Everyone with any sort of electronic knowledge has heard of the Angry Birds game by now. The app is listed as the most downloaded of all time on Wikipedia, and no one doubts that. You can’t get on a bus, or sit in a break room, without seeing someone playing the game.
What you may not know is that Angry Birds also has an insanely successful YouTube channel. How successful? How about being:
- The most successful branded YouTube account.
- Having, at the time of this writing, 2,269,766,283 views. You can click the link to see how many they have now. And yes, that it 2.2 billion.
Those are some pretty impressive numbers for a game I once thought was stupid! How they got so popular will be explored in this article. I’ll look at the video content itself, as well as other social channels to see what you can learn from!
Angry Bird’s variety of content
The first thing you’ll notice on the Angry Bird YouTube channel is their wide variety of content. It’s a little overwhelming at first as you try to figure out what you want to watch! They have series for the pigs, series for the birds, series for the seasons, and they still have more to choose from.
Here are just the first three rows of their Playlists out of nine total:
The main focus of their channel is their three main cartoons:
- Piggy Tales: Pigs at Work
- Angry Birds Toons
- Angry Birds Stella
Looking at all of this, you can start to come to the conclusion that Angry Birds is not just a video game app company anymore. They’re a full-on media company with video as part of their overall income plan. Why? Because over on Social Blade they estimate that RovioMobile, the actual YouTube channel name, is making between $360,000/year and $3,000,000/year just from YouTube AdSense:
I compared this with PewDiePie, who we know made $7.5million last year. He was estimated, using the exact same algorithms, at between $2,700,000 – $22,000,000. It’s safe to say that the Angry Birds cartoons are earning at least $1,000,000/year for Rovio, and that’s not bad. How much do they spend on animators though? Your guess will be as good as mine, but I’d wager anything they come out well ahead with a profit on the cartoons.
Two of Angry Birds’ biggest video marketing wins
Angry Birds have employed two big tactics to keep their subscriber base strong and growing. One of them is as old as YouTube itself: Partnering with other YouTubers! They made 14 videos with well-known YouTubers reacting to the teaser trailer for the upcoming moving.
This has helped them tap into a different audience that may have never heard of their channel. People have been using this tactic to get more YouTube subscribers for years. If nothing else, it certainly helped push the movie out to new audiences who regularly engage with these YouTube users.
Their other tactic around ‘partnering’ deals with them paring their game with other video games. This is my favorite one out of sixteen total:
But then I’m forever nostalgic for Street Fighter II… The lesson we learned here is that partnerships, no matter how popular you are, never lose importance. Highlighting this content from other people does plenty for their social proof, while giving their fans more Angry Birds themed content to view and stay within the brand story. Sometimes, one of your best ideas for getting more views is to not worry about your own content!
Angry Birds pushing their YouTube marketing on the web
No Youtube channel ever existed in a vacuum and succeeded. You need to promote your channel off of YouTube, and the Angry Birds team certainly have done so.
Their Twitter channel features a mix of content, as well as some Twitter video uploads. Every video, right when it’s uploaded, see a shared link on Twitter though:
— Angry Birds (@AngryBirds) November 10, 2015
With their 640,000 followers retweeting them all the time, more people are being exposed to their YouTube channel every day.
Their Facebook page doesn’t send out their videos as often as Twitter. This is the norm for every branded social media account. The difference between most social media accounts, and the Angry Birds Facebook account, is that Angry Birds has 25,000,000 fans.
With numbers that big, they can share their YouTube videos once a week and see great engagement:
That was an entire playlist potentially being exposed to 25 million people. You can get a few views that way for sure!
The Rovio website has been sure to prominently feature the Angry Birds YouTube video by embedding a YouTube player right on the home page.
This appears just below the ‘fold.’ and serves two purposes. The most important is that it improves their bounce rate by keeping people on the website. Second, it will increase their YouTube views as views count wherever they happen.
They have an ‘Animation’ tab which features their cartoons, but it feels too much like an afterthought. Where their YouTube videos get their next big share is in their blog posts. They embed a video in almost every blog post. This is important as once people sit down to read a blog, they’ll watch a video. This type of mixed-media content can do wonders for keeping people on a page.
Angry Bird’s overall video marketing strategy
As you’ve read above, Angry Birds have a few strategies they use to remain the most viewed branded YouTube channel:
- They have a wide variety of content.
- They create YouTube Playlists that include their fans.
- They work with influencers and partner with other YouTube channels.
- They use the power of their huge social media accounts to push their video marketing wisely.
With some work, you can better align your own video marketing efforts across the web to create a view-machine like Angry Birds!
Ernest is a digital marketer with a slight video marketing obsession. You can read more about him over on the Social Media Marketing Guide website at the link. His favorite YouTube Channel? Probably Epic Meal Time, but he also watches Epic Rap Battles regularly.