What is BuzzFeed you ask?
Errrh… no, it’s not a new slang word/#hashtag that the new kids are using. BuzzFeed is a multi-media based company that focuses on journalistic news, promotional advertising and social entertainment. This has led to the company being valued at $1.5 billion, at the beginning of this year[i].
What do they do?
Buzzfeed produces creative content based on what is currently trending – now that’s unique. This company went from releasing its first meme, Disaster Girl, to premiering season 2 of its new series, You Do You, on Netflicks, in just 10 years. Buzzfeed follows a principle of publishing content that is relatable and relevant. They do this through imagery, articles, quizzes and videos that are distributed on more than 30 social platforms from across the globe and in 6 different languages.
Mainstream media has become very monotone and one-sided, making it difficult for everyday people to fully relate to it. From opinionated discussions on Black Lives Matter and Gun control, to a list of 10 ways to chug beer, Buzzfeed has proven itself to being a continuously evolving brand. They create a platform for information sharing among communities of people who have common interests, with a tinge of emotion which is often lacking in mass media. These audiences range from young millennials, cool and hip parents. Basically anyone and everyone involved in the digital age.
You have probably noted that BuzzFeed’s content plays a huge role in the marketing of the organisation. Peer to peer persuasion is used to invade the market. They largely rely on people sharing their content to others. This explains their intense social media presence through:
- their website where articles and quizzes are published
- the BuzzFeed mobile app where subscribers can get updates of new content being released
- social platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram.
Emails are sent to online subscribers informing them of new material. There’s no running from them, BuzzFeed is EVERYWHERE.
How do they do it?
BuzzFeed binds exciting content, digital media, advanced technology and analytics to create its winning formula. As previously mentioned, it aims to create material that will appeal to audiences across boarders. The content is often associated with moments in time and cultural trends.
This digital powerhouse optimizes their titles, images and subject matter according to what they think viewers will find relevant. Analytical tests are used to understand people’s experiences and perceptions about the brand to encourage social sharing.
BuzzFeed has developed its own technology, BuzzFeed Pound[ii]. This enables them to track how social media spreads and, in so doing, create material that is bound to go viral. They are able to find out what audiences enjoy, by evaluating what is being shared and re-shared. Amazing right? Based on the material featured, this technology can also be used to find out how far a story will travel in the digital world. This is an absolute breakthrough to creating shareable content. No wonder BuzzFeed is a success!
However, this amazing content would go to waste if BuzzFeed did not have such a strong digital media presence. The age of newspapers and magazines is dwindling and long gone- well, almost gone anyway. But, honestly, who wants to flip pages when you can just scroll down? BuzzFeed is definitely shaping this evolution. #TakeOver
[i] Robischon, N. 2016.Fast company magazine: How BuzzFeed’s Jonah Peretti Is Building A 100-Year Media Company [Online]. Available: https://www.fastcompany.com/3063623/most-innovative-companies/youtube-is-building-community-and-its-not-just-about-video (2016, September 2)
[ii] Kelleher, A., Kelleher, A., &Nguyen, D. 2015. Introducing Pound: Process for Optimizing and Understanding Network Diffusion [Online]. Available: https://www.buzzfeed.com/daozers/introducing-pound-process-for-optimizing-and-understanding-n?utm_term=.ih8jGOoEk#.jk4zapG6y (2016, September 2)