Newsflare ranks among the top companies engaged in licensing and distributing ‘eyewitness videos’ shot and uploaded by over 60,000 amateurs and professionals located in more than 40 countries worldwide. The London-based company – which also has a large Los Angeles operation serving the US market – licenses the ‘on-the-scene’ videos to media clients throughout the world and shares revenue with all video contributors equally. The videos cover virtually the entire spectrum of lifestyle, entertainment and business, with stories that are oftentimes too breaking or remote for traditional news organizations to capture.
Case Study: The Cheese Rolling Wipeouts
64 million social media views thus far makes the “Cheese Rolling Wipeout” among the biggest viral hits of the year. Uploaded to Newsflare within its “Weird Sporting Events” category, the annual Cheese Rolling competition – which attracts thousands each May – dates back to the 1800’s and takes place on Cooper’s Hill in Gloucestershire, England.
The viral Newsflare post can be viewed here.
Research and Editorial
Newsflare had already achieved viral success within this offbeat sports category earlier when the company distributed the Wife Carrying Championships video. Uploaded eight months ago, the video garnered 1.8 million views as well as generated a substantial amount of viewer comments. The success of the Wife Carrying Championships triggered Newsflare’s interest in similarly wacky competitions held around the world – and the annual Cheese Rolling event was earmarked as a viral contender. The Newsflare editorial team was also aware that humorous (but ultimately harmless) ‘fails’ are embraced by visitors to Facebook and YouTube – and therefore seeing contestants tumbling wildly in an outdoor setting would hold potential as a viral breakout hit. After identifying the competition event, Newsflare’s news desk and marketing departments went into high-gear by issuing a call-out to registered videographer members – an outreach effort that resulted in generating outrageous footage.
The Newsflare editorial department’s treatment of the source footage became integral to the success of the video. Instead of presenting the clips from a broad perspective as they were filmed, the company opted to hone-in on the action. While the Newsflare staff were aware that a large percentage of viewers were most likely new to the concept of cheese rolling, they felt confident the spectacle of the individual competitors rolling and stumbling down the hill towards the cheese would generate enthusiastic views. ‘What will happen to the Deadpool guy?’ ‘Will the fellow in the backpack ever come to a stop’? These would be among the questions people would want answered, leading to increased views, comments and shares. The choice of music was also unique. After initially using a frenetic heavy-metal track (which did the job just fine), the company’s creative staff came up with the thought that using a graceful sounding classical would result in a humorous juxtaposition. The choice of ‘Habanera’ from Bizet’s opera Carmen lent the images a certain grace one wouldn’t expect from an avalanche of muddy individuals cartwheeling down a grassy slope. But set to a slow motion montage of falls, the video became something bizarrely poetic.
Distribution and Optimization
After its initial posting, it became evident early on that the video was destined to perform well. The next step was to ensure that Newsflare maximized its potential by sharing the post with digital platforms from across its network including YouTube, Instagram and Dailymotion. As of this writing, the Cheese Rolling video has accumulated 64 million views – and counting – across the major social media platforms.
For more information on Newsflare and to register as a Newsflare video contributor, visit www.newsflare.com.