Organic growth for fashion and beauty brands on YouTube has become tougher without advertising and amplification, according to new numbers from L2’s Fashion: Video Report.
According to the report, brands struggle to build interest in their videos without promoting them and are seeing far less interest in product campaigns compared to ‘brand building’ videos. The brand building videos are usually story-driven and have unique tales about the company’s history rather than showcasing products that viewers can buy. Even so, all branded videos are only garnering exposure with heavy advertising. L2 notes that even the most successful videos on Louis Vuitton’s channel got most of their views from paid clicks (only 2 to 4 percent were organic). While the brand building videos outperformed the campaign video 3 to 1, both needed paid advertising to be seen by millions of viewers.
Influencer Marketing and Amplification
Working better further down the funnel are influencer marketing campaigns. The fashion and beauty industry already knows this strategy works for product campaigns. Fashion and Beauty Monitor recently reported that 57 percent of companies in these sectors use influencers as part of their marketing mix. An additional 21 percent are also planning to add this strategy to their campaigns in the next year.
With the YouTube success the beauty industry, particularly in the cosmetics space, experiences, those numbers are not a surprise. Over the holidays, Tribe reported that Lush had a lot of exposure on YouTube with videos from influencer Grav3yardgirl. In a shopping ‘haul’ video, the self-described ‘swamp family queen’ showed off the Lush products she bought for herself and as gifts for her family, garnering over 700 thousand views. Her passion for the products is clear, ensuring an authentic feel to the endorsement. During the same time, Lush also benefitted from YouTuber lifestyle maven Nicole Guerriero including their products in a video that gained 690 thousand views. Of course, these YouTube stars have built-in audiences of 6 and 2 million subscribers. By comparison, the Lush’s own channel and the aforementioned Louis Vuitton’s branded channel each have only about 110 thousand subscribers.
That’s not to say the industry doesn’t still see challenges when working with influencers. Per the Fashion and Beauty Monitor report, finding the ideal influencers to work with is still a struggle since brands need to connect with social media creators that have a true brand affinity rather than those just looking to get paid for vlogging. Tracking the success of influencer campaigns is also a challenge for 73 percent of marketers surveyed. Yet, 49 percent of companies said that influencer marketing was ‘highly effective’ and another 28 percent called them ‘effective’, which is likely why 59 percent of marketers said they are increasing their budget for influencer campaigns in 2016.
Photo credit: Nicole Guerriero