Developing a Solid Content Strategy, As Told by Buzzfeed’s “Tasty”

Like it or not, Buzzfeed kills when it comes to content strategy. Especially Buzzfeed’s “Tasty”.

buzzfeed-tasty-logo-blue-background-with-colorful-food
Tasty logo from buzzfeed.com

Founded initially by Jonah Peretti, fresh off co-founding and building the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed had its ear to the ground from day one. Its mission? Content fit for the masses.

Now, after several years of virality, Buzzfeed all but owns the listicle, has gotten clickable headlines down to a science, and continues to mold its content strategy depending on changes in the digital landscape, trends, and loads of consumer data.

If that’s not the essence of #contentgoals, I don’t know what is.

Let’s take a peek at Buzzfeed’s content strategy playbook to see what’s heating up.

The “Tasty” Thing You’ve Never Heard Of, But Can’t Stop Seeing

No news here: video content’s exploded. 2015 boasted a huge year for video, and it’s projected to go nowhere but up.

Never behind the curve and a big player on the video content train for a couple years now, Buzzfeed is further pioneering video content with sped-up tutorials in a realm to truly drool over: food.

Buzzfeed’s newest brainchild is “Tasty”, hot and fresh out the kitchen in late 2015 and dedicated to all things food. It’s entirely possible you may not have even known Buzzfeed pivoted to develop loads of foodie video content to satisfy our collective ravenous hunger for recipes and cooking hacks. However, it’s unlikely you haven’t brushed elbows with this content in some form in recent months.

Recognize this?

buzzfeed-tasty-how-to-make-cheesy-cheese-sticks

There’s not much to these videos. There’s not a lot of fanfare or frills. They’re not dumbing down fine French cooking or tackling the baking of obscure sponge cakes of yesteryear, as in the Great British Bake-Off. It’s six ways to make pasta, spinach and artichoke dips, and a new way to use Nutella.

They’re minimalistic, highly edited, sped-up cooking tutorials. That’s it. Just really good food made from really simple techniques, cooked down to their simplest form.

What We Can Learn from Tasty’s Content Strategy

  • It intimately knows its audience & stays hyper-focused. Tasty’s only got six sections: desserts, dinners, cheese (yes, a whole dedicated section), pizza, apps, and comfort foods. It’s evident they’ve pinpointed what their audience searches for most and deliver just that.
  • It takes the best from tried-and-true, while effectively experimenting. It clearly leverages data available to predict trends (toward food, in this case) and virality, while simultaneously trying out new material. Paired with tried-and-true, addictive, click-worthy headlines to get the audience’s eyes, Buzzfeed racks up watch-throughs and shares.
  • It’s concise. The videos range from 30 seconds to two minutes long, focused on the food and how to do it. It plays to our psychological desires to see results quickly and is presented in an “anyone can do it” style, all while looking clean and staying simple. It works.
  • It finds commonality. Food is the common denominator (even in different markets — see Buzzfeed’s “Proper Tasty” for the UK). And quality recipes are valuable commodities.
  • It stays true to the brand. Despite the deviation from solely written form, Buzzfeed’s Tasty maintains the distinctive Buzzfeed voice — down to the URLs of the videos:

buzzfeed-cheese-Verblio-url.png

Buzzfeed’s Tasty has married content to a form, and the form they set out to marry initially was Facebook video. As a result, playing it low-key on the public’s radar, Tasty has successfully permeated Facebook, spreading literally digestible, delicious content.

Kali Greff

I write and market (yes, verb) at Verblio. Whether that's a blog post, email subject line, social media update, or a lousy author bio like this one, if you've been around Verblio you've likely seen some letters I threw together. I love helping get the word out about Verblio to get all sorts of folks good content to market themselves. Apart from Verblio, I'm really passionate about puns, foreign languages, Colorado at large, staying active, and leprechauns.

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