Sony has launched a new marketing initiative directed toward vloggers, aimed at teaching up-and-coming video bloggers while simultaneously promoting its gear as epic for shooting video.
Vlog With Sony is a new microsite and Sony Vlogger Academy is a series of in-depth workshops taking place later this year.
For the uninitiated, vloggers are people creating video content primarily for YouTube. The vlog is a new alternative media, like podcasts, that’s becoming a powerful and profitable business venture. ‘Da youth’ these days prefer to watch others excitedly ‘unbox’ products on YouTube, over whatever lowbrow reality TV is served to them by the struggling commercial networks.
‘We used to dream about being rockstars and astronauts. Now we blow out the candles and wish for YouTube fame and glory on the ‘gram,’ Sony says, without cringing the teeniest bit.
Sony has recruited Australian and New Zealand vloggers Jake Rich, Elly Awesome, Flying The Nest, Daneger and Stacey, Kim Dao, and Stefan Howorth. The team was flown to South Korea to film a series of ‘how-to’ videos for tips and tricks on how to make authentic video content.
While photographers typically prefer being behind a camera, vloggers point the lens at themselves (perhaps aided with a flippy screen or selfie stick) and harp on about anything. Many do it in shamelessly and courageously public spaces.
‘Vlogging is one of those weird things where if you become aware of how odd you look, or how odd you are to other people you start thinking like them,’ Daneger said Sony’s second vlog. ‘In the moment it’s very easy to be like “oh there’s too many people, this probably isn’t the right scene”. So you walk somewhere and hide around a corner to vlog something. But that’s not as real. It’s not interesting for the viewer either.’
Sony has primarily recruited hip Millennial travel and fashion vloggers, but practically all interests and activities have video blog potential. Elly Awesome, for example, has undergone a slight branding transformation, but her claim to fame is a ‘taste test’ video of her eating American junk food from five years ago – 1.4 million views.
Sony is promoting its nifty little RX0 II action cam, paired with a Stereo Mic and Shooting Grip, as a perfect vlogging tool; as well as the a6400 equipped with a Gun Zoom mic, remote control tripod, and accessory bracket.
Vlog With Sony is the next major marketing initiative after Sony Scene, a team of enthusiastic ambassadors recruited to host workshops and create content aimed toward Sony enthusiasts.
Sony appears to be marketing to the next generation of photographers through both initiatives. The imagery published with both initiatives shows Sony shooters as hip, young adventurous types.
It makes sense for Sony, a company fresh to premium photography gear, to target the new markets of online video bloggers and young photographers, rather than win over established photographers committed to another ‘eco-system’.