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What Does Jimmy Fallon Tell Website Owners?

Jimmy Fallon had an amazing 2014 and is poised to grow even more in 2015. He was named the successor to Jay Leno as the new host the Tonight Show. Having just spent about an hour watching clips of his hilarious bits on YouTube it was clear that he is doing something that website entrepreneurs should use as inspiration for how to be a "new media" company (is the internet still considered new?).

First let me take you back to a precarious time, that might be fading from memory. Jay Leno left the Tonight Show twice. The first time, he was replaced by Conan O'Brien. Conan O'Brien failed after short number of weeks (maybe months, I barely remember it).

Conan O'Brien waited for that spot, for years and having paid his dues and earning it; once he got it he made a mistake. Instead of making it his, he tried moving in and take it over while giving credit and paying homage to the show's roots back to Johnny Carson. This fatal error, for lack of a better word, of being "unoriginal" is the basis of what tanked the ratings and eventually led to Conan's ouster. On some level it's understandable, he waited so long and had been around for the history of it all, and probably had the feeling he needed to be respectful to his inheritance. If that's an error in judgement, many of us would do it. But anyhow, I digress. Jay Leno came back and upon his 2nd retirement Jimmy Fallon steps in.

Jimmy Fallon didn't "move in", Jimmy Fallon "took over"! He made that show his own, and has found ways to innovate and be original. Sure he uses the same format. Intro monologue, a band, followed by skits and guest appearances from celebrities. But these are no normal celebrity appearances. With a throw back to his SNL days these guests are a part of the skits, and of course it helps that the skits are well written.

Where he has innovated the most though, is in his distribution and promotional network that he's been building for the last 11 months on YouTube and other social media.

Every day he releases the best clips from his show on YouTube and gets another few million views added to his audience. This second level of distribution beyond his normal outlet, which has the slowing growth curve of network television, brings him to new people and gives a more viral grass roots type of feel to the high growth curve online, on-demand viewing audience.

To put it a bit more simply... he gives people what they want when they want it.

As much as we might detest news organizations following this example with infotainment news styles (eg. "giving people what they want" instead of "what they need"), coming from an entertainer it's quite a lesson for how entrpreneurs who are focused on growing their online businesses, and how they can use Jimmy Fallon as an example for how to make and distribute content that draws in a viral grass roots growth curve.

I could easily digress into some other tangents about MVP Launching (Minimum Viable Product), and letting your customers tell you what your product should be, but that's a discussion outside the scope of Jimmy Fallon helping entrpreneurs with their web development projects.