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Step off a New York subway or drive a Los Angeles Freeway and it's hard to miss billboards promoting YouTube's biggest stars by the size of their fan bases. But how much value do beauty guru Michelle Phan's 8 million subscribers really have?
Marketing giant Ogilvy & Mather believes that subscriber numbers mean a lot less than a creator's ability to build a community. So Ogilvy has put together a list of the 30 online stars with the most-engaged fans as part of a larger paper in partnership with mobile community platform Victorious on the new social contract. "There's a bias of looking at the world through the lens of TV," says Rob Davis, executive director of content and video marketing at Ogilvy. "The value of TV is the value of the eyeballs that are tuned in at any given moment, but I think it has taken a while for marketers to understand that the value of online communities has another layer to it."
Ogilvy weighed an online star's reach, engagement and growth rate across YouTube, Vine and social media to determine the top three creators across 10 categories (listed alphabetically below). Says Davis, "We found that some of the people with massive audiences weren't growing a community."
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