Top ways brands can obtain quality UGC and connect with influencers and creators
Well, social media is officially the new word of mouth. Social media allows consumers to share your brand, and it helps you connect with consumers, build trust, and develop a community. And, now there’s a way you can leverage the power of digital word of mouth marketing to also produce more impactful content at a reduced cost. Enter user generated content (UGC).
Successful creators know how to focus and tap into their competitive advantage
Think back to the first time you decided to take your creator career seriously. You face a sea of decisions that can feel paralyzing. It’s no surprise then that one question keeps getting brought up when I talk to creators: How do you break through in a sea of distractions, choices and competition?
INFINITI launches marketing campaign driven by creators
INFINITI, the luxury division of Nissan, has launched a new creator-powered campaign called Capture INFINITI. According to the agency leading the campaign, INFINITI is looking for ways to differentiate itself within the growing competitive luxury vehicle space, which is why it teamed up with seven creators to launch a one-of-a-kind creator-led campaign. The campaign showcases INFINITI’s QX series.
Options for paying creators: Affiliate commissions vs. contracts vs. full-time
The question isn’t whether or not there’s value in hiring creators—even over celebrities—to promote your brand. There is. The question is: what’s the best way to compensate creators so you can secure more mutually-beneficial partnerships and grow your brand?
Nisha Godfrey: The woman behind TikTok’s viral chicken salad sound
“It’s a chicken salad.”If this phrase sounds familiar, it’s likely because you’ve heard it used as a trending sound in thousands of videos on TikTok and Instagram over the past several weeks. The entire sound features an exchange between frequent deli goer Nisha Godfrey and owner Wael Herbawi at East 81st Street Deli in Cleveland, Ohio.
Not all creators need to foster community
Building audiences has always been a lucrative endeavor. It’s the reason why the amount brands spend on influencer marketing keeps rising. Community is powerful on its own, too. Conferences and online memberships are thriving businesses. This begs the question, do all creators need to build community?
#paid named an official TikTok marketing partner
#paid, a multi-channel creator marketing platform that empowers creators to partner with brands and build their businesses, today announced that it has become an official TikTok Marketing Partner. As a badged partner, #paid will bring more great opportunities to their engaged network of content creators and marketers.
TikTok is paving a new path for online search
@Colesflow summarizes a hot, new consumer trend in one, short sentence: “I don’t Google anymore—I TikTok. ”While it seems funny at first, stats show TikTok is more than an entertainment and social commerce platform—it’s a search engine. For many consumers, especially younger ones, TikTok is edging out Google as the preferred search engine.
Changes to Meta’s API impacts some influencer marketing platforms
Grin, a popular creator management platform used by DTC brands like SKIMS, Warby Parker, and Allbirds, was dealt a hard blow last month due to Meta’s new API and service guidelines. Most Meta-related features have been wiped from the platform, including Instagram creator search. And that’s barely scratching the surface. The platform removed unauthenticated Instagram creators along with the campaigns and content they’ve made for partner brands in the past.
TikTok success: Value longevity over the momentary peak
As humans, we all need time to develop. We need time to experience new things, make mistakes, and build our own perspectives. Going through this development period helps us make more informed decisions that align better with our skillset. TikTok doesn’t give us time to develop. Post a video today and in 24 hours you can be ‘famous.’ You then go fight a mental battle: Should I keep doing this because of the fame or should I keep doing this because it is fulfilling?
Creators all want long-term deals, but are they willing to play the long game?
We all agree that creators should be fairly paid. The time and energy effective creators put into their craft can’t be understated and should be met with equitable compensation.
Creator-brand partnerships: What brands need to know
All creator content isn’t created equal. Consumers don’t want brands to simply throw money around and hire famous faces to promote their products. They want authenticity and content that is synergistic to both the brand and the famous face being used as a spokesperson.
Is UGC oversaturated? Not even close.
The popularity of UGC has grown exponentially over the last few years. However, as with all things, there’s an abundance of UGC creators working to connect with brands and provide a service.
Meet Vantana: Digital creator, artist, Twitch streamer, and online Yoga instructor
Vantana is an artist who abandoned traditional work during the pandemic to focus on his creative digital projects.
