Auto brands not fully aware of YouTube footprint: study

Stats show the importance of influencers when it comes to how car brands are perceived on the platform, says analytics firm Octoly.
December 4, 2014

Automotive brands are not fully aware of their YouTube footprint, claims a new study from Octoly, a brand-management software company that offers analytics for the platform.

Titled “YouTube, Automotive, and the Power of Earned Media,” the report released Thursday found that 9.9% of all views about car companies on

“This study shows just how crucial YouTube creators are in the perception of automotive brands in online video,”said Thomas Owadenko, Octoly’s CEO and founder, in a statement.

“While brands do get the conversation started with videos on their own channels, the main share-of-voice then moves on to YouTube influencers, whose videos get 90% of the views about automotive. This means that there’s a huge unseen brand footprint on YouTube that brands themselves don’t even know about,” Owadenko added.

However, brands within this category are very active in the online video space: recent web series and digital projects have touted sponsorships from Toyota, Ford Motor Company and Hyundai. The sponsorships are in addition to the brands’ own YouTube channels that are localized for each market.

Octoly, which ranked 50 international auto brands across all videos on YouTube worldwide, found a total of 1,049 YouTube channels managed by car companies. Ford has the biggest network in the category with 48 channels (including Ford Go Further, pictured), followed by Audi and Volkswagen with 46 channels each, according to the study.

But when it came to which brand had the most overall views, the title goes to BMW, which has 36 branded channels worldwide that accounted for 3.6% of its overall 174 million views. Fan-created videos accounted for 96.4% of the total.

“While of course no brand can really control exactly what is said in earned media (in this case earned media is what creators are saying about brands on their own channels), they certainly can communicate with creators and incentivize them,” Dane Golden, VP of marketing and client services at Octoly, tells StreamDaily via email.

Screengrab from a recent Ford YouTube clip “Go Further”

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One Comment »

  • Dane Golden said:

    Thanks for the mention of Octoly StreamDaily! If readers have any questions about the study, I’ll be happy to answer them here in the comments, thanks!

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