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Vbloggers stronger than beauty brands?

By Lucy Whitehouse + , 27-Mar-2014
Last updated the 28-Mar-2014 at 09:26 GMT

With a recent report by marketing and advertising software company Pixability revealing that cosmetics brands are losing out in the digital marketing space to the ever-growing influence of beauty video bloggers, the true value of non-professional product reviews for consumers comes under question.

The report reveals that monthly views of beauty videos are up to 700 million on the site, far outstripping the 300 million seen in 2010, and observes that major brands control only 3% of the site’s beauty video content of 14.9 billion views.

The statistics suggest the YouTube presence of beauty brands is in need of an urgent shake-up: companies are missing out on the lucrative marketing platform, in a potentially costly failing for both the industry and the consumer.

Vbloggers winning out

YouTube’s top 15 vloggers now hold an average of 2.1 million channel subscribers each, and brands are not measuring up with courting the consumers on the video platform.

The WWD fashion trade publication recently noted that vblogger Michelle Phan’s ‘Matte About You’ with 1.2 million views was far outstripping MAC cosmetics’ 60,000 views  for ‘Viva the Glam, behind the scenes with Rhianna’.

According to Merrily McGugan, marketing manager from Pixability, brands are missing out because they are attempting to translate traditional television advertising models onto YouTube, according to the company.

Once brands shift their mentality from television commercials put onto YouTube, and move into delivering relatable, valuable content, the competition ceases because you’re offering something as good, if not better, than those vloggers,” she said. 

True value?

The increasing dominance of non-professional reviews is a marketing opportunity entirely out of the hands of those brands that are featured, so missing out on this trend could be costing brands in terms of reputation as well as revenue.

While there already exist more reliable resources of non-professional opinions on beauty products available for both the consumer and the industry, such as the 20,000 consumer review-strong ‘Beauty Bible’ pioneered by Jo Fairley, vlogging is still winning out.

McGugan suggests the reason lies in the power of video, as the medium allows a tutorial model for the product reviews, which consumers find valuable and relatable.  

Getting up to speed with the tutorial video model offers a key opportunity for beauty brands going digital, notes McGugan, one from which they can easily profit.

Vbloggers are doing better because they’re being authentic, they’re delivering a benefit, and they’re pushing out regular content. These are solvable problems for major brands,” the industry expert observes.

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