Blog Post

DBG launches premium video syndication platform

Digital Broadcasting Group (DBG) may be best know for producing high-quality web-original video content like Kiefer Sutherland’s The Confession or Seth Green’s ControlTV. Now the online video production company is getting into the distribution game, opening up its platform to allow third parties to syndicate and monetize their premium online videos.

With the launch of DBG’s new Content Library Platform, (CLiP) the startup hopes to create editorially curated verticals of premium content, which publishing partners can embed on their own web pages. DBG will then sell video advertising against that inventory and share revenues with publishers and video producers that are part of the network.

The whole thing is powered by infrastructure that DBG has built out for distribution of its own videos, which the company is now extending out to third-party publishers. It includes a proprietary video player and handles all the content management, hosting, ad serving and reporting for those partners.

For DBG publishing partners, the CLiP platform is designed to expand the library of content that is available for playback on their own websites. In short, it is meant to grow the available ad inventory not just for DBG, but for participating publishers. For large video publishers, that could mean incremental video ad revenue. For mid-tier and long-tail publishers, the platform could add a whole new line of video ad revenue.

In that respect, CLiP is kind of like AOL’s 5min video distribution platform, (s AOL) which aggregates video content from thousands of video creators and automatically provides relevant video inventory on publisher pages through contextual analysis.

There are a few important differences, though, according to DBG CEO Chris Young. For one thing, DBG’s CliP is focused on premium online video content, and is very specifically trying to differentiate itself from some of the semi-professional how-to content that is part of the 5min network. More importantly, unlike 5min, which uses contextual analysis to determine which videos to serve up on publisher pages, DBG has an editorial team whose job it is to curate its vertical channels of content.

The system will launch with six channels, including Entertainment, Business and Technology, Woman’s Lifestyle, Men’s Lifestyle and Travel. Future channels of content will include Health, Sports, Food and Premium Entertainment. A select group of beta partners have been working with DBG on the platform since last December. Together, those publishers are on pace to attract 30 million monthly uniques, but the footprint should expand significantly when the system goes live later this year. According to Young, the video library includes more than 22,000 video clips and at launch. CLiP will be syndicating out to 22 content partners, which together have more than 70 distinct websites.

For premium web-original publishers, platforms like DBG’s CliP offer new ways to increase views, especially in light of the emergence of more broadcast and cable content coming online. With services like Hulu and Netflix (s NFLX) gaining popularity, those publishers need a way to get their content noticed, at the same time they seek to differentiate from other semi-professional web original content.