Who do you trust more: movie stars or YouTubers?
It’s a fact: some people take the advice over celebrities versus news agencies. But now, there’s another group of people who are finding their ‘facts’ elsewhere. Namely, Instagram and YouTube.
We’ve been hearing about the rise of social media influencers for a while now, as well as the foggy grey line between paid-endorsements. But for bigger brands, influencers were always seen as an alternative to proper, A-list celebrities. But thats about to change.
In a study by Defy Media, 63-percent of respondents aged 13-24 said they would try a brand or a product recommended by a content creator. For celebrities, that dropped down to just 48-percent.
You might think that’s an apples vs oranges study to make; actors tend to have very polished public personas, versus content creators who put just about everything online – but for brands looking to sell their products, relatability is key.
A great example of this is the ‘Casey Neistat vs Jennifer Aniston for Emirates’ as highlighted by an academic article put together by the University of Pennsylvania.
Aniston is one of the most beloved and well-known actors of the 20th and 21st century, so it’s hardly surprising that Emirates airline coughed up US$5 million dollars to have her star in some short ads on YouTube.
One of the minute-long ads has her play a Friends-style role, strutting up and down an Emirates first class cabin talking about how wonderful it is, showing off the food and drinks, the privacy and the amazing staff.
As of right now, this video has 6,270,000 views.
Now let’s look at YouTuber Neistat, who also highlighted Emirates’ First Class in one of his videos. It’s become one of his most popular ever on YouTube, clocking up 66-million views at the time of writing.
Yes, the two videos are very different. Neistat was allowed full creative freedom, and just says what he likes about the experience. Aniston was obviously put in front of a camera with a script.
The move from celebrity to YouTuber hasn’t come out of the blue, however.
Back in 2016, Think with Google conducted a study showing that showed 70-percent of teenage YouTube subscribers say they relate to creators more than traditional celebrities.
While celebrities may be household names with millions of millions of fans, most don’t come close to the ‘genuine’ perceived moments that content creators can share with their fans almost daily.