Vevo is curating content from AAPI artists for advertisers

Woman playing the guitar in a rock band

The new product, called API Amplified, makes it easy for brands to reach audiences passionate about AAPI artists.

Advertisers are becoming more conscious about their media plans, looking for opportunities to reach key communities via minority-owned and -targeted media.

That’s why music video platform Vevo on Monday launched AAPI Amplified, an inventory package for advertisers featuring content from Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) artists across genres, from established players to rising stars.

The content, which is curated and updated regularly by Vevo’s editorial team, offers brands an opportunity to reach audiences that are passionate about artists from their communities.

According to a study by Vevo, 69% of API respondents aged 18 to 54 say it is important to them to watch content that reflects their cultural heritage or identity. That’s 21% higher than the U.S. population overall.

“There is a certain pride people have about their heritage and the stars that are part of the larger pop culture paradigm. Ultimately, this is where they come from,” said Jesse Judelman, SVP of sales, Americas, at Vevo. “People like Bruno Mars and Olivia Rodrigo are a huge example of that. Artists like that are driving a significant audience.”

Advertisers can buy into API Amplified in May, just in time for Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage month, but the product will be available year-round. The inventory is available across Vevo’s digital and CTV (connected TV) inventory, the latter of which is a growing platform for consumption on Vevo. The package is not available programmatically.

“This [content] stands out from the audience, to the specificity of [Vevo] owning this content, to the passion and identity that goes along with it,” Judelman said.

This is not Vevo’s first foray into multicultural offerings. Last year, the company launched AfroPulse, a similar product for brands to reach curated inventory from Black artists.

“AfroPulse kind of wrote this concept for us in terms of how do we take ‘multicultural’ and expand it beyond the parameters of what the industry has had so far, which is isolated marketplaces that are able to achieve a specific thing, driven by larger players in the industry?” Judelman said.

Judelman says leaning into multicultural offerings makes sense for Vevo as a platform for music content. Since 2018, Vevo, which is jointly owned by Sony and Universal Music Group, has seen multicultural content grow from representing 4% of its business to 20% – a 5x growth spurt.

“We are inherently as multicultural an offering as there is, but we hadn't distilled it, shaped it and offered it to the marketplace in a way they could participate,” he said.

Demand from advertisers for these offerings has “hit a new level” over the past 18 months, Judelman added. During last year’s upfront, a conversation about investing in diverse-owned media came to the fore as brands tried to be more responsible, not just with their messaging, but also with their media dollars.

Demand is so strong now that Vevo plans to launch similar offerings for Hispanic and LGBTQ audiences and hold a dedicated multicultural upfront in 2023.

“Demand caught up so quickly that it’s imperative we bifurcate the business,” Judelman said.

As Vevo continues to expand on CTV, it plans to use its multicultural content and audience data to curate programming for different communities – think the MTV of streaming.

“How do we make this pop in a way that holds on to these identities, sensibilities but in a way that's a new age network or portfolio of visual music?” Judelman said.

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