Influence Weekly #287 - How Sephora Is Partnering With Creators for Brand Impact

Influence Weekly #287
June 2nd, 2023
Executive Summary
  • The Secrets Behind Alex Cooper's Influencer Success
  • How Sephora Is Partnering With Creators for Brand Impact
  • All About Instagram’s Twitter-like App Launching This Summer
  • TubeBuddy Launches Inaugural Emerging Creator Awards
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Great Reads

Invisalign rejects the hassle of braces for creator-led social media push
Invisalign, a provider of teeth aligners, has launched a creator-led social media campaign called "Stay Clear of Drama" to highlight the convenience of its aligners compared to traditional braces. The campaign focuses primarily on TikTok and involves partnerships with popular creators such as Trey Makai and Symonne Harrison, who will share content emphasizing the simplicity of using Invisalign aligners. 

In June, Invisalign will release branded videos across multiple platforms including TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat. This campaign builds upon Invisalign's previous "Drama Free" campaign and its activation on Roblox's Livetopia, where users could explore an interactive dental hub. By leveraging social media influencers and tailoring content to platforms popular among Gen Z, Invisalign aims to attract younger customers, despite the fact that many in this demographic rely on their parents for major dental health decisions.

The Secrets Behind Alex Cooper's Influencer Success
Alex Cooper, the host of the popular podcast Call Her Daddy, has achieved significant success as an influencer. Since its launch in 2018, Cooper has grown the podcast exponentially, attracting a large audience with its discussions on sex, gossip, and feminism. Cooper's ability to adapt and evolve the show has contributed to its popularity, particularly with her interview-style episodes featuring notable celebrities like John Mayer, Miley Cyrus, and Chelsea Handler.

Cooper's rise to fame was accelerated by internet drama with other influencers and business disagreements, capturing the attention of media outlets and fans. The podcast was initially co-hosted by Sofia Franklyn, but after a public fallout, Cooper continued as the sole host. The show took a year-long hiatus before relaunching in 2020 with a new format that included celebrity interviews.

Cooper's influencer success led to a significant deal with Spotify, signing a three-year contract worth approximately $60 million, making her one of the highest-paid podcasters on the platform. Despite controversies and internet feuds, Cooper's loyal fanbase continues to support her, and the future of Call Her Daddy looks promising.

3 hacks to boost your UGC ad performance

Leading eComm brands like Clinical Skin, goPure, Bearaby, and Joy Organics are using these 3 strategies, through Insense, to drive revenue with micro-influencers:
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  2. Run whitelisted ads on Meta and TikTok 
  3. Drive traffic and sales with influencer posting using trackable links
Campaign Insights

How Sephora Is Partnering With Creators for Brand Impact
Sephora is partnering with content creators to make a lasting impact by elevating BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) brands and influencers. Through its Accelerate program, Sephora aims to build a community of innovative and inspirational founders in the beauty industry, with a focus on founders of color. The program has seen 23 additional brands go through it since 2020, with over half of them now on Sephora's shelves. 

To further extend its commitment, Sephora has collaborated with TikTok to create the Sephora x TikTok Incubator Program, empowering diverse creators alongside select Sephora Accelerate brands on the platform. The program provides knowledge and tools to help these creators grow their businesses on TikTok. Sephora's goal is to create a diverse, equitable, and inclusive space in the beauty industry. The importance of fully investing in these partnerships and addressing the pay gap for BIPOC creators was also highlighted.

Myntra unveils virtual fashion influencer, Maya ahead of EORS
Myntra, an online fashion platform, has introduced its virtual fashion influencer named Maya ahead of the End of Reason Sale (EORS). Maya is a digital avatar based in the Myntra virtual universe and is designed to resonate with the GenZ audience. With GenZ's interest in digital avatars and immersive tech experiences, Maya aims to enhance the consumer experience and engage with young, trend-focused, and tech-savvy shoppers. 

Maya, known as '@maya_unlimited' on Instagram, is portrayed as an emerging fashion stylist with a passion for trends, makeup, fitness, and more. She advocates for body positivity, mental health, equality, and inclusivity. Maya has a growing base of 177K followers who seek fashion and makeup inspiration from her relatable content. Myntra's EORS, the biannual fashion event, will feature Maya as a 'style hacker.' The move emphasizes Myntra's commitment to connecting with the GenZ audience and leveraging the immersive Myntra virtual universe.

L’Oreal, QC partner to train ‘beauty influencers’
L'Oreal Philippines has partnered with Quezon City to launch the Digital Beauty Academy program, aimed at training residents to become digital content creators and beauty influencers. The program is conducted in collaboration with social media platform TikTok and SPARK! Philippines, a non-profit organization promoting inclusivity. The training includes two tracks: participants can become TikTok affiliates, earning commissions for every item sold through their platform, or L'Oreal live streamers, earning a set income with additional opportunities to work with other L'Oreal brands. 

The initiative reflects the increasing significance of social media in product marketing and the growing social commerce industry in the Philippines. The program aims to empower participants, promote financial literacy, and tap into the potential of the creator economy.

