Facebook’s new “Instant Articles” platform has caused quite a stir in the publishing industry. Some publishers have pointed out that they won’t be able to compete with this new platform and, from now on, will be dependent upon Facebook for their revenue. However, this launch has also paved the way for newcomers to gain traction, leaving the larger publishers to grapple for attention. So, look out Buzzfeed and Huffington Post! A new player is in town.

The largest newcomer on Facebook is PlayBuzz, a content publishing platform (think Buzzfeed meets style lists and quizzes) that has been awarded the newcomer of the year for 2014 by The Whip. It draws around 58 million unique monthly visitors and, with more than 10 millions shares it is rated "most-shared publisher" on Facebook.

Many are asking why there would be so many unique visitors to this seemingly "me too" site. The answer seems to be that viral content evokes a deep emotional response in us and we can't help but share it. The best viral vids and content tend to have a great surprise factor in them, which gives people an anticipation about what may be coming next.

Instead of creating content in-house, as a publisher would, the PlayBuzz platform allows content creators, both amateur and professional, to build their own quizzes, listicles or polls to distribute and embed on their websites and social media platforms. Users can listen, interact and engage with Playbuzz's unique platform.

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PlayBuzz, which has relocated from Israel to New York City, is expanding it’s business by getting into the sponsored content game. Founder and CEO Shaul Olmert said that PlayBuzz had previously focused on demystifying social or viral content by providing marketers with easy-to-use tools, best-practice materials and analytics to optimize campaigns accordingly. But, unlike other platforms offering these services, PlayBuzz puts the campaign completely into the hands of the business. You can think of PlayBuzz as a DIY BuzzFeed.

Everyone can use the tools for free, no matter the size or budget of the campaign. Olmert recommends experimenting with the the Playbuzz free option. Getting started is as simple as signing up and putting up content that your audience will find entertaining and shareable. Don't worry if you don't know how to do this process, Playbuzz will walk you through the process step by step.

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Olmert wants PlayBuzz to remain a free platform, especially for users when they are just starting out so they don’t have to commit to a budget. Once you begin to gain traction, consider PlayBuzz’s paid distribution service to increase your online visibility, user engagement, page views, and watch or time how long your customers spend on your site.

Native campaigns can be both expensive and time-consuming and that is a problem for smaller businesses. With PlayBuzz, you’re reducing the cost and labor of creating content. More importantly, however, PlayBuzz has already proven that it can boost engagement. Studies have shown that PlayBuzz’s platform has an astounding “94 percent item completion rate from its audience.”

What’s next for Playbuzz? Olmert has no desire for PlayBuzz to become just a publisher. He wants the company to be the next YouTube, an exciting infrastructure for distributing fun, interesting, engaging content that we can't resist.

PlayBuzz's native advertising platform is currently in beta and they're hoping for a full-launch in Q3. Playbuzz is well on its way to providing a new playground for those who wish to connect to the world in a unique way, engage with other people, and find information that's worth sharing.

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