2015 is the year of video content; it is no more the future, it is here and happening. Yesterday, Facebook launched Anthology – its branded video ad program, YouTube is already celebrating the 10th anniversary of its first video upload, Instagram is working on video and Snapchat the destination for millennials isn’t ignoring this trend either.
Online video consumption is at its peak with the growing mobile penetration in the country. “In India, the land of Bollywood, it’s easy to see how we are all big fans of engaging content/videos stories. We lead the rest of the world in online-video consumption by 21%,” informed Partho Sinha, National Creative Director at DigitasLBi at the beginning of the year.
The first quarter of 2015 itself has seen the proliferation of long ad films by notable brands. With this growing trend agencies are also enhancing their armory in this space. For others it might be a maiden venture but for 120 Media Collective, the Mumbai headquartered company which houses digital agency brand, Jack in the Box and video production companies Bang Bang Films and Sniper is a second coming. “The production business is ripe for disruption. We’ve done it before with Bang Bang Films, and, for the second time in five years, we intend to lead that disruption again,” said Roopak Saluja Founder and CEO at 120 Media Collective.
The company that earlier in the month launched a production model called Sniper has now announced a joint venture with UK-based Diagonal View. The new entity in the digital video space Sooperfly will offer video creation, distribution and monetisation.
The business model around Sooperfly is to work with new and existing talent for content, work with large publishers and finally work with brands to create branded video content. “With an experience of 9 years in content creation, video distribution, digital marketing, social amplification and brand credibility we are bringing it all together for Sooperfly with the expertise of Diagonal View,” informed Roopak while emphasizing that they are not following the Multi Channel Networks in the country since they are platform agnostic.
Interestingly UK based Diagonal View is an MCN founded in 2008 with clients like Sony Music, Comedy Central UK, Channel 4 News and others. For this alliance in Asia, Diagonal View is going to bring their past success and experience with audience management and IP creation in the APAC market. “We see huge potential in the Asia Pacific market, and believe this partnership and its unique skill sets will deliver professional video to substantial audiences”, said Matt Heiman, Founder, Diagonal View.
Going further Roopak shared that there is a strong model to integrate Sniper with Sooperfly. Sniper which has been launched to produce TV commercials, as well as long, short and mid-form content, and also see it through to amplification across social platforms and paid digital media, will bring business to Sooperfly and vice versa. In the coming weeks the company is going to sign a one year video content creation deal for a large brand which would involve both Sniper and Sooperfly.
Along with branded content and working with individual content creators, Sooperfly is in talks to bring large publishers on board. While Indian publishers may not be that serious like Buzzfeed or Vice when it comes to video content creation but Roopak is quite upbeat about educating them.
He said that right now they are working with a couple of publishers for whom they are providing strategic consulting, as later on they might open up to the monetization possibilities and also manage their video content. For the other set of publishers, 120 Media Collective is going to create and manage content. Diagonal’s experience and capabilities in managing professional content of large players from music to the sports industry will be one of the parameters of Sooperfly’s success.
In 2015, Sooperfly wishes to forge 200 partnerships, across individuals, publishers and content collectives. Genres of content targeted include lifestyle, beauty, fashion, comedy, sports, education, technology and performing arts. Among the talents that Sooperfly will work with are journalist Vir Sanghvi, chat show host Tara Sharma and stand-up comic Radhika Vaz. Collectives such as Shalom Films and The Rolling Garaari are also on board.
With this aggressive business strategy, Sooperfly seeks to be a top three player in digital video across APAC region over the next three years. It isn’t going to be an easy ride with the growing clout of MCNs in the country who have mastered the skill of content creation, production and distribution. In fact Sooperfly is in direct competition with #fame – previously known as Famebox Networks – which has created a plethora of web content around segments like fashion, music, comedy, food among others.
Nevertheless, the combined expertise of content creation, digital marketing, social amplification and brand credibility that has come while creating branded content for brands like Unilever has set 120 Media Collective in a comfortable position to disrupt this space.