Working with a Talent Agent

Want to know how to align your brand with a celebrity or influencer for a partnership?

There are so many benefits to getting talent, which could be a celebrity or influencer, on board for a campaign. And it's often Talent Agents, like this episode's guest, Corey Cooper from CC & Co., who are the gatekeepers to accessing them.


We'll let you know what information talent agents require from a PR, why a budget is essential, what analytics you should expect the agent to provide you on completion of the campaign plus shed some light as to why providing a contra product or experience often just isn't good enough.


WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS TO USING A CELEB FOR A PARTNERSHIP?

  • They can humanise a brand and help build authenticity for its service/product

  • You can tap into that person's social media reach and therefore increase brand awareness (keep in mind your target markets should align). Often, celebs/influencers have larger followings than the brands do so it's a good way to increase awareness within a relevant demo

  • Provide actual engagement via social media between an ambassador and their audience/community in regards to that brand, versus an advertising campaign where there's no engagement beyond a visual reference

  • Gives you an opportunity to get media coverage as they become the face of that campaign and can be used for interviews

“Ensure you're very clear with the talent agent what analytics/measurement you require from them to assess the success of that partnership. And, make sure you agree on what those look like before the campaign commences."

Listen to the full episode on The PR Pod podcast for more insight on engaging celebs for a campaign. You'll also find this episode on your fave podcast players, just search "The PR Pod".

WHAT INFORMATION DOES A TALENT AGENT WANT FROM AN INITIAL APPROACH?

  • Phone or email is usually fine for this initial approach, as you're going to have to follow up with the other method to provide more information anyway

  • Background on brand and overview of campaign goals

  • Requirements of that talent - is it a social media campaign, are they required to do interviews, do you want to make them a brand ambassador, does it involve a photo shoot etc

  • Usage - is this campaign just for one country or will it run globally? And for how long is the campaign?

  • Exclusivity - do you require exclusivity for your brand? By this they mean, can that celeb be used for other similar product campaigns from competing brands? If not, what's the time period you require exclusivity for?

  • Budget - this is essential, as they need to weigh up all the above elements plus budget to determine if this is an appropriate fit for that particular person. If that person isn't able to meet your requirements for that budget, the talent agent should recommend someone else from their agency that could be a better fit. If you don't have an exact budget, then a guide is very important. And if you have no idea of budget, then you'll need to ensure you provide all the other information so the manager can give you a rough guide of what you could expect to pay

WHAT SHOULD A TALENT AGENT PROVIDE YOU WITH FOR A SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN?

  • Pre-campaign: Social media breakdown of the talent's account analytics so you can see what their audience is and whether it's an appropriate fit

  • Post-campaign: screen-shots of analytics from each post so you can see full analytics

  • If the agent doesn't agree to send you either of the above, I'd be concerned. If you're paying, you deserve to know if that person is the right fit and how successful each post was

INSIDER TIPS FROM A TALENT AGENT

  • If you want someone for a social media campaign, take a look at the aesthetics of the potential ambassador's social media channels. If they do come on board, they will want to post content that is line with their aesthetics and looks seamless with the rest of their posts. And if that is completely opposite to what you want from them, they may not be the best fit for you

  • Once you have confirmed a partnership, you'll need to provide key messages that the brand requires that person to communicate via social media posts/interviews etc. However, keep in mind they may need to be modified so they're reflective of the talent's own language

  • Make sure if you are using a celeb for interviews to promote your brand/product, you brief in the journalist/producer on the service/product that person is promoting. The celeb will work in they key messages to responses but they can't control the questions asked of them

  • It can often seem like a better tactic to spread your budget over a number of celebs/influencers versus just use one or two. There's no right or wrong approach but consider the fact that if you use 1 -2 high profile people, you'll be much more likely to get editorial coverage in addition from them, which gives you even more brand awareness. Versus using macro/micro influencers who will just guarantee you social media posts. Depending on your goals, it may be better to use one high profile person, rather than 20 lower profile people

  • Contra is generally only of interest to micro or macro influencers. High profile talent can buy whatever products they want. But, if it's a luxury item or service, they may be more inclined to consider it, if it is in addition to a monetary fee

  • Don't be rude, pushy or think you understand what the celeb will be interested in, better than their agent does

  • Get in touch with the agent as far in advance as possible. Talent usually like to be involved with developing the creative concept and this can take time to create

  • Give agents 24 - 48hrs before you follow up on your initial pitch

  • Understand the legal requirements of what needs to be included in any social media posts from celeb/influencer partnerships . Each country will have different requirements. The Australian Influencer Marketing Council (AIMco) has introduced an Influencer Marketing Code of Practice which you should read through prior to engaging in a partnership that has a social media component

In the interview, Corey references a company called Klear, which offers an influencer marketing platform. You can find out more about them here.

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