In a 2019 MediaKix report, 71% of marketers agreed that the quality of customers or traffic from influencer marketing was better than other marketing channels. So we know that influencer marketing can be a very profitable marketing strategy.
If you are considering using this tactic but aren’t sure where to start, consider YouTube.
Unlike other platforms which are generally time limited (think TIC Tac and Instagram), YouTube celebrates long-form content. This allows influencers to delve into the topics and give in-depth reviews of products and services.
Beyond that, engagement rates on YouTube are the highest compared to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, according to a Influencer Marketing Center Report 2020.
Now that consumers are turn more to YouTube for uplifting content, this gives brands a huge opportunity to leverage the power of influencers on a platform known for its high engagement.
So what kind of videos can influencers and brands collaborate on? Let’s go through seven examples.
1. Daily vlogs
One of the most natural ways to integrate influencers sponsored products in their YouTube videos is done via daily vlogs.
Usually done with a video of the morning or daily routine, the influencer will guide viewers through their day and mention the product or service as part of their ritual.
In this video, Natalie Barbu gives her audience a glimpse into her daily routine, with an emphasis on her planning process. It covers the benefits of software like Asana and Google calendar, and in the middle of her video, at 9:03 am, she presents Sharing of skills.
What is effective about this style of product integration is that it integrates organically with the influencer content. Some ads can be quite shocking and disrupt the user experience, which can lead to ad skips and video drops.
The title of the video defines the expectation that the subject of the video will be planning. So when Barbu introduces Skillshare as a platform for learning new skills (including how to use Asana for planning), it’s a smooth transition.
Another approach taken by influencers is to mention the sponsor towards the end of the video.
This video shows influencer Mayuko, showing her version of a productive workday. Towards the end of the video (at 7:08 am), she thanks the brand, Nord VPN, to sponsor the video and discuss the benefits of using the software.
With this method, there is a risk that some viewers will not stay there to learn more about the sponsor, as engagement rates drop towards the end of the videos. However, the sponsor is mentioned at the start of the video and in the description box, which gives viewers additional opportunities to learn more about the brand.
Shopping groceries and unboxing videos are some of the most popular YouTube videos among fashion and lifestyle influencers. They can also be an effective way to showcase sponsored products.
What’s great about this type of video is that it doesn’t force influencers to dedicate an entire video to a single product, but rather include that product in a larger category.
In this video, British influencer Patricia Otegwu, known as Patricia Bright on her channel, covers a wide range of luxury items that are perfect for the fall season.
She begins the video by framing the importance of the casual “do you treatbehavior. She then goes through a few things, explaining the reasoning behind each purchase. At 5:01 am, she introduces the products of Silk Lily, which fits perfectly into the theme of the video.
Plus, mentioning the product in the first half of the video gives the brand a better chance of reaching more viewers.
3. Behind the scenes tutorials
Another possibility for seamless product integration is behind-the-scenes content.
In this video, famous YouTube illusionist Zack King gives viewers a full look at some of his illusions. So how exactly does Google fit into this?
Well, King uses first Google meet and a super televised illusion to feature its conference room segment at 1:59 am. Because Google’s platform promotes virtual conference meetings, it’s a nice, subtle touch.
Then at 3:53, he presents Google Password Manager app to move on to the next turn. This is an example of how quickly and efficiently you can highlight sponsored content without distracting from the main focus of the video.
4. How to do
It’s one thing to explain to viewers how to do something. It’s another to use a tool that will help them do it. Brands and influencers often use this approach to present new product lines to the public.
In a very meta-example, Sean Cannell of the popular Video Influencers channel gives viewers advice on how to get sponsorship on YouTube using the sponsored product, FameBit.
FameBit, recently renamed YouTube BrandConnect, helps connect brands to influencers and vice versa. With that in mind, the channel – and its audience – is probably a very good match for the sponsored product.
Cannell gives a brief overview of the main features of the platform and spends the remainder of the video detailing his personal experience with the product. The exam is a prime example of social proof, because this is often more valuable than a simple product overview.
5. Comedy sketch
People love to laugh, and some brands, like GEICO, are adept at transforming acidic subjects into fun ads that leave an impression.
In this video, comedian influencer Caleb Glass of CalebCity makes a hilarious sketch in which he asks a psychic to prove his abilities by guessing what he ate that day. If the psychic gets the correct answer, he agrees to task the psychic with finding a hidden heirloom and sharing the money with them.
This is where it goes well. The medium guesses all the right ingredients, but assumes that such a good dish had to be cooked by a chef. Glass slams the sponsored product, Devour food, on the table and tells the medium that they are wrong because the dish was prepared in the microwave. A screaming match ensues and the video ends with a presentation of the product.
Here’s why this video works: It plays on the idea that microwave food can’t be delicious against the backdrop of something completely different. Brands with playful identities can greatly benefit from using comic influencers to promote their products.
6. Unpacking and product reviews
Nothing brings me more joy than getting a new product in the mail and opening it.
It seems like a lot of us share this trait because unboxing videos are very popular videos on YouTube. In this video style, viewers live vicariously through the influencer by opening a product box and exploring its functionality.
The success of this approach lies in the ability to attract viewers at or near the decision-making stage.
When Playstation released the new PS5, the brand collaborated with Justine Ezarik of iJustine, a tech, travel and games influencer on YouTube, for this video. Often, brands send free products to influencers in exchange for unboxing videos and / or honest reviews on their platforms.
With much of Ezarik’s channel focused on gaming technology, her followers likely fit the target market for PlayStation and made her an ideal influencer to promote this new product. In the video, she comments on the futuristic look of the product and the lightweight controllers while adding B-roll footage for the PS5’s close-ups.
There are many ways to use this type of YouTube marketing. What brands should prioritize when considering an influencer is whether the influencer brand and values align with theirs. Second, to produce influencer marketing campaigns that convert, it’s also important that the influencer audience matches the brand’s user’s personality.