Interview with Sam Barcroft: Building Barcroft Media

By Magda David Hercheui

1. Give us a summary of the trajectory of your company.

Barcroft Media was formed in 2003 to provide editorial content to the print media. We have embraced the transition from analogue to digital media, and now have over fifty staff in our offices in London, New York and New Delhi. We have two main methods of operation. We provide B to B editorial content as white label materials to news outlets like MailOnline, Huffington Post and amongst others. We are paid to provide this content to our clients. Now we are also building our own B to C brand around the success of Barcroft TV on platforms such as YouTube, DailyMotion and MSN. We monetize these branded channels using advertising revenue-sharing agreements.

2. You have particular stories in your portfolio, as presented in your YouTube channel. Some people would call these videos bizarre, considering the sort of topic you have specialised. Why have you chosen this particular segment to focus your video production?

We are passionate about what we call The Amazing Side of Life – those stories that trigger an emotional response in the viewer. The success of the channel across the world shows that this type of factual works really well, and it chimes with demand from our news clients.

3. Who is your audience?

According to our YouTube channel is ranked no.5 globally in the News vertical. In November 2013 we achieved a record global audience of over 22.2 million views on the Barcroft TV channel. We have a particularly strong audience in the USA on YouTube, with the UK, Canada, India, Germany and Saudi Arabia often making up the rest of the top five most viewed territories. Our demographic is significantly female. We have no information on economics or education levels.

4. What makes the channel appealing?

Our channel is accessible, consistent in schedule and tone, contains new exclusive content five days per week and has a fantastic team of journalists behind it working very hard to produce great content.

5. Naturally, different audiences are to be targeted with different advertisements. Which companies and products are more aligned to reach the Barcroft TV audience?

We have a range of advertisers and brands that advertise around our content. These tend to be large consumer brands that are keen to connect with our mainly female audience.

6. Do you use any kind of outsourcing and crowdsourcing method, to create the videos?

Our three news HQ’s operate in a similar way to any other newsgathering operation. Our in-house team of producers research, shoot, edit and curate our content in the same way other news organisations do.

7. From the success you have got with Barcroft TV, what advice you would give to companies looking to reach their target audience with video?

It’s important to minimize spend and risk by partnering with a company like ours to ensure you don’t waste time and money getting up to speed. Once your content is out there, listen carefully to your audience and keep developing your content every day.

Relevant links

About the author

Dr. Magda David Hercheui is senior lecturer at Westminster Business School, social media consultant, and editor of New Media Knowledge. 



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