September 16, 2014
MTV and GE are among the brands that have turned to 23-year old Jerome Jarre and his popular Vine videos and Snapchat messages that reach millions (his Vine account alone touts 7.2 million followers). Brands pay up to $25,000 for his Vines and $35,000 for a single Snapchat message. Jarre’s marketing firm, GrapeStory is helping to shape the contagious appeal of short form media. And his star status is going mainstream. Celebrities such as Robert De Niro, Ashton Kutcher and Aaron Paul have appeared in his Vines.
The social media influencer was born in France, lived in China and Canada, and eventually made his way to the U.S. by 2012. He was mentored by social media marketer Gary Vaynerchuk, who helped Jarre learn English and later became his business partner.
“Jarre has helped to transform the six-second looping video into an art form and a marketing vehicle,” reports Adweek. “It all may look really easy, but it isn’t. Jarre has to measure every second, carefully inspect each frame, shoot and often reshoot what appear to be spontaneous moments. Six seconds can take as much as six hours of work. The result is Jarre’s unique blend of comedy, pranks and absurd vignettes — all in his distinctive French accent.”
Marketers have taken notice of the influence possible from enlisting Jarre and other standout social stars. Major brands are increasingly turning to Twitter, Vine, Snapchat, Instagram and other social tools. In many cases, consumers are invited to participate in many of the campaigns.
“In one Vine, Jarre recruits a group of people in a park to swarm a sunbather and lather him in Coppertone,” notes Adweek. “On Gravity Day last year, General Electric put Jarre on a plane to film the first zero-gravity Vine.”
He was front row at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards as “the VMA creeper,” producing humorous Vines of his own face, selfie-style, with popular stars such as Ariana Grande and Beyoncé performing behind him.
“You’re seeing this space heat up right now,” says Jordan Bitterman, chief strategy officer of agency Mindshare. “The content is shorter form, snackable, shareable, fun, informative … and brands want to get involved in that because creating a six-second Vine, in almost every single case, is far less expensive than a premium spot for television but just as on brand.”