What evolutions between Brands and Media?

Par : HUB Institute
24 novembre 2014
Temps de lecture : 3 min
Will Hayward, BuzzFeed’s Vice President, spoke at the HUBFORUM Paris about native advertising to explain why and how the website got to use this business model, using social and quality content. Jonah Peretti, the Huffington Posts’s founder, is also BuzzFeed’s founder. In 2006, he wanted to develop a new media to understand why web users want to share a content more than another. He already understood that in a few years, social and creative content would be trending, and that we medias would need to produce something shareable and of quality. Turned out his idea was the right one, considered today, this type of media is in the big league. Instead of buying banner ads and following to bring audience to their website, or to sell those to monetize their media, at BuzzFeed, they create content. Indeed, Jonah Peretti doesn’t have much interest in classic advertising formats, they’re expensive, not creative or social, and other tools are more efficient in bringing audience, so BuzzFeed create content for brands. By following both the editorial line and the brand’s speech, the website products articles, quizzes, lists, or even tests that can be highly shared by communities, while apposing a logo to be fully transparent on the sponsored nature of the content read by web users. With discreet advertising, integrated in the article stream of a media web site, simply with a « sponsored » mention, a logo or both, the web site developed itself thanks to native advertising. 10679490_537498763048740_2676438029199041308_o BuzzFeed really cares about this model, because it allows them to eliminate every banners from their website. No more visual pollution with disgraceful and interest-less ads. Now, the web site can generate profit by integrating their clients campaigns directly in their articles. No need for much change in the enterprise : journalists, web designers and other developers are already here, and the creations made for the brands are included in their everyday tasks. However, the marketing team needs to adapt to new working ways : their work isn’t to sell and buy advertising places anymore, but to find clients to appear on the web site, as sponsors. Of course, for BuzzFeed, this isn’t a problem : they already have a very good audience and are well-known for their native advertising strategy, important brands like Pepsi are already working with them.


To Will Hayward, BuzzFeed’s solution could easily adapt to many big medias. Create a content for a brand, do them a favor by including them to their editorial line, is a possible business model for medias. One important thing is to keep its own voice, not to imitate BuzzFeed’s content, only the way it’s promoted. It’s not the only way to allow users to have access to an advertising free content. More suitable for specialized medias with a niche audience or for news web sites, the other solution to avoid banners is to make people pay for your content. That would be reserved to those whose target can pay and are willing to pay to have access to a specialized, quality content. 10644647_537506109714672_7864563265253175494_o In the end, what you need to remember from BuzzFeed is their business model, it’s profitable to everyone : the media doesn’t have to handle banners anymore, brands get visibility and sympathy, and web users have a better experience on the website. Working for brands is more beneficial than selling ads. This business model isn’t the only alternative, different ways can still be imagined other than today’s two trends, native advertising and premium content.
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