The YouTube and Influencer Marketing Blog

The latest news and analysis of YouTube and Influencer Marketing For Top Brands,

YouTubers, Instagrammers, Social Media Influencers, & Influencer Marketing Campaigns

The Streamy Awards 2015: Everything You Need To Know

The Streamy Awards 2015: All The Winners From Last Night, Here's Everything You Missed

Similar to the exponential growth of VidCon, BeautyCon, the genre of online video and its social media influencers, The 5th Annual Streamy Awards 2015 hit a milestone last night when it aired for the first time on VH1 television (see select excerpts of their live stream playlist here). 2015 marks perhaps a year where the mainstream public and traditional forms of entertainment are beginning to recognize the vast scope and potential of these video (vloggers or YouTubers) and social media creators (Snapchatters, Viners) who are far more influential than blockbuster movie stars or chart-topping singers (see Variety's 2nd annual survey of American youth here).

With the meteoric rise of the social media influencer or digital star on user-generated content (UGC) platforms including YouTube, Vine, Snapchat and now Periscope, many broadcast networks are left wondering whether they need a YouTube influencer strategy, traditional Hollywood talent agencies are racing to sign YouTube talent, and traditional global brands are partnering with social media influencers for major marketing campaigns based on the efficacy of influencer marketing (i.e. Apple, Castrol, airlines, travel/hospitality, and automotive).

This year's winners and award categories featured the very best nominated in online video and social media from brand sponsored video campaigns with top YouTubers (Nissan, Purina, DanceOn, Totino's, and Pizza Hut), social good campaigns, music, performance, and much more including performances by Hailee Steinfeld, Sir Mix-a-Lot, and OMI (see all the music performances here).

Hosts Tyler Oakley and Gracie Helbig are joined by presenters Paula Abdul, Mel B., Natasha Bedingfield, Ciara, Philip DeFranco, Ricky Dillon, GloZell Green, Kat Graham, Hannah Hart, Mamrie Hart, Sean Kingston, NeNe Leakes, Jenna Marbles, Brooke Mahan, Miss America 2016 Betty Cantrell, Shay Mitchell, Harley Morenstein, Ingrid Nilsen, Pauley Perrette, Michelle Phan, Jillian Rose Reed, Smosh and James Van Der Beek (via Heavy).

Here are the categories and winners for this year's Streamy Awards 2015 along with samples of their best or most popular work:

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in blog, Bloggers, Fashion Influencers, Instagram Influencers, Online Video Marketing, Snapchat Influencers, Social Media Influencers, Vine Influencers, YouTube Influencers

YouTube Influencer Spotlight: Sharzad Kiadeh

Sharzad Kiadeh Interview YouTube Influencer Spotlight

Spotlight Interview With YouTuber, Sharzad Kiadeh

In the world of YouTube, beauty reigns supreme as one of the platform's top categories. Sharzad Kiadeh is a Los Angeles-based YouTuber who produces content on YouTube and on a personal blog. She hosts the YouTube channel The Mom's View which centers around women's issues and parenting. Her personal blog, LuxLyfe, covers everything from beauty, food, travel, and other such lifestyle categories. Recently, Kiadeh has embarked on a new initiative as a co-host on SASS, a brand new beauty series on Mixed Makeup, a YouTube beauty channel. Here she takes on offbeat beauty trends and treatments in the Los Angeles area.

In the following interview, Sharzad shares how she started on YouTube, a wealth of insight on being a YouTuber, and how she transformed her passion for beauty to reach hundreds of thousands of followers.

Read Sharzad Kiadeh's interview to learn her outlook on the YouTube influencer marketing industry, tips and advice for bloggers, and brands looking to partner with influencers for sponsored content campaigns.

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in blog, Bloggers, Fashion Influencers, Influencer Spotlight, Online Video Marketing, Social Media Influencers, YouTube Influencers

Best Brands On Instagram Working With Top Influencers

Best Brands On Instagram Marketing With Influencers

image via Ispy Instagram

A Look At The Best Brands On Instagram Working With Influencers

In addition to Instagram's new sponsored ad offerings, many brands are marketing on Instagram with top social media influencers. Marketing with social media influencers provides brands a succinct way to reach targeted audiences on Instagram and elicit engagement with potential consumers ultimately driving up profitable action and brand affinity. With influencer marketing, brands can strategically partner with prominent social media influencers (Instagrammers, YouTubers, bloggers, et. al.) to create aspirational lifestyle sponsored content that resonates with a brand's target audience. To learn more about how brands market with Instagram influencers, see our brand guide here.

Retailer Old Navy, watch brand Daniel Wellington, and beauty subscription box Ipsy are three of the best brands on Instagram marketing with influencers. Many other brands in different industries (including automotive brands, airlines, and hospitality) also market with social media influencers on Instagram.

