What the Cool Kids Can Teach Us About Selling Out

My friend John Haydon shared a link with me to a video by Youtube user italktosnakes (Kristina Horner). It’s a video response to another Youtube user, nerimon (Alex Day).

In both the videos, each discuss the merits of being paid to advertise products on their Youtube channels. What’s interesting is their take on how companies are approaching this. Kristina praises Ford for its Fiesta initiative (which she’s part of) while Sanyo’s “insert here” example by Alex shows a company still getting to grips with the new tools.

Each video also acts as a nice rebuff to marketers and advertisers who say that Gen Y aren’t worth dealing with as they don’t have the influence or business savvy of older media users.

How about you? Would the approaches talked about in the videos work on you? How can businesses reach you?

Opt In Image
Get my latest posts as soon as they're published
and get your free chapter of Influence Marketing

Enjoy this post? Then join over 12,600 other smart subscribers and receive my latest posts as soon as they're published - simply enter your email below (I respect your privacy and will never spam you).

Alternatively, click here to subscribe to the RSS feed instead.

51 comments
websuccessdiva
websuccessdiva

Great point Danny, Gen Y are worth it and more so than any other group, in my opinion. They are a powerfully vocal group that will not hesitate to help or hurt a company - smart companies don't take their power for granted :-)

websuccessdiva
websuccessdiva

Great point Danny, Gen Y are worth it and more so than any other group, in my opinion. They are a powerfully vocal group that will not hesitate to help or hurt a company - smart companies don't take their power for granted :-)

websuccessdiva
websuccessdiva

Great point Danny, Gen Y are worth it and more so than any other group, in my opinion. They are a powerfully vocal group that will not hesitate to help or hurt a company - smart companies don't take their power for granted :-)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Great points, Judith and (like John), completely agree. It's the same as bloggers - anyone doing a review or taking part in a sponsored campaign should have final approval. Otherwise it becomes just another advertising outlet for the company, and not a viable outlet for the audience.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Great points, Judith and (like John), completely agree. It's the same as bloggers - anyone doing a review or taking part in a sponsored campaign should have final approval. Otherwise it becomes just another advertising outlet for the company, and not a viable outlet for the audience.

judith
judith

thanks! and of course, the companies wouldnt be going to them if they werent the content creators. the value in picking specific social media users is their influence. however, that influence is only as good as their own personality/content. people follow them and listen to them based on who they are. thats the biggest mistake that sanyo ended up making. instead of capitalizing on the influence of social media (level of trust/entertainment/relationship/content) they were pretending that alex was nbc or cbs.

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

Judith - I totally agree with what you said: "i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control". They *are* content creators in the first place - right?

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

The problem with Sanyo (at least in this instance) is that they don't have the word "integrity" mentioned within their corporate values - while bloggers (at least the ones I know) have very high levels of integrity. They also demonstrated a lack of understanding about blog culture by not having a *dialog* with Alex.

Alex - 2
Sanyo - 0

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

The problem with Sanyo (at least in this instance) is that they don't have the word "integrity" mentioned within their corporate values - while bloggers (at least the ones I know) have very high levels of integrity. They also demonstrated a lack of understanding about blog culture by not having a *dialog* with Alex.Alex - 2Sanyo - 0

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

The problem with Sanyo (at least in this instance) is that they don't have the word "integrity" mentioned within their corporate values - while bloggers (at least the ones I know) have very high levels of integrity. They also demonstrated a lack of understanding about blog culture by not having a *dialog* with Alex.Alex - 2Sanyo - 0

jackieadkins3
jackieadkins3

First, I'd say Sanyo missed out since it seemed like Alex was willing to work with them to find some common ground and making it work. Ultimately probably turning off Alex and all of his viewers to their brand.

Out of the two, I think Ford definitely has a better grasp of utilizing Gen Y and the "YouTube Generation," but I think it's definitely still an area where companies will have to kind of test the waters for a while to see what is generally accepted as "kosher" in the space.

As a consumer, I would be much more open to something like this than "sponsored tweets" and blatant advertisements like this. I think the key is for companies to not just convince people to put their product in a video or talk about it for the financial incentive, but to genuinely create brand evangelists that really are passionate about your product (which Kristina definitely sounded passionate about the Ford Fiesta). How you can do this...is a whole other question :)

jackieadkins3
jackieadkins3

First, I'd say Sanyo missed out since it seemed like Alex was willing to work with them to find some common ground and making it work. Ultimately probably turning off Alex and all of his viewers to their brand.Out of the two, I think Ford definitely has a better grasp of utilizing Gen Y and the "YouTube Generation," but I think it's definitely still an area where companies will have to kind of test the waters for a while to see what is generally accepted as "kosher" in the space.As a consumer, I would be much more open to something like this than "sponsored tweets" and blatant advertisements like this. I think the key is for companies to not just convince people to put their product in a video or talk about it for the financial incentive, but to genuinely create brand evangelists that really are passionate about your product (which Kristina definitely sounded passionate about the Ford Fiesta). How you can do this...is a whole other question :)

