Parties on the Social Nets Parties on the Social Nets

Monday, July 27, 2009

Steve Smith
What was true in high school is often true on the Web’s social nets. The most popular guy in the halls of your old school likely was the one with the most beautiful women around him. And so it is with As we noted weeks ago in our run down of top magazine brands on Facebook, the 1.2 million “friends” at the Playboy Facebook page is among the largest collections we have seen around a print brand. According to Playboy Digital vp and associate publisher John Lumpkin, “Facebook has done a tremendous amount of traffic we find.” As we will see in next week’s issue of min, when we speak at length with Lumpkin, the brand is finding new and interesting ways of leveraging this social network outreach with its advertisers. For instance, when the editors posted a link to the new Uncovered video series launched with sponsor Southern Comfort, over 300 people interacted, 30 of them offering comments. On the other hand, a typical “Model of the Day” post on Facebook’s Playboy page garners 1,500 to 2,000 interactions (mostly votes) and hundreds of direct comments. Sponsors get served, but the girls still rule.

In 2008, Playboy announced its “Playboy Audience Network,” which distributes select videos (including branded video for sponsors) to ten sites, including YouTube,, Metacafe and Howcast. Lumpkin says that the YouTube channel alone gets 3 million monthly visits and that Playboy videos are viewed over 40 million times a month on the Google-owned video goliath.

In next week’s min we explore in greater detail with John how Playboy is putting a special emphasis on its growing video programs and leveraging the medium for sponsors like Southern Comfort and HBO.