Trevor Merchant: The content creator watching TikToks so you don't have to
Trevor Merchant, also known as @timesaver9000, condenses other people’s often clickbaity or unnecessarily long videos so you won’t have to waste time watching them—hence the username.
Should brands hire creators over agencies to produce high-fidelity content?
If creator content is so effective across social media, should brands be turning to creators for all kinds of high-fidelity content as well? And, is there a benefit to hiring creators directly instead of going the traditional route and hiring an agency?
Influencer and publisher whitelisting is all the rage: And it works!
Always looking for emerging marketing techniques, operators are backing a new tactic referred to as whitelisting, creator licensing, or creator listing.
Hispanic and Latinx creators making their mark In 2022
Meet eight creators and influencers carving their own path in the creator economy. From beauty and lifestyle content to activism and entrepreneurship, these Latinx creators are making their mark and doing it for the culture… or por la cultura.
Leo González: The TikTok creator and comedian making his way to stardom
Leo González has caught the attention of public figures like George Lopez and Will Smith with his POV-style comedy videos and has amassed more than 2.5 million followers on TikTok and over half a million on Instagram.
Creators without influence (gasp!) can still benefit your brand
In today’s digital age, the term “creator” has been taken hostage by those with a critical mass of followers and who make money exclusively from growing an audience.But the reality is that being a creator doesn’t mean you have to have hundreds of thousands of TikTok followers, and being an influencer doesn’t mean you’re qualified to ‘create.’
TerraZero, VentureBeat announce partnership on ‘Metaverse event center’ in Decentraland
Metaverse focussed company TerraZero today announced a partnership with tech, gaming and AI media and event company VentureBeat, the tech that will see the two build a Metaverse event center and corporate showcase environment in Decentraland.
Candice Danae: The creator who went viral for cooking for her sister every day
Imagine waking up each morning knowing that you’re going to have a full-course meal prepared for you and all you have to do is walk into your kitchen. Honestly, even the nation’s most popular meal delivery services could never. From lobster and waffles to classic, soul food this dynamic sister duo is creating content and meals so good that even the world’s top chefs would be impressed. Gordon Ramsay, I’m talking about you.
6 brands you may be surprised to learn are making it big on TikTok
While beauty, fashion, and lifestyle brands dominate TikTok, more “traditional” (see also: un-sexy) brands can also use the social platform to share educational and entertaining content.
Spiritual TikTok: Content creators target digital worship (of all things)
Traditionally, people have sought answers to these big questions from spiritual gurus, religious leaders, palm readers, prophets, books, community groups (sometimes cults), nature, psychedelics, and other physical sources.But, with the advent of the Internet, the growth of the Creator Economy, and the rise of TikTok as a source of information, spiritual enlightenment is innovating right along with popular technology.
5 influencer marketing campaign goals for Cyber Week
Consumers are 71% more likely to buy products after seeing positive reviews on their social networks, so if creator marketing isn’t in your marketing strategy for Black Friday-Cyber Monday (BFCM)–it should be.
Alisha Ether (LeeshCapeesh) on her journey to becoming a full-time creator on Twitch
While her gaming skills are on point and it’s a riot to watch her play, Alisha Ether's fun personality is what makes me continue to avidly consume her content. She’s conversational, warm, and absolutely hilarious.
F*** You Pay Me looks to help close the influencer pay gap
While the creator-led economy opens the door for individuals to make more money than they made in traditional roles, the answer isn’t black in white in regard to how much any influencers are actually making (male or female). @MsYoungProfess, founder of F*** You Pay Me (FYPM) created FYPM in response to this problem. The organization’s mission is to bring more transparency, accountability, and fairness to the influencer industry, and to make sure influencers get paid what they’re worth.
Anthony Gomes: The content creator redefining menswear through culture and creativity
Prior to becoming a full-time creator, Anthony Gomes was navigating his professional career as a financial analyst at an information services firm. As was the case for many creators-in-the-making, the pandemic was the catalyst that pushed him to leave his nine-to-five and pursue content creation full-time.
Creator mental health: What Instagram therapists want you to know
The mental health decline of content creators and influencers is exacerbated by the fact that they cannot simply “unplug” like the average social media user. When things get to be too much, there are still brand deals and business expectations. Content creation and influencer marketing are viable careers—so, why aren’t there the same realistic mental health resources being provided to these professionals?
