YouTube is one of the most popular platforms for video content, with over 2 billion monthly active users. As an influential marketing channel, finding and partnering with the right YouTube influencers can be a highly effective strategy for businesses looking to drive awareness, engagement, and sales.
But with so many creators on the platform, how do you identify and connect with the influencers that best align with your brand? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the top methods and platforms for discovering relevant YouTube influencers for your next influencer marketing campaign.
Why Partner with YouTube Influencers?
Before diving into influencer discovery tips, let’s first look at why YouTube influencer marketing should be part of your strategy:
Massive reach: Top YouTube creators have millions of engaged subscribers watching their content regularly. Partnering with nano, micro or macro influencers provides instant access to these large, loyal audiences.
Trust and credibility: According to Twitter, 83% of consumers trust recommendations from influencers over traditional ads and celebrity endorsements. Viewers see YouTube influencers as trusted experts.
Entertaining and engaging content: YouTube videos are interactive, visual, and entertaining. Audiences are more likely to watch and share interesting or funny branded video sponsorships.
Sales impact: From awareness to consideration and conversion, YouTube influencer marketing delivers real ROI across the sales funnel when done right.
Now let’s explore tips for finding the right YouTube influencers for your niche, audience, products, and campaigns.
6 Ways to Find YouTube Influencers for Your Brand
Here are six of the most effective methods for discovering potential YouTube influencer partners:
1. Search Google
One of the easiest ways to start finding YouTube influencers is good old Google. Simply search for relevant keywords like:
- [Your industry or niche] + “YouTube influencers”
- [Your product or brand] + “YouTube reviews”
- [Your location] + “YouTube vloggers”
You’ll find articles and lists showcasing some of the top YouTube stars and rising nano or micro-influencers in your category. While far from comprehensive, this can give you a jumpstart on potential influencers worth evaluating.
For example, searching “beauty YouTube influencers 2023” surfaces star creators like Jeffree Star, NikkieTutorials, and James Charles. You can dive into their channels to understand if their content, audience, and brand fit make sense for a partnership.
2. Use YouTube’s Trending Tab
YouTube’s Trending tab showcases the platform’s currently most popular videos. Checking what’s trending can clue you into rising viral videos from up-and-coming creators. It can also reveal opportunities to partner around timely topics and trends relevant to your brand.
However, YouTube’s Trending section features all kinds of popular videos, not just influencer content. Use filters like “most popular” and focus on clips over 10 minutes (common YouTube influencer content length) to narrow your search.
You can also search Trending content based on geography to find locally relevant influencers in your target location.
3. Check Out Previously Sponsored Content
An effective way to find YouTube influencers open to and experienced with paid brand partnerships is to explore their backlog of sponsored videos.
Most YouTube influencers properly tag and disclose paid or gifted video sponsorships with brands. Go through recent videos from creators in your niche and look for common hashtags like #Ad, #Sponsored, or #BrandPartner.
Seeing positive examples of past YouTube sponsorships gives you evidence that an influencer is open to and effective at integrating branded content.
4. Search Hashtags
Hashtag searches are another useful discovery method for finding potential influencer partners on YouTube. Identify popular and relevant hashtags in your niche like #BeautyGuru, #Gaming, or #Unboxing.
Search these hashtags and filter by most popular. Look for videos from creators properly using niche hashtags to tag their own content. Their organic use of relevant hashtags signals they reach and understand your target demographic.
You can also search branded hashtags like #SephoraHaul or #AppleEvent to find YouTubers actively talking about or reviewing your products.
5. Meet Influencers at Events
Industry events, conferences, or meetups are valuable in-person venues for networking with YouTube influencers. Top creators often attend influential marketing events or fan conventions like VidCon, Playlist Live or ComicCon.
See if popular YouTube influencers will be speaking at or attending any upcoming events for your industry. These provide a chance for in-person networking to gauge interest and laying the foundation for a future paid partnership.
6. Use Influencer Marketing Platforms
Dedicated influencer marketing platforms provide powerful analytics and discovery tools for finding and vetting YouTube influencers. Most maintain extensive databases of influencer profiles across YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and more.
These platforms let you search for creators based on audience demographics, engagement metrics, content topics and other filters. They provide consolidated performance data to evaluate relevance and impact.
We’ll highlight the top influencer marketing platforms later in this guide.
Best Platforms to Find YouTube Influencers
Influencer marketing platforms streamline discovery and campaign management with YouTube influencers. Here are 7 top platforms for finding YouTube influencers:
Ainfluencer is an intuitive self-serve influencer marketplace used by over 12,000 brands. Key features include:
- Search database of over 2 million global influencers
- Filter by platform, audience, engagements, location
- Free basic plan for brands
Ainfluencer makes it easy to identify and connect with relevant YouTube creators that match your target audience and partnership goals.
