Fullscreen is changing its name to “Fullscreen Media,” and the youth-skewing digital company is restructuring into three business units focused on creators, consumers with premium entertainment and advertisers with branded content.
Founder and CEO George Strompolos said the changes reflect the company’s evolution over the last five years from its origins as a YouTube multichannel network operator.
“We placed a big bet early on that creators would become media channels in their own right,” Strompolos said Monday at Fullscreen’s Digital Content NewFronts presentation in NYC. “Today we stand as a next-generation media company transforming the way people watch and engage with content, serving creators, consumers and brands that share this vision.”
The three new divisions of Fullscreen Media are:
- Fullscreen Creator Network: provides services to creators on YouTube and other platforms to grow viewership, develop programming, expand distribution and sell merchandise; also includes management services and direct-to-fan technology Fullscreen Direct, formed from the acquisition of StageBloc;
- Fullscreen Entertainment: comprising Rooster Teeth and Fullscreen Productions, the company’s subscription VOD services for Rooster Teeth and Fullscreen, the $5-per-month package that launched last month, and Fullscreen Live, which will produce 250 live, in-person events in 2016; and
- Fullscreen Brandworks: a team of content creators and marketing experts dedicated to creating branded social content distributed across every platform and a media network that amplifies content across millennial audiences.
At the NewFronts presentation, which carried the tagline “People Are the New Media,” the company highlighted new initiatives by Fullscreen Brandworks, headed by G.M. Pete Stein, the former Razorfish CEO who joined the company in January.
That included Fullscreen Brandworks’ “All Star Collabs,” a new initiative to let brands integrate into premium content by top creators with millions of monthly views. The first two series in the program are style vlogger Eva Gutowski’s “How to Survive High School” and Devin Supertramp’s “Around the World in Seven Stunts” from the thrill-seeking filmmaker (aka Devin Graham).
“I want to be clear: This is not a build-to-order series,” said Maureen Polo, senior VP of influencer marketing. “These are meant to be a true collaboration” with brands. In her pitch, Polo cited Gutowksi’s No. 4 spot on Variety‘s 2015 Famechangers ranking of digital stars. Two additional “All Star Collab” series will be announced in the fourth quarter, she said.
Burnie Burns, Rooster Teeth’s founder and chief creative officer, told the crowd about its 360-degree video version of series “Immersion,” featuring hosts testing whether or not they can recreate elements of video games in real life. The “Immersion 360” show, Rooster Teeth will “transport viewers inside their favorite video games,” Burns said — adding that brands will be able to take advantage of virtual-reality video as well.
Another new project from Fullscreen Brandworks is “Part of the Family,” a new community-driven influencer program targeting millennial families geared around six families. “We haven’t really seen a brand jump in and be part of this community in a meaningful way, at scale,” said Billy Parks, Fullscreen Brandworks VP of original entertainment.
Parks, who joined Fullscreen last year from Judy McGrath’s Astronaut’s Wanted, was responsible for producing multiplatform programs for AT&T including “@SummerBreak”; the first branded series on Snapchat, “SnapperHero”; and “AT&T Hello Lab,” featuring programs with social media stars.
In addition, Fullscreen Brandworks in partnership with Mattel is launching “The Hot Wheels Network,” a digital media property designed to build brand buzz and inspire kids to play with Hot Wheels in new ways.
The company also announced HerScreen and HisScreen, which aggregate the top 50 female- and male-led creator channels in a way that mirrors primetime programming and packages them with Nielsen campaign-rated audience buying. The top 50 channels include female stars like Grace Helbig, Andrea Russett and Eva Gutowski, while the male stars include Fine Brothers Entertainment, Rooster Teeth and Devin Supertramp.
HerScreen and HisScreen are “the perfect combination of quality and quantity,” said head of sales Kevin McGurn. He said the new offerings will be optimized for unique reach and viewability, with guarantees through Nielsen’s DAR and Comscore’s vCE measurement.
The HerScreen creators deliver some 14 million views per week, rivaling femme-focused TV shows like “Project Runway,” while the HisScreen vertical has a bigger dude audience than male-centric TV shows like “Walking Dead,” “People vs. OJ Simpson” and the NBA All-Star Game, according to McGurn.
Fullscreen hosted the event at the Altman Building in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. The company’s new website is FullscreenMedia.co.