Mumbrella hangout with Upworthy execs

Mumbrella held a video hangout with three senior members of the team behind international viral content site Upworthy, talking about how the site is different from competitors, how to create compelling content linked to brands, and what exactly makes a clickable headline.

Founded in March 2012 Upworthy has been described by FastCompany as the “fastest growing media site of all time”, raising millions of dollars from investors and gaining a global following, but has come in for criticism for popularising clickbait style headlines, and its liberal leanings.

Sitting down to talk to Mumbrella editor Alex Hayes were writer and producer Eddie Geller, chief revenue officer James Marcus and revenue product manager Josh Luger, who discussed the revenue models and partnership structures the site uses, as well as how it creates shareable and engaging content. 

Geller is a comedian and curator for @Upworthy. His videos and ads for organizations like the Courage Campaign, Free Press and have been viewed millions of times over and featured in outlets including the Huffington Post, the Los Angeles Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Marcus is quoted as saying: “Advertisers are not coming to us with how to get more clicks on content. They’re coming to us for how to create great content. Our fundamental user experience is different. It isn’t a break in someone’s day where they were momentarily amused. This is something where people learn something; they’ve been moved.”

Luger  helps conceive, build, scale, and sell products that support Upworthy’s mission, deliver for their partners, and generate revenue. Luger claims the topics that Upworthy is focussed on, including the environment and racial equality, could be the most powerful of all.

“Content that connects with people deeply can go viral. There is a misconception that content like that can’t go viral and isn’t sharable but it can be the most sharable content on the internet. It’s not just about creating stuff that’s humorous and entertaining. Something of social significance can be as sharable as something funny,” he added.

They are also in Australia to support the new GetUp campaign #Reefreels, which will see budding filmmakers get their films shown at Tropfest.

The hangout will take place on this page at 2pmAEST on Monday. You can put your questions to them on the comment thread below, or using the hashtag #askupworthy on Twitter.


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