Formerly Revfluence, Aspire boasts one of the largest US-focused influencer databases with over 400k profiles. Discovery options for YouTube and other platforms include:
- Filters like age, gender, location
- Engagement and audience size parameters
- Content analysis: categories, sentiment, keywords
- Campaign management and reporting
Aspire provides deep analytics on YouTube creators to gauge audience quality and content relevance.
French startup Upfluence operates in over 100 countries with 500k mid-tier and nano-influencers on social platforms like YouTube. Key partner search features include:
- Granular filters: language, gender, topics, posts/week
- Location search down to the city level
- Priority weighting for search criteria
Upfluence offers both free and paid tiers based on number of campaigns and features.
NeoReach features over 875k influencer profiles with campaign management tools for Instagram, TikTok, Twitch and YouTube. Their cloud-based partner search, contracting and payments facilitate end-to-end influencer program execution.
Grin provides an influencer CRM to streamline relationship-building with YouTube creators and other social media talent. Features include:
- Search database of over 2 million influencers globally
- Contact management and email productivity tools
- In-depth influence profiles and analytics
- Schedule posts and track campaign performance
Tribe caters to enterprise influencer marketing for major brands. Alongside powerful campaign management tools, Tribe indexes over 1 million global influencers. YouTube and Instagram are currently their most robust platform databases.
Their proprietary algorithm assesses creators based on engagement levels vs audience size for more advanced filtering. Custom reporting provides impact analysis on key brand metrics.
Used by over 4,000 global brands, SocialBook combines competitive benchmarking, audience insights, creator discovery and campaign planning tools.
With their Chrome extension, get at-a-glance profile stats as you browse YouTube. Or access their searchable influencer database filtering by location, gender, age range and interests.
SocialBook offers tailored enterprise plans but has free tools to support getting started.
Tips for Evaluating YouTube Influencers
With a robust list of potential YouTube partners, next evaluate creators that best align with your brand and campaign goals. Consider factors like:
Niche Relevance: Do they create content around topics important to your target audience?
Content Quality: Is their content professional, appealing and effectively engaging?
Audience Personas: Does their subscriber base match your ideal customer demographics and psychographics?
Previous Sponsors: Have they worked with complementary brands or companies in your vertical?
Engagement Metrics: Ultilize benchmarks for views, comments and likes relative to audience size in their niche to gauge involvement.
Tracking down and vetting potential YouTube influencers takes work. But the audience access, trust and conversions driven make the effort well worth it.
The platforms and tactics covered in this guide provide a 360-degree approach to streamlining relevant YouTube influencer discovery. Identify and connect with creators that move audiences in your niche to accelerate awareness, interest and sales.
FAQs About YouTube Influencer Marketing
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions around finding and partnering with YouTube influencers:
What engagement rate is good for a YouTube influencer?
Engagement rate benchmarks vary greatly by niche on YouTube. For example, gaming and comedy verticals see much higher comment rates versus beauty or food.
As a general rule of thumb, here are strong engagement rates for YouTube:
- Views: 5-10% of subscriber count
- Likes: 5-10% of views
- Shares: 20+
- Comments: 5-10% of views
- Watch time: Over 2 minutes average
Of course, rates will scale down for macro influencers with 7-8 figure subscriber counts. Compare to other creators in their vertical to gauge reasonable expectations.
How much do YouTube influencers charge?
Influencer pay rates differ greatly based on audience size, production values and vertical, typically:
- Nano creators (1k subs): $100 to $500
- Micro influencers (100k subs): $2,000 to $10k
- Mid-tier influencers (500k subs): $10k to $50k
- Macro creators (1M+ subs): $75,000+
Be sure to factor in production costs for high quality videos which varies by creator. Discussion sponsorship opportunities through pricing, barter/gifting, affiliate commissions, or revenue share approaches to find fitting creative compensation models.
How many subscribers do you need to be an influencer on YouTube?
There’s no definite threshold, but here’s a generalsubscriber tier model:
- Nano influencer: Over 1,000 subscribers
- Micro influencer: 10,000+ subscribers
- Mid-tier influencer: 100,000 to 500k subscribers
- Macro influencer: 1 million+ subscribers
Even creators with only a few thousand dedicated subscribers still provide great value aligning with niche microbrands. With custom affiliate links and codes, conversions generated from shoutouts can deliver solid ROI working with sub-10k channels.
Hopefully this guide has equipped you to effectively identify YouTube influencers ideal for your niche, brand and next influencer marketing campaign goals.
Key takeaways include:
- YouTube influencers expand brand reach through borrowed trust and entertaining content
- Optimize Google, hashtags, events and influencer platforms to discover relevant creators
- Benchmark engagement rates and track records to quantify potential impact
- Compensate influencers through a variety of pricing models and partnership structures
Ready to connect with YouTube influencers that drive real business growth? The platforms listed above facilitate streamlined influencer discovery and campaign management to amplify your impact on the world’s second largest search engine.