Gaming and Entertainment Rule the Sponsored Video World

October 18th, 2017
Gaming and Entertainment Rule the Sponsored Video World

Thanks to Tubular’s latest Sponsored Video Marketing Report, we know views on sponsored video content on YouTube and Facebook in Q1 2017 grew year-over-year by a whopping 242% and 7390%, respectively. Obviously, something about sponsored video works. Whether that’s because audiences are already familiar with their favorite companies and want to see more content from them, or maybe the pairing of influencers and complementary brands just works fantastically well in some cases, the fact is online video viewers are hungry for sponsored content.

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

But what genres of content get the most attention from these viewers? What topics are sponsors most interested in investing in? As it turns out, two genres per platform (YouTube and Facebook) dominated the rest, with others competing for views before slowly trickling off into the less-viewed content by viewers in Q1 2017. Here’s what we found when we analyzed posts on YouTube and Facebook from January 1 to March 31, 2017, in terms of top genres for sponsored content, which sponsors were on top of their game within these genres, and which media partners helped these sponsors’ campaigns find success.

Gaming and Music/Dance Rule YouTube, but Sponsored Animal Content Performed Best

YouTube has always been a top destination for video fans who want to watch gaming content. Back in 2014, Minecraft became the second most-searched term on Google’s online video site with a total of (at the time) 44.3 million searches. YouTube also launched its complementary YouTube Gaming site and app in August of 2015, reportedly to compete with Amazon-owned game streaming site Twitch.

It should be no surprise, then, that the top genre of sponsored content in Q1 2017 on YouTube was gaming. Content which focused on game guides, playthroughs, how-tos, and possibly even some rage quitting and button mashing generated 198 million total views over the course of the first three months of this year alone. Several YouTube creators were choice partners for sponsors, too, including well-known channels such as VanossGaming (which pulled in 18 million views in Q1 on sponsored content), H2ODelirious (9 million), and Achievement Hunter (8 million). The top three sponsors whose content generated the most views this quarter were Ubisoft (36 million total views), COUGAR (8 million), and EA’s United States branch (7 million).

The second most-popular genre of sponsored content in Q1 2017 turned out to be music and dance, with 161 million total views. Singha Light, Young & Hungry, and SEEK Thailand were top sponsors of music and dance content, pulling in an impressive total of 46 million total views. The next-highest genre — entertainment — came in third with 95 million views and partners such as To Catch a Cheater, Rooster Teeth, and Domics earning a total of 44 million views on their sponsored content in Q1.

Despite gaming, music and dance, and entertainment all generating the most views on sponsored content in the first three months of this year, a different genre entirely came out squarely on top in terms of engagement, and that was animals and pets. Sponsored content featuring furry critters and fascinating creatures had a 30-day average view count (V30) of 1.2 million. The next-highest V30-boasting genre? Film and movies, with a significantly less count of 273k.

According to Tubular’s DealMaker product, the #1 sponsor behind sponsored content on YouTube in terms of views hailed from pet nutrition brand Mazuri with 86.8 million total views. And this company helped sponsor portions of a live stream for April the Giraffe, the long-necked, spotted creature living at the Animal Adventure Park in New York. April became internet famous — she even has her own Twitter account! — after the park started live streaming the late stages of her pregnancy in February and the birth of her male offspring Tajiri in April. The live stream (which was also sponsored at one point or another by Toys R Us and Babies R Us) generated a total of 232 million views since its launch in February, with Tajiri’s birth pulling in 1.2 million live viewers alone.

April undoubtedly helped spur audience’s interest in animals in Q1 of 2017. The extended views on her live streams and word-of-mouth marketing regarding her soon-to-be-born calf easily contributed to the overall 1.2 million V30 sponsored animal content received in Q1 on YouTube.

Facebook Users Love Being Entertained and Looking at Food

YouTube audiences seem ready to consume gaming and music/dance content on that platform, with the occasional animal-centric live stream or content push thrown into the mix. But what about on Facebook? Across the billions of users on this social media site, two genres in particular resonated the most with them in terms of video views. And, as you might expect, these two genres universally seem to connect with people around the world: entertainment and sports.

Sponsored entertainment segments generated a massive 2 billion total view count in Q1 of 2017. Ellen DeGeneres was the top media partner, having pulled in 90 million views herself across various sponsored videos. Unsurprisingly, DeGeneres’ digital video studio ellentube also landed in the top five partner list for Q1, with 73 million total views at third place. Second place went to Architecture & Design with 75 million views. As for the top sponsors who partnered with creators in Q1 2017, the top three spots go to Disney’s Moana (73 million total views), New York Life Insurance Company (45 million views), and Walmart (37 million views).

As for the sports genre on Facebook, that sponsored topic saw 1.1 billion total views from January to March of this year, beating out the third-place genre of food and drink by 244 million views. Bleacher Report was the best-performing partner at 90 million total views, with Red Bull — a brand already well-known in the digital video world — coming in second with 59 million views on its sponsored content. The National Football League (NFL) was pacing to beat Red Bull with 58 million total views. These creative partners and more helped action camera brand GoPro become the top sponsor in Q1 with 60 million views across all its paid content; Pepsi wasn’t too far behind at 54 million total views, and PokerStars rounded out the top three sponsors at 22 million views. Clearly, Facebook users are interested in a variety of sports and the brands and creators who generate content about them.

Sponsored content on Facebook followed in YouTube’s footsteps in that the top genres for views weren’t necessarily the top genres in terms of view performance. That honor instead goes to food and drink with a 621k V30, with home and DIY sponsored content coming in second with a V30 of 454k. The top three creative partners who helped contribute views to food and drink’s performance in Q1 2017 were BuzzFeed’s Tasty property (with 331 million total views), Tastemade (28 million), and Cooking Panda (27 million). And the sponsors who benefited most from their branded content the first three months of this year? That would be hot sauce brand Frank’s RedHot (39 million total views on paid content), Campbell’s (37 million views), and Google (30 million views).

As for the top-performing sponsor on Facebook in Q1? That would be A Plus, a media company which focuses on positive journalism and garnered 169 million total views from January to March. A Plus only partnered with two creators, music and dance brands Lil Wayne and Young Money, who both uploaded a total of 31 videos ranging in content from inspiring quotes from celebrities to funny moments with animals. The most-watched clip out of all of these was a video which pulled in roughly 103 million total views and featured an Australian Shepherd who does everything her owner does, including yoga.

Conclusion

The rise in popularity of sponsored content over the last year isn’t something brands can afford to ignore if they want to stay ahead in the digital video game. Audiences around the world have proven they will give their attention to quality creative content paid for by their favorite brands and produced and distributed in collaboration with top media partners and creators around the world. This is an opportunity a lot of different companies can take advantage of, not just the ones in industries mentioned above (though it can’t hurt if you are).

Interested in learning more about Tubular’s sponsored video content findings? Click below to download the report!

