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August 22, 2018Published by: Meg Edwards

Facebook’s ‘Become a Supporter’ feature has landed in the UK

Back in March 2018, Facebook announced that it was testing a new subscription feature for video creators. The idea was to encourage YouTube-style creators to start earning money from their Facebook followers with a $4.99 (£3.49) a month subscription fee for loyal fans. Subscribers would have access to exclusive content and a range of other perks.

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August 20, 2015Published by: Jonny Atter

Three top tips for YouTubers working with brands

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August is the month when YouTubers across the world get together at two major video conventions. At the beginning of the month the massive Vidcon in the USA draws around 20,000 people eager to find out more about video and to meet their idols, and this is quickly followed up by Summer in the City (SITC) - the largest YouTube convention in the UK.

While at SITC last weekend, it quickly became clear that there is increasing emphasis being put on how YouTubers can work with brands. How they can and should work with brands, the problems they face when they do, and how this affects the YouTubers’ viewers.

These are our three top tips for YouTubers we gleaned on working with brands.

  1. Be true to you and your brand

As a YouTuber, you need to retain creative control of the content on your channel. A brand deal has to be a good fit with the YouTuber’s content, otherwise the audience will see through it and label the YouTuber a sell-out. The videos you create should always be created to suit your audience, but most importantly you should work for those brands that really excite you so that you truly enjoy working together.

Brands must learn to give up creative control to YouTubers in order to deliver the most authentic results. When there is too much emphasis on landing key messages for a brand it can come across as somewhat contrived which has ultimately has no value for either party. A brand shouldn’t give a YouTuber a script, just key points they wish to cover.

Equally, YouTubers need to communicate effectively with brands to let them know what they have to offer and be savvy about their approach to journalists when selling in their own stories. At SITC, YouTube Communications Manager, Thea O’Hear talked a lot about the do’s and don’t of contacting journalists and teaching YouTubers how to build their brand through effective PR and media management.

  1. Be transparent

Being transparent and honest with your audience is key and many viewers have quickly realised that some YouTubers treat YouTube as their full time job, and are ok with with the odd branded video as long as it’s upfront and of value to them.

This week the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) released new guidelines for vloggers who work with brands to make sure viewers know when they’re being advertised to. When a the question was raised during #YouTubeHonestyHour panel at SITC, about whether or not YouTubers are seen as sell-outs for taking sponsored deals, it was clear that if the audience knows what to expect from their favourite YouTuber and they’re upfront about it, the viewers really appreciate it.

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It’s not only the viewers who appreciate it, many of the panelists at SITC agreed that they prefer having the CAP guidelines. Although it can get confusing for viewers when they see some YouTubers following the guidelines and others not. And typically, you’ll find that American YouTubers who dominate the platform, don’t have the same guidelines as British YouTubers do.

  1. Be connected on and offline

Fandom is at all all time high with YouTube viewers and this was evident both at VidCon and SITC. At VidCon they had to restrict access for guests at hotels to maintain control during a YouTuber meet and greet, while at SITC there were queues of people lined up to say hello to their favourite video creator. It’s staggering! Opportunities to meet your favourite YouTuber, or indeed celebrity are incredibly rewarding for your viewers and critical to building your brand further.

It also goes beyond just meet and greets with top YouTubers, it’s a chance for them to meet their online friends too. As a YouTuber myself, it was lovely to meet fellow #Battenveda vloggers Sonja, who spotted me across a room at a panel session, as well as Laura-Christelle, who was volunteer at the event and joined me to make a vlog together.

Finally, both VidCon and SITC presented an important reminder for any brand and YouTuber doing a deal. It’s not just about the numbers, how far a post will reach or if it will ‘go viral’, it’s about providing something of value and something that YouTuber or audience might not have access to ordinarily.

November 26, 2014Published by: Janey Spratt

YouTubers: brand endorsement crack down by ASA

maxresdefaultWe recently blogged about the rise of YouTube celebrities and for years now brands have been tapping into their highly engaged audiences through brand endorsements.

The influence of these YouTubers has been picked up by the media this year, uncovering that YouTubers can earn in the region of £100k in return for a day of product endorsement on their channels.

The latest revelation comes from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) who have noticed that some YouTubers have been breaking advertising standards. Today, the ASA have ruled that Vloggers must clearly declare when a brand has paid for a product to appear in a video.

YouTubers must now clearly mark ‘advert’, ‘promo’ or add a symbol onto the video or in the title. Simply saying ‘this wouldn’t have been possible without the help of *brand*’ isn’t going to cut it anymore. These changes are to protect the YouTuber's audiences who are often very young in age.

In our experience, we’ve managed relationships between brands and YouTubers where both parties have been keen to endorse the campaign message while making it look as natural and as discreet as possible. So these new rules will be a significant change for YouTubers as they work hard to maintain relationships with their loyal subscribers.

With this standardised approach to YouTuber endorsements being enforced by the ASA, the crucial effect yet to be seen will be the impact on subscriber loyalty and engagement. Does this new ruling change the commercial opportunity for brands and YouTube partnerships?

YouTubers owe their success to their loyal fanbases - they know better than anyone that the right content tailored to the audience has the potential to draw in mass support and engagement. As YouTubers grow their fanbases, commercial opportunities begin to appear and the line between fan loyalty and financial gain can become blurred. If the new ASA ruling jeopardises fan loyalty, we predict YouTubers will simply minimise the volume of product placement on their channels to avoid losing subscribers. It may be that YouTubers move over to brands' owned channels when promoting products in return for payment.

Read more on the changes here.

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March 25, 2014Published by: Steph Bennett

Register to be part of the #BattenVEDA Community

BattenVEDA What is VEDA?

VEDA is a YouTube Challenge taken up by vloggers around the world to Vlog Every Day in April.

This year we're inviting you to take part in VEDA and become part of the #BattenVEDA community. It doesn't matter whether you're a YouTubing Pro with millions of followers, a blogger who's looking for their next big challenge or someone who's never dared to talk to camera before.

We'll be here to guide you with regular vlogging tips and tricks via the Battenhall blog as well as providing you with a network of incredible people who've all decided to get involved too. We're all in it together and connected via the hashtag #BattenVEDA. We've even put together an entire calendar of topics for you to talk about every day to help keep you focused and plan your vlogs. Of course you're welcome to freestyle too!

Are you up for the #BattenVEDA challenge?

Yeah? Okay! Let's get you registered, connected and ready to vlog! Simply complete this little form to let us know you'll be taking part so that we can follow your progress on YouTube and Twitter.

The entire #BattenVEDA community will appear in this lovely spreadsheet below. Go forth and connect with everyone on Twitter and subscribe to each others YouTube channels. You'll find this is a great way to get ideas and tips and also a great way to share and receive positive feedback to keep you motivated throughout the month. This is also an awesome list for all the non-vloggers out there to follow if you're just interested in seeing how it works!

Here you'll find the beloved #BattenVEDA calendar complete with your carefully selected daily vlogging topics. We hope you'll be inspired and have a lot of fun taking part in the whole VEDA experience.

Finally, always remember to use the #BattenVEDA hashtag when you share your vlogs on social media. We can't wait to connect and start watching your vlogs! See you all on April 1st!