Audience development executives or showrunners are always on the lookout for content that no one else is creating and spend most of their time looking for new categories of content that are already getting surprising results – before everyone else in the digital video marketing business has spotted these trends, too.

In Tubular’s latest ‘State of Online Video’ report, we take an in-depth look at the trends in short-form video from the first half of 2018, and the opportunities that showrunners, media companies, and digital first publishers can act on as part of their social video creation and distribution strategy in Q3 and Q4 2018. Data-driven video content is becoming the cornerstone of digital marketing campaigns and our latest report will give you the heads-up on:

  • The latest global mega-trends in video content
  • Insights into rising video content in Q3 2018
  • The evolution of evergreen content
  • Hot creators to watch
Download the New Q2 2018 State of Online Video Report Today! Get All the Latest Video Insights and Trends

“Sent Me” Videos Grow Steadily Since End of 2017

Industry watchers will know that “haul” and “unboxing” videos have been a major trend on YouTube since 2007. This content has not only sky-rocketed some major influencers into super-stardom along the way, but also provided incredible sponsorship opportunities for fashion, beauty, and tech brands.

In Q4 2017, Tubular noticed a new trend emerging around the evergreen haul and unboxing content: the “sent me” video. Highlighting the way top creators will adapt their content (and video titles) to capitalize on the latest viewer interests, many “sent me” videos follow the traditional unboxing format, but embrace a wider collection of items to reveal, including those from fans or unknown sources as well as sponsors and brands.

As the chart below illustrates, there were 21 million views of “sent me” videos in October 2017, and this trend flew under the radar up to 25 million views in April 2018. But, there were 65 million views of this emerging category in Q1 2018 and it saw over 20% growth from March to April.

YouTube Views for ‘Sent Me’ Videos: All Data via Tubular’s ‘Q2 2018 State of Online Video Report’

Why does this represent a real opportunity for Showrunners? The answer lies in seven parts.

First, Ali-A, an influencer in the gaming genre, uploaded “FORTNITE sent me a *SECRET PACKAGE* – WHAT’S INSIDE?” on April 20, 2018, and it got 5.4 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is more than 10x above average.

Second, RiceGum, an influencer in the entertainment genre, uploaded “YouTube Sent Me The Wrong Play Button (10 Million Subscribers)” on May 1, 2018, and it got 2.7 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 4.9x above average. Third, notnotryan, an influencer in the general interest genre, uploaded “My friend sent me this video of a bison in his car with no context” on February 23, 2018, and it got 2.6 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 1.7x above average. Fourth, grav3yardgirl, an influencer in the beauty genre, uploaded “EBAY Sent Me A MYSTERY BOX?!” on December 10, 2017, and it got 1.4 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 4.8x above average.

Fifth, Mo Vlogs, an influencer in the people & blogs genre, uploaded “A Company sent me $50,000 in CASH !!!” on January 4, 2018, and it got 1.3 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 4.0x above average.

Sixth, check out “Yesterday @amyschumer sent me her new movie I Feel Pretty (its because I’m obsessed with her)” by Selena Gomez, an American singer, actress, and producer.  Uploaded April 20, 2018, this Instavid got 21.2 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 1.5x above average. And seventh, watch “My drunk friend sent this to me at 4 am” by Machinima, a next-generation video entertainment network for the gamer lifestyle and beyond. Uploaded on January 10, 2018, this video got 16.5 million views in the first 30 days and an engagement rate that is 1.4x above average.

In other words, “sent me” videos have jumped across multiple genres and several platforms. That means this trend isn’t likely to fade anytime soon.

Download the New Q2 2018 State of Online Video Report Today! Get All the Latest Video Insights and Trends