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

Pet Industry Scores Big with 2M Average Video Views for Sponsored Content

October 12th, 2017
Pet Industry Scores Big with 2M Average Video Views for Sponsored Content

Sponsored video content has seen an upsurge in production and success over the last year, as Tubular’s new DealMaker Sponsored Video Marketing Report discovered. Some industries in particular are striking gold when it comes to sponsoring videos; in fact, in quarter one of this year alone, the top three most successful sponsors in terms of video views pulled in almost 2.3 billion total views on their content from January to March. Here’s which industries we’re talking about:

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

Gaming, Media, and Food Industries Claim the Majority of Sponsored Content Views

Sponsors from a whole range of industries including technology, insurance, automotive, and education generated content in Q1 of 2017. But only three particular industries saw the most returns on their investments. In terms of overall total views, sponsors from the gaming, media, and food industries made out well earlier this year.

YouTube audiences are steady consumers of video game content, so much so the Google video giant launched its own dedicated game streaming site and app YouTube Gaming a few years ago. And it’s this love of gaming which helped the titular industry generate roughly 109 million total views on sponsored video content. Some of the biggest brands in the entire gaming industry became the top sponsors on YouTube within this genre in Q1, with Ubisoft solidly leading the pack with an impressive 36 million total views. As for the top partners within the gaming industry, companies’ partnerships with VanossGaming, H2ODelirious, and Wengie proved most fruitful with 18 million, 9 million, and 6 million views, respectively.

Media sponsors also performed exceptionally well on both YouTube and Facebook from January to March. On YouTube, the second-highest total views by sponsor behind gaming was from media companies with a total of 94 million views. On Facebook, media brands came in first place in terms of overall views with a not-too-shabby 1.4 billion. So which media companies invested in sponsored content from January to March, and which partners helped contribute the most views?

The top media sponsor on YouTube turned out to be audiobook seller Audible with 13 million total views across 70 different partners (home and DIY channel Troom Troom being the top partner with 7.8 million views), while anime streaming service Crunchyroll placed second with 9 million views across 10 partners — animation channel Domics turned out to be Crunchyroll’s best partner with 7.8 million views across two videos alone! On Facebook’s end of things, that site’s top media sponsor Moana generated 73 million views alongside top partner ellentube in Q1; next up on that video platform was My Kitchen Rules, pulling in 24 million total views on videos about puff pastries and pancake bacon dippers (yum…) from partners Tasty and Cooking Panda.

Speaking of food, that industry also did well for itself in Q1 2017. Coming in second behind media brands in terms of sponsored views on Facebook, videos from food sponsors generated 691 million total views across the site. Top sponsors included Campbell’s (with 74 million views), Frank’s RedHot hot sauce brand (39 million), and rice company Uncle Ben’s U.S.A. (24 million). Tasty and NowThis produced the best results for the food industry’s sponsored content with approximately 165 million and 55 million total views, respectively (these two creative partners also were the top two view generators for Campbell’s sponsored content). Mexican food and media brand kiwilimon was the third-best partner for sponsors to team up with in Q1 thanks to 43 million views.

However, Average Views on Sponsored Pet Content Eclipses All Other Industries

Many online video professionals would argue that view counts aren’t the be-all-end-all metric of success. In many ways, they’re right, especially in terms of the data Tubular uncovered in its recent DealMaker report. This is because despite the media, gaming, and food industries claiming the most video views for themselves in Q1 2017, the industry which received the best average 30-day viewership (V30) across both YouTube and Facebook was actually the pet industry.

On both platforms, 22 different sponsors from the pet industry worked with 41 different creators/partners on 167 different videos. On YouTube in particular, pet-related sponsored videos saw a huge V30 number of 2 million. The next-highest industry on Google’s online video site, logistics and heavy transportation, only pulled in half that average view count at 1 million. Interestingly enough, the pet industry came in fifth on Facebook with a V30 of 249K, but even the site’s top sponsor in terms of V30 (which was, perhaps unsurprisingly, the gaming industry) only saw 344K views.

As it turns out, the pet industry sponsor with the most views across YouTube and Facebook in Q1 2017 was Mazuri, a pet food brand for unique and exotic animals. The company sponsored a few of the wildly popular live streams for April the Giraffe, a resident of the New York-based Animal Adventure Park who was expecting a calf earlier this year. Mazuri’s most popular video broadcast saw 34 million total views, with a V30 of about 34.1 million. Unfortunately, no recording is available for this “Giraffe Cam” live stream, so enjoy this updated video instead of April, her new calf Tajiri, and her mate Oliver:

These findings seem to show sponsored pet content can perform exceptionally well on YouTube. The fact of the matter is pets and animals will almost always eclipse other industries simply because of viewers’ penchants for consuming and sharing cute kitten or puppy videos, a practice essentially synonymous with being an internet user. After all, the first video ever uploaded to YouTube by one if its co-founders was filmed at an elephant enclosure at a zoo!

Find Out More About Sponsored Video Content Trends

Interested in learning more about Tubular’s sponsored video content findings? Click below to download the report!

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

How to Stay on the Right Side of the FTC When Publishing a Sponsored Video

October 10th, 2017
How to Stay on the Right Side of the FTC When Publishing a Sponsored Video

The #Sponsored session at Advertising Week 2017 promised to shed light on the do’s, don’ts, and grey areas of #sponsored content “from multiple points of view.” And the panel discussion started off strongly.

Mary Orton, the style blogger behind Memorandum and the co-founder of Trove, a mobile style app, talked about how the updated FTC requirements have changed she discloses paid partnerships. Orton said she thought #ad and #sponsored are terms from another era and a different medium. The high profile influencer added that she only works with brands that she actually uses and often creates more content than an agreement calls for because she so passionate about the brand. Now, that promised to be a point of view that coulda been a contender.

Melissa Davis, the EVP of ShopStyle, the world’s most fashionable search engine, added her two cents on how to be successful, creative, and remain authentic while working within the guidelines of the FTC.

Kim Waite, the VP Global Communications at Laura Mercier Cosmetics, disclosed how her brand has shifted traditional marketing and advertising budgets to influencer partnerships and discussed their stance on transparency and best practices.

But, then Ellie Altshuler, an attorney at Nixon Peabody, spoke. Altshuler, who specializes in influencer contracts, is the lead council for Digital Brand Architects. She discussed game-changing rulings and said the lines between influencers and celebrities are now more blurred than ever. Once she weighed in, the other three panelists deferred to her comments as if they were the Highest Paid Person’s Opinion (HiPPO).

So, what had promised to be a lively discussion “from multiple points of view,” turned into asymmetrical conversation with more than one panelist asking at one point or another, “What do you think, Ellie?” Nevertheless, video marketers still need to know if “Sponsored is a dirty word or new normal. So, let me summarize what Altshuler had to say about how to be successful, creative, and remain authentic while working within the guidelines of the FTC.

If you have any influence over influencers, alert them to three developments, including the FTC’s first law enforcement action against individual online influencers for their role in misleading practices. According to the FTC, Trevor Martin and Thomas Cassell – known on their YouTube channels as TmarTn and Syndicate – deceptively endorsed the online gambling site CSGO Lotto without disclosing that they owned the company.

