Twitter lands Sky as biggest UK advertiser for influencer platform Niche

Sky has become the biggest advertiser to launch a campaign with Niche, the Twitter-owned service which connects brands with online creators and influencers.

Niche: the Twitter-owned platform boasts UK clients such as Apple, Unilever and now Sky
Niche: the Twitter-owned platform boasts UK clients such as Apple, Unilever and now Sky

Niche was acquired by Twitter last February, and matchmakes brands with online celebrities and creatives on Twitter-owned Vine, Snapchat and Instagram.

Sky is using Niche to push Sky Go, its streaming service targeted at the cord-cutting generation.

Via Niche, it has partnered with eight creators, most of whom are probably unknown to anyone older than 24, but who each command anywhere from 50,000 to several million followers across their social channels.

Rather than push out Sky creative, each social celeb has created their own sketch to "subtly" illustrate the benefits of Sky Go – such as the fact that it's "free"(if you're already a Sky TV subscriber).

The issue Sky faces is that younger audiences living at home are unaware they can crib off their parents' Sky subscription to log into Sky Go, and share their logins with friends.

Aside from pointing out these benefits, the sketches will also showcase Sky's content and give use cases for Sky Go, and will be pushed as promoted tweets and by whitelisting – a function which allows an advertiser to promote someone else's tweets.

Niche will be running a survey after the two-month campaign, which launches 31 May, to determine whether the target audience has become more aware of Sky Go. The company also worked with MediaCom, Sky's media agency of record.

This is Sky's first ad campaign with Niche and the broadcaster is the platform's biggest UK advertiser to date.

Luke Bradley-Jones, director of TV and content products at Sky, told Campaign in a statement: "We decided to partner with Niche to explore new ways to reach our customers as well as exciting and creative ways of engaging with younger social audiences.

"Working with Niche on Sky’s social campaigns will allow us to reach more people, and crucially, give us more of an insight into what they love about Sky."

The creatives in the campaign include Emily CanhamHolly Horne and Yasmine Wilde among others

Niche builds out its UK business

Niche launched in the UK at the end of last year, and has already run influencer campaigns for Unilever, Apple, Vodafone, PepsiCo, Amazon, Ford and Volkswagen in the UK, Luke Townsin, head of Niche in Europe, told Campaign.

Different brands have taken different tacks, with Apple running a campaign using influential photographers based in different markets and some stop-motion film to promote Apple Music.

Unilever, meanwhile, commissioned hair product reviews from YouTube influencers.

"The response has been strong," Townsin said, noting that brands are keen to commission internet-friendly content as well as influencer campaigns.

"Niche can have great impact into finding new audiences, but we have lots of clients saying they would love to access that audience - but the content [they] have isn’t great," he said.

"They're pleased when [they] can access a stop-motion Viner who can build a brand narrative into their film."

The way Niche works is by suggesting creatives to advertisers based on what they can deliver to the brand's budget - such as number of posts per platform. Creatives must sign up proactively to Niche, and attach their various social accounts on Vine, Instagram, Periscope, YouTube and Twitter.

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