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The Frenemy Report: An Ode to the Creators

No matter how big the media company is, we’re all trying to connect on a human level, whether it be in Anaheim, in Cannes, or working away in screen-land. Creators still reign over the digital landscape– Tubular Labs analyzed short-form video in the first half of 2018 in their The State of Online Video report and found that influencers accounted for 84% of 1.7 billion YouTube views compared with 13% for media companies and 3% for brands, while on Facebook influencers grabbed 56% of 966 million views with media companies on 40% and brands on merely 4%.

And just in time for VidCon, platforms are presenting the creators with new playgrounds. YouTube is launching a new creative suite, while Instagram is launching long-form video hub called IGTV (errrr, Watch, anyone?), and Facebook is debuting a “Facebook for Creators Launchpad” and Branded Content Marketplace. And for those creators hoping to make it in the brand-safe living room? Digiday reports on how publishers are turning to Hollywood talent agencies to break into TV. Worth noting, over 180 million hours of YouTube content is streamed on TV screens everyday .

Of course, not everyone’s happy. Unilever is taking a stance on fake Instagram followers, and Facebook is about to annoy users again, this time with in-messenger video ads. Perhaps these companies should take a page from the Millennial playbook and look to the cosmic powers for direction.

 

YouTube Is Launching a New Creative Suite for Marketers to Make Better Ads [Adweek]

The Creative Suite will focus on delivering insights for brands (with the Video Experiment and Video Creative Analytics tools) and storytelling (with its Director Mix and Video Ad Sequencing tools). The company said it is working with a number of agencies and brands including brands like 20th Century Fox (for The Greatest Showman) and Kellogg’s which have already started to use these tools.

Users Watch Over 180 Million Hours Of YouTube Content On TV Screens Daily [Tubefilter]

Susanne Daniels, said that the streaming video platform was “competing for TV ad dollars that were previously exclusively TV ad dollars.” Now, with so much YouTube content consumed on television screens, that competition appears more relevant. Still, most YouTube viewing continues to take place on mobile devices. Over 70% of watch time happens on phones and tablets, and YouTube viewers watch on average upwards of an hour a day on the company’s mobile apps.

Instagram Launches Long-Form Video Hub Called IGTV [Variety]

News of the launch appeared on Instagram’s business blog before the launch of the press event. The Facebook-owned video service also announced that it will give users the ability to upload videos of up to one hour in length. Previously, Instagram limited uploaded videos to 60 seconds, and capped videos Stories at 15 seconds. Live streams were limited to one hour.

Influencers hold the power for YouTube, Facebook video views [RapidTV News]

Influencers still rule the video landscape, dominating uploads and views on Facebook and Instagram when compared with brands and media publishers. Looking at share of views in the first quarter of 2018 I terms of views, the research found that influencers accounted for 84% of 1.7 billion YouTube views compared with 13% for media companies and 3% for brands, while on Facebook influencers grabbed 56% of 966 million views with media companies on 40% and brands on merely 4%.

Facebook Expands Monetization With Branded Content Marketplace, More Ad Breaks [Tubefilter]

For creators who, according to the post, upload “longer, authentic content that brings people back, that are focused on building a loyal community of fans, and who meet our monetization standards and follow our content guidelines for monetization,” Facebook is launching the Facebook for Creators Launchpad, a program that will help those videomakers further their digital careers. Applications for that program are available here.

Facebook Increases Its Presence At VidCon As The Online Video Conference Draws Broad Participation From Social Media Platforms [Deadline]

Livestreaming platform Twitch is joining this year for the first time as a sponsor and Snap taking part in panel discussions. Other digital media notables joining the digital media scrum include Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Musical.ly and LiveMe. Before festivities get underway, Facebook will host more than 120 global creators on Tuesday in Los Angeles for a Creator Day, an event to celebrate their work, network and learn best practices.

Facebook Bets $1 Billion on Content, but Will It Pay Off? [Variety]

Moreover, Facebook tabulates a “view” even if it’s watched for as little as three seconds. That was the show that first kind of put Watch on the map,” says Ricky Van Veen, Facebook’s head of global creative strategy. According to Facebook’s public stats, “Ball in the Family” increased average views per episode from 2.6 million across the first run to 4.6 million for Season 2. But how do those figures translate into real audience? It’s worth noting that in April 2018 alone, BuzzFeed’s Tasty recipe videos tabulated around 1 billion views, according to Tubular.

Unilever Demands Influencer Marketing Business Clean Up Its Act [WSJ]

Points North Group said it has found that midlevel influencers—those with between 50,000 and 100,000 followers—often have about 20% fake followers. The consumer-products giant, which spent more than $9 billion on marketing its brands last year, said it wouldn’t work with influencers who buy followers. Unilever said it found some of the influencers it was using were buying followers in some instances.

Facebook’s new AI research is a real eye-opener [TechCrunch]

It does so with a Generative Adversarial Network, essentially a machine learning system that tries to fool itself into thinking its creations are real. In a GAN, one part of the system learns to recognize, say, faces, and another part of the system repeatedly creates images that, based on feedback from the recognition part, gradually grow in realism.

Twitter is taking a new pass at making the news come to you [Fast Company]

Now Twitter wants to take a more active hand in packaging up breaking news and ongoing events for consumption on its service. Via a combination of human curation and algorithms, it will collect together tweets, videos, and other elements about specific news events; fill your app with news about subjects it thinks you’re likely to care about; and attempt to ensure that you see the most important stories even if you’re not rummaging around for them.

New York Times CEO: ‘Facebook is very difficult [Digiday]

“Although we have a long list of things we’d like to talk to Google about, it’s actually a genuinely quite creative, positive environment,” said Thompson. Twitter also got brief but noteworthy mention from Thompson. “Twitter is becoming an exciting and interesting platform again,” he said.

Publishers turn to Hollywood talent agencies for help breaking into TV [Digiday]

Vox Media likely wouldn’t have been able to sell its upcoming show, “American Style,” to CNN without the help of Hollywood talent agency WME. BuzzFeed entertainment arm BuzzFeed Studios and Refinery29 have each signed with WME in the past year, and HuffPost signed with ICM Partners in April. 

Next year, people will spend more time online than they will watching TV. That’s a first. [Recode]

In 2019, people are expected to spend an average of 170.6 minutes each day on online activities like watching videos on YouTube, sharing photos on Facebook and shopping on Amazon. They’ll spend slightly less time — 170.3 minutes —watching TV.

Want to Win Over Millennials and Gen Z? Vice’s New Study Says Brands Should Get Spiritual [Adweek]

The Vice & Virtue study suggests that only 20 percent of millennials and Gen Z attend traditional, organized spaces for religion. There is, according to the study, another possible way for brands to find those connections they so desperately seek with young people.