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

FTC & Law Enforcement

Here’s the backstory: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (also known as CS: GO) is an online, multiplayer, first-person shooter game. “Skins” are game collectibles that can be bought, sold, or traded for real money. Skins have another use: They can be used as virtual currency on certain gambling sites, including CSGOLotto.com. On that site, players could challenge others to a one-on-one coin flip, wagering their pooled skins. In 2015, respondent Martin posted a video touting CSGO Lotto:

We found this new site called CSGO Lotto, so I’ll link it down in the description if you guys want to check it out. But we were betting on it today and I won a pot of like $69 or something like that so it was a pretty small pot but it was like the coolest feeling ever. And I ended up like following them on Twitter and stuff and they hit me up. And they’re like talking to me about potentially doing like a skins sponsorship like they’ll give me skins to be able to bet on the site and stuff. And I’ve been like considering doing it.

Martin followed up with more videos on his YouTube channel showing him gambling on the CSGO Lotto site. In addition, he tweeted things like “Made $13k in about 5 minutes on CSGO betting. Absolutely insane” and posted on Instagram “Unreal!! Won two back to back CSGOLotto games today on stream – $13,000 in total winnings.”

Cassell promoted CSGO Lotto in a similar way, posting videos that were viewed more than five million times. In addition, he tweeted a screen shot of himself winning a betting pool worth over $2,100 with the caption “Not a bad way to start the day!” According to another tweet, “I lied . . . I didn’t turn $200 into $4,000 on @CSGOLotto. . . I turned it into $6,000!!!!” Then there’s this one: “Bruh.. i’ve won like $8,000 worth of CS:GO Skins today on @CSGOLotto. I cannot even believe it!”

Well, Bruhs, while we’re on the subject of things we cannot even believe, did either of you like consider clearly disclosing that you like owned the company – a material connection requiring disclosure under FTC law?

The complaint also challenges how the respondents ran their own influencer program for CSGO Lotto. They paid other gamers between $2,500 and $55,000 in cash or skins “to post in their social media circles about their experiences in using” the gambling site. However, the contract made clear that those influencers couldn’t make “statements, claims, or representations . . . that would impair the name, reputation and goodwill” of CSGO Lotto. And post they did on YouTube, Twitch, Twitter, and Facebook – in many instances, touting winnings worth thousands of dollars.

According to the FTC, Cassell, Martin, and CSGOLotto, Inc. falsely claimed that their videos and social media posts – and the videos and posts of the influencers they hired – reflected the independent opinions of impartial users. The complaint also charges that the respondents failed to disclose the material connection they had to the company – and the connection their paid influencers had. The proposed settlement requires Cassell, Martin, and the company to make those disclosures clearly and conspicuously in the future. The FTC is accepting public comments about the settlement until October 10, 2017.

An interesting aside: This isn’t the first time Cassell’s name has appeared in an FTC complaint. In a 2015 settlement with Machinima, the FTC alleged that Cassell pocketed $30,000 for two video reviews of Xbox One that he uploaded to his YouTube channel. Although the FTC didn’t sue him, the complaint in that case alleged, “Nowhere in the videos or in the videos’ descriptions did Cassell disclose that Respondent paid him to create and upload them.”

FTC: Warning Letters

The next development of interest to influencers relates to more than 90 educational letters the FTC sent to influencers and brands in April 2017, reminding them that, if influencers are endorsing a brand and have a “material connection” to the marketer, that relationship must be clearly disclosed, unless the connection is already clear from the context of the endorsement.

21 of the influencers who got the April letter just received a follow-up warning letter, citing specific social media posts the FTC staff is concerned might not be in compliance with the FTC’s Endorsement Guides. But the letters are different this time. The latest round asks the recipients to let the FTC know if they have material connections to the brands in the identified social media posts. If they do, the FTC has asked them to spell out the steps they will be taking to make sure they clearly disclose their material connections to brands and businesses.

Updated Guidance for Influencers and Marketers

The FTC has also just released an updated version of The FTC’s Endorsement Guides: What People are Asking, a staff publication that answers questions about the use of endorsements, including in social media. The principles remain the same, but we’ve answered more than 20 new questions relevant to influencers and marketers on topics like tags in pictures, disclosures in Snapchat and Instagram, the use of hashtags, and disclosure tools built into some platforms. You’ll want to read the updated brochure for details, but here are four “heads up” points for influencers:

  • Clearly disclose when you have a financial or family relationship with a brand. “But everybody knows!” No, they don’t. It’s unwise for influencers to assume that people know all about their business relationships.
  • Don’t assume that using a platform’s disclosure tool is sufficient. Some platforms are starting to offer disclosure tools, but that’s no guarantee they’re an effective way for an influencer to disclose a material connection to a brand. Like so many things on social media, it’s all about context. One key consideration is placement – whether the disclosure attracts viewers’ attention, taking into account where people are likely to look on a particular platform. For example, when paging through a stream of eye-catching photos, a viewer may not spot a disclosure placed above the picture or off to the side. The ultimate responsibility for making clear disclosures is yours. That’s why you want to make sure your disclosures are hard to miss.
  • Avoid ambiguous disclosures like #thanks, #collab, #sp, #spon, or #ambassador. Clarity counts. When disclosing a material connection to a brand, use language that’s clear and unmistakable. It’s unlikely that abbreviations, shorthand, or arcane lingo will communicate the disclosure effectively to consumers. Think of it like football. Unless the quarterback throws the ball and the receiver catches it, it’s an incomplete pass.
  • Don’t rely on a disclosure placed after a CLICK MORE link or in another easy-to-miss location. Consider your own viewing habits on social media. Do you click every CLICK MORE link? We don’t either. When disclosing a brand relationship, the better approach is to hit ‘em right between the eyes. Furthermore, on image-only platforms, superimpose your disclosure over the picture in a clear font that contrasts sharply with the background.

Now, I’m not a lawyer. But, I know enough to recommend that you talk with one about how to be successful, creative, and remain authentic while working within the guidelines of the FTC. That’s right, I would have differed to the HiPPO, too. Hey, there are plenty of other things worth debating.

Video Trends: Why Sponsored Content is the Future of Digital Advertising

October 6th, 2017
Video Trends: Why Sponsored Content is the Future of Digital Advertising

Video content has never been more ubiquitous, or more popular with viewers, than it is in 2017. In Q1 2017 alone, we surpassed 2.3 trillion online video views across the main social video platforms! Millions of videos are being consumed via social platforms, owned and operated websites, and across multiple advertising channels, and the medium is one of the most effective ways of reaching a target audience.

However, the proliferation of ad-blocking software installed by users poses a real threat to brands, publishers, and video advertisers. The software threatens traditional interruption advertising, such as pre-roll video, especially as mobile ad blocking reaches mainstream penetration. TV advertising is not exempt from these trends either. Younger viewers watching less TV than ever, and when they are tuning in, it’s either post-broadcast via a catch-up service, or via second screen viewing—both of which make it harder to deliver effective campaign results.

Sponsored Video is the Future

So what can video marketers and advertisers do to ensure their message reach as much of their intended audience as possible? Well, sponsored video is the fastest growing vertical in digital advertising today. According to an eMarketer survey, 48% of marketers anticipated increasing their influencer marketing spends this year to shore up their sponsored footprint, contributing to a sector that is rapidly growing and is currently estimated at $1.3 billion annually. Sponsored video content can also help bypass ad-blocking software, and help brands and publishers reach new demographics by sponsoring content from trusted influencers, and other partners.

