‘Vloggers valued for entertainment but not brand promotion’

Despite a recent trend for brands to tap vloggers to endorse their products rather than traditional celebrities, the wide global audiences that watch vloggers are not looking to them for purchase-related information but rather for entertainment value.

This is according to a report by the GlobalWebIndex (GWI) on the influence of vloggers, which suggests they are failing to engage users in terms of purchase power.

The survey shows that vloggers are the least effective source of product discovery, with only 7% of all internet users saying they find out about new products, services or brands via vlogs, a number that only rises to 12% for those who have watched a vlog in the last month.

Vlogs come eighteenth on the list of preferred discovery channels, falling behind the top choices of search engines, consumer review sites, product/brand sites and price comparison websites.

Further, only 2% of internet users in the UK say they turn to vlogs when they want to find out more information about brands with 25% of vlog viewers following vloggers specifically. Meanwhile, more than 50% of viewers say they follow their favourite brands on social networks.

This is despite the fact that roughly two thirds of adults have engaged with vlogging in some form, with 42% of internet users globally having watched a vlog in the last month.

Further, the survey shows that vlog viewers are more likely to say brands play an integral role in their lives, that they tend to buy brands they see advertised, and that they like to try new products. 73% also say they regularly inform friends and family about new products and services.

Combined with the massive reach vloggers have, they would seem like the perfect advocates, but these figures suggest that vloggers are valued more for entertainment and tips rather than as a source of brand promotion, despite the recent trend for brands to choose bloggers and vloggers to endorse their products rather than traditional celebrities.

Beauty brands such as L’Oreal, Estee Lauder and Chanel may be wasting their time and money, as they are frequently mentioned by vloggers such as Pixiwoo and Beautycrush who each have over 1.5 million subscribers to their channels, while Domino’s recently used the high profile Vine users Hue Samuel and Leslie Wei for a “Pizza Quest” campaign where the duo search for the ultimate slice of pizza.

The new figures also come after the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruled at the end of 2014 that vlogs featuring paid promotion of products had to be more clearly labeled as adverts following a series of posts by vloggers who had endorsed Oreo without stating they were paid by Mondelez.

Key statistics

  • 42% of internet users globally have watched a vlog in the last month
  • 7% of all internet users say they find out about new products, services or brands via vlogs, 12% for those who have watched a vlog in the last month
  • 2% of internet users in the UK say they turn to vlogs when they want to find out more information about brands
  • 25% of vlog viewers follow vloggers specifically
  • 50% of vlog viewers say they follow their favourite brands on social networks
  • 73% of vlog viewers say they regularly inform friends and family about new products and services

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