Last Friday, BuzzFeed began a Facebook Live video that broadcast two employees testing the number of rubberbands it would take to make a watermelon give under the pressure and explode. The broadcast took 44 minutes before the watermelon exploded under the pressure of the rubberbands. Once the broadcast was over, the video had attracted over 800,000 viewers, as well as making “watermelon” a trending topic on Facebook and Twitter.
It’s been almost a week (as of this writing) that the broadcast ended, and it looks live over 10 million people watched the exploding watermelon experiment take place. The funny thing is that the video was shot with something as simple as an iPhone, which was mounted on a tripod, and the mic was connected to a drumstick. The video is sporting over 320,000 comments and 17,000 shares.
Jeremy Briggs, the head of BuzzFeed video New York said
“The idea came about in a brainstorm earlier this week about the various things the BuzzFeed Motion Picture New York team could do around Facebook Live.”
An interview had been conducted, and in that email interview, Briggs said that his team had been expermineted with a lot of different formats and types of content.
“One of our producers, and the director of this FB Live video, Edd Souaid, had seen the watermelon-rubber band experiment before and thought it would be great for a live video as it would give the audience a level of suspense and draw them in.”
BuzzFeed Tasty won three billion video views across YouTube, Facebook, Vine and Instagram, setting a new record for video views.
Ever since BuzzFeed had begun experimenting with Facebook Live, Briggs said that the company had seen a growing audience of engaged followers.
“One of the benefits of using Live video is that it allows us to connect with our audience in real time, and creates a level of intimacy with our viewers.”
With the launch of its first broadcast on March 1 for Super Tuesday, BuzzFeed has created more than 80 Facebook Live videos to date.
“Both editorial — in the US and international — and BuzzFeed Motion Pictures are experimenting with Facebook Live video,” says Briggs, “We’ve had a lot of success across a few of our different Facebook pages, including BuzzFeed, BuzzFeed News, BuzzFeed Video, Tasty, BuzzFeed Food, BuzzFeed DIY, Try Guys, among others.”
Briggs said that,
“One of the reasons the exploding watermelon concept worked was that it built to a climatic[sic] moment. This is definitely a format we’re going to continue to experiment with.”
What are some of BuzzFeed’s future plans for their live videos? Briggs didn’t reveal any of the details. It looks like BuzzFeed will be playing around with different formats and concepts from this point to see what works.