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Interview

Visual Amplifiers: "Brands are definitely looking for higher quality content over following now"

Visual Amplifiers: "Brands are definitely looking for higher quality content over following now"

Visual Amplifiers (VAMP) is an influencer and content marketing platform. Founded in Australia in 2015, the company aims to solve the key challenge brands face of getting high quality creative content in a fast, cost-effective and scalable way.

The platform’s invite-only network of high quality trusted creatives is said to lend unparalleled credibility and value to brands, which translates into ongoing customer loyalty and engagement.

Last year, VAMP announced its expansion into the UK with the addition of a London based team to proactively drive the growth of the business in connecting global brands with social media influencers.

We spoke to Co-Founder and CEO of VAMP - Aaron Brooks - about the services the platform can offer and how they're curating high quality content and campaigns to ensure the best possible ROI for their clients.

What is Vamp, and what services do you offer?
We are solving the key challenge for brands across the globe to receive high quality creative that outperforms other content at a much more cost-effective rate.

Our tech platform streamlines the process for brand and influencer collaborations by cutting out the painfully long email trails and admin. Our influencer campaigns are full-service and strategically implemented for brands and agencies who use our platform.

Part of our service is taking a load off for brands; from recruiting, briefing, shipping product to monitoring posts, paying talent and reporting. We also help our clients amplify their content outside of social so they see the highest ROI.

Vamp CEO Aaron Brooks

What excites you about the influencer marketing space?
There is so much that excites me about this space! For me, the passion started quite simply with looking at influencers’ feeds and seeing aspirational content that wasn’t just high quality and beautiful, but also so much more engaging than anything brands or traditional publications were producing.

I saw a lot of unleashed potential in the quality of this content. I think it’s incredibly exciting to see how this will do to revolutionise the whole landscape of advertising.

Now, a few years on, influencer marketing has matured into a fully fledged sophisticated advertising channel which is dramatically outperforming traditional channels.

A lot of agencies have been cropping up to help brands run their influencer campaigns. What we’re doing with the Vamp platform makes this scalable and streamlines the whole process.

What do you think are the biggest trends in the influencer space right now?
Video content - particularly vertical video - is definitely something that we are seeing more brands invest in.

Vertical video performs really highly, and with Instagram Stories being such a powerful marketing tool, we expect to see more brands utilising Influencer content in Instagram Stories ads.

Always on influencer campaigns is another trend - where previously brands were trialling it, now they see its values and have planned for on-going influencer activity.

Brands are definitely looking for higher quality content over following and the vast majority purchase additional usage rights of influencer content to amplify it off the back of an influencer campaign.

What are the big do’s and don’ts of Influencer PR in your opinion?

The biggest fails in influencer marketing have occurred when brands have visibly interfered with the influencer’s content on their feed.
One of the key DO’s which influenced the development of our tech platform was clear, up-front briefing. Nailing the briefing phase is key to a successful campaign.

A lot of clients aren’t sure about the best way to achieve the results they are looking for so we help them with this strategy.

Another important thing to get right is the talent selection. Spending time to properly vet influencers will save so much pain in the process. Our platform is invite only which means they go through a screening process for many aspects like quality, engagement, following and authenticity.

We identify whose followers are genuine and fake - and only the best are invited to receive briefs. Nine times out of ten for brands who have had a bad experience with an influencer in the past, the talent vetting stage is where the main errors will have been made.

One thing we have always been very protective of is ensuring influencers have full creative control. 

It kills the magic of an influencer post when brands try to insert their own agenda and tone of voice. Some key values of an influencer for brands is in their authenticity and follower engagement.

This is usually because brands are worried about trusting influencers. We solve this beforehand with clear briefing and talent recruitment. Our process allows brands to keep calm and trust influencers.

How do you think entertainment industry has changed with the rise of influencers?
The rise of social media and influencers have dramatically changed the entertainment industry in a short space of time.

We’ve seen the trend shifting away from TV advertising to social media and 2017 was the first year that digital marketing surpassed TV ad spend. (Source)

What we’re seeing is that entertainment companies are embracing Influencers as part of their marketing strategy to engage young people.

We’ve worked with many entertainment companies like Foxtel, Hayu and Disney on the promotion of new products, series, games and movies.

Is there a particular influencer campaign or case study you’ve run that you’re personally proud of, and what was the result?
There are so many highlights from the hundreds of influencer campaigns we’ve run all over the globe since Vamp started in 2015. A team tradition every Friday is that we all gather round and review the best content from the week - it inspires us.

For me, a personal moment of pride was the first time we saw a brand utilise our influencer produced content in their wider advertising campaign.

MasterCard used the Vamp platform to create high quality content and blog posts to populate a micro-site for their Priceless Getaways campaign.

Influencer content was amplified in digital ads on publications like The Urban List and Concrete Playground. It performed so well that MasterCard Australia was recognised globally and received an award for Best Use of Creative from their head office.

Now the majority of our clients aren’t just running influencer campaigns with us, but also leveraging the content outside of Instagram. Our focus on high quality content is what makes brands want to make the most of the content. Since we’ve become Facebook and Instagram Creative Marketing Partners, this is something that we are integrating more into our service for clients.

Influencer Editor

Danielle Partis is Editor of InfluencerUpdate.biz. She was previously the lead content creator for TeamRock Games, as well as contributing to outlets such as Metal Hammer, both online and in-print. Prior to that, Danielle worked as a freelance PR consultant and freelance journalist for a number of outlets.

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