Sramana Mitra: Do you have metrics that you can share with us in terms of what kinds of follower count and rates do people get on the per post model?
Ted Murphy: Sorry to be all over the board because a lot of that is determined by the creators themselves. The way that our marketplace works is that the marketer and the creator have to agree on a price. On the low-end, you could be talking about a couple of dollars for something like a tweet. On the high end, a tweet might go for $100,000 or more. It depends on who that person is and what they’re following and also what the brand’s larger strategy is.
Sramana Mitra: If you look at the industry in general, what are the key trends that you see and what are the open problems?
Ted Murphy: I think we are moving more towards accountability and having things driven more by data. I think that in a lot of cases, brands have done themselves a disservice where they have overpaid for people in the past where they weren’t really getting the value that they should have because they didn’t have the data they needed to be able to quantify things. I think that that is going to change over time.
It’s going to make that creator think of themselves more like a business and make sure that they are delivering value for the brands that they’re working with on the other side. We do see a lot of the people who have come out of nowhere and all of a sudden, have these huge followers. They act like they’re entitled and that the brand should be lucky to work with them. That’s not how a business works. I think that some of these creators are going to have to readjust their mindset as brands get more and more data.
Sramana Mitra: Anything else that you want to share in terms of trends and nuances in your space?
Ted Murphy: There’s really two parts to what we do in our space. One is the influencer side and the other part is the content side. I would say that we see a world where if you are consumer-facing, you absolutely need to think of yourself as a publisher in some capacity. You are expected at this point to have a blog. You’re expected to have social accounts. You’re expected to be active and engaged.
Sramana Mitra: Yes, the content is the brand. It’s not just for consumer marketeers. All marketeers will need to understand this. Even on the B2B side, essentially search engine optimization and organic traffic is one of your best inbound traffic strategies.
Ted Murphy: Absolutely. It’s the one form of advertising that can be an annuity for you. If you invest a bunch of money just in television spots of billboards, you’re really doing yourself a disservice. If you’re providing thought leadership and you’re providing white papers and research, those are things that continue to pay dividends long after you’ve paid for them.
Sramana Mitra: We’re huge believers in content marketing. We’ve built a business on a shoestring. It’s all done through content marketing. We do a tremendous amount of publishing. I’ve been following some of the companies in B2B that are doing good work in content marketing. Hubspot does a very good job in content marketing. Hootsuite does a very good job of content marketing. They are reaping solid dividends.
Ted Murphy: If you’re a marketer today and you don’t have this content-first mindset, you’re going to waste a lot of money and you’re going to have difficulty keeping up with the competition at this point.
Sramana Mitra: Agreed. It was nice talking with you.