Daily Mail Looks to Long-Form Video with New YouTube Slate

Dan Meier 18 June, 2024 

The Daily Mail today unveiled a slate of new video content, due to launch on YouTube over the next six months. The strategy also opens up advertising opportunities via the publisher’s Global Video Studio, a new commercial offering enabling brands to integrate with the Mail’s video content.

The Mail said there are over 20 original shows in development, with 12 expected to launch this year. The series will comprise 15-25 minute episodes, intended to be watched on connected TV. The publisher expects to release episodes on a weekly basis, looking to mirror traditional TV schedules.

“It’s kind of like Back to the Future,” Tony Manfred, Global Head of Video at the Daily Mail tells VideoWeek. “We’re using what has worked on TV for a long time, where you have your slate of shows, and each show has a really specific concept and look and feel, and the episodes feel consistent from week to week. So they’re longer, and we’re putting a lot of work into making sure they look and feel of a piece with YouTube broadly.”

Manfred likens the content to popular YouTube formats such as Hot Ones and Vogue’s 73 Questions, concepts which can be repeated in a way that builds strong audiences on the social sharing platform. “We’re making high-concept, repeatable, identifiable shows that are optimised primarily for YouTube,” he comments.

Going global

Building on its brand loyalty in the UK, the Mail is aiming to make global content to appeal across the English-speaking world. It has built a global video team over the last six months which now has around 12 staff, with production taking place in New York and London.

The content itself will focus on areas that appeal to the Mail’s audience, such as showbiz/entertainment, true crime, sport, royals and news. The titles include Price of Fame, which will examine the financial cost of celebrity lifestyles; and Your Body on Sport, a sports science show explaining the physiology of professional athletics. These formats also lend themselves to natural brand integrations, according to Tony Manfred, across YouTube, other social video platforms, and the Mail’s on-site vertical video.

“When you’re playing in this space, it unlocks a lot of interesting commercial possibilities that wouldn’t be available to us otherwise,” he notes. “If you have brands or clients or partners who want to integrate into these shows, and align around either certain events or certain themes, we have lots of ways that we could do that, in a really natural way that feels good to the user.”

Playing the long game

The strategy continues the publisher’s video push, seeking to grow its global audience across its social video channels. Earlier this year, the company announced it has more than 12 million followers across its combined TikTok channels. But longer-form content tends to be easier to monetise than short-form video, leading the Mail to invest more heavily in “TV quality” content.

“These are super long, retentive shows; people are watching these in their living rooms for 20 minutes at a time,” remarks Manfred. “We fully expect the majority of viewership to come on television through YouTube, so we want it to look awesome on a giant screen.”

But given the cost of producing longer YouTube content, the publisher is planning to maximise the value of its videos by distributing them across its own website and other social channels, in order to get “the most possible eyeballs” on its series. While YouTube will be the “North Star” for the new video offering, the Mail will also distribute the shows on Facebook and Instagram, as well as producing short-form cutdowns for TikTok, Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts.

“It just gives us the ability to reach people who we might not be reaching otherwise,” says Manfred. “These might be people who don’t live in the UK, so they can’t pick up a physical newspaper, or might be people who spend all their time on the internet on TikTok, and that’s where they get their news and entertainment. It really helps expose our brand to those people, so that maybe over time, they become brand loyalists, and they do go to our site and listen to our podcasts. But it also just lets us reach people with our storytelling who would never come into contact with us otherwise.”

Follow VideoWeek on Twitter and LinkedIn.


About the Author:

Reporter at VideoWeek.
Go to Top