nickelodeon. But these digital video companies are following divergent strategies in hopes of cultivating, and monetizing, their budding children audiences.
- Netflix and Amazon are focusing on developing high-quality content for children to make their subscriptions a must-have for parents. Both companies are pouring billions into original content, with a large portion going to children’s programming, according to a lengthy profile by The California Sunday Magazine. On Amazon, six of the company’s 15 original shows are for children, according to the profile. Meanwhile, Netflix is working with DreamWorks to produce a slew of kid-focused original content. The goal for both companies is to make content that’s so good that parents will be happy to pay a monthly subscription fee.
- YouTube is curating its massive content library for children and focusing on immediately monetizing its audience through advertisements. Google’s video site recently launched a dedicated service for children called YouTube For Kids. The service features a family-friendly curated list of YouTube videos paired with children-approved ads, Ad Age reports. YouTube video creators can also include advertiser sponsorships and product placements in their videos. However, YouTube For Kids’ branded content and heavy ad-load has irked some parents and even caught the attention of regulators, TechCrunch reports.
Because Netflix and Amazon are subscription services, these companies are trying to build viewership at the household level; on the other hand, YouTube, which is free and ad-supported, is building an audience at the individual level.
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YAHOO EXPERIMENTS WITH GOOGLE AS A NEW SEARCH PROVIDER: Yahoo is testing Google’s search results and search ads, according to initial reports by SEO Book that were later confirmed by both companies’ spokeswomen. Microsoft’s Bing platform has been powering Yahoo’s organic search since 2009, but this April the deal was renegotiated so that Yahoo could source 49% of desktop search results and ads from other services, according to The New York Times.
- Yahoo may be focusing on content and content monetisation. In the past year, the platform has invested more resources in mobile content through its Yahoo News Digest and a partnership with Snapchat’s Discover feature. Yahoo has also stressed monetisation of its content by promoting its native advertising platform, Yahoo Gemini.
- There has been major movement and consolidation in the search industry. If Yahoo gives any of its search business to Google, the company would have an even greater control over the search industry. In May 2015, Google led desktop search with 64% market share, Microsoft had 20%, Yahoo 12%, and AOL accounted for a little over 1%, according to data by comScore. Recently, AOL announced that it will give Bing its search functions on all of its properties, ending a 13-year relationship with Google.
GOPRO’S TWOFOLD CONTENT STRATEGY: Camera maker GoPro is making big investments in digital video content. The company’s goal appears to be to reinforce loyalty among its customers, composed primarily of extreme sports and outdoor enthusiasts. Secondly, the content could create a new revenue stream for the company, either through distribution agreements or partnerships with other brands and advertisers.
So far, GoPro’s content strategy appears to be twofold:
- The company is getting serious about developing high-quality original content. GoPro took a big step toward expanding content production with the appointment of Hulu-alumna Charlotte Koh to lead its content initiative, Variety reports. Under her leadership, GoPro will focus on creating documentary and unscripted video content, Koh told Variety. Koh’s background as head of original series for Hulu suggests that the company may even begin developing long-form programming for TV, the report notes.
- GoPro is using a variety of distribution channels to get its content in front of as many viewers as possible. Already, the company distributes content, including a mix of user-generated and staged videos, through Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, according to Variety. GoPro also distributes content through dedicated channels on game consoles, and the company even has its own channel on Virgin America’s in-flight entertainment system. This multichannel distribution tactic likely serves to market the company’s cameras, while simultaneously cultivating an audience among people who do not own a GoPro device.
WHAT FACEBOOK’S ‘PRIORITISED’ NEWS FEED MEANS FOR PUBLISHERS AND BRANDS: Facebook released a new feature yesterday that lets users manually prioritise friends and pages. Posts from prioritised friends and pages will appear higher up and more frequently in users’ News Feeds. The new feature could offer some reassurance to publishers and brands that are worried their posts are being pushed further down the News Feed to make room for sponsored content.
But prioritised pages will only help page owners that are able to convince followers to add them to their prioritised lists:
Publishers and brands that make it onto users’ prioritised lists can be confident that their most loyal followers will still see their nonpaid posts. This should result in increased engagement (i.e. likes, comments, and shares), which many page owners have seen erode after a series of changes to Facebook’s News Feed algorithm.
- However, page owners that are unable to convince their followers to add them to the prioritised list will likely see engagement fall even further. Not only will page owners have to compete with sponsored content, but they will also have to compete with posts from prioritised pages and friends. This, in turn, could put even more pressure on page owners to pay for post promotions.
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Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.