NewFronts Day Two: AOL A-Listers, Maker to Sell Ads Across All of YouTube, Condé Nast Has VR Series in the Pipeline

The NewFronts events are gathering pace and yesterday there were further signs that online video content is increasingly indistinguishable from that found on TV, while not losing site of the need to meet the multi-device world – and millennials – on their own terms.

Day Two Highlights

  • AOL rolls out the a-listers at the World Trade Center
  • Maker Studios will sell ads across all of YouTube, deepens Disney relationship
  • Condé Nast to produce over 2,500 new videos in 2015-2016 and two virtual reality series

AOL Breaks Out the A-Listers

AOL continued the company’s push into video with a raft of new announcements including two re-commissioned shows starring James Franco (Making a Scene), Steve Buscemi (Park Bench) and new shows such as Beyond the Horizon featuring Jared Leto and Citizen Mars, which follows five of the contestants selected from the Mars 100 competition.

AOL NewFront, April, 2015 at 4 World Trade Center in New York, NY
AOL NewFront, April, 2015 at 4 World Trade Center in New York, NY, Credit: Pearcy Proper, AOL

The ‘AOL Unleashed’ event, which was a star-studded affair held at the top of 4 World Trade Center, featured new video programming and formats across AOL’s properties, including MAKERS, The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Engadget, Cambio, and, as well as new AOL Originals on its video hub, AOL On.

AOL say they are shifting from a NewFront “season” to a NewFront “year” with the launch of the company’s “Content 365” strategy, which will include short form, mid-form and long-form programming. Dermot McCormack, AOL’s Head of Video, said that ‘formats are the new dayparts’, meaning that people will seek out particular types of content formats depending on where they are at a given time.

You can get the full run-down on AOL’s new content here.

Maker Studios Now Sells Ads Across All of YouTube

Maker Studios, the multichannel network (MCN) acquired by Disney last year, announced that it would be selling ads across all YouTube inventory, courtesy of a partnership with OutRigger Media. Outrigger’s OpenSlate platform provides a detailed analysis of YouTube’s 220,000 channels, allowing buyers to run campaigns in brand-safe and contextually relevant environments.

Maker’s growth and scale is staggering. In the past year Maker has doubled its views to 10 billion views per month, and now sees 650 million subscribers across 55,000 channels. Maker now has 200 shows in development, and 30 that are currently in production.

The company will also exploit its relationship with other Disney companies, teaming up with Marvel, ESPN and ABC’s Lincoln Square Prods.

Condé Nast

Condé Nast Entertainment’s ‘The Scene’ will expand to 40 Channels and will feature comedy, sport and music content, along with CNÉ’s 18 branded channels, including over 2,500 new original videos, 10 new content partners and some early experiments with virtual reality.

Condé Nast will partner with Jaunt Studios on the virtual reality series, a of cinematic VR experiences (the UK’s Sky are an investor in Jaunt). The companies will jointly produce two ‘narrative/plot-based virtual reality series’ this year and more details will be announced in the coming months.

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