The Sidemen are opening ten new brick-and-mortar locations for their fried chicken concept
The Sidemen, a popular U.K.-based YouTube group, are set to open ten new brick-and-mortar locations for their fried chicken concept, Sides. The expansion plan aims to open all ten locations before the end of the year. Sides initially started as a virtual dining concept in 2021, partnering with Virtual Hero to launch the brand. Since then, the Sidemen have opened three physical locations in London. 

The upcoming locations will not only serve chicken but also act as entertainment centers and meeting points for Sidemen fans. The new locations will feature a new menu item, Nashville-style hot chicken. While the Sidemen have drawn inspiration from American creators like MrBeast, they have yet to bring Sides to the United States. However, as part of their future plans, they aim to open 200 new Sides locations, including physical shops and virtual delivery points, over the next decade. To support their expansion, the Sidemen recently secured a "multi-million pound" deal with Viewture.

How chef influencer Tue Nguyen works with the BuzzFeed Creator Network
Content creator and chef Tue Nguyen, known as @TwayDaBae on social media, has been working with BuzzFeed as the host of the Tasty show "Making it Big" since 2022. After two seasons of the show and monthly videos for BuzzFeed's cooking brand as part of her role in the BuzzFeed Creator Network, Nguyen is now developing a new show with Tasty that will better showcase her as a content creator. 

Nguyen has also signed a cookbook deal, started the process of opening a fine dining restaurant in Los Angeles, and continued to grow her owned-and-operated channels alongside her partnership with BuzzFeed. Nguyen credits working with BuzzFeed for helping her grow as an individual creator and learn more about production. While brand deals still primarily come through her team, BuzzFeed pitches her for potential partnerships.


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Interesting People

Surviving The Creator Economy: Nick Vespa On Building A Resilient Mindset To Thrive Amidst Criticism
Nick Vespa, the creator behind the YouTube channel "Build Dad Build," is a prime example of how resilience and a positive mindset can help creators thrive in the face of criticism. With a following of over 110,000 subscribers, Nick has cultivated a loyal fan base through his down-to-earth personality and relatable approach to woodworking and DIY projects. He emphasizes the importance of developing a thick skin and not dwelling on negative comments, while also embracing feedback as a catalyst for growth. 

Nick's passion for woodworking and his ability to find solace in his craft have contributed to his success, even amidst personal challenges such as mental health issues and the aftermath of a destructive flood. By aligning his niche with his passion, Nick has created a platform that not only showcases his artistry but also provides a therapeutic outlet. Moving forward, Nick has exciting plans for collaborations, vlogs, and expanding his community. His story serves as an inspiration for aspiring creators to build resilience and pursue their creative passions in the face of adversity.

Influencer Marcel Floruss Named Creative Director of Aetos
Men's essentials brand Aetos has appointed Marcel Floruss, known for his influence on the One Dapper Street platform, as their creative director. Floruss, a German-born men's style influencer, has gained recognition as a Forbes 30 Under 30 Honoree in the Media & Marketing category and has garnered over 90 million views on his One Dapper Street YouTube channel, along with nearly 2 million followers across his social media channels. He has collaborated with prominent brands like Walmart and Louis Vuitton and co-founded the men's footwear brand Ankari Floruss. 

In his new role, Floruss will contribute to the development of future collections for Aetos. The brand, founded by Alex Costa, another men's influencer, aims to benefit from Floruss' vision and expertise to create fresh and elevated designs. Floruss expressed his excitement to bring his creativity and unique perspective to Aetos, highlighting the brand's commitment to delivering quality menswear essentials.

How John Aghayan CEO Of EMCEE Helps Brands And Creators Form Better Partnerships
John Aghayan, CEO of EMCEE, has created a platform where content creators and influencers can easily set up online storefronts with their favorite products. In an interview, Aghayan explains how EMCEE is different from other affiliate marketing platforms. EMCEE helps creators monetize their expertise through shoppable content and build sustainable businesses. Creators, known as Emcees, join the platform through an application and invitation process. 

They have their own dashboards where they find products from EMCEE's brand partners and showcase them in their Showrooms. EMCEE ensures genuine partnerships by allowing creators to choose brands that align with their values. The platform addresses challenges like the content creation hamster wheel and lack of data ownership. EMCEE supports Emcees' growth, plans for new features, and envisions becoming a shopping-first social media platform where creators and shoppers build communities. Aspiring creators are advised to find their uniqueness, create authentic content, and partner with brands they love.

The One Up Guy Connor Bergersen On His TikTok Comedy Career And How It All Started
Connor Bergersen, known as "The One Up guy" on TikTok, shared insights into his comedy career on social media. Originally working in blue-collar jobs, Connor transitioned to becoming a successful skit creator on TikTok. He describes himself as a lighthearted and easy-going creator who aims to bring laughter and positive energy to his followers. Comedy became his true calling after attempting stand-up shows and realizing his passion. 

