What started as an idea by Kristen Wiley to tailor the influencer marketing industry into a personalized and authentic marketing tool, has now blossomed into an eighteen person and counting company, named Statusphere. On Oct. 13, the University of Florida’s Alpha Productions members had the opportunity to hear from one of the founding members and COO’s of Statusphere, Theresa Joseph. Statusphere focuses on the micro-influencer market to help people discover brands they love; from people they trust.
Theresa broke down how the traditional process to use influencers as a marketing tool can be extremely time consuming and takes roughly seventy hours to only get thirty influencer responses. The problem is that the traditional method is not scalable, not guaranteed and not authentic. At Statusphere, their mission is to bring back authenticity to influencer posting. They have devised a solution that is scalable, guaranteed and authentic. These goals are accomplished by selecting a target audience, shipping the product out on behalf of the brand and getting guaranteed influencer posts; all of which can be completed within one hour.
Statusphere gifts the products to the influencers based on the influencer’s preferences and interests. Over 90% of the products are gifted. This establishes credibility between the product, influencer, and their post. The company has found that using micro-influencers is more beneficial because of niche targeting, the content of photography and how the third-party endorsement creates social proof. Micro-influencers also have 4x the engagement rate of typical influencers. Statusphere’s network includes thousands of diverse influencers. As a start-up, they currently use female influencers ages 18-65 who are U.S. based, but they are looking to expand their network in years to come.
What makes Statusphere so unique is the software they have developed to match the brands with influencers. The company has over 100+ data points on each influencer and Theresa said, “Our process is a mixture of marketing and Match.com.” Some data points include lifestyle, hair type, pets, shopping behaviors and hobbies. Brands are required to fill out a profile as well to be matched with an influencer and have their product distributed. Once the product is distributed, influencers have to post within 30-45 days of receiving the product and the brand is granted the rights to share that post. Influencers can only see 6-7 products at a time. When products are sent, influencers are given market copies, general talking points and required actions to take to guarantee they fulfill their duties to the brand.
Diving a little deeper, brands also have the opportunity to select their campaign goals. Campaign goals include brand awareness, retail support, e-commerce support, brand reviews, mass product sampling and Instagram follower growth. The two main social media platforms that Statusphere uses are Instagram and TikTok because these platforms allow for an increase in brand reach with the influencer content.
At the end of her presentation, Theresa also mentioned Statusphere’s internship program and how the company has a habit of hiring interns that they feel did their jobs well and are a great fit for the company. Alpha’s members were given the opportunity to ask questions once the presentation was complete and Theresa gave great advice to help with student’s current campaigns. She offered insight on how to reach out to influencers as well as how to promote a brand to certain target audiences.
Thank you to Statusphere and Theresa for joining Alpha Productions!