jackieadkins3
jackieadkins3

First, I'd say Sanyo missed out since it seemed like Alex was willing to work with them to find some common ground and making it work. Ultimately probably turning off Alex and all of his viewers to their brand.Out of the two, I think Ford definitely has a better grasp of utilizing Gen Y and the "YouTube Generation," but I think it's definitely still an area where companies will have to kind of test the waters for a while to see what is generally accepted as "kosher" in the space.As a consumer, I would be much more open to something like this than "sponsored tweets" and blatant advertisements like this. I think the key is for companies to not just convince people to put their product in a video or talk about it for the financial incentive, but to genuinely create brand evangelists that really are passionate about your product (which Kristina definitely sounded passionate about the Ford Fiesta). How you can do this...is a whole other question :)

judith
judith

ugh. the idea of inserting a commercial into a youtube video is nauseating. it also shows that the company that wanted this has no idea or clue about social media in general. as for product placement and advertisement and "selling out" - as long as the youtuber or twitterer is up front about their connection, i think making a video discussing the experience works the best. after all, in social media we create relationships. hearing a review from someone you have a relationship with, someone you trust is much more effective than one of those "im not an actor" commercials on tv.that said, i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control, and the ability to be honest about any flaws in the product, otherwise its not an honest review, and it is selling out. this honestly would eventually lead to brands improving their products based on user experience, which is just better for everyone.

judith
judith

ugh. the idea of inserting a commercial into a youtube video is nauseating. it also shows that the company that wanted this has no idea or clue about social media in general.
as for product placement and advertisement and "selling out" - as long as the youtuber or twitterer is up front about their connection, i think making a video discussing the experience works the best. after all, in social media we create relationships. hearing a review from someone you have a relationship with, someone you trust is much more effective than one of those "im not an actor" commercials on tv.

that said, i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control, and the ability to be honest about any flaws in the product, otherwise its not an honest review, and it is selling out. this honestly would eventually lead to brands improving their products based on user experience, which is just better for everyone.

judith
judith

ugh. the idea of inserting a commercial into a youtube video is nauseating. it also shows that the company that wanted this has no idea or clue about social media in general. as for product placement and advertisement and "selling out" - as long as the youtuber or twitterer is up front about their connection, i think making a video discussing the experience works the best. after all, in social media we create relationships. hearing a review from someone you have a relationship with, someone you trust is much more effective than one of those "im not an actor" commercials on tv.that said, i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control, and the ability to be honest about any flaws in the product, otherwise its not an honest review, and it is selling out. this honestly would eventually lead to brands improving their products based on user experience, which is just better for everyone.

GreenStar
GreenStar

:) I didn't even think they should be in a different order, I just wanted to watch the video of the company who failed first. haha But yeah, they look better in this order.I would assume that the success rate would be a lot better for FORD than for SANYO. Assuming the videos are getting the same amount of views, from the same general audience - I see the audience liking the non-direct advertisements better (even if they don't know it's an advertisement - and in this case, the company did their advertising job VERY well)

GreenStar
GreenStar

:) I didn't even think they should be in a different order, I just wanted to watch the video of the company who failed first. haha But yeah, they look better in this order.

I would assume that the success rate would be a lot better for FORD than for SANYO. Assuming the videos are getting the same amount of views, from the same general audience - I see the audience liking the non-direct advertisements better (even if they don't know it's an advertisement - and in this case, the company did their advertising job VERY well)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Ha, good point - maybe I should have had the videos in order? I've updated the post :)

I agree, both videos show each user has a grasp on how we want to be treated as customers, and how two companies approached it very differently. Be interesting to see success rates of each.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Ha, good point - maybe I should have had the videos in order? I've updated the post :)I agree, both videos show each user has a grasp on how we want to be treated as customers, and how two companies approached it very differently. Be interesting to see success rates of each.

GreenStar
GreenStar

I watched the second video first (Alex Day). I love what he's talking about. A commercial right in the middle will not only hurt his credibility, but it'll also not get anyones attention. Having him use the camera, talk about the camera or have a box of the camera in the background even would be better than the commercial idea.Kristina is definitely right as well. Ford has a good grasp on the grassroots method and she's also right about how people don't care for advertising anymore. We want the organic, word of mouth methods to know about new products/services.Good post Danny.

GreenStar
GreenStar

I watched the second video first (Alex Day). I love what he's talking about. A commercial right in the middle will not only hurt his credibility, but it'll also not get anyones attention. Having him use the camera, talk about the camera or have a box of the camera in the background even would be better than the commercial idea.

