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  Online Video Marketing

See the latest online video marketing campaigns, examples, and case studies with YouTubers & video creators. Learn how top brands & companies are marketing online by partnering with top YouTube content creators.

VidCon 2015: Everything You Need To Know

VIDCON 2015 top youtubers entertainment weekly people magazine

From Business Insider To USA Today, Here's What Happened At VidCon 2015:

Now in it's 6th year, VidCon 2015 featured record-breaking attendance, dedicated "industry-only" events, and as expected -- thousands of fanatical subscribers who turned out to see their beloved YouTubers, off-screen and in-person. Started in 2010 by Hank and John Green (The Vlog Brothers), VidCon has grown exponentially from hardly 2,000 attendees into the leading online video industry event with more than 300 top YouTubers and 20,000 in attendance for the three-day conference at Anaheim's Convention Center. VidCon represents the summit for online video connecting community (fans, followers, subscribers), creators (YouTubers, Viners, Snapchatters, and other digital content creators), and industry professionals.

While VidCon 2015 is standout in many respects, here are a few notable turning points:

  • According to Nielsen, TV viewing hours for millennials (age 12 to 17) have drastically declined from 21 hours to 18 just in the first quarter of 2015 (VentureBeat). Additionally, surveys illustrate how teens identify most strongly with YouTubers than mainstream celebrities. In light of these trends, major TV networks are seeking to capitalize on the popularity of top YouTubers and growth of online video by sponsoring several VidCon 2015 events in order to stay relevant to the next generation of consumers. Nickelodeon, who held a casting audition at VidCon 2015, becomes the latest TV network pioneer a YouTube influencer strategy. Many other traditional TV networks including HGTV, PBS, HLN and BroadbandTV were present in this year's VidCon.
  • VidCon 2015 may be the last year in which Google's YouTube is the title sponsor - will VidCon 2016 featured Facebook as a title sponsor in place of YouTube? Facebook, who recently announced it's plans to share video ad revenue with content creators, was a main topic of discussion for everyone in the forthcoming battle for video dominance. Also on the horizon of change: the rise of several live-streaming apps including Periscope, Meerkat, YouNow, and Keek.
  • With the rise of YouTuber and social influencer marketing, VidCon 2015 featured entire tracks of dedicated industry events "for more than 2,000 professionals from over 600 companies building the future of the online video ecosystem" with topics "How to use influencer media to reach millennials," "The Rise of the Vertical and Alternative-MCN," and "Building Brand Campaigns Across Multiple Services." Many other fireside chats and panels addressed pertinent issues including the future of MCNs, effective campaign strategies, and how to make money on YouTube.

Top YouTubers At VidCon 2015

In addition to several brand partnerships featuring LaurDIY, Wong Fu, and Bethany Mota, VidCon 2015 highlighted several top YouTubers including panels from Joey Graceffa (Ask Joey), Miranda Sings (Behind The Scenes with Colleen Ballinger), and multiple in-depth interviews with Alli Speed, iJustine, Sawyer Hartman, Olga Kay, Rebecca Black, Toby Turner (featured in Terminator Genisys YouTube Chronicles), Louis Cole (FunFor Louis), Cassey Ho (Blogilates), Ingrid Nilsen, and many more.

For an exhaustive list, see VidCon 2015's agenda or check out our 2015 Top YouTuber Resource Guide

The Latest Industry News For Vidicon 2015

Need to get up-to-speed about VidCon 2015 and what it means for your brand? Here's the latest industry news:

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in blog, Online Video Marketing, YouTube Influencers

Ant-Man, Trainwreck Marketing Strategy With Top YouTube Stars

Influencer Marketing Strategies With Top YouTube Stars Dude Perfect

Ant-Man's Paul Rudd and top YouTubers Dude Perfect vie for "World's Smallest Trophy" in epic Dizzy Battle Game

Top YouTube Stars Tapped For Major Millennial Movie Marketing

Both Marvel's Ant-Man and Universal's Trainwreck released on July 17th. In addition to traditional forms of movie advertisement and promotion, both companies enlisted the help of top YouTube stars to bolster their reach, engagement, and buzz in hopes of eliciting consumer ticket sales from each YouTuber's massive subscriber fan base. As more and more major brands give precedence to creating branded or sponsored content specifically for YouTube, companies are seeking out top YouTube stars are for both their creative collaboration and social media publishing distribution channels.

