One of the most amazing channels on the Internet that many companies fail to recognize in their social media strategies is YouTube. The impact of the content on YouTube was brought to attention this past week when their most popular personality, Felix Kjellberg, known as his screenname PewDiePie, was dropped from the site because of his content that included crude anti-Semitic jokes and references to Hitler. Kjellberg’s sponsors also stated that they would not work with him again because of his crude comedy.
This situation has raised many questions about the level of vetting and oversight that advertisers and media companies should have for social media influencers and the content they are creating. Many companies choose to work with social media influencers rather than well-known regular celebrities because they are cheaper to work with. However, I believe that the standards need to be the same for both groups of people.
If a brand chooses to work with a person it is important to conduct full audits, background checks and understand risks associated with them. In the instance of Kjellberg’s association, his sponsors and YouTube should have been paying more attention to the content he was posting for the world to see, because their name is attached to everything he publishes.
The internet is a great place to advertise one’s brand however, because it’s such a big place it is important to be frequently checking who you’re associating with and what image they are sending out.