“Video Killed The Radio Star, But Nothing Will Kill Video”: Vevo’s MD Steve Sos

“Video Killed The Radio Star, But Nothing Will Kill Video”: Vevo’s MD Steve Sos

This month Vevo is celebrating 40 years of music videos – a medium that has become a cultural touchstone for anyone with ears and eyes.

MTV premiered exactly forty years ago this month and changed music forever, offering a visual music medium and music lovers and advertisers have never looked back. 

To celebrate such a milestone Vevo has put together a list of the top ten music videos for each decade, and all your favourites appear, everyone from Lady Gaga to The Cranberries. 

However, arguably Vevo celebrates music videos every day of the year. 

Vevo is the worlds’ leading video network and has 25 billion views globally a month. In Australia alone, Vevo has a network of about 10 million Aussies that consume Vevo. That works out to be about 40 per cent of the population.

The breakdown of that 10 million is:

  • 25 per cent is 18-24
  • 33 per cent is 25-33
  • 21 per cent is 35-44
  • 17 per cent is 45 plus

These figures show that music videos are able to reach a broad range of demographics, something manager director (MD) at Australian Vevo, Steve Sos is incredibly aware of this. “We deliver big chunks of audience across pretty much any demographic anyone’s trying to reach.

“Music is something people enjoy from the cradle to the grave.”

Even with the rise in streaming services, and consumers moving away from the traditional ways to watch music videos, music videos have prevailed, Lil Nas X new music video, Industry Baby has received over 8 million views in less than five days.

The video has also become a favourite on TikTok, giving it a whole new life online.

A success, Sos points out, that isn’t uncommon with music videos. “Olivia Rodrigo’s music video drivers license had over a million views in Australia within the first fourteen days.

“It’s not like, it’s just the odd video, you know, we can talk about those numbers across the board.”

Rodrigo’s drivers license was also a favourite on TikTok

While the days of MTV Saturday mornings may have vanished, new generations are embracing music videos via their social channels and taking to Twitter to share their thoughts. Music videos have managed to continue to be part of the cultural conversation. 

In the same way, work conversations often revolve around the Bachelorette or whatever reality show is gaining traction, water cooler moments are still happening over music videos – think about Miley Cyrus’s Wrecking Ball music video, which has since racked up over 1.1 billion streams.

Who didn’t comment on Cyrus licking that infamous hammer?

Sos, said: “Music videos have always gone from strength to strength,

“From a commercial point of view, there tends to be four content pillars that underpin any media plan that is worth its salt. Sport, scripted drama, news and music, but it’s music as a constant pillar that is evergreen, whose number continues to grow.

“Music videos continually accumulate audiences, over 125 million views last year were attributed to people rewatching music videos from the 80s.”

Considering the ever-changing scope of how people consume content, particularly television, big advertisers have continued to work with music videos.

Some go so far, as to be in the music videos.

Famous examples include, Calvin Klein, featured in Justin Bieber’s music video for his single, What do you mean? Nike teamed up with Drake for his music video, Headlines. Jennifer Lopez’s music video for Papi featured, BlackBerry. Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit music video, featured Converse.

Vevo offers advertisers a platform with a video completion rate of 90 per cent and 89 per cent average viewability.

Sos, is confident in what Vevo offers advertisers, “We provide this credibility by association with the biggest stars on the planet.

“Premium content, super brand-safe, we are mass reaching and delivering audiences that increasingly are very hard to find on linear TV, you know, because it’s declining.”

Forty years ago MTV premiered with the iconic music video, Video Killed The Radio Star by The Buggles.

The irony isn’t lost on Sos, “Video may have killed the radio star, but nothing will kill video.” 




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