Kristina is definitely right as well. Ford has a good grasp on the grassroots method and she's also right about how people don't care for advertising anymore. We want the organic, word of mouth methods to know about new products/services.

Good post Danny.

GreenStar
GreenStar

I watched the second video first (Alex Day). I love what he's talking about. A commercial right in the middle will not only hurt his credibility, but it'll also not get anyones attention. Having him use the camera, talk about the camera or have a box of the camera in the background even would be better than the commercial idea.Kristina is definitely right as well. Ford has a good grasp on the grassroots method and she's also right about how people don't care for advertising anymore. We want the organic, word of mouth methods to know about new products/services.Good post Danny.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

The fact that Ford has Scott Monty in their corner is a definite advantage and I think that shows in their approach.

Companies can help themselves by monitoring what's being said and by whom - there are so many tools available now to do this that there's no excuse not to. Find out who's talking about you, approach them and ask if they'd be interested in taking it further (but without editorial control). Allow them early access to what you're doing, treat them as a valued commodity and part of your team, and you'll find more success than some random tweet or advertisement that gets shot down for its crassness.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

The fact that Ford has Scott Monty in their corner is a definite advantage and I think that shows in their approach.Companies can help themselves by monitoring what's being said and by whom - there are so many tools available now to do this that there's no excuse not to. Find out who's talking about you, approach them and ask if they'd be interested in taking it further (but without editorial control). Allow them early access to what you're doing, treat them as a valued commodity and part of your team, and you'll find more success than some random tweet or advertisement that gets shot down for its crassness.

digitaljoy
digitaljoy

RT @Chris_Neil: RT @dannybrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT
via uberVU

judith
judith

thanks! and of course, the companies wouldnt be going to them if they werent the content creators. the value in picking specific social media users is their influence. however, that influence is only as good as their own personality/content. people follow them and listen to them based on who they are. thats the biggest mistake that sanyo ended up making. instead of capitalizing on the influence of social media (level of trust/entertainment/relationship/content) they were pretending that alex was nbc or cbs.
via uberVU

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

Judith - I totally agree with what you said: "i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control". They *are* content creators in the first place - right?
via uberVU

judith
judith

ugh. the idea of inserting a commercial into a youtube video is nauseating. it also shows that the company that wanted this has no idea or clue about social media in general.
as for product placement and advertisement and "selling out" - as long as the youtuber or twitterer is up front about their connection, i think making a video discussing the experience works the best. after all, in social media we create relationships. hearing a review from someone you have a relationship with, someone you trust is much more effective than one of those "im not an actor" commercials on tv.

that said, i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control, and the ability to be honest about any flaws in the product, otherwise its not an honest review, and it is selling out. this honestly would eventually lead to brands improving their products based on user experience, which is just better for everyone.
via uberVU

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Great points, Judith and (like John), completely agree. It's the same as bloggers - anyone doing a review or taking part in a sponsored campaign should have final approval. Otherwise it becomes just another advertising outlet for the company, and not a viable outlet for the audience.

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

Judith - I totally agree with what you said: "i think its also important that the youtuber/twitterer have complete creative control". They *are* content creators in the first place - right?

Danny Brown
Danny Brown

Ha, good point - maybe I should have had the videos in order? I've updated the post :)I agree, both videos show each user has a grasp on how we want to be treated as customers, and how two companies approached it very differently. Be interesting to see success rates of each.

Chris_Neil
Chris_Neil

RT @dannybrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT #ethics
via uberVU

DalDubya
DalDubya

RT @johnhaydon: RT @DannyBrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT #ethics
via uberVU

timbrauhn
timbrauhn

RT @johnhaydon: RT @DannyBrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT #ethics
via uberVU

johnhaydon
johnhaydon

RT @DannyBrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT #ethics
via uberVU

snowkitten
snowkitten

RT @DannyBrown: What marketers and advertisers can learn from Gen Y on selling their products http://bit.ly/3wCazT #ethics
via uberVU

judith
judith

thanks! and of course, the companies wouldnt be going to them if they werent the content creators. the value in picking specific social media users is their influence. however, that influence is only as good as their own personality/content. people follow them and listen to them based on who they are. thats the biggest mistake that sanyo ended up making. instead of capitalizing on the influence of social media (level of trust/entertainment/relationship/content) they were pretending that alex was nbc or cbs.

GreenStar
GreenStar

:) I didn't even think they should be in a different order, I just wanted to watch the video of the company who failed first. haha But yeah, they look better in this order.I would assume that the success rate would be a lot better for FORD than for SANYO. Assuming the videos are getting the same amount of views, from the same general audience - I see the audience liking the non-direct advertisements better (even if they don't know it's an advertisement - and in this case, the company did their advertising job VERY well)

Trackbacks