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How This Agency Built a Viral YouTube Channel From Rejected Ideas
By: Aaron Whitaker
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At some agencies, rejected ideas get scrapped and disappear for good. At Denizen, they’re used to make viral videos.

Founded in 2008, Denizen had seen its share of success with high-profile campaigns for PepsiHTC, and Disney (Johnny Depp even joined in on that last one). But content creators were still frustrated when ambitious pitches were turned down for being too risky. They realized they needed a place to produce these ideas without third-party interference. That’s why HelloDenizen was born in 2014, a YouTube channel that has racked up over 33 million views thanks to viral hits like the “Tiny Hamster” series.

“Originally the function of it was purely like, fuck it, let’s just make stuff that we like and not worry about if clients want to buy it or not,” co-founder Joel Jensen told me.

The first three videos in particular—“Tiny Hamsters Eating Tiny Burritos,” “Guy Does Amazing Bottle Cap Snap Tricks,” and “Angry Dogs in Cute Costumes“—were pulled from Denizen’s Good Idea Archive, a running list of rejected pitches and wacky ideas.


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About the Author
Aaron Whitaker is a copywriter, blogger, and social media aficionado who likes watching the TV commercials more than the actual shows. He prefers reading the magazine ads over the articles. And you can learn more about him online right here.
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