YETI UGC: Highlighting products that have been through the ringer
To those thinking no one is putting out authentic UGC anymore, YETI says hold my very, very, very cold beer.Over the past couple of months YETI—known for their line of coolers, bags and a host of other outdoor products aimed at keeping your drinks and food cold—has put out several Instagram stories featuring products that have been through the ringer.
BeReal: What’s the appeal of Gen Z’s new fave app, and how can brands participate?
Authenticity works. And, based on the popularity of the latest social media app, BeReal, people want even more. Here’s a closer look at what BeReal is, why it’s growing, and how brands are sneaking onto the platform.
DTC brands founded by influencers: The future is now
The rising tide of the creator economy will benefit DTC brands as well as they adapt to the changing landscape and leverage the growing influence of creators. Brands need not view the boom in influencer-led brands as competition but rather as an exciting white space.
InfluencerMade founder Chris Grayson on best practices for brands and creators to work together
You’ve heard all the success stories of content creators turned business owners. Chris Grayson is one such success story. He started his career as a content creator in the gaming industry, and his success led him to start InfluencerMade, a hub with the resources aspiring creators need to experience success.
Meet TikTok's Gay Bestie: Luke Franchina
TikTok's Gay Bestie, Luke Franchina, talks about his content strategy, how he found his unique voice and offers his advice to fellow creators.
How Title IX has empowered female athletes to become creators and entrepreneurs
Title IX has created many opportunities for women on and off the field. Fifty years after it’s been passed into law, there are still areas where equality is lacking. However, progress is being made.
Creator funds suck: Turn creators into shareholders instead
Instagram and TikTok are doing anything they can to attract creators. Anything, that is, except the one thing that would create a fair value exchange between platform and creator: partial ownership of the platform company.
How to use influencer marketing in your back-to-school campaigns
2022 will be a big year for back-to-school shopping, and brands will continue to fight for consumers' attention. If creator marketing isn’t part of your back-to-school marketing strategy, this year would be a great time to incorporate it. Set clear campaign goals, partner with creators that align with your goals and brand, and plan your launch!
Who are the top soccer creators to watch ahead of 2022 World Cup?
Here are the top soccer creators you need keep your eyes on leading up to and during the upcoming World Cup
The Creative Ladder: New nonprofit supporting underrepresented creatives launched by Ryan Reynolds, Dionna Dorsey Calloway, and David Griner
A group of leading marketers, designers and creators have come together in support of making creative careers more accessible to young people and underrepresented communities.Announced at Cannes Lions last week, the new nonprofit has been named The Creative Ladder and is being led by Ryan Reynolds (yes, that one), Dionna Dorsey Calloway, and David Griner.
YouTube Shorts vs. TikTok and how creators—and brands—can cash in on short-form video
Kevin Ferguson comes to life upon a question about an old, stodgy business school term. “Is there a first-mover advantage for some?” the YouTube exec repeats. “Potentially.” Forgive him for being coy. Ferguson is the director of global operations and partnerships for Shorts, the 60-seconds-or-less short-form video platform YouTube first launched in 2020 as a direct answer to TikTok and Instagram Reels, which had staked long-standing leads in the space.
Decentraland and the future of renting land in the metaverse
A look at the future of renting land in the metaverse and how brands can activate opportunities across Decentraland and elsewhere.
#paid announces partnership with BuzzFeed Canada to bring creators to BuzzFeed, Inc.’s brands
BuzzFeed Canada today announced a new, ongoing collaboration with #paid, an award-winning creator marketing platform. The partnership will allow BuzzFeed and its portfolio of brands, including Tasty, to offer clients access to the largest on-platform network of creators as cast members for BuzzFeed’s content
Why brands need authenticity in their celebrity and influencer collaborations
Consumers don’t want brands to simply dump money and hire famous faces to promote their products—they’re becoming more marketing-savvy every day and don’t like being sold to. They want meaningful partnerships that they can believe in. And when brand collaborations with celebs and macro-influencers easily come off as inauthentic and lazy, it’s difficult for consumers to move forward.
How creators are building their own labor movement in the U.S. and the UK
What used to be a meme-able clash between generations is now having serious repercussions on working conditions and labor rights for career social media creators. While some people think it’s easy to pick up a camera and “make something go viral”, professional creators have lived the umpteen hours it takes to brainstorm, create, edit, and post content people love enough to share.
