Tag Archives: bloggers

The Next Frontier for Food Influencers: YouTube

Written by: Allie Wester
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It is undeniable that YouTube is a big platform for influencers. But when it comes to the food space, compared to the massive power and reach of food blogs, it is still finding its footing.

Why? I think it is because Gen Z – the core YouTube consumer – hasn’t quite entered the stage of life where they want to learn to cook. The oldest Gen Z members are in college, which means a lot of eating out and easy convenience foods. 

However, once Gen Z graduates, they will want to learn how to cook. Will they look to blogs or Pinterest (which ultimately leads to blogs)? As a majority, probably not. They’ll look to where they always look for “how to” information: YouTube.

Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 2.48.19 PM

Source: Google

There are a TON of high-quality food blogs out there right now. There are a handful of food YouTube channels, but comparatively it’s slim pickings.

For food marketers: Start experimenting now! You may not get huge view counts right away, but think of the long-term effect. Your video could get hundreds of thousands of views down the line. And you can perfect your craft now before it is mainstream.

“Food hack” videos, demonstrating tricks and tips for making cooking exciting and fun, draw interest from one in four millennials. Use this as an opportunity to not only promote your product, but also explain how to cook with it and why it’s a useful tool or ingredient.

For food bloggers/influencers: Start experimenting now! Many food bloggers I’ve talked to are hesitant to start on YouTube because video is complicated. I get that. But I also know that the food blogging industry figured out food photography and styling from scratch. I have faith that they can also figure out food video. 

In the meantime, the millennial generation is watching food YouTube videos. According to a survey by Google, Millward Brown Digital, and Firefly:

  • Sixty-eight percent of millennial moms purchase food products featured in the videos they watch. Sixty-nine percent of these highly-engaged moms watch food videos every week, and 68 percent of them will also watch videos while cooking.
  • While three out of four millennial women are open to watching branded food content, close to half (43 percent) have not done so, representing a significant opportunity for brands to gain new audiences.
  • Sixty-eight percent of millennial men described themselves as a “confident cook” – two times more than their millennial female counterparts.
  • Millennial dads are the most engaged with food content on YouTube, watching videos to spark inspiration and create meals. And 42 percent of them will make special trips to the store to buy products they learn about in food videos.
Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 3.51.57 PM

Source: Google

For the foreseeable future, food blogs are not going anywhere. They’ll always have the millennial, Gen X, and boomer generations. But if they want to remain relevant with the younger generation — and let’s be honest, make more money — they should start experimenting on YouTube now!

6 Things to Know About FTC Disclosures When Working with Influencers

Written by: Allie Wester
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Earlier this summer, the Federal Trade Commission updated their Endorsement Guides FAQ for disclosures in digital advertising. This new document helps provide additional clarity into their 2013 Disclosure Guide, which is a bit ambiguous.

In blogger/influencer brand partnerships, it’s always best to make disclosures clear and conspicuous. If you’re not sure if something is clear and conspicuous, take a step back and look at the content through the eyes of a consumer who doesn’t work in the advertising/marketing industry. Assume this consumer has no idea that bloggers, YouTubers, Instagramers, Viners, etc. get paid by brands to market on their behalf. Is it 100% clear that the content is a partnership with a brand? If not, then you have some editing to do! If it is… good job!


Here are some general guidelines that bloggers/influencers and marketers should follow when working on sponsored content:

1. Make sure to clearly disclose relationships in blog posts.

Again, make sure the disclosure is clear and conspicuous. You can say something like, “This post is sponsored by Brand X,” or “This post is in partnership with Brand X.”

2. Disclose relationships in individual social media posts, too.

Typically, influencers promote brand partnerships on social channels that complement their primary channel (such as their blog or YouTube channel). These complementary social channels include Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, etc. If the brand is mentioned in text (e.g., calling out the brand’s Twitter handle) or image (e.g., the product is visible in the Pinterest image), disclosure needs to be included in that individual piece of social content, too.

Linking to a blog post with disclosure is not sufficient. What if someone never clicks on that link?

3. #sp and #spon are not acceptable disclosures on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc. Use #ad instead.

Many bloggers use #sp and #spon as disclosure. This is a common mistake. The FTC Endorsement Guide cites #spon as insufficient and not clear. A consumer may not realize that #spon or #sp is shorthand for “sponsored.” I see their point here; even I, a marketer, read #sp and think, “Spelling error!” (Elementary school essay flashbacks…)

The easiest solve is to use #ad. It uses the least amount of characters and is undeniably clear. For a softer approach, you can disclose in context such as, The easiest BBQ brisket, in partnership with @BrandX: [LINK].”

4. Don’t put #ad in the first comment on Instagram.

If multiple people comment, then it will get buried and no one will see it. It needs to be in the description.

5. On YouTube, make sure disclosure is stated verbally both in the video and in the description.

Make sure that the disclosure is featured in the description above the fold, before the “Show More” link. Additionally, disclosure should be stated verbally at the beginning of the video, since YouTube videos are often embedded and a consumer may never see the description. And, as the FTC says, it’s even better to disclose multiple times throughout the video.

6. If you’re working with a blog network, make sure they call out the brand name in the disclosure. 

Some blog networks have bloggers disclose with a simple “This post is sponsored by Blog Network X,” without any mention of the brand name. The consumer may think Blog Network X is a neutral third party, so it is not sufficient. The brand name must be mentioned.

