Allison Bickerstaff X BarkBox

To my knowledge, Allison Bickerstaff has no partnership with BarkBox.

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What is an influencer?

For the sake of this thought paper, I will be using the following definition that I found on Influencer Marketing Hub.

“An influencer is someone who has the power to affect the purchasing decisions of others because of his or her authority, knowledge position or relationship with his or her audience.”

Who is Allison Bickerstaff?

Allison Bickerstaff is a University of Florida, College of Journalism and Communications alumna. She studied Telecommunications, on the advice of a professor, she started her YouTube channel to work on video production skills. Bickerstaff started her YouTube career around 2016, and her first-ever video was titled, Moving to UF!

https://youtu.be/m36KfU9vUqc
Instagram: @allisonbickerstaff

I found Allison Bickerstaff on YouTube when I was admitted into the University of Florida back in the Spring of 2018. I watched tons of her videos while I was preparing for college life. I especially liked the vlog style videos she produced that showed me around campus and her daily commute to the College of Journalism and Communications. I felt like I got a sense of life in Gainesville before I even moved in. I knew about all the cool study spots and coffee shops before my friends. And I knew how much time I had to bike between point A and point B on campus and stop for Starbucks at the Hub in-between. While she was a student, the majority of the content on her YouTube was centered around being a college student and sprinkled here and there DIY and How-To content.

https://youtu.be/_k65u3Ci6CQ

Post-College & Disney Style

After beginning my own journey at the University of Florida, I no longer was watching her videos for that kind of content. Luckily, Allison’s channel shifted, and she was making content geared towards working as a social media marketing intern for the Walt Disney Company. When someone asked what I wanted to do after graduation, my answer was always “anything in social media or marketing and preferably for the Walt Disney Company.” Allison Bickerstaff’s channel evolved, and her content was even more spot on with my goals after graduation.

Instagram: @allisonbickerstaff

Pandemic Lifestyle Content

Allison is now posting about local places in Orlando, fun recipes she is trying or creating, moving into her new home, and documenting her life while at home during the pandemic. One big change has happened recently on Allison Bickerstaff’s feed and channel. Like many people during this ongoing pandemic, Allison Bickerstaff and her husband adopted a dog!

https://youtu.be/YUuKefDSdP8
Instagram: @allisonbickerstaff

And while Allison has certainly partnered with other brands such as Cheerios, Ritual Vitamins, Volkswagen, Roborock vacuum, and many other brands, I have yet to see a sponsored post-BarkBox.

What is BarkBox?

BarkBox is a monthly subscription service (BarkBox). Each month members will receive a customized box of themed toys and treats. Some of their previous themes include “Dinner Dates,” “Sit. Stay. Spa Day!” and even character-themed boxes like Snoopy from “Peanuts.” Inside the box are toys and treats that also center around the theme of the month. The toys are probably the most fun. Inside the Dinner Dates box was the “Main Squeeze Cheese” chew toy and the “Sweetie Poo” to “satisfy your pup’s squeak tooth” (BarkBox).

BarkBox encourages its members to post on social media using the hashtag #barkboxday. And connect with other members who got the same themed box that month using a specific hashtag. For example, Valentine’s Day-themed box for February was #DinnerDates.

Allison Bickerstaff X BarkBox

Influencers build relationships with their audience. I have been following Allison Bickerstaff’s videos since before she was Allison Bickerstaff and was Allison Schaper instead. She has 64 thousand followers on Instagram and 256 thousand subscribers on her YouTube channel. She is a mid-tier influencer, sitting right above micro-influencers. In a recent video, she mentioned how she works on YouTube full-time now after her Internship with Disney ended roughly a year ago.

53% of American households own dogs (Cooper, 2021). It is likely that a majority of her followers and subscribers also have dogs or pets at home. I think right now would be such an ideal time for Allison Bickerstaff to partner with a company like BarkBox. She could create YouTube unboxing videos, Instagram posts, and more with the contents of the box. Her puppy, Palmer, would probably love to try the new treats and surprises inside. Her new dog is full of energy, is currently teething, and very curious. The chew toys and treats would definitely aid him well in this stage of his life.

That is one of the benefits of BarkBox. The items in the box can be tailored to the needs of your companion. As the pup grows, the items could alter and be tailored to fit them in every life stage.

By partnering with BarkBox, Allison Bickerstaff would receive high-quality toys and treats for her puppy in training. And BarkBox starts to receive brand recognition from a possibly untapped side of their target audience in Allison’s followers and subscribers. A high-quality brand like BarkBox should be receiving high-quality curated content from trusted micro-influencers.

Resources:

BarkBox. (n.d.). Welcome to BARK. Retrieved April 3, 2021, from https://bark.co/

Cooper, J. (2021, February 2). Pet Ownership Statistics. Spots.Com. https://spots.com/pet-ownership-statistics/#:%7E:text=Pet%20Ownership%20in%20the%20United,of%20American%20households%20own%20dogs.

Geyser, W. (2021, January 28). What is an Influencer? — Social Media Influencers Defined [Updated 2021]. Influencer Marketing Hub. https://influencermarketinghub.com/what-is-an-influencer/

University of Florida Advertising Student