Business

YouTube Video Providers Form Trade Group

A new trade association hopes to help video networks on YouTube draw advertiser interest and create a unified voice when working with the video-sharing site.

Some of YouTube’s biggest networks are learning the power of collaboration.

Though so-called multichannel video networks—such as Discovery Digital Networks’ Revision3, Big Frame, and Maker Studios—have been winning dedicated audiences for their content, the companies often find themselves asking the same questions: How can we get advertisers interested in our work? How can we better spot new talent? And how can we ensure that we have a better relationship with YouTube?

Their common search for answers drove the launch of the Global Online Video Association.

“All these companies were formerly defined by just having a bunch of channels on YouTube, and it was about aggregating views and prerolls,” GOVA Executive Director Paul Kontonis told AdWeek. “Now, they’ve all become major digital media companies. They all have interest in bringing dollars and attention to the space. And they need a group like GOVA to protect their interests.”

Why It’s Needed

The online ad industry is not lacking for representation from trade groups, but the needs of these networks are different, Maker Studios sales chief Jason Krebs told AdWeek: “This is really about helping members to navigate the ecosystem. We felt it was the right time to make sure we are driving the industry forward.”

One noteworthy difference between traditional video programming and the content that GOVA members create is their focus on the niche. Revision3 has a heavy slate of DIY programming, for example, and one of Maker Studios’ shows, Friend Zone, is a live-streamed program where the hosts talk “nerd news” and play board games.

While the group’s focus at this point is on YouTube (the Google-owned company reportedly reacted positively to GOVA’s founding), it is likely to expand to other networks, such as Hulu and Amazon. Though it has a few well-known companies on its member list, several big names are missing—most notably Vevo, the music video service whose presence on YouTube is hard to miss. (As MusicAlly notes, Vevo has 22 of the 100 most popular YouTube channels.)

But Kontonis, an online video veteran who’s also the senior vice president for strategy and sales at Collective Digital Studio, says that more members are coming—including a few traditional brands. “A bunch have already expressed interest,” he said.

A screenshot from "DIY Tryin'," a series by GOVA member Revision3.

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the social media journalist for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. MORE

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