We all remember the first time that we watched “DollarShaveClub.com – Our Blades Are F***ing Great.” Published in March 2012, the oldest video on Dollar Shave Club’s YouTube channel currently has 24.7 million views and 180,000 engagements, according to Tubular Labs.

This video literally launched the company, and generated an incredible number of views, and engagements. The brand’s second video, “Let’s Talk About #2,” is the second most popular one on YouTube. Published June 4, 2013, it currently has 3.5 million views and 22,000 engagements.

Now, this might lead some video marketers to mistakenly think that the brand that makes and delivers everything you need to look, feel, and shave like a million bucks — without paying it – is a “one-hit wonder.” But they would be wrongedy-wrong-wrong.

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Dollar Shave Club & Sponsored Video

Lately, Dollar Shave Club has been cleverly using sponsored video, the industry’s fastest growing marketing channel, to accomplish something that hasn’t been seen in these parts for more than 140 years. In fact, this form of collaboration was first described by Mark Twain in Chapter 2 of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, which was published way back in 1876. That’s right, Dollar Shave Club has figured out how to get its friends to whitewash the modern equivalent of Aunt Polly’s fence, or to be more literal, the brand is sponsoring a wide variety of influencers to create sponsored videos on YouTube and Facebook that are engaging and also happen to promote the brand’s amazing razors and grooming products.

So, how are they doing? Well, I’m glad you asked. According to Tubular’s new sponsored social video intelligence product, DealMaker, Dollar Shave Club is currently working with 24 content partners, who have created 69 sponsored videos The most popular is “8 Groovy grooming hacks to keep you feelin’ fly this summer!” Uploaded to Blossom’s Facebook page on July 21, 2017, this “hack video” currently has 24.4 million views and 662,000 engagements.

A second sponsored video, “Samsung Galaxy S8 – Does It Suck?,” was uploaded to the Unbox Therapy YouTube channel on April 3, 2017. This review video currently has 5.8 million views and 113,000 engagements.

A third sponsored video, “Cheating,” was uploaded to the Domics YouTube channel on May 20, 2017. This animated video currently has 4.6 million views and 212,000 engagements.

Sponsored Video = Higher Engagement

So, Dollar Shave Club has sponsored three videos that have already received more views and engagements than their own better known “viral videos” did from a couple of years ago. And these are just the top 3 examples. There are 66 more videos in the campaign.

Okay, so the brand is getting views and engagements from sponsored videos. But, what’s that doing for Dollar Shave Club in real life? Well, according to a recent article in the Financial Times, no brand in the shaving products sector has matched Dollar Shave Club’s rapid growth during the past seven years. The company’s 3 million subscribers spent a reported $160 million last year. Which is why Unilever acquired Dollar Shave Club last year for $1 billion.

So, I’d say this was a success story that other video marketers should study. And this is just one campaign out of many that 7,782 sponsors and 8,701 partners have launched in just the past 90 days, according to Tubular’s new Dealmaker product.

If you haven’t checked out Dealmaker yet, you should. It tracks over 140,000 sponsored videos, 15,000 brand sponsors, 15,000 content partners, and 30,000 campaigns on Facebook and YouTube. I should disclose that Tubular Labs is the publisher of Tubular Insights. But, I discovered this story by poking around through the Dealmaker data on my own. And, by my calculations, I’ve barely scratched the surface.

According to Rob Gabel, CEO and Founder of Tubular Labs, there will be over 24 billion views on sponsored content in 2017 with over $1.2 billion in media value, and that is expected to grow to $8 billion over the next several years as the industry matures. Gabel says, “It’s clear that the biggest opportunity today in social video is sponsored content.”

So, when I suggest that you check out DealMaker, I’m not asking you to whitewash Aunt Polly’s fence. I’m merely pointing out the blind spot in our overall view of the social video landscape. All of us look at our YouTube Analytics and Facebook Page Insights to see how we’re doing. Many of us use tools like Tubular Labs to see how our competitors are doing on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. But, to discover what Dollar Shave Club is doing, I needed a different perspective of the social video ecosystem. And DealMaker’s data is independent, impartial and unbiased.

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