As opposed to simply repurposing TV ad content, many companies are becoming increasingly digitally-savvy -- opting to create custom branded content tailored around top YouTuber stars, organically integrating movie themes and characters into existing YouTube storylines, and specifically for YouTube consumption (utilizing short form web-series; i.e. the Terminator Genisys YouTube Chronicles with Lilly Singh and Toby Turner).

For Ant-Man and Trainwreck, movie stars Paul Rudd and Amy Schumer partner with YouTube stars/channels Dude Perfect, The Fine Bros., Rhett and Link, and Flula.

Ant-Man Marketing With YouTubers

The channel Dude Perfect is known for the "trick shot" genre on YouTube. For Ant-Man, main actor Paul Rudd joins the five best friends of Dude Perfect for a second video of "Dizzy Sports Battle." Their first Dizzy Sports Battle garnered over 7.5+M views in two months. Ant-Man's promotion with Dude Perfect organically integrates Rudd into a familiar game format but with an Ant-Man twist: battling for the smallest trophy.

As can be expected from all of Dude Perfect's videos, hilarity ensues:

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in blog, Online Video Marketing, YouTube Influencers

Influencer Marketing Companies: The New YouTube MCN?

Influencer Marketing Companies Better Than YouTube MCNs

For the latest news and trends on top YouTubers, Instagrammers, bloggers, & Snapchatters, subscribe to our industry digest newsletter!

Are Influencer Marketing Companies Replacing The YouTube MCN?

MCNs launched shortly after YouTube influencers started to rise in audience and prominence. The first set of MCNs (Revision3, Next New Networks, Machinima, and Maker Studios) launched around 2010 as the new way of content support and distribution to serve the new wave of audiences on YouTube. Several MCNs (multi-channel networks) have been acquired by major brands, most notably Walt Disney's purchase of Maker Studios for $500M, Fullscreen's $200-$300M acquisition by AT&T/Chernin, Stylehaul's $107M, and most recently Collective Digital Studios. As defined by YouTube's own Creator Hub, MCNs "are entities that affiliate with multiple YouTube channels, often to offer assistance in areas such as product, programming, funding, cross-promotion, partner management, digital rights management, monetization/sales, and/or audience development. These companies are not affiliated with or endorsed by YouTube or Google."
With the meteoric growth of brands, broadcast networks, and major advertisers augmenting their reach on YouTube by aligning with prominent YouTubers to create branded or sponsored content, many of these entities have looked to MCNs for support and guidance. The largest MCNs oversee tens of thousands of YouTubers creating a conflict in trying to provide tailored services for their myriad of smaller channels and creators to monetize and grow while simultaneously collaborating with top brands to orchestrate advertising media campaigns on YouTube. Furthermore, restrictive MCN contracts can limit a YouTuber's abilities to do smaller brand partnerships that best benefit them but may not achieve the scale to interest the broader governing MCN entity.
Oftentimes, brands also look to hand pick the YouTube channels and creators they want to work with, rather than exploring packaged deals through MCNs that may not serve the best direct interests of the advertisers. There are also tools for discovery like Open Slate, Tubular Labs, and Social Blade -- again, all requiring extensive manual digging and inherently built with the "plug-and-play" understanding that brands come to these tools with an intimate knowledge of the space.

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in blog, Influencer Marketing, Online Video Marketing, YouTube Influencers

Top YouTuber Spotlight: Austin Evans

Top YouTuber Spotlight Austin EvansTop YouTuber Austin Evans

In the world of YouTube gaming and technology reviews, few names rank higher with community affinity and influence than self-professed geek, Austin Evans. Though he's been "in the game" for the better part of YouTube's entire history, Austin is quick to advise aspiring YouTubers to "be persistent," recounting the 3 years it took him to get "a handle on what makes a good video and another two years before [he] could actually deliver the content." Along the way, Austin has built a vibrant tech community and highly engaged follower base -- one that pitched in and helped him get back on his feet with a new MacBook Pro when he lost everything due to a house fire in 2014.