Sponsored Video Insights: 2017

Sponsored video content has the ability to have a greater persuasive impact on viewers than a straight sales pitch. Advertisers need to cut through the noise, find the content opportunities, grow their audience, and successfully partner with brands to monetize video content. In our exclusive new insights report on sponsored video , we took a look at videos uploaded to Facebook and YouTube up to and including the March 31st 2017. Videos were selected where we believe there was an exchange of payment included in the creative and/or publishing process, i.e. there was a transaction where a partner was paid by a sponsor, to benefit the sponsor. (We consider gifts, like free products, or free hotel stays, as payment).

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

There was significant growth of sponsored video content on YouTube and Facebook between April 2016 and March 2017. On YouTube, views of sponsored video content grew by 242% compared to Q1 2016, with a 57% increasing in publishers and creators uploading that type of content. On Facebook the numbers are even higher – views grew by 7390% YOY, with uploads also increasing by 4864%.

Growth of Sponsored Video Content on YouTube and Facebook – April 2016 to March 2017 (All data via Tubular)

Those numbers are incredibly impressive, but which industry verticals are pulling in the viewing and engagement numbers on the video content that’s being sponsored?

Top Sponsored Content Industries on YouTube and Facebook April 2016 to March 2017 (All data via Tubular)

On Facebook we are seeing the highest ROI in terms of views from sponsored videos via food and drink, home and DIY, and TV and movie content. In the last year, food and drink videos created in partnership with brands and publishers have averaged around 621K views. Think of publishers like Tasty,  Tastemade, or The Food Network who often collaborate with other brands, and influencers to reach a wider audience.

BuzzFeed’s Tasty US property has worked with Hersheys, Halo Top Creamery, Chobanis, Del Monte, and M&Ms over the past year to create and publish content that leverages Tasty’s 89M followers on Facebook. This collaboration with Hershey’s on this walkthrough for Marshmallow Kiss cookies generated over 17M views, and 155K shares for Tasty via Facebook. That’s nearly 17M views for a Hershey product beyond its own media properties!

Create Winning Brand Content Partnerships with Tubular DealMaker

Tubular provides independent analytics for the entire video ecosystem, allowing publishers, agencies, and brands to succeed together – growing organic audience and branded content partnerships. With our new product, Dealmaker, monetizing the social video marketplace has never been easier. DealMaker is the most comprehensive database of sponsored content on the market today, tracking over 140K sponsored videos, 30K campaigns, 15K brand sponsors, and 15K content partners. Built by Tubular for all media companies & publishers, DealMaker arms you with the intelligence you need to sell more deals and grow revenue.

Download Our Sponsored Video Content Insights Report: You May Qualify a Free Trial of Dealmaker!

We’ll be taking a deep dive into the new Sponsored Video Insights Report over the next few weeks. If you want to get your hands on a copy right now – and find how you can use Tubular to determine which sponsors or partners to work with – just click the button below.

Download Our New Sponsored Video Insights Report Today! Get All the Latest Data on Sponsored Video Trends

When Data Meets Creative: Why Audience Insights are Critical for Video Publishers

October 3rd, 2017
When Data Meets Creative: Why Audience Insights are Critical for Video Publishers

One of the largest panels at Advertising Week 2017 tackled one of the classic topics in the advertising, marketing, media, and related creative industries: The strategic symbiosis of data and creative. The panel was moderated by Quynh Mai, Founder of Moving Image & Content. Her panelists included some of the best and the brightest stars in the business, namely:

  • Richard Alan Reid, BuzzFeed’s International Executive Creative Director & Executive Producer.
  • Renee Plato, the SVP of Media Solutions and Innovation at Nielsen.
  • Becky Wang, the CEO of Crossbeat New York.
  • Michelle Klein, Facebook’s Marketing Director for North America.
  • Kristen D’Arcy, who runs digital marketing, social and media for AEO.
  • Maureen Traynor, the Global Director, Creative Solutions at Spotify.

Since I know you’re incredibly busy, let me share the session’s conclusion at the beginning of this column: Successful brands and disruptors are inverting the traditional “top down” approach that was driven by Creative Directors, who ruled the industry for decades. They are also abandoning the siloed organizational structure that has become a barrier to success in the digital age.

Instead, they are becoming better listeners and internalizing their data-driven audience insights across teams. That means they are adopting a data-driven approach to creativity and letting these insights drive the creative process instead of sticking with the old “Mad Men” approach. Instead of retrofitting strategy to support creative, the panel urged attendees to let data and insights lead creative. That was the big takeaway. Get it? Got it? Good. Now, most of you can get back to work.

But, for those of you who want to dig deeper, there were 10 other observations that Mai was surprisingly able to capture and summarize at the end of the session:

  1. Plato: Differentiate yourself.
  2. Wang: Establish your data approach.
  3. Plato: Learn about your audience.
  4. Traynor: Create for your audience.
  5. Reid: Engage with your audience.
  6. Klein: Use your resources to optimize online.
  7. D’Arcy: Use your resources to optimize offline.
  8. Wang: Think about the data in three dimensions.
  9. Traynor: Consider the context.
  10. Reid: Grow with your audience.

And for those of you who are now kicking yourself for missing this session, relax. Watch the video: “Data <3 Creative: A Strategic Symbiosis.” Yes, it is 41:46 long, but watching it will put you about a year ahead of most of your busy competitors, who stopped reading this column after the first 250 words.

Now, for those long-time readers who know that I tend to keep the good stuff on the top shelf or at the end of the column, whichever is hardest to reach, let me share the following strategic insights, critical data, tactical advice, and trends in the digital video marketing business. Hey, if I can be replaced with a video that’s 41:46 long, then I should stop writing now and start talking into my laptop’s webcam.

Audience Insights for Online Video Campaigns

Why is it so hard to get the left-brained data geeks into the same room with the right-brained creative types when digital campaigns are being incubated? Don’t both sides realize that using your whole-brain is more likely to be successful?

Well, the panelists decided that outdated organizational structures and “top down” approaches were to blame. And, it’s true that too many senior executives at ageing agencies still put too many talented people into silos like the “creative services” department or the “research” unit of the “marketing services” department. And then they put these different departments on different floors of tall buildings with slow elevators or even in different buildings in big cities – and are shocked, shocked to find that’s it difficult to get their employees to collaborate.

And too many senior executives at big brands have similar barriers to overcome. They’re still using org charts that are generally modeled after the classic military structure used by Napoleon from 1793 to 1815. Seriously. And marketers use a lot of military terms, including strategies, tactics, campaigns, objectives, officers, divisions, and territories that reflect the thinking of Albert W. Emery, an American advertising agency executive born in 1923, who said, “Marketing is merely a civilized form of warfare in which most battles are won with words, ideas, and disciplined thinking.”

