By Sahil Patel
FremantleMedia’s The Pet Collective wants to become the biggest pet destination on the web by not only creating a lot more original programming but also aggregating relevant content from external sources.
The Pet Collective is determined to use its YouTube channel, which recently surpassed 200,000 subscribers, to pull audiences to ThePetCollective.tv. “We’re premiering a lot of our content on the actual website,” says Tom Maynard, channel head for The Pet Collective. To bring viewers to the site, Maynard says his team is creating “snippets or promos” to be distributed on The Pet Collective’s YouTube channel. These videos feature annotations that drive viewers back to the main site, the hub from which The Pet Collective plans to build out its pet content empire.
These empire plans also include a niche pet-focused MCN, which Maynard says The Pet Collective is close to launching. As Maynard describes it, The Pet Collective MCN would be a smaller network — at least relative to top players like Fullscreen and Maker Studios — with a focus on a specific vertical. Likening The Pet Collective’s MCN plans to what StyleHaul does for fashion and beauty content on YouTube, Maynard said: “There is only a certain amount of creators making pet and animal content. We’re looking to partner with them, surface and promote their content, and present them with sponsorship opportunities.”
And for creators who produce episodic content, Maynard says The Pet Collective would be able to offer them a “runway” to make stuff for television. “One of the ideas with The Pet Collective is to create shows that could work on television as well,” says Maynard. “It’s an opportunity we’d obviously want to extend to our MCN partners.”
“We need to offer these creators something that most other MCNs aren’t able to,” Maynard continues. “Our ability to create long-form programming sets us apart,” he says, citing Fremantle’s long history in creating programming for television.
So when will this MCN launch? “Realistically, probably in the next month,” says Maynard. “We will bring in our first marquee partners during over the next 30 days.” After that, he says it will be a fast partnership process as the MCN looks to grow and scale.