Munchies on OnlyFans, Pepsi Digs In

This is the second of my ‘Unexpected stories’ posts. Thanks for the great feedback last week.

I read lots of ‘expected’ stories last week, including UPS having the highest rate of returns ever post-Christmas, and Amazon buying eleven planes to bolster their delivery network. Here are three that I did not expect to read:

Munchies is now on Only Fans
Vice’s Munchies food channel now has an account on OnlyFans, allowing their enthusiasts to pay £5 a month to see extra content not posted elsewhere. Only Fans is the media success story of 2020 that no one talks about. It is (essentially) a paid adult site that Instagrammers and social media personalities can use to share even racier content. There is also other content, but I would imagine that over 95% of content is ‘adult’. I used to wonder why Instagram allowed people to openly link to their Only Fans pages, but I guess for them it’s a really good way to see which users are likely to be pushing the boundaries of what is allowed on its own app. Anyway… Vice’s Munchies is the first ‘mainstream’ media channel to join Only Fans, charging a monthly subscription to see even more content; under the concept of ‘food p*rn’, I guess. I expect that several brands have had this idea pitched to them, and for Vice it’s quite low risk. Will we see others do this?

Pepsi’s new ‘Dig In’ programme is supporting black-owned restaurants
This one is maybe not that unexpected; maybe what is unexpected is that no one has thought to do this before. Pepsi has launched Dig In in the US, working with black-owned restaurants to provide funding and resources to help them generate an extra $100m in revenue in the next 5 years. As Pepsi points out, not only have restaurants been disproportionately hit by the pandemic, black-owned businesses find it much harder to get funding through loans. Pepsi is going to help through grants, mentorship, training & business support. This is a perfect example of showing purpose, doing good for the community, and — presumably — generating business by extending Pepsi’s brands into more outlets. I’m expecting lots of good things to come from this.

Struum is a new paid streaming service
You would have thought with the failure of Quibi no one would be trying to launch a new streaming service, not least experienced industry heavyweights like Michael Eisner. However Struum is very different to Quibi, and has a much better chance of succeeding. What it is trying to do is be an aggregator for the smaller channels; your Struum subs would give you credits to allow you to watch content from lots of the more specialist streamers as a guest, rather than taking out a full subscription. This seems like a good idea, except that for most you can take out a month’s subscription every so often and watch all the stuff you want to, like I plan to do with NowTV once I’ve exhausted Netflix and Prime. Also — Struum is a *terrible* name.

Head of Media Futures for Carat Global, interested in all things media, digital and edible