Unruly acquisition gives News Corp edge in video-based content, marketing strategy

By Sharb Farjami

News Corp Australia

Sydney, Australia


The importance of video has never been as obvious as it is in today’s media landscape. Cisco predicts that 80% of consumer Internet traffic will be video based by 2019. In this landscape, it’s clear why content organisations like News Corp are focusing heavily on video.

At the end of 2015, News Corp acquired Unruly, a London-based video start-up. Unruly is a prime example of why video is so important to publishers today, with technology focusing on testing, distribution, measurement, and audience targeting.

Unruly is a unique video distribution network, with proprietary technology allowing discovery and targeting of the appropriate viewing audience for a particular piece of video content. This happens across the open Web, an important point of difference given the huge number of video views every day still happening away from platforms like YouTube or Facebook.

For News Corp’s commercial division, Unruly provides a unique proposition in a world where advertisers are increasingly moving toward content marketing online. Unruly’s ShareRank algorithm allows testing of video creative, delivering a ranking of shareability for a piece of content across a variety of emotional factors like joy, excitement, and happiness.

Alongside News Corp’s online platforms and Storyful (a user-generated content platform also acquired by News Corp), advertisers can now discover, test, target, and distribute video content — all through what two decades ago was a newspaper company.

Unruly ShareRank can actually help to predict shareability of an ad with an algorithm that analyzes trillions of video views.
Unruly ShareRank can actually help to predict shareability of an ad with an algorithm that analyzes trillions of video views.

ShareRank is the piece of Unruly's product suite that really gets marketers excited. Unruly has spent years working with academics to collect and analyse more than 1.3 trillion video views.

This data has traditionally been used simply to test creative, however a new product called Unruly Custom Audiences allows advertising partners to target viewers who demonstrate an intense emotional response to a specific ad, leading to increases in earned media, brand recall, and purchase intent.

Unruly has completed more than 15,000 campaigns and tracked more than 2 trillion video views. For News Corp, the acquisition of Unruly has created an immense amount of reach and understanding within the critical world of online video.

About Sharb Farjami

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