Now arguably one of the biggest and most respected names in tech, Austin began his YouTube journey six years ago in 2009. In the years to come, Austin, who's work has been prominently featured by Mashable and is frequently a topic of favorable discussion on reddit, ascribes his massive success to constinual learning-based growth. Earlier this year, Austin was part of tech media network The Verge's CES 2015 roundtable with other top YouTuber friends, Marques Brownlee (MKBHD) and Jonathan Morrison (TLDToday).

Check out Austin's exclusive Mediakix interview feature as he details his humble beginnings to working alongside global brands like Castrol and VIZIO, shares how the YouTube vlogging world has significantly changed, and the kinds of epic projects Austin only imagined working on when starting out.

Mediakix: How did you get started making YouTube videos?

Austin Evans: In 2009 I was just getting into doing written reviews of the first batch of iPhone and iPod touch apps, a friend was starting to make video app reviews and he suggested I give it a try. I made one video on YouTube and never looked back.

What was your first video?

It was Application Review 1. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, I didn’t even own a camera at the time. I took screenshots on my iPod and recorded a voiceover using the microphone from the game Rock Band on the PlayStation. A few people liked the video though and that was all the motivation I needed to keep going.

What was your breakout moment?

You know I don’t think I ever had one big moment where everything just clicked. It’s really been a steady ride the last six years, lots of consistent learning and growth.

Has anything you’ve posted gone viral?

My first big ‘hit’ was a speed test between the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3. Mashable picked it up and it got 100,000 views the first day which was huge for me. Funnily enough two years later an updated version of that video with the iPhone 6 and Galaxy S5 also blew up with nearly 5 million views so far.

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

How YouTube Influencers Go Viral: Beauty Blogger Creates My Pale Skin Video

YouTuber Em Ford Makes Viral YouTube Video "You Look Disgusting"

YouTube beauty star Em Ford, of My Pale Skin Blog, is no stranger to the glaring world of beauty & fashion. A former model, Em is now working full-time at a creative agency pursuing her passion for storytelling and filmmaking. She has since developed her own beauty channel on YouTube -- her adjoining blog celebrated it's one year mark in January 2015. Em’s cheeky and straightforward video tutorials have attracted a sizeable following of 200K+ subscribers and 15M total video views.

Recently there has been an uptick in body acceptance movements, where models and YouTube influencers with seemingly unattainable standards of beauty speak out regarding body shaming, often revealing themselves "sans fards." While the response has been overwhelmingly positive, the polarity of social media comments is startling.

Em recently garnered attention with her YouTube video campaign #YouLookDisgusting. This blisteringly candid behind-the-scenes reveals the internet’s response to her video where she reveals herself with and without makeup. Her message is clear: “One challenge many face today, is that as a society, we’re so used to seeing false images of perfection, and comparing ourselves to unrealistic beauty standards that it can be hard to remember the most important thing: you are beautiful.”

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

Vessel’s Video Platform: What Happened?

Vessel video platform interface

The Vessel Video Platform Is Here. Now What?

Vessel's video platform debuted in limited access beta on January 21, 2015. On March 24, the Vessel app became available to everyone on iOS and the Android version, June 16.

Prior and following its release, Vessel succeeded in signing both top YouTuber talent and mainstream influencers (most notably The Ellen Show, Rhett & Link, Machinima, and Miss Glamorazzi). Although Vessel's superior revenue share makes financial sense to some YouTubers, MCNs, and mainstream publishers, many industry professionals have expressed their concern regarding Vessel's ability to secure a critical mass subscriber base and therefore ensure profitability.

What Happened To Vessel Video?

Vessel made major headlines worldwide and garnered the attention of top investment firms when several of YouTube's top creators signed to Vessel's video platform. Getting top YouTubers signed to Vessel's platform did come at an extortionate price: Vessel spent millions, sometimes up to $500,000 on single influencers, to get YouTubers to publish first to Vessel.

With a $75M Series A funding round, Vessel's video platform quickly became a hot topic of discussion in the online video space, threatening to disrupt YouTube's foothold in the market. Although traffic to Vessel's site skyrocketed around their iOS release in March, it quickly plummeted afterwards.

Vessel video platform complete data traffic

According to data intelligence service Compete.com, traffic to Vessel's site is nominal and the overarching trend suggests that in spite of Vessel's sustained effort to sign major YouTubers and publishers, traffic has dropped precipitously to Vessel's video platform.