Here are 3 best brands on Instagram marketing with social media influencers:

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in blog, Branded Content With Influencers, Instagram Influencers, Social Media Influencers

Instagrammer Spotlight: Josh Ostrovsky, The Fat Jewish

Josh Ostrovsky's sponsored YouTube video campaign with Three Jerks Jerky

Why Josh Ostrovsky "The Fat Jew" Entertains Millennials, Major Brands

Known for his corpulent figure and hairstyle, Josh Ostrovsky is anything but subtle. Ostrovsky, who refers to himself as "a Jew unicorn," launched to fame with his outrageous brand of humor via his Instagram channel, @TheFatJewish. Josh Ostrovsky’s often coarse material has attracted 5.7M followers, and while he has more than his share of detractors, his fan base is both staggering and climbing.

Born and raised in New York City, Ostrovsky attended several universities before ultimately becoming an alumnus of SUNY Albany. After graduation, he used his alter-ego “The Fat Jew” to host parties and various gigs before joining Instagram in 2012. In addition to his own channel, Josh Ostrovsky is also the creator of Instagram accounts @ToastMeetsWorld and @MuppetsRevenge (his pets) both of which have a combined follower count of 337K. 

With his vast reach and highly engaging content, Ostrovsky joins the ranks of other prominent social media influencers who have partnered with major companies for brand-sponsored content and sponsorship opportunities (see our post here on how to create sponsored content with Instagram influencers). Josh Ostrovsky's brand sponsorships include Burger King (detailed below) and Three Jerks Jerky (as seen in video above). 

See our post here on how brands work with social media influencers.

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in blog, Branded Content With Influencers, Influencer Spotlight, Instagram Influencers, Online Video Marketing, Social Media Influencers, YouTube Influencers

Influencer Marketing Stats You Should Know

Influencer Marketing Stats TrendsSee additional insights and full reporting on influencer marketing via Google Trends. Subscribe to our industry digest newsletter: the latest authoritative marketing news, trends, and stats on social media stars

Influencer Marketing Stats Shaping How Brands Work With Social Media Influencers

Influencer marketing is utilized by the latest blue chip startups to well-established traditional brands to generate awareness, engagement, build audiences across multiple social platforms, and ultimately drive up profitable customer action. As a rapidly growing sector of digital marketing, social media, and native advertising, influencer marketing helps brands capitalize on overarching industry trends including the shift from TV to digital, display advertising to sponsored content, and online video traffic.

The continued growth of Facebook, YouTube, and newer social media platforms (Instagram, Snapchat, Vine, Periscope) have concurrently helped fuel the growth of influencer marketing -- brands are seeking to target these platform users and leveraging the vast audience reach of top social media influencers (YouTubers, Instagrammers, Snapchatters, Viners). For perspective, top YouTuber Bethany Mota's average video view rivals the median viewership for many TV shows. As TV viewership declines (see Nielsen data cited below), advertisers will need to find new ways to connect and engage with audiences online on these social channels:

Here are the influencer marketing stats and trends marketers need to know:

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Influencer Spotlight: Sweet Tooth Sweet Life

Sweet Tooth Sweet Life InterviewLifestyle Blogger Courtney Horan of Sweet Tooth Sweet Life

Courtney Horan began blogging as a way to keep track of her daily fitness routines and meals. Her blog centers around living a healthy and active lifestyle, all while maintaining a positive outlook (with room for dessert). Courtney’s path was not always easy -- after college, she struggled with relationship issues and allowed bad habits to take over her life. However, she was able to find her drive and ultimately achieve a healthy, balanced life.

In her interview feature, Courtney shares her life's experience in the ever-changing blogging world, and how it has evolved into a veritable business platform connecting audiences with brands. Sweet Tooth Sweet Life "a love of food, fitness, and fashion" shares the latest on her pregnancy journey, recipes, workouts, meal planning, and more.

Read Sweet Tooth Sweet Life's interview to learn her views on the industry, candid advice for bloggers and brands alike, and her viral post, "The Twinkie Diet."

How did you get started blogging?

I had been reading blogs for about a year and always thought, man, that seems really fun! Then while I was away one weekend with my husband, I told him that I wanted to start one of my own and he said, “Ok, then go for it!” So I started right then and there by taking a super dark and grainy picture of our truffle fries.

What was your first blog post?

I actually had to go back and re-read it because I had no idea! My very first post was basically two sentences saying “Hello!” to the world. But my first “real” post was a bit of a recap of that weekend that we were away in Burlington, VT. Sadly, I ended up deleting most of the pictures from my first few posts back in the day, because I had run out of storage space and had no idea what else to do. Rookie mistake…

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in blog, Bloggers, Influencer Spotlight, Social Media Influencers

Influencer Marketing Case Study: Airlines

Influencer Marketing Case Study Airlines Tuula Vintage Jessica Stein

In 2015, Airline companies Cathay Pacific, Air New Zealand, Air France, and Air Nippon collaborated with leading travel and lifestyle influencers including Tuula Vintage and Song of Style to develop rich content while integrating their brand messaging to new audiences online. The influencer marketing campaigns are not solely focused on travel-specific blogs, rather they seek to incorporate the brand within several categories, resulting in an innovative, engaging approach for increased audience exposure.