For further insights and guidance, visit:

FTC Endorsement Guides FAQ

.com Disclosures: How to Make Effective Disclosures in Digital Advertising

Headlines & Stuff

Written by: Christy Wise
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Here are some cool things we read about this past week:

Twitter Launches New Advertising Options
Twitter is remodeling the way it charges advertisers. Twitter currently receives payments if a user interacts in any way with its sponsored ads. This includes retweets, replies, “favorites,” and clicks. Twitter is now introducing a new fee structure that gives advertisers the option to pay based on performance. For instance, a retail store may choose to pay Twitter only when a user clicks through to its website to view a fall collection. Other options include paying specifically when an advertiser gets new followers, has its app downloaded, or gets a user email address.

Facebook Bans Incentivizing Users to Like Pages
Facebook announced two important changes this week to its Platform Policies under games and proper use. The first requires that games which include mandatory or optional in-app charges must now disclose in their app’s description, either on Facebook or other platforms it supports. The second, bans users from incentivizing people to use social plugins or to like a Page. This includes offering rewards, or gating apps or app content based on whether or not a person has liked a Page. It remains acceptable to incentivize people to login to your app, checkin at a place or enter a promotion on your app’s Page.

Facebook Starts Building Ad Links to Instagram
Instagram is conducting a test with Mercedes-Benz that allows the luxury car brand to effectively target Facebook users who previously saw one of its Instagram ads. Brands will soon be able to use Instagram and Facebook to work their way up the purchase funnel. One of the purposes of a test like this is to A/B creative on Facebook and Instagram and glean insight into what images perform better on each platform.

Twitter Just Dropped a Huge Hint that It Will Introduce Shopping Services
The evidence that Twitter is planning a move into e-commerce is stacking up, after a handful of users noticed a new setting for “payment and shipping” on the company’s Android app.  This is the latest in a stream of hints that Twitter is preparing a foray into commerce.

Uber Unveils UberPool
Uber announced a testing option that enables users to split fares on rides with strangers who are traveling on a similar route. UberPool works like the regular Uber service, except it pairs users up with another rider, and notifies them of their co-rider’s first name.

Global Social Media

The new law requiring Russian bloggers to register as media entities and hold themselves to the same standards as full media organizations has come into effect this week. The law is applicable to all blogs that manage to attract more than 3,000 unique visitors per day. Bloggers will need to register with relevant authorities and will be required to cite their physical location. Bloggers will also be required to do more fact-checking before publishing. They are not allowed to use obscene language or produce material that incites criticism from its online audience.  Bloggers that don’t comply will be slapped with a fine of between 10,000 and 30,000 rubles ($80 – $840 US).

Noteworthy Campaigns

Tinder Hijacked to Help Rescue Dogs Get Adopted
Tinder is doing 750 million swipes per day and over 10 million matches per day, with close to a billion total matches since it’s founding in 2012.  The average users spends about 60 minutes per day on Tinder, and logs in around seven times. 3.9 million dogs enter animal shelters each year. Like people searching for relationships on Tinder, these animals are searching for caregivers.  To raise awareness, and ideally, make some matches, animal rescue organization Social Tees hijacked Tinder. Profiles and photos were created for 10 adoptable dogs, with their age manipulated so they would show up as matches for Tinder users. So far, over 1,500 matches have been made, though the number of dogs adopted based on the hijacking has not been confirmed.  Some Tinder users expressed outrage over the initiative via Twitter. Though most think it’s for a worthy cause – especially because 1.2 million dogs each year are euthanized.

Expert Series: Influencer Marketing

Written by: Digitally Approved
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We’re proud to introduce a series of posts in which Fanscape social and digital marketing experts explain best practices and recommended strategies in their related areas of concentration. The first will feature Allie Wester who leads us in Influencer and Blogger Outreach marketing.  Having connected some of the largest brands in the world with some of the most influential voices in social media, Allie knows a thing or two about helping get the word out about a brand’s products or events.
Allie has been with Fanscape since 2008, and her guidance, extensive background in pr, blogger relations, and ongoing insight to social media trends has contributed to countless successful marketing campaigns.
Look for Allie’s regular posts including these:


Pitching to Bloggers

Written by: Digitally Approved
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Is there a specific way to pitch a blogger? How do you get a blogger to respond? Are there ethics or guidelines bloggers need to follow? Fanscape, along with the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA), have published the following white paper highlighting the best practices when it comes to connecting with and engaging a blogger.


Editorial Coverage Or Advertising?

Written by: Digitally Approved
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There has been a lot of buzz in the marketing blogosphere this week about the research brief released by Forrester entitled “Add Sponsored Conversations To Your Toolbox: Why You Should Pay Bloggers To Talk About Your Brand”.

Articles discussing this brief have popped up on Micro Persuasion and AdWeek, among others. The research brief talks about how sponsored blog posts and conversations are going to become more common and this will be a great way to reach consumers. I agree that online influencers such as bloggers are a great way to reach consumers, but is paying bloggers really okay? To me it seems like this rides a fine line between editorial coverage and advertising. There have been ‘sponsored posts’ on blogs for some time, and the distinction between these sponsored posts and regular posts have always been obvious. So if this is done totally transparently, as it should be done, would it really have the same impact as a typical blog post, or would you just skip past it like I do with those ‘sponsored posts’?

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