Jukin Media’s innovative approach to viral videos

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One might assume that it’s no easy feat to identify a viral video’s potential before it’s reached the masses, but as it turns out, Jukin Media has got it down to a science. The Los Angeles-based agency shared some of its behind-the-scenes magic during a NewCo event hosted at Jukin’s offices Nov. 19.

Josh Entman, co-founder and and chief development officer of Jukin Media, walked attendees through some of the company’s strategies for making viral sensations out of carefully curated short-form video content identified by its strategically placed researchers in every time zone.

Jukin prides itself on owning the entire life cycle of a viral video — most of which you’d recognize immediately because, well, they’ve gone viral. Entman explained that using specific parameters, his team quickly identifies videos with potential to go viral, reaches out to the content creators after a detailed vetting process to ensure that they are, in fact, the true owners of the content, and offers them a contract, which typically includes a 50/50 revenue-sharing agreement — for revenue generated with YouTube ads, etc.

The company helps boost the video views by working to place them on outlets like The Today Show, Ellen, Jimmy Kimmel, and popular MTV clip shows. As Entman noted, many viewers see a viral video featured on TV, and then look online to find them and share for themselves, adding to the views that help the video creator (and Jukin) earn more.

Jukin also works with its represented video stars to license content for other media use, leveraging the increasingly popular trend of UGC in TV ads. Jukin has partnered with companies like Oscar Meyer, Subaru, and Pizza Hut to develop ads from viral content.

The company also offers its own licensed library of content for partnerships, similar to a Shutterstock library, but for more than 14,000 videos.

Many brands attempt to create content that they hope will go viral, but as Entman said, it’s really lightning in a bottle, which can be hard to produce. Entman’s personal pet peeve when it comes to brands’ attempts to go viral is how at first glance, branded YouTube video content may seem like a smashing success with 2 million views — something that’s likely touted internally, or perhaps even externally, as a viral win for the brand. Upon closer look, though, you see that it only has 80 likes, which compared with the 2 million views is actually a limited measure of engagement and obviously a result of that same video’s views as a YouTube pre-roll ad.

“Content speaks for itself,” Entman noted. And with Jukin addressing this void between content creators, brands, and media outlets, the content has a wider audience to hear.

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