Why brands need to diversify how they use their creator content
Brands who want to make the most of their creator campaigns quickly learn that like other tactics, creator assets aren’t simply something you post once and forget. There are endless opportunities when it comes to the distribution of creator content, allowing you to optimize your time and effort on every campaign. Integrating creator content into all aspects of your digital marketing and advertising programs is a surefire way to develop trust and educate your customers across various channels.
Watchalongs: Sports and the new generation of consumers are at a crossroads
Sports entities are being forced to make their games more engaging, using eSports codes, gamification strategies, pushing daily fantasy, interactive experiences, and sports betting. Simply put, Gen Z doesn’t want to just sit back and watch traditional sports broadcasts. Alternative broadcasts allow viewers to essentially watch a live podcast with the game playing on the screen at the same time.
Podcasts: The new frontier for brands and creators
Podcast creation is on the rise and there’s no indication it will slow down anytime soon. Over the last handful of years, podcasts have picked up in popularity for a few reasons:
Dream bigger! The reach of creators is much more extensive than you may imagine
We already know creators have influence over niche communities on single platforms. On YouTube, 22,000 creators have reached the one million followers threshold. On Instagram, 500,000 have achieved 100,000 followers or more.But once you’ve reached the summits of creator success on your platform, where’s the space to grow? If you feel tapped out by the possibilities present in your current community or current platform, it can be difficult to explain trends like this:
2022 TikTok trends: Everything you need to know
From being seen as just one more social media channel to becoming an important part of every successful brand’s marketing playbook—TikTok has revolutionized social media marketing. By the end of 2022, TikTok’s ad revenue is expected to triple, and they’re projected to own 20% of the social media market share, according to CNBC.
How the “Sing 2” TikTok campaign went viral
QYOU launched a viral multi-phased campaign for “Sing 2.” It was a smashing success. The campaign drove 26.4 million views, 2.2 million engagements, and a 9% engagement rate on posts featuring key characters, music, and messaging.
How early fitness influencers shaped modern gym culture
If you’ve ever felt frustrated with modern gym culture, it may be tempting to imagine a fitness utopia where your appearance doesn’t matter, diets don’t exist, and no one is trying to sell you anything. It may be even more tempting to yearn for a return to pre-social media fitness culture, before the fitspiration feeds and the Gymshark hauls and the “What I Eat in a Day” videos trying to convince you 1,200 calories is enough to sustain an adult woman. But what would we actually find if we scrolled up on the history of American fitness culture? Would it be any more inclusive and welcoming?
Abercrombie & Fitch leverages TikTok to stage its comeback
From bringing attention to legacy brands and making them cool again (hello, Vaseline) TikTok has been a boon to brands who know how to use the platform and tap into various markets. For Abercrombie & Fitch, that meant leaning into the power of TikTok to build brand awareness in its target market: Gen Z and millennials. For millennials, it might be playing a bit on the nostalgic factor.
How Viome leverages UGC in the marketing mix
The reason: UGC humanizes your brand. There’s a certain level of authenticity it creates that’s hard to replicate in any other format. And this is critical, as there’s a real disconnect between brands and consumers right now. 91% of marketers think they’re creating authentic content on their websites, but only 51% of consumers agree.
Meet Viral TikTok Creator DaMya Gurley
With more than one billion users active on the platform each month, TikTok has established itself as one of the top social media platforms for content creators to grow their personal brands and audience. This leaves many creatives with the opportunity to stand out in their own way and create unique content that reaches the oftentimes coveted status of “viral”—content that explodes and reaches audiences on its origin platform and beyond. DaMya Gurley, a queer content creator based in Los Angeles, California, is no stranger to this. Acting since the early age of five, DaMya has utilized her talents to create funny, relatable, and oftentimes viral content on TikTok and now has amassed almost 360 thousand followers on the platform.
Will the creator economy help close the gender pay gap?
The growth of the Creator Economy can be largely (not exclusively) attributed to women and their entrepreneurial efforts.Statista, for example, found that 84% of social media influencers who post sponsored content are women, while only 16% are men. Women represent 48% of all freelancers, while 45.5% are men. And, more women than men started their own businesses from scratch during the pandemic.
