VEVO’s Kevin McGurn on “Pervasive Distribution”


Global president of sales and distribution for video hosting service VEVO, Kevin McGurn, discussed the company’s steps to appeal to a wider audience during his keynote at the Future of TV Advertising event. Wednesday.

McGurn spoke about the changes that the evolution of technology has brought to the music video services industry, pointing out that since 2006 there has been no global broadcaster. The reason for this has to do with personal preference.

“It happened, because everyone in this room, table by table, if you tuned into any given channel that was talking about music, you wouldn’t be watching the same time of TV. Music is a very personal choice. And with the controls the internet gave you, namely YouTube, that didn’t make sense. It made no sense to schedule music videos on an hourly basis. It also didn’t make sense to associate with a really big industry called the music industry that had huge royalties and different kinds of publisher and label rights associated with it, when you can replace it with a very cheap and very profitable reality show,” McGurn said.

Going forward, he explained how VEVO approaches local markets, taking the time to study the musical habits of different audiences.

“When we went to different countries, we tried to find the relative popularity of music in general, because it’s popular everywhere you go. And not just western music or, you know, popular global superstars. But at what was the local music scene like? What is the relative popularity of your content in the region you’re analyzing the expansion? And so we looked at that very, very quickly.

“And we had a big head start on the rest of the competition because all of these videos are available on YouTube. And they’re available in perpetuity, right? We could therefore measure very quickly by artist, genre, catalog, etc., what was the popularity in a given region. And that will tell you that our content through YouTube and then other services like Apple and Roku and Samsung and Amazon reaches between 25% and 33% of the population of each country where we obtain rights. That’s 55 different countries around the world.

“So it’s a very popular genre of content. But as you travel through these regions, what are the popular changes? So you have to study it, you have to understand what your progress looks like. And what are your viewers doing to find your content? »

McGurn made three important points to all viewers, saying it’s critical to understand what audiences are looking for, what they’re doing to find it, and what the relative strength of content is compared to the competition.

Speaking specifically about VEVO’s strategy, McGurn said they’ve gone for a “pervasive distribution” approach, which came as a big surprise to many. However, as he said, it made sense for them to do so.

“So for us, ubiquitous distribution is about putting videos in the neighborhoods that people frequent. And where fans can watch and find their favorite artists. And that’s something very different from a lot of other types of content.

“But I’m going to tell you, give yourself a minute and think about all the time and money and technology that all of these distribution partners spend building an audience, and then think about the time you spend and the money you you spent bringing the public together, what’s the balance between building your own walled garden and distributing where people are going to watch is something to consider.

“And it can be for the library, it can be for a certain show or a sporting event. But expanding that reach means serving ad buyers in the room and giving them what they desperately need: people to sell their products to.


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