So, it’s not surprising that the best and the brightest stars in 2017 would reach that same conclusion that Pogo, a possum in the classic comic strip by Walt Kelly, reached back in 1953: “We have met the enemy and he is us.” But, will a simple reorg save big brands and aging agencies from a similar fate? Is that the only way to ensure that you get the left-brained data geeks into the same room with the right-brained creative types when digital campaigns are being incubated?

There is an alternative approach that was discussed the day before this session was held. And, unfortunately, none of the rising stars who are familiar with this alternative approach were members on one of the largest panels at Advertising Week.

I’m talking, of course, the moderator and three panelists from the session entitled, “#Sponsored and The Rise of Celebrity Influencers for Subscription & E-Commerce Marketing.”  Ashley Iaconetti, a reality TV personality who first appeared on ABC’s The Bachelor, Paul Desisto, a senior talent agent at Central Entertainment Group, Jolie Jankowitz, the Director of Influencer Marketing for FabFitFun, and Caitlin McLarnon, the Growth Marketing Manager of the US division of HelloFresh would have added a radically different perspective to the session on “Data <3 Creative: A Strategic Symbiosis” – if they could have squeezed an extra chair on the Shutterstock Stage at the Liberty Theatre.

They understand that tens of thousands of social media influencers and video content creators are not only data geeks, but also creative types. And these data-driven influencers and creators already work naturally and effectively in small teams – and generally outperform the traditional approach to producing engaging video content in less time and at a lower cost. All big brands or ageing agencies need to do is figure out:

  • How to identify the right influencers.
  • How to find the right engagement tactics.
  • How to measure the performance of your programs.

Critical Data for Audience Insights 

Is this even possible? Yes, it is. I’ve already written about how Chobani uses sponsored videos to stir up yogurt sales and market share, GE’s sponsored videos electrify B2B and B2C audiences, and Dollar Shave Club’s video campaigns are doing just great.

In addition to these examples, I just looked at Tubular’s DealMaker and saw that 9,994 brands have sponsored 11,100 content partners, who’ve uploaded 49,500 videos in campaigns across 24 industries, 21 genres, and 123 countries in the last 90 days. So, it appears that lots of brands are kicking the tires of this alternative approach.

Tactical advice for Video Marketers and Creators

Even after you identify the right influencers, you still need to find the right engagement tactics. I provided a number of tips and best practices in “Schmooze optimization: What it is and why it expands views, engagements, and earnings on YouTube” as well as in “Schmooze optimization 2: The search for more B2B video success.” Yes, both of these articles were written back in 2013. But, I was either ahead of my time, or (more likely) no electronic-communications superhighway, no matter how vast and sophisticated, will ever replace the art of the schmooze. But, you also need to know how to measure the performance of your programs. Well, you’re in luck. I wrote a three-part series last fall on the:

In other words, long-time readers of Tubular Insights already know how to overcome these hurdles.

Trends in Digital Video Marketing

So, let me close with this honest analysis of these latest trends in the digital video marketing business. Unfortunately, they appear to be remarkably similar to the trends in the advertising business that David Ogilvy wrote about in 1983 in his classic book, Ogilvy on Advertising. Back then, Ogilvy lamented “the cult of creativity” and declared, “When I write an advertisement, I don’t want you to tell me that you find it ‘creative.’ I want you to find it so interesting that by buy the product.” He added that creative types who have a contempt for research “occasionally luck into a successful campaign, but you will run the risk of skidding about on what my brother Francis called ‘the slippery surface of irrelevant brilliance.’”

And my favorite chapter in Ogilvy on Advertising is Chapter 15: “18 miracles of research.” It begins with this warning: “Advertising people who ignore research are as dangerous as generals who ignore decodes of enemy signals.”

So, it’s sad that we still need to discuss the strategic symbiosis of data and creative in 2017. I would have thought that we’d already learned this lesson a long time ago. But it looks like the “Mad Men” era never ended.

Why Paying Celebrity Influencers $500,000 for a #Sponsored Video Ad May Not Give You the Best ROI – Advertising Week 2017

September 29th, 2017
Why Paying Celebrity Influencers $500,000 for a #Sponsored Video Ad May Not Give You the Best ROI – Advertising Week 2017

On Monday, I attended several sessions at Advertising Week, including #Sponsored and The Rise of Celebrity Influencers for Subscription & E-Commerce Marketing. If you want the read the top news stories from Advertising Week, I can recommend Adweek’s coverage of the event. But, you already know that Tubular Insights is no longer reporting news. Instead, we are focusing on delivering strategic insights, critical data, tactical advice, and trends in the digital video marketing business. And the biggest epiphany that I experienced while listening to panelists talk about #Sponsored content and the value of celebrity influencer marketing for small businesses, subscription boxes and services, and e-commerce was the answer to this question: “Is it worth paying Kim Kardashian West $500,000 for a #sponsored #ad?”

Celebrity Influencers & Sponsored Content

Now, no one actually mentioned Kimberly Kardashian West during the sessions that I attended. But, none of the influencers on any of the panels that I attended disclosed how much they get paid by brands to create a sponsored video. But in the session moderated by Ashley Iaconetti, a reality TV personality who first appeared on ABC’s The Bachelor, it became clear why Paul Desisto, a senior talent agent at Central Entertainment Group (CEG), Jolie Jankowitz, the Director of Influencer Marketing for FabFitFun, and Caitlin McLarnon, the Growth Marketing Manager of the US division of HelloFresh, have all worked with Ashley before and would love to work with her again.

Yes, Iaconetti is a fan favorite because she is very open with her emotions. But, CEG’s clients, FabFitFun, and HelloFresh are all trying to leverage influencers to improve their company’s bottom line. And Iaconetti provides a better return on marketing investment (ROMI) than Kardashian West, who is also a reality television personality, would. Wait! How do I know that? Nobody even mentioned Kim Kardashian West during the session on The Rise of Celebrity Influencers for Subscription & E-Commerce Marketing. And nobody mentioned what they had paid or would pay Ashely Iaconetti, either. But, we do know what the Kardashians ask for.

According to “This Is How Much the Kardashians Get Paid for One Instagram Post,” by Sarah Karmali in Harper’s Bazaar UK, Michael Heller, the CEO of digital-marketing firm Talent Resources – the company that arranges many of the reality-TV family’s deals – told US Weekly that some companies have been known to pay up to $500,000 to get access to Kim Kardashian’s (103.3 million) Instagram followers, while sisters Khloé and Kourtney can earn up to $250,000 a post.” (They have 69.1 million and 58.7 million followers respectively).

So, there you have it: You could call it the Kardashian Standard. But, it should come with the following warning: This is what you’d have to pay if you measure influencers on only one dimension: Reach.

Engagement: The Influencer Metric That Matters

But, Desisto, Jankowitz, and McLarnon don’t use any of the Kardashians. But, they all use Iaconetti. Why? Because they measure more than reach; they also measure engagement. And based on my analysis of what they did and didn’t say during the session, they know how to calculate ROMI.

Now, return on marketing investment (ROMI) is calculated using a different formula than the typical return-on-investment (ROI) formulas that most chief financial officers (CFOs) use. It’s different because ROMI measures operational expenditures (OPEX), while ROI measures capital expenditures (CAPEX). But, the amount spent on marketing is typically expensed in the current period (quarter); it isn’t “tied up” in plants and inventory. So, when most CFOs ask their chief marketing officers (CMOs) to report the ROI of an influencer marketing campaign, they’re asking for the wrong measure of success.