After a period of feeling lost and taking a trip to Europe, Connor started creating videos daily, which eventually gained traction. One of his most popular characters, "The one-up guy," was inspired by a real-life encounter. Connor highlights memorable moments in his career, such as his favorite athletes supporting him and interviewing NBA star Richard Jefferson. He advises aspiring comedians to find inspiration in everyday life and focus on posting consistently without obsessing over views or numbers.
Industry News

All About Instagram’s Twitter-like App Launching This Summer
Meta, the social media giant that owns platforms like Facebook and Instagram, is set to launch a new text-based app that will serve as a Twitter alternative. The app, codenamed P92 or Barcelona, is expected to be partially integrated with Instagram and will allow users to share their thoughts following similar guidelines to Instagram. While there is no official release date, influencers and creators contacted by Meta have provided insights into the app. 

The new platform will have integrations with Mastodon, enabling users on Mastodon to see and interact with content on Meta's app. Users will be able to publish up to 500 characters per post and can sign in using their existing Instagram credentials. The app's interface will resemble a mix of Instagram and Twitter, with the option to include photos along with text. Meta's entry into the decentralized microblogging space comes at a time when Twitter is facing uncertainties and changes under new ownership.

Ogilvy Africa launches InfluenceO in Kenya: a platform that connects influencers to brands
Ogilvy Africa has launched InfluenceO, a platform that connects businesses, brands, and creators in Africa to excel in influencer marketing. InfluenceO aims to enable genuine partnerships between brands and influencers and drive impactful marketing campaigns. The platform revolutionizes the brand-influencer collaboration process by offering enhanced influencer identification using AI technology, streamlined onboarding, contracting, and payment processes, and integration with Ogilvy's proprietary media technology platform, Feed. 

InfluenceO provides comprehensive analytics and performance metrics, going beyond traditional metrics to measure conversion rates and long-term changes in brand sentiment. The platform also offers a centralized dashboard for managing campaigns, reviewing content drafts, negotiating terms, and tracking deliverables. Vikas Mehta, CEO of Ogilvy Africa, expressed excitement about introducing InfluenceO to Africa, highlighting its world-class functionalities tailored to sub-Saharan African countries. 

Introducing Community x Seen, a Beauty Marketing Platform That Aims to Make Leveraging UGC Easy
Community x Seen (CXS), a beauty marketing platform, is set to make its debut in the U.S. after successfully launching in the U.K. a year ago. Developed by Seen Group, a PR and communications agency, CXS aims to connect beauty brands with nano creators (those with fewer than 50,000 followers) to trial and review products and generate user-generated content for distribution across various social and digital channels. 

Since its launch in the U.K., CXS has gained over 4,000 beauty-specific creators and partnered with brands like Fenty Beauty, Jo Malone London, Charlotte Tilbury, and Byoma. Creators on the platform can customize their preferences, allowing them to be matched with relevant brands. CXS also provides guidance to creators on optimizing visibility through hashtag usage and other best practices. The platform plans to expand its reach with a future mobile app.

TubeBuddy Launches Inaugural Emerging Creator Awards
TubeBuddy, the AI platform by BENlabs, has launched the Emerging Creator Awards to recognize smaller YouTube channels with under one million subscribers. The program aims to provide exposure, exclusive trophies, and the opportunity to speak at VidSummit. Megan Oxford, Senior Community Programs Manager at BENlabs, highlights the awards' significance in supporting emerging creators who have put in considerable effort to grow their channels.

With over 11,000 nominations, finalists will be announced on the week of May 29th, followed by winners on the week of June 12th. Winners will enjoy admission to VidSummit, a VIP speaking opportunity, custom SWAG, a trophy, and increased exposure. TubeBuddy's AI tools evaluate nominee channels based on factors like posting regularity, SEO practices, audience engagement, and content quality. The program's future plans involve expanding categories and creating a larger celebration each year.
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Great Paywalled Content

Insider Mr. Beast's $14 Million Dollar Production Studio - Insider
MrBeast, the world's biggest YouTuber, has given a glimpse inside his "top secret" filming studio, which he claims is worth over $14 million. The studio is located in Greenville, North Carolina, and is where MrBeast creates his high-production challenge-style videos. The main filming room, called "Studio C," spans approximately 50,000 square feet and features various sets and props. 

The studio is equipped with a control room lined with screens for monitoring contestants, a camera room stocked with a vast array of camera equipment, and multiple offices for editing and brainstorming. Additionally, the studio contains a kitchen space and even a small apartment where MrBeast resides. The total estimated value of the studio, including the property, tech equipment, and renovations, is said to exceed $14 million.

OnlyFans Rival Fanfix Has No Nudity, Sold for $65M - Insider
22-year-old Harry Gestetner, co-CEO of Fanfix, a subscription platform, has successfully sold the company for a reported $65 million. Fanfix offers a model similar to OnlyFans but with a major distinction: it does not allow nudity. The platform targets Gen Z influencers who want to monetize their fan base without associating themselves with explicit content. Gestetner believes that many famous creators on OnlyFans are not actually engaged in explicit nudity but are still associated with adult content, which hampers their brand deals. 

Fanfix requires influencers to have at least 10,000 followers across their social media profiles to be eligible for joining the platform. The sale of Fanfix to SuperOrdinary, a brand accelerator, indicates the growing prominence of the creator economy. Fanfix reported having over 10 million users in April and projected payouts of $50 million to its 3,000 creators by year-end.

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