Trends & Insights

5 Video-Focused Publishers Rising to the Top of the Competition

By Bradley Popkin | Jul 6, 2017


Prominent publishers like BuzzFeed and NowThis may sit atop the Mount Rushmore of video — however, as more publishers are realizing the value that video provides in terms of both revenue and engagement, many are beginning to harness the power that video holds and giving the big boys a run for their money. Here are five brands making the ascent up the esteemed video-publishing mountain this year.

1. MTV News 

MTV had all but lost touch with their millennial audience as they saw their TV channel’s viewership continue to dwindle over the last four years. Luckily, parent company Viacom realized before it was too late that MTV’s digital news brand held the key to attracting a new generation of viewers. MTV News has since undergone restructuring, and hired new team members who can help beef up their short-form video library. So far, it seems like it’s working. Average time spent on (which includes all digital MTV content including News) has gone up from an average 3.6 minutes in November to 4 minutes in February, while viewership in the 18-34 age bracket has increased three percent in June from the same month last year, according to Nielsen.

2. Bossip 

Bossip, one of the leading African American entertainment websites, has been full steam ahead when it comes to video. Since they began using the Wibbitz platform in 2016, Bossip has published over 3,100 videos and seen their average monthly revenue increase dramatically.  And since Wibbitz introduced the Control Room’s trending articles feature in June, Bossip has become a star example of the Wibbitz 80/20 rule by accumulating over 25 million monthly video views on their high-traffic article pages.

3.  The Atlantic

The Atlantic, a heralded online news site dedicated to politics, business, tech and more, has been steadily building up its archive of digital video. Previously, the brand had a singular way of thinking — monetize video on the flagship site, then push those clips to YouTube. But now, by partnering with YouTube to produce exclusive video content, The Atlantic is now monetizing through direct-sold pre-roll on its YouTube channel or through its own site. “Now, once we know a video is doing well on our platform, that will show up in YouTube’s algorithm on its platform,” SVP Digital Kim Lau told AdExchanger. In terms of numbers, The Atlantic is producing roughly 15-20 longform videos per month and reaping the benefits.

4. Observer

Observer, a news and culture site for young professionals, is rapidly expanding its video offerings by using Wibbitz. Like Bossip, the up-and-coming publisher has been taking advantage of the Wibbitz platform’s trending articles tool, and has seen their video revenue double in the last month. Observer has also been pushing videos from the Wibbitz Control Room to social media and racking up the video views – to the tune of over 30 million.

5. Joe Media (JOE & SportsJOE)

Leading men’s lifestyle publisher Joe Media has captured a specific audience with rich, original content. CEO Will Hayward, who previously worked at BuzzFeed, has made it a cornerstone of his brand’s video strategy. Famous for their face swap videos, JOE has been targeting brand sponsors to go with their series-based video content. Hayward tells FIPP that the challenge lies in incorporating the brand message so that it demonstrates a “clear and meaningful value…. Social and mobile web totally levels the playing field with TV, allowing us to reach huge audiences, but without the necessary production values of TV.”

Bradley Popkin