GTChannel says Goodbye to Machinima and soars

By Kym McNicholas , written on June 27, 2013

From The News Desk

A new automotive multi-channel network is blowing up after leaving Machinima -- a very risky move that revved up its business. In case you're not familiar with the multi-channel network concept, it's a community of Youtube channels that are brought under one umbrella. It's the best way for independent Youtube channels to get their videos seen and get help monetizing them.

Typically, the multi-channel networks are created under a particular genre. Machinima focuses on gamers. The GT Channel focuses on cars. That was the biggest reason why the GTChannel, which joined the largest multi-channel network in July, 2012 (Machinima has more than 8 million subscribers), left just seven months later.  GTChannel's CEO Taro Koki quickly realized that although Machinima had great reach, it wasn't the right place for his automotive videos, which focus on the newest trends in motor sports, as well the culture of this next generation of racing enthusiasts. Instead, in January of 2013, GTChannel set out on its own.

"They didn't understand our content and could not sell sponsorship against our content,"  Koki says.

So, GTChannel launched its own multi-channel network in March, signing on its first partner, and targeting the 18-34 male car enthusiasts demographic. It's quickly grown to more than 132 channels, with more than 452,000 subscribers, and more than 325 million views. It's not far behind the number one auto video site on YouTube sponsored by Motortrend, which touts more than 375 million views.

Once you see the videos, you'll understand why this channel is catching on so quickly. Even if you don't like racing, they're exciting to watch -- much more than race car drivers  spinning around an oval. And speaking of NASCAR, while the nation's most popular spectator sport and other internationally recognized racing organizations are struggling to get new sponsors, advertisers are competing to get their ads on these videos.  Just last week, GTChannel brought forth eBay Motors' campaign to its partners --something only an MCN, with 132-plus channels could do.

I got a taste of the racing action recently at Sonoma Raceway with one of the world's best "drifting" drivers to better understand the lure.  I also talked to the CEO of the GTChannel about organically growing this network in one of the most sought after genres for advertisers. Take a look: