Dear Marketers: Please Don’t Do Influencer Marketing —We’re Begging You

This piece was original appeared on the Epic Signal blog and was inspired by an article a friend of mine wrote about book marketing and is more or less paying homage to his style (hence the similarities).

There’s a reductive narrative circulating in the advertising world lately: if you need to meet your marketing goals, then you should do influencer marketing.

Want to reach millennials? Influencer marketing speaks to teens! Want to be more efficient with your advertising budget? Influencer marketing is cheap! Want to be ahead of the curve? Influencer marketing is the future!


I Don’t Understand Why Cannes Is Bigger Than VidCon For Advertisers

The future is not at Cannes and I’m shocked at how many brands and agencies are spending so much money to go to the South of France, when VidCon, the largest digital video conference overlaps with the conference.

Would you rather have one foot in the past or one in the future?


Vidcon 2018: A Veteran’s Recap

Vidcon is a great fucking conference.

It’s got diversity, great/big announcements, excitement and knowledgeable panels and speakers. This year definitely felt like the tipping point for the conference – getting so massive and (what felt very) mainstream. Having been to every single Vidcon so far (including the international ones) here’s my quick recap/takeaways:


The World Cup, E-Sports, and The Battle For Eyeballs

The World Cup has begun and major brands such Budweiser, McDonald’s, and Coca-Cola have launched ad campaigns to take advantage of the global event.

While the matches are sure to generate billions of viewers the question remains – in this fractured media landscape will the World Cup, and sports as a whole, manage to remain the media and advertising powerhouse it has historically been?

Initial numbers throughout Europe seem to show that viewership will be down from the last World Cup.


How do influencers make money and how much are they making?

One of the most common questions I’m asked is, and something I discussed with a reporter for a recent article on Highsnobiety, is – how much do influencers make? How much does a Youtuber make? How much does an instagrammer make, etc?

How much money an influencer makes is not a simple question to answer. There are some influencers who make tens of millions of dollars each year, and while they capture the headlines, they are in the minority.

In this post I hope to shed some light on how influencer generate revenue, and what avenues they use to make money.


The Confessional #15: Longtime YouTube Creator

My latest interviewee for The Confessional is a manager of several top YouTube talent (several of which generate over 100 million views a year). In this extensive interview, we discussed the business of YouTube, the goals of his talent (both on and off YouTube), and the how much money top creators are really making.

Some of the major points we covered were:

  • Subscription video on demand (SVOD) and YouTube competitors
  • YouTubers “making it” on television
  • YouTuber revenue streams
  • How much money his top creators are making in a year
  • How creators can better work with brands, and vice versa


The Confessional #14: YouTube Exec

My latest interviewee for The Confessional is a former YouTube executive. This was a great interview that provides a lot of insight into the inner workings and attitudes of YouTube.

 We covered a number of topics including:

  • How Youtube’s relationship with creators has evolved
  • The massive growth of the YouTube partner program
  • YouTube’s relationship with MCN’s


Why YouTube’s Hero, Hub, Help Content Strategy works

Most brands are terrible at developing a community on YouTube.

There isn’t a single brand amongst the top 100 most subscribed channels on YouTube today.

So how can brands develop a community and generate earned media? The solution is to apply the hero, hub, help content strategy, which, YouTube popularized via their brand playbook. I’ve also written extensively about hero, hub, help and recommend you read through those articles here, here, here, and here if this is something you want to explore further.

However, one thing that I haven’t spent too much time explaining – is WHY the hero, hup, help content strategy works so well on YouTube. In this post, I break down those reasons.


Forbes Profile

Amazon’s Rumored YouTube Competitor

I think the future of digital is video.

What Amazon’s role in the space is coming under increased scrutiny and speculation.

Is Amazon developing a YouTube competitor?

Every social media site on the planet has shifted its focus to video. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, and Tumblr have introduced or expanded their video capabilities, and are prioritizing live video in their algorithms. Even LinkedIn recently announced new video features.