Here’s the formula for calculating ROMI: / Marketing Spending ($).

So, Kim Kardashian West charges brands $500,000 for a single Instagram video post like this one. It appeared Aug. 22, 2016, and got more than 16 million views.

Instagram Photo

Well, SugarBearHair, the sponsor of Kim’s Instagram post, charges $79.99 for a 3-month supply of Gummy Hair Vitamins. And, let’s say that SugarBearHair’s contribution margin is 50%. This is a scientific wild ass guess (SWAG). So, Kim’s #ad needed to generate over 25,000 orders to deliver $2 million in incremental revenue – / $500,000 – for SugarBearHair to get an ROMI of 1. In plain English, Kim’s Instagram post needed to generate $2 million in orders for SugarBearHair to see $1 in profit for every $1 it spent on her sponsored content. Usually, marketing spending will be deemed as justified if the ROMI is positive.

But, what if Desisto, Jankowitz, and McLarnon had identified 10 micro-influencers who didn’t have Kim’s reach, but had an even greater impact on the purchase decisions of their followers. And let’s say they paid these micro-influencers an average of $25,000 apiece to generate $3 million in orders. Do the math and you’d get / $250,000 = an ROMI of 5. In other words, they got $5 in profit for every $1 they spent on sponsored content. Yes, it took more work to find 10 micro-influencers with above average engagement rates, but that effort resulted in more revenue and higher profits.

That’s the strategic insight that I had while listening to panelists talk about #Sponsored content and the value of celebrity influencer marketing for small businesses, subscription boxes and services, and e-commerce. That’s the biggest takeaway that I’ve had so far from Advertising Week. Let me know what you think about my big epiphany. Share your thoughts on Facebook or Twitter.

Superheroes and Nostalgia Drive Warner Bros. Social Video Strategy

September 28th, 2017
Superheroes and Nostalgia Drive Warner Bros. Social Video Strategy

Since 1923, Warner Bros. has been one of the leading entertainment brands in the film and television industries. Founded by four brothers whose family had emigrated to Canada from present-day Poland, Warner Bros. is known for contributing some of the most famous entertainment titles to date, such as the Looney Tunes animations and characters and the World War II romantic classic Casablanca. The company was originally named Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc. but now operates under the title Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc. Regardless of what it’s called, the company not only knows its way around the silver screen, but around the small, social one, as well.

Across the main social video platforms, all Warner Bros.’ properties boast more than 200 million followers and subscribers. These fans routinely visit the brand’s social video accounts for content related to their favorite franchises, like Harry Potter, The Lego Movie, and anything having to do with Superman, Batman, and other DC Comics characters (more on that in a bit). We took a deep dive into some of the top-level Warner Bros. film and entertainment-related social accounts to see how the company operates its online video strategies as well as what content performs best on various platforms. Here’s what we found:

Warner Bros. Has a Sweet Spot with Comic Book Content

Warner Bros. is closely tied to its comic book property DC Comics, which recently contributed the blockbuster hit Wonder Woman to Warner Bros.’ summer repertoire. As of now, the Gal Gadot-starring flick has pulled in just over $407 million in the U.S. alone, a good $77 million more than DC’s 2016 Batman v Superman. Clips based on Wonder Woman didn’t perform so shabbily, either, with official trailers and teasers for the film pulling in millions of views each.

But it’s not Wonder Woman videos which have landed in the top ten spots on official Warner Bros.’ social video channels. Instead, that distinction belongs to some of the Amazonian warrior’s fellow counterparts in the DC universe (despite some of their films performing less favorably than hers). Five out of the top ten clips, in fact, relate to either Batman, Superman, or the gang of ruffians from the Suicide Squad franchise.

The Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Suicide Squad films were highly anticipated in their own ways over the last few years, so it’s unsurprising videos related to these flicks are some of the most popular Warner Bros. content to date. For example, the first official trailer for Suicide Squad, posted on January 20 of 2016, has garnered over 82.7 million views to date, as well as a favorable 30-day average engagement rate (ER30) of 1.2x and an average 30-day view count (V30) of 38.9 million. The trailer currently holds the third position of most-watched videos across all Warner Bros. social accounts.

While the trailer for Suicide Squad was certainly impressive in terms of views and ER30, fans of comic book content watched the film’s first-look teaser even more. That clip, released at Comic-Con in 2015, generated an impressive 48.1 million V30. The video with the next-highest V30 was the 2015 Comic-Con trailer for Batman v Superman, at 42.7 million. This teaser also claims the title of most-commented video of all time for Warner Bros. Pictures with just over 98k comments on YouTube alone.

Ed Sheeran Contributes His Talents for Warner Bros.’ Most-Watched Video of All Time

At this point, it’s obvious Warner Bros. is closely linked to DC Comics. In many cases, the two can almost be considered inseparable. However, the entertainment company’s most-watched video of all time actually stems from another well-loved franchise which has more to do with hobbits, elves, and dragons than it has to do with flying men, vigilante superheroes, and Amazonian warriors.

The clip in question is the music video “I See Fire” by Ed Sheeran (whose recent album release helped land him top positions on the leaderboards for a few months running earlier this year). The song was created for the Warner Bros.-distributed film The Hobbit, and the combination of the wildly popular British singer-songwriter and one of the most beloved book and film franchises of all time ensured the clip’s long-term success. The music video claims almost 85.2 million views to date.

“I See Fire” also hit home with viewers around the world, as the clip generated great engagement rates across various social platforms. On YouTube, the Sheeran-led song saw 590k total engagements, while on Facebook, the video pulled in 218k engagements in the form of likes, shares, and comments.

Don’t Forget the Cat and Mouse Duo of Tom & Jerry

When analyzing most of the top-level properties of Warner Bros., including some of its home entertainment division and television outlets, we discovered another interesting viewing preference of the company’s audiences. Years ago, viewers turned their attention to the old cartoon Tom & Jerry.

Originally launching as a series of short films in 1940, Tom & Jerry has become one of the most well-recognized animation brands in the entire world. In 2006, Warner Bros. created a new series based on the cat-and-mouse duo which is always battling each other for superiority through slapstick humor. Now, three of the top ten clips on Warner. Bros. social accounts stem from Tom & Jerry content.

The second most-popular video of all time, for example, is a March 2010 snippet from season one of Warner Bros. Tom & Jerry Tales. This video currently boasts 83.3 million total views, roughly 2 million short of Sheeran’s “I See Fire” music video. Additionally, spots #8 and #9 on the top ten Warner Bros. videos belong to Tom & Jerry clips, too.

