I wrote this post originally for LinkedIn’s marketing and advertising section
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has just launched his own YouTube channel last Monday with the help of fellow top YouTubers. Chief among them is Lilly Singh, who has over 9 million subscribers on her YouTube channel. At the beginning of The Rock’s first video which was just released last week, Singh tells The Rock, “You just created what could be one of the biggest channels on YouTube.”
Capitalizing on his already 100 million follower social media presence, The Rock is deciding to tackle YouTube as another way to connect with fans in a way that no other celebrity has done before.
Why are no celebrities marketing themselves on YouTube?
With every athlete, celebrity, and CEO focusing all their time marketing themselves on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, The Rock has taken advantage of the fact that none of these people are focusing their time and energy on YouTube. Either they don’t understand it enough, they think it would be too much work if they did, or they just don’t want to put out that much of their life on YouTube.
This is why the player in the MLB for example who isn’t well known could easily become one of the top five most popular athletes in the league if he only decided to start a YouTube channel. Given that he has the right personality, there would be hundreds of thousands, if not, millions of people who would love to subscribe to that type of content. This is what The Rock has figured out, and by being the first celebrity to take advantage of YouTube, he has a head-start in leading and dominating this social media opportunity.
YouTube is a platform to create engaging long form pieces of content
The problem with only being on social media channels like Instagram and Snapchat is not just the fact that every marketer is already on those platforms, but that the video format is all short. YouTube is special because it gives the creator a medium to create long form pieces of content that engages with audiences.
According to a report, 65% of video viewers watch on average 80% of the videos they watch. That means people who are on YouTube, like The Rock, have the opportunity to differentiate themselves by creating 10-20 minute long videos everyday that will be watched and consumed by thousands of people.
What does The Rock need to do in order to succeed on YouTube?
Instead of using YouTube as another marketing channel to push out promotional content, The Rock should be focused on putting out authentic content that provides insight into his life in a long form way that Snapchat or Instagram cannot. Three months ago, The Rock was invited to be a part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, where he met with two kids who’s dream was to meet the actor and former pro wrestler. Afterwards, The Rock had posted a short behind the scenes video on his Instagram of him making Ms. Ashley Rodriguez’s dream come true.
And people loved it.
This genuine, behind the scenes content is what people want to see and what people like The Rock should be putting out on YouTube – Not some promotional content for an upcoming scripted series.
The reason reality shows such as Kim Kardashian’s show “Keeping Up with The Kardashians” do so well is because it gives viewers as authentic of a look as possible into how these people live their lives. People are naturally curious and they love to watch this type of day in the life content, making YouTube the key to complete branding.
Someone who does this perfectly is marketer, entrepreneur, and bestselling author Gary Vaynerchuk, who does two shows for his YouTube channel. One is called #AskGaryVee where he gives answers to questions on topics like marketing, branding, and building businesses. And the other show is called DailyVee where he vlogs himself throughout the day in order to give his followers a behind the scenes look at what it’s actually like to run a 600+ person marketing agency. By being one of the only entrepreneurs who has taken advantage of this platform in the way that he has, Gary has been able to greatly increase the relationship and trust that he has with his audience.
In the same way that Gary Vaynerchuk has differentiated himself from other marketers and entrepreneurs through his #AskGaryVee and DailyVee show, The Rock has the opportunity to differentiate himself from other celebrities by doing something no celebrity has done before. This shift to YouTube is a big move by The Rock and it’s going to be interesting to see how he does on this platform and what effects this will have on how other people market themselves on social. It wouldn’t be surprising to see more celebrities, CEOs/entrepreneurs, and athletes jump onto YouTube as a result of this as a unique way of building a following and growing their brand.
What do you think about this? Let me know what your thoughts are, I would love to hear your opinion.