Nathan Guerra

Nathan Guerra joined the Google Creative Agency Team at the end of 2012, and spends his time liaising with the UK creative industry. His job is one part education, one part inspiration and one part troubleshooting, all in the service of helping creative agencies make great work. Before joining Google, Nathan spent five years at AMV BBDO, first as a Digital Planner and later as Director of Innovation.

The changing face of (digital) fame

Fame. It’s evolving. And nowhere is it evolving more than on YouTube. YouTube celebs can tweet they’re going to a park – and be mobbed. They can arrive at a One Direction concert, and suck away the attention of the young fans (to the bemusement of their Mums). Lindsey Stirling failed on an American talents show – but is a huge, 7m subscriber hit on YouTube, and has done big deals with brands. PewDiePie is the biggest celebrity on YouTube and the mainstream has never heard of him. It doesn’t matter.

Having a global platform is an amazing opportunity to build audiences worldwide you’d never have been able to reach in the past.

What famous people do

It’s also changed what famous people do. His children watch non-stop music videos. It resurrected the format, after MTV had dumped them. YouTube is the biggest streaming music service in the world. It’s taken videos and made them viable – and a revenue source – again. Lady GaGa can make 11, 12 minute films, because she has the audience who can watch the video whenever suits them.

Comedians who can’t find the outlet for their work on mainstream TV can push the boundaries and explore more unusual ideas through YouTube – and find an audience. Even chefs like Jamie Oliver are doing it.

How ideas spread

Google does a lot of analysis. You’re probably aware of the importance of cats and dogs to YouTube, but for a few weeks last year, they saw goats became the biggest animals on the site. People had come up with a video concept, and people kept replicating it. They were encouraged to join in the creativity. The Harlem Shake drove millions upon millions of views – but across a range of videos. It was the idea, not a video. The same applies to the Ice Bucket Challenge right now. “Hauling” videos are big – 800,000 plus videos of young women sharing their shopping hauls.