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Top YouTube Stars + Terminator Genisys In YouTube Chronicle Series

top youtube stars collaborate with schwarzenegger

Top YouTube Stars Featured In Paramount & YouTube Space LA/NY Collab

Paramount Pictures enlisted the help of several top YouTube stars in a targeted effort to reach millions and ultimately drive sales to their movie, Terminator Genisys. Paramount is one of many brands leveraging both the reach and engagement of top YouTube stars in order to successfully market a service, brand a product, or drive awareness to an event.

As a major part of Paramount's promotional advertising strategy, Arnold Schwarzenegger filmed at YouTube's Space LA/NY (a dedicated production studio for YouTube content creators with over 10K subscribers) with several top YouTube stars including Lilly Singh "IISuperwomanII," Toby Turner "Tobuscus," the MCN Machinima. Many more top YouTube channels created related content to support the the YouTube hosted series (i.e. Epic Rap Battles' "Terminator vs. Robocop" video).

Check out the entire 3-part series here and see how well known brands like Paramount Pictures are collaborating with top YouTubers to create exceptionally well-branded creative content as a part of their targeted advertising strategy:

Terminator Genisys: The YouTube Chronicles

Part I

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Smashbox Studios: How Brands Are Innovating With YouTube Content Creators

YouTubers Content Creators at Smashbox Studios

Top YouTubers, like Cassey Ho of Blogilates and Monica Church, partaking in new digital program "Made at Smashbox."

Smashbox Studios To Collaborate With Top YouTube Content Creators

Smashbox Studios debuted their "Made at Smashbox" digital program specifically for YouTube content creators in conjunction with their recent 25,000 square foot studio facility relaunch. This program epitomizes how established brands like Smashbox and other companies are tactically integrating top YouTubers into their core business operations.

The beauty, fashion, and lifestyle video blog (vlogger) niche is one of the most competitive spaces with hundreds of brands vying for the attention and product promotion for these YouTube content creators. Brands are looking for ingenious ways to connect with content creators and their audiences through YouTube, but outside of strict sponsored videos. Programs, like "Made at Smashbox" offer YouTubers professional services in exchange for massive brand exposure to their consumer audiences, fans, and followers.

How Smashbox's New Digital Program Works

YouTubers are invited to create branded video content at Smashbox's newly redesigned studio. Their new program, in partnership with Collective Digital Studio (CDS), creates value for YouTube content creators by providing a professional studio space to collaborate with MUAs, stylists, and offering a variety of photography and videography services. In turn, the Smashbox brand benefits from the direct value exposure to each YouTuber's channel and contiguous social media networks. Traditionally, beauty and make-up YouTubers film their video tutorials within their bedroom settings. As more and more content creators saturate the space, some of the top YouTubers have sought out professional studios and video services like Smashbox's new digital program in order to differentiate themselves. See our post here on the rise of top fashion bloggers.

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

Top YouTube Influencers: A Quick Resource Guide

Top YouTube Influencers: A Quick Resource Guide

Subscribe to our industry digest newsletter: the latest authoritative marketing news, trends, and stats on social media stars.

The Top YouTube Influencers: Everything You Need To Know

There are now 1000's of YouTube channels vying for the attention of YouTube's 1.5 billion active users. As the world's most powerful brands shift from traditional advertising models to online video marketing strategies, top YouTube influencers (called "YouTubers") are being courted by influencer marketing agencies, MCNs, TV broadcast networks, and mega tech companies like Yahoo, all seeking to leverage the relationships between influencers and their followers.

To help marketers identify the best ways to find and work with the industry's most magnetic YouTubers, we've assembled the best resources from around the internet into one comprehensive guide.

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Castrol’s #VirtualDrift Campaign Features YouTube Influencer Strategy

YouTube Influencer Austin Evans Sits Shotgun In Castrol's Virtual Drift Marketing Campaign

A throaty 600 horsepower muscle car, daredevil driver, and loads of next level tech gadgetry. What sounds like a Dom Toretto movie scene from Fast and the Furious, is actually the latest all-digital, YouTube marketing campaign from motor oil giant, Castrol. And instead of a muscle-bound Vin Diesel welding a steel pipe, Castrol’s sponsored influencer marketing video features Austin Evans (a YouTuber star known for his PC and tech reviews) with Oculus’ virtual reality helmet.

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