Rise of the Periscope MicroSponsor

Storm’s a brewin’…
“Oh wow…” Josh said over the phone before starting his next scope, “I’ve not really thought about that.”

Josh Greenbaum is one of Periscope’s most notable and featured stars with around 25,000 Followers and over 9,000,000 hearts (as of June 8). For those of you that don’t understand what this means it means that he is a well loved celebrity on a very new platform that was recently acquired by Twitter for a sizable amount of money (that may be the most boring sentence I’ve ever written).

“Josh, we have to get you a sponsor,” I said, “and I think that you should reach out to Dove Men + Care. They’ve been wonderful sponsors to other events I’ve been involved in.”

My thought was that it would take about one thousand dollars for Dove to fly the good looking young man out to San Francisco for one of the most broadcasted events that man has ever seen and that he could plug them on a few scopes, add “sponsored” to his site and hashtag a few things. Josh is well known for his cool hair that he flips majestically in front of the camera as though James Dean lived in the slacker 90’s. It would be the best testing ground for a new brand of celebrity that is more directly engaged with an audience than any celebrity on earth.

Boom perfect fit, right?… done, right?


There are a few disconnects…

  1. Inexperienced celebrities — Josh works full-time in retail and does not have the business background to think about making some boilerplate email to reach out to sponsors. He doesn’t have the connections.
  2. Unaware Brands — Brands are amazed by Periscope but have no idea how to utilize it (#trainwreck). Their Twitter followers aren’t just sitting there waiting for them and they don’t realize how slow and painful the build or how steep the learning curve is.

We are in The Wild West right now and as a Periscope expert I watch and cringe as I see these initial attempts that end with forgotten accounts.

Another popular “show” on Periscope is Sock Cop. He is one of the few E-Listers that has monetized in any way. To begin with, he began selling Sock Cop T-shirts (mine is in the mail) and then he was approached by a car dealership in Canada as a sponsor. They worked out the numbers and now the Mills Motors sign is behind the puppet when he does his hilarious routine.

A Canadian car dealership is sponsoring a sock puppet show in Alabama…

I’ll let that sink in for a moment.

What’s the likelihood that Mills Motors would get mentioned in an article that will be seen by some of the most powerful thought leaders in America without Periscope or that a sock puppet would be doing a routine with Tom Green just a few months after the mustache was glued to the seam?

Bupkis. Nada. Needle meet haystack…

MicroSponsorship needs to be your next strategy as a brand. The E-Listers are meeting with the A-Listers and the interesting thing is how amazed the A-Listers are in them. Take my friend Bradley Laborman AKA BradManTV. He is constantly live in New York with the most famous of the famous, he deals with AOL and Mashable and will continue to grow in popularity and in relevance.

BradMan is not only one of the original stars of Periscope, he lives and breathes to develop the community and will be coming out with ingenious ways to connect sponsors with brands and new uses for the platform. He is one of the thought leaders within the platform… and he’s damn entertaining.

Take Dan Moore, one of the most loved travel scopers. He’s sponsored by Cover-More Travel Insurance.

“People think I own the company because it’s ‘More’ like my last name,” said Dan over the phone and on the other side of the world from me, “My friends think that I am in charge of their Instagram or something.”
Hearts can be a visible metric but content and engagment are the most important factors for scopers and brands.

As Periscope progresses we will see an upward trend of engaged audiences and quality content as the downloads pile in. We will see brands clamoring to find ways to engage with this new audience. We will see amazing things from the two big Periscope events: New York Scope Week in September and Periscope Summit in San Francisco January. We will see stars emerge in music (SamKingTV, Gentri & Tom Rhodes), art (please check out Amanda Oleander) self help (Alexa Rose Carlin) and we will have the opportunity to KNOW them before they are famous.

The landscape is ready.

“So…. Mills Motors just approached you?” I asked Jason Cooper, the man behind Sock Cop.

“Yeah, we’re trying out a monthly thing.” he said in his cool southern voice that sounds nothing like his fast-talking alter ego.

“You’re always drinking Dr. Pepper on your show. Why don’t you see if they’ll sponsor you? You could really have some fun with that.”

“Oh man,” he said, “I’ve definitely thought about it.”

My opinion is that Jason doesn’t have time to work 40 hours a week at a regular job, feed content into Periscope and strategically culminate relationships with brands. The future will be with management companies representing these celebrities. At this point management companies make the most sense because the E-Listers aren’t seeing the BIG picture.

While much of this is very tiny right now the real point of this article is that…


just maybe

Dr. Pepper needs to start thinking that small…

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