Don’t play the average game
An influencer should create a ‘worship at the church of’ following to raise the averages.
Look to Barstool Sports, a controversial, to some, business, but a behemoth in the content world. They, like any company, have had to twist and turn to try and retain and gain new sponsors to attach to content which would have normally been large sports games. But I have loved the incredible and very original content they have put out. I think it has raised the stacks on content creation. Dave Portnoy, the founder, alone has masterminded several jump steps and in turn, has helped a ton of small businesses during this period but in a very genuine, funny and original way.
If you don’t know Barstool Sports, Dave Portnoy, on top of many things, when he moved the company from Boston to New York, started to do Pizza Reviews around the city. They have become so popular that where ever he travels he finds local pizza restaurants to review. The associated One Bite app has been downloaded 250,000 times. There is a lot more to this but let me get to the point. During this lockdown, he turned to the frozen pizza market to review. Whilst doing one of his reviews, the buzzer to his apartment rang and someone delivered a package so he opened it during the review. (Somewhere along the lines and I missed this he gave his home address away) so people caught on and the packages started arriving in very, very large numbers. I think it may have maxed out at 200 in one day. So he started to an unboxing show to open all of these packages. About 50,000 people would tune in to watch this live show. Teeshirts he has received have been turned into merchandise or as the ‘youth’ say merch. Someone sent him a live fish, yes a live fish (Randulph) if you are interested in the name. This has been turned into content and ‘merch’. Sponsorships have been found for the new shows. I am not saying they have not lost income but they have found a different way to bring their content to you.
Eric Nardini, the CEO of Barstool who really stayed out of a lot of the content has been putting out a daily podcast Token CEO which is excellent and probably full of the best business advice from the real world. She also started a running club that people can join again which has given an opportunity to partner with, I think Nike, to create more ‘merch’.
The reason why I have banged on about Barstool is they were always unique content creators, they never played by the rules and have raised their game even more in these difficult times where others are floundering because they have stuck to the template.