A screenshot from Facebook Watch. PewDiePie’s videos will soon be available on Facebook.
YouTube creator PewDiePie has a massive 107 million subscribers. His videos have been viewed over 26 billion times. And he’s coming to Facebook now, says the co-founder of Jelly flavor, the company that makes it possible.
“I think it’s a big deal … he’s the greatest YouTube creator,” Michael Philippe told me on the TechFirst podcast today. “At this point, he’s part of … internet culture … that means we’re really now in a cross-platform ecosystem, which was really not a few years ago.”
Phillipe is the co-founder of Jellysmack. With more than 100 creators, 10 billion monthly video views, and reach of 125 million unique viewers in the US alone, Jellysmack shows more videos to more people than Comcast, WarnerMedia, Buzzfeed and Fox. Jellysmack has signed an exclusive contract with PewDiePie (pronounced Pew-dee-Pie, real name Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg) to make its content available to Facebook viewers.
Multiple reasons including money.
“The developers we’re working with now, most of them make more money on Facebook than they do on YouTube,” says Philippe. “In the real world, sometimes, when you have the right tools and technology, and the right content and everything, you can make much, much, much more money on Facebook than on YouTube.”
People underestimate Facebook for monetizing videos, says Philippe, maybe because it’s newer in videos and maybe because YouTube and Twitch have a lot more streamers and video artists. (See also: YouTube and Facebook destroy Twitch in at least one critical live streaming category.)
While PewDiePie (Kjellberg) comes to Facebook, he doesn’t leave YouTube. And, as before, his videos will be published for the first time on YouTube: usually via live streaming. Then Jellysmack selects the right videos for a Facebook audience and optimizes them for the Facebook platform. In general, this means a little shorter: people watch longer videos on YouTube.
Listen to that interview behind this story:
It can also mean focusing on different elements that appeal to a different audience.
“That is exactly what our technology does,” says Philippe. “We know … from his huge video library which videos will be successful on the platform.”
Unlike scenarios where platforms are essentially buying creators to get audiences – think Spotify is locking up Joe Rogan’s podcast for $ 100 million – this is not an attempt to pull an audience away from YouTube.
Rather, it’s about building the overall PewDiePie audience.
“There is only 19% overlap between YouTube and Facebook Watch,” said Philippe, quoting data from Tubular Labs – the Nielsen of social media.
Additionally, it’s likely a game to avoid being overly platform dependent. Developers who grow very large on a platform have a single point of failure when a platform is suspended (TikTok in India) or loses popularity (Vine) or is shut down by its owner (Periscope). They are also prone to breaking culture if they make mistakes or become offensive.
PewDiePies channel on YouTube
(Which PewDiePie did to some extent. Among other things, he included anti-Semitic content in a number of his videos that he apologized for and that he resigned from.)
That, of course, is the defensive point of view that Philippe is quick to point out. Going cross-platform is also important to maximize the distribution and reach of the developers’ content and brand. After all, why stick with just one platform when you can meet billions more people in all of your major stores?
Jellysmack’s role makes it easy.
PewDiePie (and other developers) can just focus on creating great content. Jellysmack will customize this creative for each platform. In this way, according to the company, 25 to 300 million incremental calls are unlocked for developers every month. This is probably one of the main reasons why many of the 100 or so developers on the Jellysmack platform make “six-digit numbers per month” on Facebook alone.
What is the key to great content?
“What we’ve learned from previous mistakes is that premium content doesn’t mean well-produced content,” said Philippe. “Premium content in short is authentic content and content that drives engagement. And that’s why you can’t build a platform without a developer. And that’s why TikTok wins because TikTok is ultimately a developer platform. “
The exclusive global deal has been signed.
PewDiePie’s content will appear on Facebook “this month”, says Jellysmack.
One question: is this the future of the media? From celebrity and influence and from studios?
“The Creators will continue to grow very, very quickly,” says Philippe. “And so you will see more and more platforms and more and more ways to monetize your audience. So that’s what we see with Patreon and Only fans. And it will take different forms. “