New York, May 9, 2013 – BuzzFeed is launching a new partnership program to empower leading social storytelling agencies with expanded training, tools, and support on the BuzzFeed publishing platform.
The Social Storytelling Creator Program (SSCP) will pilot with VaynerMedia, who will help shape the program, determine best practices, and craft ideal program elements. VaynerMedia will also test and provide feedback on the BuzzFeed Platform, a new self service tool that will be made available to leading agencies and brands.
GE, Milk-Bone (Del Monte), Slimfast (Unilever) and TRIDENT GUM (Mondelēz International) will be the initial corporate participants.
"Like GE, the BuzzFeed community has an inexhaustible appetite for invention and we've long enjoyed sharing our technology stories with them. Now, with our partner VaynerMedia and the Social Storytelling Creator Program we see an exciting platform for increasing our speed and growing overall engagement," said Paul Marcum, Director of Global Digital Marketing and Programming at GE.
"Being part of BuzzFeed's on-trend and real-time approach is a fantastic partnership opportunity. We know dog content resonates strongly online, so we have created a number of stories around the loving and joyful connection between dogs and owners," said Melinda Winter, Senior Brand Manager at Milk-Bone.
"BuzzFeed empowers our brand to be a leading storyteller online, and we can deliver relevant content where people are spending time," added Gina Squara, Director, Digital, at Del Monte Foods.
"The modern day woman is living through a massive shift in communication and as a company that values relevance and authenticity, we plan on being at the forefront of this shift. By working alongside two companies pioneering the social age of communication, we're in the best seat possible to create new conversations that make sense now and impact the way conversations happen in the future," said Wesley Boas, Marketing Director, Unilever.
The pilot program will include:
•Extensive training on the BuzzFeed platform for VaynerMedia staff
•Kickoff workshops with each VaynerMedia client participating in the program
•Weekly joint content reviews between BuzzFeed Creative team members, VaynerMedia team members, and VaynerMedia clients that are piloting the program.
•Aggregate reporting for VaynerMedia across all their clients to determine best practices and successful content formats
•Staff exchange program between VaynerMedia and BuzzFeed
•Early access to new BuzzFeed features, and creative/ad products
The program will kickoff with a full day symposium in Q3 on best practices in social storytelling in editorial and branded content to be held in NYC. Speakers will include: Gary Vaynerchuk (CEO VaynerMedia), Jonah Peretti (CEO BuzzFeed), Ben Smith (Editor in Chief of BuzzFeed), Ze Frank (EVP Video BuzzFeed), and pilot clients.
"Brands need to do a better job storytelling and bringing value to their customer. The age of disruptive ads is coming to an end, and models like BuzzFeed are the future of advertising. VaynerMedia is beyond humbled to be piloting this program with Jonah, Jon and their amazing team," said Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO of VaynerMedia.
"We've found that sharing best practices with leading agencies makes better, more shareable content, and we think this new program will make real strides in creating a new golden age of storytelling. We've consistently found VaynerMedia to be agile, passionate, and ahead of the curve in the creation of great social content for brands. I'm excited to define this program with Gary and his team" said Jon Steinberg, BuzzFeed President and Chief Operating Officer.
BuzzFeed will accredit VaynerMedia as the first BuzzFeed Authorized Social Storytelling Creator and plans to extend this program and credential to other qualifying agencies after the pilot period.
BuzzFeed, Director of Communications
BuzzFeed is the leading media company for the social age, intensely focused on delivering high-quality original reporting, insight, and viral content across a rapidly expanding array of subject areas. Our technology powers the social distribution of content, detects what is trending on the web, and connects people in realtime with the hottest content of the moment. Our site is rapidly growing and reaches more than 50 million monthly unique visitors. Jonah Peretti, founder & CEO of BuzzFeed, previously co-founded the Huffington Post. Ben Smith is its Editor-in-chief, Jon Steinberg is its President & COO and Kenneth Lerer is the Executive Chairman.
VaynerMedia, a 250-person digital and social media firm, believes that we're living through a fundamental change in the way humans communicate. With offices in NYC, SF, and Las Vegas, VaynerMedia helps Fortune 500 brands navigate these tectonic shifts which are increasingly happening within online channels and marketing programs in order to drive better business results. Born out of the commitment of co-founders Gary and AJ Vaynerchuk to humanize brands, the company specializes in working with clients to fuse all elements of business, marketing and emerging technologies together to build and support KPI-driven campaigns and 'always-on' content.