Recode Media | How Bleacher Report Evolved was my favorite podcast out of the two this week. Not because I like sports but because of the information about them growing on Instagram from Facebook. They also hit some similar points I think about all the time. This was a learning experience for me mostly but as I listened to this I came across three points.
#1…. Social media careers aren’t a walk in the park like you may think.
When it comes to social media, most of us utilize it as a place to post selfies, photos and funny memes and videos for our friends and family to watch. On the other hand, when you put that into a career category people sometimes give you the side-eye, (especially when you aren’t a publication like the New York Times or something like that). I am also guilty for the side-eye reaction, as I thought it was no possible way you could make a living doing something like that.
Listening to this podcast without a doubt showed me something different. CEO Dave Finocchio talks about the different processes growing the Bleacher Report and transitioning from Facebook to Instagram. He and his team grew the platform from 1 million followers to 6 million currently.
One thing we are discussing in class is our audience, and I think Mr. Finocchio’s outlook on it was spot on. He said that the magic is in how the content is framed up, and how you connect that content through the text and culture. If its funny, or something is going on in culture, that’s when the audience gets excited.
He explained that the platform makes money through advertisements. These being: partnerships, sponsorships and commercial ads for brands that create amazing content as well. This took me back to some our first readings where it said that advertising revenue was growing.
#2…. The new age of media.
If its one thing I and many others say all the time, it’s that media is not the same as it was 10 years ago. Live reports became popular when there wasn’t really any competition for entertainment. For a simple summary…. ESPN basically isn’t the end all be all anymore.
Let’s face it we are on our phones so much we are going to find game results on or phone much faster then if we were to try and get to a TV and get game highlights. In the podcast they say that shows with people sitting down talking about sports is becoming a dinosaur. Yes, old people still like it, but who needs that when you have Instagram? Bleacher Report gives some of the same highlights ESPN or other outlets give and the great thing about that is it is right there as soon as we need it.
#3…. Which way is better?
This part really stood out to me when he talked about different brands. For the Bleacher Report, he described the platform as a brand who had an audience first before building their brand and not being brand-first, meaning the audience isn’t big but the users are loyal and passionate.
Now, in my opinion, either one works just fine. If you have an audience first this may just mean people came across something that was worth keeping up with and it allows you to narrow down on what that is to make it a brand. On the other hand, having a well-established brand first is also great because all that is left is figuring out how to grow that brand. In that case, you can do what Finocchio did and data-mine what people want to see; then come back each year and see how to do it better.
All in All, I really enjoyed this podcast. It really caught my attention on how to grow an idea.