Heartfelt LeBron Spot for Samsung Mobile Explodes on YouTube

NBA stars drive branded content surge

People seem to be over The Decision. LeBron James' poorly thought-out free agency show seems like it was 20 years ago, at least in terms of James Q score and marketing clout. Last week, a heartfelt, authentic-feeling look at James' home life, all part of a two-minute Samsung Mobile spot, blew up on YouTube and generated more than 8 million views, according to the latest VideoWatch/VidIQ ranking of branded YouTube videos.

In fact, the Miami Heat star had a huge week on YouTube, as his Rocky-esque Nike spot also nabbed third place on the chart with nearly 2 million views, per VidIQ. That was part of a huge comeback week for the NBA, as it tipped off its new season with a marketing blitz. In second place on the chart was the latest Pepsi Max Uncle Drew clip starring the Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving. 

Check out the ranker here:

NOTE: Adweek’s VideoWatch Chart, powered by VidIQ, reveals the Top 10 Branded Web Videos on YouTube every week. The chart tracks more than just pure views, as VidIQ incorporates sharing data from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, among other data sources in an effort to measure true engagement. Every video is also ranked with VidIQ's proprietary Score which helps judge the likelihood of a video being promoted in YouTube Related Videos, Search and Recommended Videos.