Just Authorize Already!

Most people working in established industries rarely see the rulebook change. In the years I’ve been working with social media influencers, I’ve seen the rulebook change about every 6 months. That’s what you get when you’re defining a new medium, I guess!

Let’s talk about data permission through the lens of influencer marketing. In order to bring creators and advertisers together, the content needs to fit the sponsors’ identity, and there needs to be some true synergies between each party. But most importantly, advertisers need to check that the creator’s account reaches their target audience demographics and geography, and verify the authenticity of that audience. It’s easy to see if an influencer aligns with your brand message, identity, and values but much harder to understand audience and performance data by simply looking at an influencer’s social profile.

The best way for advertisers to access private audience data for an influencer’s social profile is by providing authorized data access to a trusted, secure third party.

The authorization process allows an influencer to grant permission to a third-party platform to access private data about his or her social account. For example, you’ve probably encountered a social authorization when logging into a tool like Spotify using Google or Facebook. At Paladin, our platform allows influencers to provide authorized data access to their trusted agents and managers in order to help identify ways to grow their audience and work with advertisers on branded content campaigns.

Providing an authorization offers valuable insight beyond publicly available metrics like followers, views, and engagements into meaningful data like audience demographics, impressions, and watch time. Such data points are essential for helping advertisers make an informed decision about which influencers to work with on a given marketing campaign.

Influencers, I know you’re worried about your account security and data privacy, but this system gives you complete control, unlike past relationships with MCNs. Let’s examine why this approach is also better for your needs :

  • Provide data access without sharing login credentials – Sharing your social media passwords, even with someone you trust, can lead to accidents or data breaches. Authorizing a third party to access your data is a much better alternative because it allows you to grant or remove data access at any time via your social account settings. Further, you can choose to only grant authorization to apps requesting ‘read only’ permissions (like Paladin), preventing others from posting, deleting, or changing your content.
  • Demonstrate your value to potential advertisers – There’s a ton of money up for grabs at the moment. By providing your agent or manager with real-time data, they can work on your behalf much faster and share your story with potential sponsors.
  • Ditch the Screenshots – Tired of sending screenshots? Agents and managers are sick of asking for them too. The faster your representation can report on a campaign, the faster you get paid, and they can start working on the next one.
  • Be a Market Leader – The more you know about what sponsors expect and how agencies operate, the more likely you’ll be frequently approached with offers.

Influencer agencies, there’s a ton of you popping up, seemingly overnight. I’m not the only one who’s noticed; brands have picked up on it too. Claiming that “influencers just won’t authorize” is the equivalent of trying to sell TV inventory without a Neilson report. Let’s think more about the advantages of authorizing:

  • Outshine the competition – With a complete roster of authorized social accounts, you can crank out RFPs at light speed, rather than individually sourcing data from creators and manually building presentations.
  • Get REAL data – Unfortunately, some influencers exaggerate their reach or even photoshop screenshots of their data, which can lead to unrealistic expectations and false reporting. Authorized data doesn’t lie. It gives you a direct line to real-time data to make sure you’re working with the right partners every time.
  • Streamline your communication workflow – Continuous access to authorized data allows your team to move much faster. Build RFPs that demonstrate your trusted relationship with the influencers you’re recommending to help shorten the sales cycle and inspire confidence in your client.
  • Be a greater asset – With the right data permissions, your team can offer more complete support to creators. Channel optimization and audience growth are established services that have been offered for years. *Prediction* The first influencer agency that can offer effective channel management at scale will break the model and move onto the next level of industry recognition.

As the changing nature of this industry has forced me to do, I’m always anticipating what’s coming next. But what isn’t changing is the basic data points on which we buy and sell media. Therefore pushing for 100% authorization within your stable of influencers is a safe goal to aim for.

Need some help getting that strategy off of the ground? Shoot me a message. I’m happy to help!

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Top 10 Biggest Losers from YouTube’s Latest Subscriber Purge

Top 10 Biggest Losers from YouTube’s Latest Subscriber Purge

What Happened: YouTube Purged Spammy Subscribers

Earlier this month YouTube announced some channels may see a drop in their Subscriber counts on December 13th, stating “We’ve recently identified and fixed an issue that caused some spam not to be removed.”

It’s not unusual for YouTube to remove accounts. Over Q3 of 2018 YouTube removed over 1.6 million accounts, 79.6% of which were had community guideline violations for being misleading, spam, or scams. 

Of the 30 million YouTube channels that Paladin Software tracks every day to power our Locator app, which helps businesses easily find creators to work with, we typically see around 500,000 channels lose 1 or more subscribers every day. However, from December 13-14 we saw a massive increase, showing over 2 million channels lost subscribers.

Small Channels Lost More Subscribers than Big Channels

Such subscriber loss appears to have affected smaller channels 3x more than larger channels in terms of the percentage of subscribers lost. This is particularly painful for emerging channels pushed below the 1,000 subscriber threshold required monetize their content with ads on YouTube.

Some data on how loss was distributed by channel popularity:

1,000+ Subscribers:

  • Average loss: 90
  • Standard deviation: 850
  • Standard deviation: 3%
  • Percent loss: -0.6%

10,000+ Subscribers:

  • Average loss: 220
  • Standard deviation: 1,443
  • Standard deviation: 1.5%
  • Percent loss: -0.2%

100,000+ Subscribers:

  • Average loss: 810
  • Standard deviation: 2,670
  • Standard deviation: 0.6%
  • Percent loss: -0.2%

So, who lost the most? Check out our handy table below to find out:

Which Channels Lost the Most Subscribers?

YouTube Channels that lost the most subscribers on the December 13-14, 2018 spam purge.

Most of this top 10 list shows big exceptions to the averages seen across the 30 million channels Paladin tracks. While it was more typical across YouTube to lose small percentages of total subscribers, most of the channels on this top 10 list took enormous hits.

There were a few channels in the top 10 who had more typical loss behavior though, with established YouTube players 5-Minute Crafts and WWE both losing small fractions of their base, despite losing 93,198 and 89,098 subscribers, respectively.

Overall, it’s a good thing to see YouTube policing its ecosystem and prioritizing genuine engagement. Bye bye, bots!


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