Much like Warner Bros.’s #1 Hobbit-related video, the nostalgia of the Tom & Jerry franchise is likely a contributor to these clips’ success. When these videos were published to YouTube in 2010 and 2013, other platforms weren’t the big video destinations they are today, and both Gen X-ers and millennials who grew up with Saturday morning cartoons were already familiar with the Tom & Jerry label. Therefore, it only made sense for Warner Bros. to distribute these clips on YouTube. Speaking of which…

YouTube Is the Platform of Choice for Warner Bros. Fans

While publishers around the globe have flocked to Facebook for its promise of massive audience reach, some have found their fans still want to spend time on YouTube with their content, and might even prefer to watch videos on that platform first and foremost. The U.S.-bsed Warner Bros. Pictures YouTube channel, for example, appears to be one of these brands, as the company boasts a large following of 4.4 million on that platform alone, accounting for 37% of Warner Bros. Pictures’ total social reach. And if you haven’t already noticed from the embeds in this article, all of the top ten videos across Warner Bros. social accounts from around the world are YouTube videos.

Here’s some more Tubular data showing the popularity of Warner Bros. Pictures content on YouTube

  • 105 million total video views in July 2017, roughly 96% of all views on Warner Bros. content for the month
  • 3 billion total views since the channel’s inception
  • 2642 videos uploaded to Warner Bros. Pictures YouTube channel as of this writing
  • 1.1 million average views per video
  • 35.6% of YouTube audience hails from the United States
  • 88.3% of total YouTube subscribers are male, with 42.5% of them aged 18-24

These stats can almost be replicated across all of Warner Bros.’ social video accounts. Even if the company has more followers on other social sites, the majority of its views still stem from YouTube. The Warner Bros. Entertainment account, for example, claims 62% of its social reach on Facebook, but still 96% of the company’s nearly 8.7 million July 2017 views came from YouTube.

The success of Warner Bros. on YouTube could be attributed to a number of factors, but the most likely cause is that film aficionados have been defaulting to YouTube for years when it comes to watching movie trailers and teasers. That habit can be hard for any other platform to break when YouTube is ingrained in fans’ viewing behaviors. Instead of fighting this situation, however, and trying to push similar content onto other platforms, Warner Bros. has embraced what format works best for its company on each social site, knowing YouTube is where its audience will go when it comes to watching 2- to 5-minute clips surrounding franchises its viewers love.

Conclusion

Warner Bros. Entertainment is a prime example of a brand which knows exactly what it stands for (entertaining viewers through movies and television) and serves that type of content exactly where its audience wants it (predominantly through YouTube). While other movie studios and TV networks have found success releasing small samples of video content on platforms like Instagram and Facebook, Warner Bros. has deliberately stuck with YouTube, supplementing that platform strategy with videos spread across other sites. Unless something drastic happens, we suspect Warner Bros. to have continued success as a YouTube publisher for years to come.

How Jungle Creations is Winning Sponsored Video on Facebook

September 21st, 2017
How Jungle Creations is Winning Sponsored Video on Facebook

In the whirlwind proliferation of publishers uploading video content to Facebook, the story of Jungle Creations stands out as particularly impressive. In just three years, the company’s social video stock now gets over 3.7 billion views per month, and as one of the world’s most-viewed media properties, its solid stable of Facebook Pages averages an extra billion views a month compared to this time last year. With its flagship Facebook channel, ‘VT‘, generating an average of 3.8M views per video, it’s no wonder the industry is sitting up and taking notice.

So successful has the media publisher been in tapping into the public’s insatiable appetite for engaging video content, it has grown far beyond its initial offering. Jungle Creations has firmly established itself as a leading producer of sponsored video content both in the UK and beyond, and is working with some of the world’s leading brands on a range of innovative campaigns aimed at reaching a wider audience. We talked to Jungle Creations about its programming and distribution strategy around social video, and how it has grown its sponsored video package so that the big brands are flocking to work with them. But first, a little about the company and the impact of sponsored video on the UK market.

Jungle Creations: A Viral Phenomenon

So, who are Jungle Creations? One title I had in mind for this post was ‘the biggest media publisher you’ve never heard of’, which while catchy, is no longer strictly true. If you spend any time on Facebook then the chances are a Jungle Creations video has popped up in your News Feed – either because you have subscribed directly to one of its Pages, or because one of your connections has engaged with one of their video uploads.

The publisher has an enviable portfolio of Facebook properties including ‘VT’ (fka Viral Thread), ‘Twisted’, ‘‘Food Envy’, ‘‘Nailed It’, ‘‘Four Nine’, ‘‘Bosh‘,  ‘The Aardvark’, and ‘Joystix’, and it consistently appears in Tubular’s leaderboard of most watched media and entertainment properties, alongside BuzzFeed, Disney, and The LADBible group. Not bad for a company that founder Jamie Bolding started from his bedroom, right?

Top Media & Entertainment Properties – Global August 2017. All data via Tubular

Bolding kicked off his multi-million pound venture with a listicle post (“Twenty People You Will Meet at Fresher’s Week” for you fact fans), and the brand has since grown to employ well over 100 people. It operates out of East London, with state of the art video production, and post-producion facilities all under one roof. The fact that all its operations are in-house is a huge plus not only for the publisher, but also for the brands and partners they work with.

The company has fully embraced the verticalization of content on social platforms, and now offers a huge variety of video to many different audiences. Its original channel, ‘VT’, has been joined by a range of others including ‘Twisted’, ‘Bosh’ and ‘Food Envy’ which cater to food lovers, ‘Nailed It’ which uploads videos around DIY, and ‘Joystix’ which is all about the gaming community.

Viral Thread rebranded to ‘VT’ in August, and is shifting its focus to producing more original content. However, engaging viral content uploaded to the page remains a firm favorite with its 18.3M followers, and the views generated on the page made ‘VT’ the third most-watched property on Facebook in August 2017.

The most viewed, and most engaged ‘VT’ upload of the past 90 days is  ‘When you meet someone new and find out they’re rude’. To date, it has attracted 115M views (47.4M in the first 3 days!), and 3.7M engagements in the form of likes, shares, and comments.

Sponsored Video Content in the UK: £100M Industry

The UK market for Facebook branded content is growing at a blistering place, and Jungle Creations are perfectly positioned to bridge that gap between consumer demand and brand outreach. According to a brand new report from Tubular Labs on UK Facebook Sponsored content (which you can download by clicking on the blue button below), the number of UK partners and sponsors publishing branded content on Facebook has grown nearly 300% year-on-year.

Facebook branded content in the UK is estimated to be worth over £100M per year, with the British market for this form of branded advertising is growing at nearly 500% year-on-year. You can get the latest insights on sponsored video in the UK by clicking the link below.

Download the NEW DealMaker UK Sponsored Video Content Report Now

Jungle Creations is one of the major players in the UK sponsored video ecosystem,  partnering with household-name brands to publish sponsored content on its Facebook properties. Partnerships with brands are an important part of the Jungle Creations business model, and successful campaigns with Oreo, Stork, and Baileys among many others mean that the publisher tripled its share of sponsored views between Q1 and Q2 2017, and grew their share of sponsors by 65%.

Data for sponsored Facebook videos uploaded during Q2 2017 by UK partners only. Source: Tubular Labs DealMaker

Jungle Creations and Sponsored Video

We spoke to Mitch Strong (Commercial Partnerships Director), and Melissa Chapman (CCO) about how the Jungle Creations works with partners to create sponsored video campaigns while remaining faithful to the JC brand.