Brands building communities and investing in creators are miles ahead of competitors
While the state of the world, commerce, and marketing is in flux, this remains the same: Successful marketing and advertising is still about finding and connecting with the right audience in meaningful ways.
Why brands need to pivot to long-term influencer partnerships in 2022
Short-term influencer partnerships work well as a sandbox to test your foundation: they give you the flexibility to experiment with different creators and platforms, and in time, you’ll start to get a sense of which content (and which creators) stick.
Insights from QYOU: The team behind viral TikTok promo campaigns for Ghostbusters, Resident Evil, Scream, & Clifford
If you’re a TikTok fan, you’ve likely seen awesome ads from creators promoting up-and-coming movies.You may have even participated in some of the viral, movie-related TikTok trends, including the “Voice of Ghostface” sound, the “Big Red Dog” effect on TikTok, or the branded “#GhostYourProblems” effect.
Brands make plans for new Instagram tagging feature
Instagram is officially doubling-down on its product tagging feature, recently announcing it will be rolling out the functionality to all users in the United States, no longer reserving it for just brands.
Creators are the new celebrities (and brands know it)
While brands still often recruit celebrities for big marketing campaigns, superstars aren’t the only—or best—option for building brand credibility anymore.With the advent of social media and the rise in creator fandoms, brands are now turning to creators for endorsements. What’s more, many creators lend greater clout to a brand than big celebrities do.
Poor TikTok showing foreshadowed CNN's failed streaming experiment
A month after the new streaming service CNN+ took flight it sputtered back to Earth and ultimately was grounded, with execs announcing its shuttering this past week. Whatever the reason, CNN's lagging social media numbers, particularly on TikTok, when compared to not only competitor networks but its own journalists likely could have served as an indicator that the news giant's digital house isn't in order.
Washington Commanders name Katie Feeney first 'Social Media Correspondent'
The NFL's Washington Commanders have named social media influencer Katie Feeney the team's first-ever 'Social Media Correspondent.'Feeney's collective Instagram/TikTok audience of 7.6 million people dwarfs that of the Commanders, which sits at about 2.5 million.
The creator middle class: A new wave of creators is here (plus, how brands can work with them)
Some of the best creators don’t have celebrity status. Do they need it? Not really.
Content creators tell all: Horror stories with brands
With influencers and creators being a hot commodity, they’re not afraid to spill the tea.
Bridging the gap between creators and fans with Laylo co-founder Alec Ellin
I recently connected with Alec to discuss his entrepreneurial roots and how he started his career in the tech and music industry.
How Creators and Brands are tapping into the power of Twitch, Discord, and Reddit
How do these new platforms factor into the creator economy, and, better yet, what does that look like for both creators and brands? Let’s explore.
Are creators the next breed of educators?
Let’s take a closer look at why the rise of the Creator Economy is changing the future of education and how creators are a new breed of educators.
The shift from Influencer to Creator: what does this mean?
In the ever-moving social media landscape, things move so quickly and so subtly that unless one is paying attention the changes are easily missed.
Web3 is just normalizing Web2 compensation for creators
Don’t be naïve. The decentralization dream of Web3 won’t come true any time soon, if ever.
The new Creator manifesto
It’s time to make way for the independent creator and here’s how they’re going to do it
The Black Creators making their mark in 2022
To amplify Black voices and encourage brands and marketers to work with Black creatives, I interviewed 14 creators that inspire their communities and me to create like no one is watching
The Great Resignation and what it means for the creator economy
The truth is, the economy is shifting. Employees are free to find followings online—and with those followings, they can leverage new opportunities.
How an Instagram creator became a hyped streetwear brand by curating moodboards
And what other creators can learn about curation, turning a hobby into a business, and staying true to oneself.
15 creators like Ceara O’Sullivan and CJ Eats share their best piece of advice for aspiring creators
I connected with some of my favorite people to get more advice about how creators can grow, find a niche, connect with brands, and be successful.
The creator economy: 2022 predictions from industry experts
We spent the last month speaking with industry professionals about the future of the creator economy, and predictions for 2022.
Smarter audiences are pressuring fitness creators to run ethical businesses
Here is where popular fitness creators succeed or fail: Remain humble, authentic, and ethical, and your audience will reward you with sustained attention and financial support.
