They go by many names. In some circles they are called influencers, many others call them brand ambassadors. We call them our Social Native branded content creators. Since the rise of the gig economy, we’ve been able to bring together hundreds of thousands of social consumers with an eye for content creation, and empower them to be Social Native creators. So, without further ado, we’d like to introduce our creators.
The creators who power Social Native are a complex blend of authenticity, creativity, and innovation. At Social Native, we aren’t focused on the big-time influencers. Instead, we focus on everyday consumers who have a knack for creating great content, and our job is to empower them to create great content for the brands they love.
Marketers with content needs now have the opportunity to draw on a diverse community of independent, dynamic, talented creators who aren’t bound by the traditional confines of an office or production studio. Our creators maintain the freedom and flexibility to only create content that’s true to themselves and their fan base. This authenticity is changing the game for brands.
“I review products anyway on Yelp or Facebook organically and say, ‘Hey, I loved this,”’ says Brittany Kelley, who has been creating content for Social Native for the past year. “So it’s kind of amazing to have the opportunity on my platform to use that same voice and get paid to do it.”
What’s more, our creators are as racially and economically diverse as the brands’ customers, and their passions vary anywhere from fashion blogging to pets to photography.
The Creative Process
Although the best part about our creators is their unique individuality, they do all have one thing in common: they want to create authentic, high-quality content as much as brands want to leverage it.
In fact, when surveyed, 98 percent agreed that “genuinely liking the brand or product” is the most important attribute when choosing to participate in a campaign, and 95 percent agreed that the brand’s aesthetic should match their own. Together, they were the top two reasons creators cited when choosing which brands to work with.
“All of the brands I collaborate with are brands I truly like, and that I know will fit with my personal aesthetic,” says Samantha Neira, one of our expert content creators. “I look for similarities between my aesthetic and the brand's style, so I can create something that will work for both of us.”
Even though our creators have managed to offer content at a fraction of the costs of agencies and top influencers, what they produce is hardly fly-by-night grist. 74% or creators said they begin by gathering inspiring images and 87% come up with multiple creative directions for a photo. 66% said they use a camera other than their phone to capture the perfect photo for a campaign, and 86% edit their content outside of Instagram. These aren’t just quick photos snapped on the iPhone, these are creative productions, made with thought and care.
The creative process is a labor, but a labor of love.
“All of the brands I collaborate with are brands I truly like, and that I know will fit my personal aesthetic,” says Neira. “I look for similarities between my personality and the brand’s style, so I can create something that will work for both of us.”
How Creators Measure Success
In the end, our creators put great care and attention into creating high-quality content that their audience will find authentic and engaging. When asked how they measure their own success, creators cited “happiness with what they’ve published” as the number one metric.
Needless to say, the creative industry has come a long way since the days of Mad Men and Don Draper. Consumers are at the heart of this rapid evolution, providing a viable source of high-quality content for brands to leverage across all channels. It’s no longer a question of if brands should use consumer-generated content, but how they’re going to empower their consumers to become an extension of their marketing teams.