A Journey Through 100 Influencer & Creator Startups — Part 3: The How

How influencers can help amplify your brand and grow your business

Celebrity co-founders

The category of influencer that probably gets the most attention is the celebrity founder — like Gwyneth Paltrow (Goop), Lady Gaga (HAUS LABS*), Jessica Alba (The Honest Company*), and others.

“We are brand first, celebrity second.”

In other words, if Honest Co’s baby and beauty products weren’t genuinely high quality, the company would have died on the vine ten years ago.

Celebrity content

Other startups like Calm deploy celebrities like Matthew McConaughey and LeBron James as key contributors. But again, this involves more than just a paid endorsement or a superficial commitment. Matthew narrates sleep stories, while LeBron offers a series of talks on how to train your mind.

  • C… Create content for the product; and
  • E… Engage authentically with the product.

Brand ambassadors as influencers

Other startups like to focus on influencers who represent their core customers. As influential creators, they are the closest to average consumers, and can have a disproportionately large impact on changes in consumer behavior.

Working with nano celebrities and micro influencers

Perhaps the most popular option for companies growing through influencers has been working with micro-influencers and nano-influencers. These are people with fewer than 10,000 followers, but whose fans are highly engaged across TikTok, YouTube, Instagram or Snap*.

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Nicole Quinn

Investor at Lightspeed, Stanford alum, Former Consumer Analyst at Morgan Stanley and British 100m sprinter