The digital age is transforming the very nature of advertising and the playing field of how brands and influencers can and should work together. Influencers from YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram and other digital platforms are no longer being used to just fill leftover year-end advertising budgets or to create hasty one-off projects. This creates a market where a brand can truly benefit from these influencers as long as they are willing to invest to have a competitive impact. The name of the game is scale and to access the gates of scalability, brands must partner with influencers with the intent to empower and not disturb the content in a compelling manner while still delivering brand messaging.
The advertising model is changing to include these digital platforms from the very beginning to make a substantial impact particularly among Millenials. Brands have to be aware of how they work with influencers in order to build strong working relationships with them starting with clear KPI’s and an infrastructure to ensure success. In a day and age where impressions can be bought, it’s important that we think beyond viewership, and think about the journey after the impression.
With the huge influx of brand sponsorship demands, influencers have become more selective with what brands they choose to work with. They want to work with brands that fit their content and audiences well and brands that help them make great content. Developing a strong relationship with these digital influencers assures that brands will be able to reach the coveted Millennial audience with powerful content that both reaches and causes audiences to act.
This year at Ad Week NY, the Branded Entertainment Network (BEN), a Bill Gates Company, was invited to speak in a 30 minute presentation titled, “The Future of TV is Digital Influencers” featuring Ricky Ray Butler, SVP of Digital at BEN and Zach King, acclaimed Filmmaker & Instagram/YouTube personality.
Zach King is by no means new to the advertising industry. He is a filmmaker, Instagrammer, YouTuber and overall social media sensation. He has been featured many times in articles across publications such as Ad Age regarding his memorable and viral work (you can find examples here). Fans across the world have enjoyed his imaginative and magical video creations. Known for his “mini-masterpieces,” Zach King has earned the name of FinalCutKing. This is a well-deserved title for his captivating videos that he produces online in partnership with brands. Zach’s creativity, passion for people, and dedication has led him to create a successful brand as well as paved the way in 2015 to begin a multimedia production company. Together, Zach and his team create content for millions of fans as well as companies such as Walt Disney Pictures, Crayola, Nike, Coca-Cola, and many more. His work has landed him features on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Good Morning America, Adweek & People Magazine, and recently he was a contender on the hit CBS show The Amazing Race. All eyes are waiting to see what he’s going to do next, including his 25 million followers that he has generated to date.
Ricky Ray Butler serves as the Senior Vice President of Digital at BEN, a Bill Gates Company and has been a leader in the influencer space representing global brands and helping them work with influencers that have relevant audiences. Ricky’s work with BEN focuses on brand integration to increase awareness, establish product credibility and build an active community of brand advocates. He is a pioneer in the digital video space and is an incredibly powerful speaker who has been featured at Vidcon, Playlist Live, and Ad Week Asia. Ricky has worked with thousands of influencers and top clients which include Ubisoft, Disney, Turkish Airlines, Dyson, Estée Lauder, 2K, and more.
It is a thrilling opportunity to have both Zach and Ricky Ray discuss how brands can partner together with influential creators to reach their audiences. The basis of their discussion lies in the dramatic decreases in traditional television viewing and how brands have an opportunity to connect with their audience in a genuine fashion across a community of viewers. Millennials and other viewers must be reached where they live and consume content – in the recesses of the internet and on the viewing platform of their choice.
To explore this conversation further, attend “The Future of TV is Digital Influencers”. The presentation will be held on September 29, 2016 from 4:15-4:45pm at the ADARA stage at Time Center Hall.Read more about it at Huffingtonpost and Ad Week.