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BizReport : Blogs & Content archives : February 15, 2012

How social is changing the game for video

A new release from Metacafe - called MEN, Metacafe Entertainment Network, will be one of the first to utilize Facebook's new Timeline and Open Graph features to help distribute short-form video content. And that could change - again - the way people interact and share online video.

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: How does M.E.N. make it easier for consumers to find relevant-to-them content?

Michelle Cox, Vice President of Marketing, Metacafe: First and foremost, we do this through clear focus. We create and curate content that speaks to a specific audience - young adult male entertainment enthusiasts. And we cover three categories that consistently prove most popular with this audience - movies, video games and action sports. Layering onto this, we use social media as a way to pull new viewers into the M.E.N. experience and to increase engagement among existing viewers. In some cases, we do this by showcasing exclusive movie trailers or video game clips via our Facebook profiles. Sometimes we do it by teaming with a brand partner to live webcast an action sports event on their Facebook page. And in other instances, we do it by tightly integrating social media extensions into the product itself - such as our new Facebook app that makes it easy for viewers to 'Add to Timeline' straight from the video player.

Kristina: Over the holidays merchants saw a strong impact between social and retail - liking products, sharing reviews, etc. Are similar acts - liking, sharing, etc. - beginning to impact video as well?

Michelle: Absolutely. Seeing that a video has been endorsed by a friend - whether he or she watched, shared, liked or commented on it - via social media gives that piece of content a huge boost among the extended community of viewers. It drives substantially more views and creates greater affinity. A video that is suddenly "all over Facebook," for example, is similar to a product that is prominently displayed at the front of a retail store - but has even more appeal since you know it's your trusted group of friends who put it there.

Kristina: How important is social for video at this point?

Michelle: Very. Discovery has always been one of the big challenges in online video. There's so much great content available, but it can be overwhelming for consumers to sort through it all to find the videos that suit their tastes and preferences. This is why curation is so important in delivering an entertainment experience in online video. Social media builds on that idea - enabling viewers to act as curators, exposing their friends to great content and creating a context for it.

Tags: Facebook, Metacafe, online video, social sharing, social video tools, video content, video shares

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