Here’s How BuzzFeed Stays Agile In The Ever-Changing Platform Space



What’s BuzzFeed’s secret to staying viral? Associate Creative Director of BuzzFeed UK, Antonia Bonello, shared the success story of BuzzFeed’s Tasty and BRING ME! at SMWLDN.


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You may not realize that popular video channels Tasty and Bring Me! are both under Buzzfeed. Tasty, a food video channel, is now the biggest food network in the world and the #1 content publisher on Facebook; BRING ME!, a travel channel, in just one year, has become the top travel publisher on the internet.

So what’s BuzzFeed’s secret in reaching these numbers? At Social Media Week London 2018, Antonia Bonello, Associate Creative Director at BuzzFeed UK, shared why brands must remain agile and nimble in the ever-changing platform space.

Be the content that people love

“If you got people to share your content, they automatically become your advocate,” said Bonello.

Since Facebook changed its algorithm to prioritize Meaningful Social Interaction (MSI), which puts posts from friends and family before public content, platforms made changes accordingly so as to encourage the share of content through Facebook connections.

BuzzFeed’s viral content takes credit from the fact that it has always been something people would love to share. “BuzzFeed content has always been built to have a good MSI,” said Bonello.

Be data driven

BuzzFeed prides itself on having a “feedback loop.” Producing more than 600 pieces of content a day, BuzzFeed doesn’t expect all to perform well but rather sees it as a chance to learn from the audience’s reaction to those content.

“We get a lot of feedback from these content,” said Bonello. “We take these learning to address our next moves.”

Bonello likes to read through comments. She sees it as a way to talk to the audience and learn about what they are interested in at the moment. Another benefit of that is, it’s a way to create branded content that has a real impact, Bonello said.

Don’t put all eggs in one basket

“The average human attention span is around eight seconds,” said Bonello. “And it changes depending on platforms.” That’s why BuzzFeed doesn’t put all their eggs in just one platform.

According to Bonello, BuzzFeed’s content meets people wherever they are rather than dragging them to the platform. So when one platform’s viewership starts to dip, they will move on to another one.

With that, they will also optimize every piece of content depending on the platform, so as to suit different users’ behaviors.

Culture is everything

“We build a culture of risk-taking and no fear of failure,” said Bonello.

A good example would be when the President called BuzzFeed “a failing pile of garbage.” In response, BuzzFeed created a limited edition trash can and clothing line in just three hours after the news broke. Most interestingly, all of the merchandise was sold out in just one day.

With all these four takeaways, BuzzFeed retains its fame as being a viral content site where people like to read and share content from. It speaks volume of the importance of creating engaging content that was backed by audience feedback data.

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