Tubular: What sponsored video brand campaigns have you been really excited to work on?

JC: Oreo was our first really big campaign, and we worked with them as part of our ‘Twisted’ channel, to create engaging content around the promotion of two new flavours – Mint Choc Chip and Strawberry Cheesecake. We created 6 recipe videos for the ‘Twisted’ channel, plus two video articles, and a live stream with an influencer to help raise awareness for the new flavours. We guaranteed 8M UK views but actually generated 13M, and the added value of global views was huge because we didn’t cage the campaign.

Note: You can read more about the Twisted/Oreo case study here. The video below, for Mint Oreo Dirt Deserts has generated 3.4M Facebook video views to date:

The brand was so pleased with the return on investment they become a repeat customer, and we recently worked with them on another successful campaign. We created an idea, and sent it over on spec to see if it was something they might be interested in us creating for them. They confirmed they had some budget money left off the back of a different campaign so asked us to create a set of videos based on our idea. We turned the videos around in 3 days and the videos went live the week later. The whole process took only about 3 weeks which is an incredibly fast turnaround for this type of campaign. We continue to work with Oreo to get their brand message out across the UK.

With ‘Twisted’, we also worked with Stork on a new baking range they were launching. The target audience was Millennial women, and housewives with children, which is very much aligned with the ‘Twisted’ audience who are 63% female, mostly aged between 18-35. We created some really cool recipes, for grown-ups, and for grown-ups to create with children. In the past, their digital campaigns have tended to be very traditional but they trusted our creative process.

Tubular: Are most of your campaigns UK focused?

JC: We’ve built up a massive global reach so can support any client that wants their campaigns to go active around the world.

Tubular: Do you have all the resources you need in-house?

JC: Yes, we have everything here – sales, creative, social, video production, post-production, distribution, analytics, paid advertising, and more. We don’t outsource anything, and that’s the USP to agencies and brands. We keep everything under one roof and all departments feed into each other, and fully support each other. Because we immediately see the results from our pitches and our campaigns, we can go directly to the teams involved and discuss what did or didn’t work, and fix anything we need to. It also speeds up the process, both for us and the client, and with the help of Tubular software and data, and our own social team, we have access to all the analytics data we need.

Tubular: Do you put a lot of paid resources behind campaigns?

JC: We can but we try not to. Most of the time we can achieve the results we set out to via organic distribution and promotion. They way we see it, if sponsored content is going to live on any of our channel properties, we are acutely aware of the audience for those channels, and that content should do fantastically well based on the audience we have built up. If we have to put money behind any content we publish to our channels then we haven’t done enough organically to get it where it needs to be.

Tubular: What’s your strategic plan behind building your social channels?

JC: As we’ve expanded over the past 4 years, we’ve created 14 different verticals for very specific audiences, so we can offer almost any one of those verticals as a good fit for a particular brand. That’s a huge advantage because we don’t have to rely on just the one channel, and then constantly adapt that channel to fit the content.

With ‘Twisted’, we saw the opportunity to work with major food and drink brands, keeping in mind there always has to be a consumer, B2C demand too, because you need that growth for it to be sellable to brands. So we keep both those goals in mind when we launch a channel – that there’s a market for this vertical, and also an audience for it. We had a very specific goal for ‘Twisted’ which was to focus on the ‘wild and wacky’ side of food, and that really hit a nerve with our audience.  We built up a following on Facebook of 1 million in just 8 weeks – and we didn’t pay for any kind of promotion! Our audience just got it right away, especially with content like our ‘Camembert Hedgehog Bread’ video.

Our clear goal is to build something that we can take to the agencies and brands and say look at what we’ve got and understand how we can leverage that for you. We are really dedicated to building these channels as the stats look so great on sales decks (for example: 1 million followers in 8 weeks for ‘Twisted’). Our social and content teams love growing the channels and find it very rewarding. So, we put a lot of investment, time, and effort into growing the channels, not only to be able to sell them to brands and agencies, but also to build a solid brand and a voice for Jungle Creations, and that’s invaluable to us.

Tubular: If you’re creating video content for a brand, does it always have to sit on one of your own channels?

JC: 99% of the time it does, yes. We usually state in the contract that we would post any sponsored video content on our channel although we can set the brand up as an advertisers so they are able to carry out digital targeting to hit a niche audience. But we also sometimes supply white-labelled content that they can post on their own channels, which sets us apart from a lot of our competitors.

But influencer/recommendation channels are much better in terms of reach and engagement. For instance, Oreo has many followers but we can generate significantly more engagement for Oreo content on Twisted. Our content team makes sure that when sponsored videos are published, we are nurturing that engaged audience on our channels so there’s that build-up of trust in all our posts. People don’t mind being advertised to, as long as it’s good, entertaining content, and that has always been our mantra. It’s also why we consistently get high engagement on an advert, and that’s why we are confident in selling our service to brands and agencies.

“People don’t mind being advertised to, as long as it’s good, entertaining content”

One bad campaign can effectively ruin your chances with other brands, particularly when we are reliant on a central group of agencies to broker on our behalf. We have faced a few stumbling blocks where the brand has wanted a little more creative control, and we’ll work closely with those brands to gently confirm why their ideas may not work with our audience. We back those assertions up with insights and data and build that trust. We’re not saying no to be arrogant, we saying no because we know what works. It would be very easy to take the money for some of the distribution deals we have been offered, but we also have to consider our channels and the impact one misguided ad can have.

Using Tubular’s Dealmaker software, we can mine the data to find sponsored partnership opportunities and also confirm which brands our competitors are working with. Of course, we’re also aware that our competitors can use the software to mine the details of our campaigns, and we don’t want to give any deals away due to poor performance or judgement on our part – the JC brand is too important. We have such a good track record with all the brands we work with because we don’t just approach a deal from a sales perspective. We’re also going to be looking after that brand from a content perspective and make sure those campaign goals are achieved.

You can find out how Tubular’s Dealmaker software has helped Jungle Creations gain a competitive edge when it comes to brand partnership deals:

Right now, we don’t really create independent video content for brands where it doesn’t feature on our own channels. But as a production house, we may consider this more and more in the future.

Download Our New Report About Sponsored Video in the UK

If you want to know more about how sponsored video in the UK is performing then please download the full report below. It contains invaluable insights for any brand, video marketing team, or creator who wants to know more about about sponsored video opportunities. The research was produced as part of the new Dealmaker software from Tubular Labs.

Download the NEW DealMaker UK Sponsored Video Content Report Now

Top 12 Sessions the Video Industry Needs to Take Notice of at Advertising Week 2017

September 18th, 2017
Top 12 Sessions the Video Industry Needs to Take Notice of at Advertising Week 2017Advertising Week kicks off on September 25th in New York City, and we highlight the 12 sessions that video industry professionals shouldn't miss.

How Chobani Uses Sponsored Videos to Stir Up Yogurt Sales and Market Share

September 5th, 2017
How Chobani Uses Sponsored Videos to Stir Up Yogurt Sales and Market ShareRead how yogurt brand Chobani is partnering with publishers and creators on a series of highly successfully sponsored video campaigns.