How Insecure's Issa Rae is inspiring a generation of content creators
Insecure—written and produced by Issa Rae—has been a transformative show, not just for Black culture, but the entire industry.
Who runs the world? (Creators)
Creators are about to have leverage, control, and political and cultural influence to the degree that is unprecedented.
Virgil Abloh, the modern-day polymath
As a black man in America, Virgil Abloh challenged many norms, he was one of the most influential artists of our day, and the tragedy of his passing was that he was just getting started.
Want a positive creator marketing program? Do this first.
Running a successful kickoff call for your creator marketing program will set the tone for a positive campaign. Learn how to achieve this by following 6 topics in your meeting!
Influencer Marketing is creating a demand for related jobs
Creators are an essential part of marketing – it’s time to give them the attention and resources they deserve
Fly by Jing, Rebecca Minkoff, and other creators are using OnlyFans. Should you?
OnlyFans is gaining traction for creators in other areas—namely mental health, fashion, food, and beauty.
Creators, not brands, are the linchpin to Web3
While we’re all speculating about crypto and the internet’s future, creators are building real use-cases we can learn from. The key? Community.
Dead artists and ad campaigns: Is it okay to use art to sell?
We’ll never be able to ask Basquiat how he feels about the Tiffany ad. But we can ask people who knew him.
Mid-year report: Influencer engagement rates
2021 influencer engagement rates are up, but video view rates skyrocket
The ultimate Creator guide to landing better brand deals
We’ve created an easy, step-by-step guide on how you can land more—and better—brand sponsorships.
9 factors that can impact Creator rates
Working with a Creator is more like partnership than transaction, which means standard rates can fluctuate. Here are 9 factors that impact Creator rates.
12 inspiring Black Creators to follow immediately
This article hopes to amplify the stories of 12 up-and-coming and inspiring Black Creators. Their social accounts and creative projects exude confidence, style, drive, and grace.
Inventive ways creators are monetizing
Here's something that might shock you: Most creators aren't satisfied with the revenue they're earning.
2021 Influencer marketing trends
What are the unorthodox trends gaining traction in 2021? We’ve sifted through the data to uncover exactly what’s going on.
Twitch creators partnerships: How brands can get started
Viewers spent 81 million hours on 'Just Chatting' content—23 million more than Fortnite—expanding Twitch beyond gaming, strengthening the case for brands to get in on Twitch sponsorships.
Creators are the new brands
Creators might have started as nothing more than billboards for the brands that paid them, but now Creators are their own brands. Let's look at how we arrived here.
Cole Bennett is this generation's Rick Rubin
Rick Rubin is arguably one of the greatest musical minds of our day. 40 years later, The Rick Rubin Effect is happening all over again and his name is Cole Bennett.
The creators are unionizing. Here’s what it could mean for marginalized creators
After many years of carving out legitimate career paths within the space, many creators want the standard features of any (good) job: health benefits, professional development, and fair pay for good value.
Savannah Sanchez on TikTok and Creators as a marketing match made in heaven
Savannah lives and breathes social media, and she has the answers on why TikTok is so special. We interviewed her to find out her best tips on how to achieve impressive results there.
History repeats itself: the ancient world of influencer marketing
Influencers arose far before the dawn of the internet. It's arguably ancient.
Rachel Dacosta x SelfLoveSupply: Growing rapidly with an engaged audience
Rachel started 2020 with 10K followers on her Self Love Supply page. By March 2020, she had already grown to around 65K followers. Today, the page sits at 140K followers with no plans to slow down. I caught up with Rachel to discuss her journey, working with brands, and the challenges of being a creator during the pandemic.
The ethical dilemma of influencer marketing during the pandemic
Influencers and organizations that depend on travel have a point when they say travelling isn’t “illegal.” But is it unfair when almost all non-essential businesses have to abide by the same regulations?
Tracking energy use the smart way, the story of Mysa
Mysa Smart Thermostats used influencer marketing to not only improve their brand awareness but strengthen equity, breaking into an untapped market.
How to think about influencer marketing, and how to get started for yourself
But if you’re new to Creator marketing or trying to better understand how it can work for you (as a business or as a Creator), let’s take it from the top.
How Ninja and Drake literally made history playing Fortnite
After Drake picked up the controller and played Fortnite with Ninja, streaming gained legitimacy in the eyes of millions around the planet.