Over the last decade, the internet has evolved in paradigm-shifting ways. This is especially true for newer generations that have grown up with this web 2.0 revolution that turned the public into content creators. However, it seems that a lot of corporate industries have yet to catch on to this trend.
YouTuber Doug DeMuro released a new video today opening up about his difficulties dealing with automakers. DeMuro touts himself as the world's most famous car reviewer on YouTube with 3.24M subscribers, averaging 1.1M views per video. In this video he addresses his upcoming Corvette C8 review, which he referred to as “the most requested car review” since he began making videos 6 years ago, and why he's been late to review it.
The Corvette C8 will not be out until some time in 2020, but it was announced back in July and DeMuro's fans are used to him reviewing cars before they become available. In his video, he claims to have been the first to review the Tesla Model 3, among other “firsts.”
DeMuro claimed that the cause of this delay is that automakers generally don't take YouTubers seriously as legitimate journalists. “They see us as influencers,” he explained. “Like people on Instagram trying to peddle face cream.” He claims to have been told that “YouTube is for kids and entertainment.”
He goes on to point out that his most popular videos are in fact SUVs and family vehicles, not the super flashy sports cars that kids would be interested in. He claimed that people constantly attribute their car-purchasing decisions to him. Despite all that, his emails to automakers often never receive a response.
Surveys dating back to as early as 2013 show that 53% of US consumers have made purchasing decisions based on YouTube videos. Another survey from 2014 found that 73% will make a purchase after watching a video.
This is in-line with what smartphone manufacturers and tech makers have known and invested in for years now. Tech YouTubers get invited to their press conferences and launch events, alongside journalists, to prepare their reviews.