As part of an ongoing series, StreamDaily is asking multi-channel network execs what they can do for influencers at different stages of their careers.
YouTubers often tell us it’s important to be able to reach MCN management and to feel like they’re a priority, even if they haven’t built up massive audiences just yet. A vlogger considering signing with an MCN might wonder if they have to meet a subscriber threshold in order for branded content opps to become available to them.
StyleHaul, a fashion and beauty network and content producer, recently hired former AOL advertising executive Rob DeChiaro to head StyleHaul Studios, which will pair up influencers with brands. Stylehaul’s Kelly Finnegan (pictured right), VP of global partnerships, says channels of all sizes can take part in programs like that one. Finnegan, who will be speaking at Buffer Festival Industry Day next Thursday, Oct. 16, says managers gauge creator needs through direct conversations, surveys, group discussions, social boards, and by proactively reviewing the channel output and making recommendations to them based on best practices.
Does a channel have to have a certain number of subscribers for brand deals, 1:1 attention and support?
No, not at all, and we want that to be clear. Our focus is about content and engagement. We do not work off of a static playbook, each influencer and program are different, which is what is exciting.
So how do you determine who will need assistance and in what area?
Based on our knowledge of, and relationship with, the channels. We speak with them directly to determine and customize their needs. For example, if we see that an influencer has what could be considered “rough or choppy edits,” we’d set him or her up with our in-house editor at StyleHaul to walk through certain software and programs – the same would be for optimization, and so forth.
But with 4,600 channels in the StyleHaul network, that’s a lot of calls to answer. What system do you have in place to address them?
We respond to any calls, or more often, email requests and questions within 48 hours as standard policy. Oftentimes, influencers are looking for basic information around payments, contracts or technical support for their channels. We have programs and classes that help educate our creators based on anticipated needs so we are proactive versus reactive. Informed influencers allow us to service our 4,600 channels very effectively. We have the lowest attrition rate in the space.
What kind of deals, either branded or production, does StyleHaul provide to creators?
StyleHaul offers partners everything from casting campaigns and premium content series to the development of custom campaigns for editorial. These generally run across multiple platforms and expand to offline executions, like events. We do our best to properly match each influencer with the appropriate opportunities for their content, overall personal brand and personal interests.
We determine the best brand partners by understanding what the brand is specifically looking for and then match them to the appropriate influencers. We are very familiar with the types of videos our creators are making and what they would normally talk about. We also have strong personal relationships with our influencers so we generally know what they are looking for in a branded program.
How do you help channels increase subscriber numbers?
We offer our StyleHaul creators the opportunity to participate in a variety of growth-focused programs that include promotion, production assistance, channel collaboration, incorporation into branded and non-branded campaigns, optimization and more.
We recently launched a program that offers in-person training with the StyleHaul Studios team on how to create strong and engaging content on YouTube and other social platforms. The training consists of everything from best practices in lighting techniques, camera framing, editing and more. The sessions also create collaborations, support and friendships within the SH community.
Can you give an example of a recent collaboration you helped arrange?
We arranged a collaboration between StilaBabe and Blogilates (pictured at top), two of our influencers with more than 5 million subscribers combined:
We also spearheaded a collaboration between SparkleandGlitter29 and To8andbeyondmakeup, two of our influencers who have slightly less than 10,000 subscribers combined.
The above examples demonstrate how the StyleHaul network scales, and also offers assistance to channels of all sizes.
How does StyleHaul work with talent’s outside managers, publicists and teams?
We definitely consider our influencers’ teams important partners and make every effort to foster a collaborative environment and work with them to develop opportunities to help our talent grow. Working in tandem with managers, publicists and agents for our talent produces a higher quality end result, which is always the overall goal for creator support.