The North Face is a brand that is effectively using YouTube to promote their brand. They do this by growing their online community, in addition to other platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google, and Instagram. Many of these platforms have gained large followings. Their YouTube channel has approximately 168,000 followers. The North Face produces quality content on their channel which is evident from the production value of the videos. The videos are crisp, clean, very well shot. The content of the videos is very interesting. It helps that many of the backdrops are amazing landscapes and outdoor sceneries which are very visually appealing. The professional quality of the videos adds credibility to The North Face’s brand. They have divided their video content into several categories named after different activities and topics. There is also a category just for The North Face commercials. These videos each have millions of views. These commercials could be considered “viral content”. The videos include expositions carried out by prominent athletes and are very personal, with the use of hand-held cameras (or what appears to be a hand-held camera). These athletes are promoting The North Face message and vision, and the products, as they test them during the expeditions, for durability, reliability, etc.
In addition, The North Face uses YouTube well because they use it to educate and inform their audience. Not only does it cater to their outdoor adventure market, it also provides lifestyle information. YouTube is also a source of entertainment for the brand’s followers. The North Face strategically uses storytelling as a powerful tool in all their videos. Video content includes exposés of athletes and sponsored athletes doing daredevil feats. The North Face’s director of digital marketing, Eric Oliver, has stated that “it’s [all] about storytelling. Compelling content on YouTube is a great way to maintain the conversation and let fans and subscribers know our athletes are not only accomplishing great feats but testing our products while they are on the expeditions” (Outdoorindustry.org, “Outdoor Brands Use YouTube”). The North Face’s YouTube channel gets a lot of traffic, and they use this to their advantage by cross-promoting their other platforms and networks. For example, on their YouTube homepage as well as on every video, they link to their website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and The North Face Journal.
The North Face has region-specific channels, such as The North Face Korea. The North Face has created two viral videos, titled “The North Face #Sudden Exploration #VR Experience with Oculus” and “The North Face ‘Never Stop Exploring’ Video”. In both videos, The North Face created an experience for its fans (in the video), and documented that for its brand followers to watch. The ‘Never Stop Exploring’ video has garnered over 12 million views, and even though it was done The North Face’s Korean audience, adding English subtitles made it accessible to an even wider audience.
In conclusion, The North Face uses YouTube effectively by creating an emphasis on storytelling, emotion and experience, rather than trying to sell a product. They also are creative in promoting the outdoor adventure/active lifestyle which encapsulates all their product offerings. Most importantly, they try to sell a message and passion for this lifestyle. The authenticity presented in the video content helps The North Face promote their brand as well.
Outdoorindustry.org. “Outdoor Brands Use YouTube to Inspire and Educate their Audiences — Outdoor Industry Association.” Outdoor Industry Association. Outdoorindustry.org, n.d. Web. 2 Mar. 2017.