Will Keenan

Sneak preview: 30 Minutes With…Will Keenan

Don't lie, be boring or desperate when pitching Endemol Beyond's president, and other insight on how to wow him.
June 2, 2015

With the third annual Stream Market  just two days away from opening in Santa Monica (June 4 and 5), the StreamDaily team has been putting together a Q&A series that showcases some of our top industry speakers.

Our “30 Minutes With…” sessions are a returning favorite at the Market. The sessions feature some of the most in-demand online original buyers and commissioners talking candidly about their programming strategies, future plans and priorities.

Will Keenan, president, Endemol Beyond USA, gave us a sneak peek of some of the industry insider information he’ll be sharing as he takes to the stage of the Fairmont Miramar Hotel this week.

Got questions on how to pitch, who to pitch and the types of projects Endemol Beyond is looking for? We’ve got the answers:

Tell us a little about yourself – what’s your main job description?

Green-lighter, talent-whisperer, deal-maker, networker, developer, producer, creative producer, executive producer, distributor, strategist, digi-mogul.

 How long have you been in the job?

A little over a year and a half. I was VP at Maker Studios before that.

When’s the last time you stepped outside of your comfort zone?

Daily, almost hourly. Once I get comfortable, people may stop calling me a visionary.

Do you take unsolicited pitches?

If you know how to get through, yes.

What types of programming are you looking for this year?

Music, gaming, e-sports, lifestyle, pop-culture, comedy.

Who is your target demo and audience?

Our current audience is primarily millennials, but we have plans to grow that audience into other demos this year.

What are some pitching “dos” and “don’ts,” or what shouldn’t people do when pitching to you?

Always bring more than one pitch, don’t be boring, desperate or lie. Leave me wanting more.

What’s the preferred approach to pitch?

Come prepared and with a great understanding about myself, our company & what we’re doing first, then suck the air out of the room during the pitch (a.k.a. wow us).

Do you have sizzle reel tips, or what should producers do to stand out?

Short and sweet. (Again, leave me wanting more). Lead with your strongest ideas or your best clips – just like the best-practices of online video, put the best stuff up front, hook us to keep us watching, otherwise we may not even finish a 30-second sizzle, too much other stuff to look at, so don’t save your best clips for last.

Check out the Icon sizzle reel for examples of what the company is looking for:

Missed a how-to-pitch Q&A? Catch up with the buyers’ programming strategies, future plans and priorities here

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