This case study is part of our ongoing Influencer Marketing Case Study Series.

Influencer Marketing Case Study:

  • Primary Objective - Build and drive brand awareness by partnering with aspirational lifestyle tastemakers in order to reach affluential audiences
  • Secondary Objective(s) - Leverage top social media influencers' social, creative direction, and audience base to elicit engagement, ultimately driving up profitable action
  • Partner with top bloggers in multiple lifestyle categories (fashion, travel, food, wedding) including Tuula Vintage, Song of Style, and 100 Layer Cake
  • Authentically develop aspirational campaign messaging
  • Organic, timely, and relevant integration within influencer's storyline
  • Market to new audiences through adjoining blog categories

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in blog, Bloggers, Branded Content With Influencers, Fashion Bloggers, Fashion Influencers, Influencer Marketing, Influencer Marketing Case Studies, Influencer Marketing Examples, Influencer Marketing Statistics, Lifestyle Bloggers, Social Media Influencers, Sponsored Content With Influencers

How To Beat Ad Blocking With Sponsored Content, Influencer Marketing

To learn more about influencer marketing, see our free white paper series.

Amidst Ad Blocking Crisis, Brands & Publishers Look To Sponsored Content Options

On August 10, 2015, Adobe in conjunction with UK startup PageFair, published a report illustrating the rise of ad blocking -- ad blocking rates grew by 41% globally, and 48% in the United States (see their entire report above). With the release of iOS9, Apple's latest operating system now features mobile ad blocking capabilities. Furthermore, starting in November, Google will penalize sites with app install ads (read more on their official Webmaster blog). As seen below in Business Insider's graph, the rapid rise of ad blocking (costing advertisers an estimated $22 billion in 2015 alone) has prompted brands including Nylon to focus their marketing efforts on sponsored content (see Digiday's article on Nylon here).

Ad Blocking Stats 2015

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in blog, Branded Content With Influencers, Influencer Marketing, Influencer Marketing News, Influencer Marketing Statistics, Monetization, Native Advertising With Influencers, Online Video Marketing, Sponsored Content With Influencers

How To Measure Influencer Marketing Campaigns

How To Measure Influencer Marketing Campaigns

For the latest authoritative marketing news, trends, and stats on social media stars and influencer marketing, subscribe to our industry digest newsletter!

Influencer Marketing Campaigns: How To Accurately Measure Campaign Success

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are quantifiable performance metrics/values that show whether or not a marketing campaign reaches its goals and/or business objectives. With influencer marketing campaigns (wherein a company works with a digital star and/or social media influencer to effectively drive engagement and increase direct response), brands may have specific primary objectives followed by secondary ones. KPIs are typically determined by the brand, are brand-specific, and vary depending on individual marketing campaign goals. Although they may overlap in nature, these marketing metrics fall into two categories: branding KPIs and response-based KPIs.

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in blog, Influencer Marketing, Influencer Marketing Guides & How-To’s, Instagram Influencers, Monetization, Native Advertising With Influencers, Online Video Marketing, Social Media Influencers, YouTube Influencers

How To Work With Social Media Influencers

"Dear brands, I've been having a bit of trouble with you recently. You don't seem to understand social media at all. What's worse is, you don't seem to understand that we do...far more than you. Which is why we have these audiences you want access to."

Want To Get The Most Out Of Working With Social Media Influencers? Start By Listening To Them.

Increasingly more and more brands are teaming up with top social media influencers to market their brand, product, or service. In an effort to engage millennials, fast food giant McDonald's recently announced their partnership with YouTubers Gabriella Lindley and Oli White in order to build their new YouTube channel, Channel Us. Hallmark, for their recent "Signature Styles" branding campaign, partnered with notable tastemakers, bloggers, and YouTubers to feature stylish outfits inspired by their new line of cards. Mercedes-Benz partnered with Casey Neistat to make a "YouTuber commercial" with an adjoining 3-part behind-the-scenes promo series.

From Adidas to Starbucks to Castrol and almost every industry vertical and advertiser category, companies are now recognizing just how immensely valuable marketing with social media influencers can be. In order to effectively break through the growing social media noise, brands seek the aid of powerful social media influencers to help with both branding and direct-response marketing initiatives.

The Glaring Problem With Brands Working With Social Media Influencers?

Most brands have a difficult time working successfully with and creating alongside top social media influencers. Influencer marketing is a newer sect of marketing that involves critical elements of social media, social media platforms, online video channels, and the influential tastemaker personalities that shape massive consumer audiences.

After a particularly frustrating month of dealing with brands, London YouTuber Dodie Clark "Doddleoddle," created a video titled "Brand Deal Rant" where she outlines the existing problems she's encountered and her best advice for brands desiring to successfully partner with social media influencers. With two YouTube channels totaling over 300K+ subscribers and 21.5+ million total video views, Dodie innately understands how to create content that resonates and build audience affinity.

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in blog, Bloggers, Branded Content With Influencers, Monetization, Native Advertising With Influencers, Online Video Marketing, Social Media Influencers, YouTube Influencers

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