The influencer marketing landscape is big and ever-changing. You have huge agencies that with with big brands for big budgets. You have boutique firms and consultants that mix and match influencer approaches. You have niche players in the agency and software space that focus on micro and nano influencers. And at each of those tiers, you have speciality shops that are more like Hollywood entertainment production houses, video-only tools … Honestly, it’s a big mess.

The ever-changing landscape also impacts the power and effectiveness of creators. To many, the individual content creator is the television network of today. Each individual one their own enterprise with all the accouterments that go with that … staffs, budgets, egos. 

One man who has seen all of it and continued to innovate and build solutions, both products and services, to address the needs of the industry is Joe Gagliese from Viral Nation. That firm has been around a while now and has grown considerably. 

It bills itself as a global digital media innovation group that powers the social ecosystem through integrated solutions that align strategy, talent, media, and technology. Viral Nation includes full-service digital and social agency, VN Marketing; creator and athlete-influencer management agencies, VN Talent and VN Sports; and software division, VN Tech.

If you want something done with influencers, Viral Nation can probably do it. And Joe’s take on how we’re all doing what we’re doing is an interesting filter for what is and what may come. 

I asked Joe to come on and talk to us about the landscape, the future, the opportunities and more. You’ll get to hear the conversation today on the show.

This episode of Winfluence is presented by We help brands solve a couple of big problems. We also have free solutions for creators you need to know about. 

For the brands out there, what does best is source authentic and high-performing user-generated content you can use to fuel your paid, owned, earned and shared content strategies. UGC performs better. We help you get as much of it as you want. If you also want those users to post the UGC on their channels to become influential voices for your brand, our software helps make that happen, too. 

For you creators, when you authenticate into’s platform, we have a free media kit you can use to market your influence, content and channels to brands. You can customize it, then pop out a PDF or a web version to share. You can even create different versions for different clients on the fly. We also have an incredible referral program that pays you 20% commission on the first year’s revenue from any brand you refer to 

You can learn more at And if you’d like to set up a call with me to personally show you the platform and how it can benefit you and your brand, jump over to, fill out that form and we’ll set up some time to talk. – We’re building a Community Commerce Marketing Super App that has something in it for you and your business. Come see us. 

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The Winfluence theme music is “One More Look” featuring Jacquire King and Stephan Sharp by The K Club found on Facebook Sound Collection.

Joe Gagliese Transcript

Jason Falls 0:00
Do you want Instagramers or Tik Tok errs to post about your brand? Or do you actually want to engage graders who influenced their audience to buy your product? If you’re in the latter of those two, you’ve come to the right place. Welcome to win fluence the influence Marketing Podcast

Jason Falls 0:23
Hello again friends thanks for tuning in to win fluence the influence Marketing podcast. The influencer marketing landscape is big and ever changing. You have huge agencies that work with big brands for big budgets. You have boutique firms and consultants that mix and match influencer approaches. You have niche players in the agency and software space that focus on micro and nano influencers. And at each of those tiers, you have specialty shops that are more Hollywood like entertainment production houses, video only tools, honestly it’s a big mess. The ever changing landscape also impacts the power and effectiveness of creators to many the individual content creators the television network of today, each individual one their own enterprise with all the accoutrements that go with that staffs, budgets, managers, egos. One man who has seen all of it and continued to innovate and build solutions both from a products and services standpoint, to address the needs of the industry is Joe gal USA from viral nation. That firm has been around a while now and has grown considerably since it started. It builds itself as a global digital media innovation group that powers the social ecosystem through integrated solutions that align strategy talent, media and technology. Viral nation includes full service, digital and social agencies, viral nation, marketing creator and athlete influencer management agencies, their talent agency and sports agency and a software division called viral nation tech. If you want something done with influencers, viral nation can probably do it. And Joe’s take on how we’re all doing. What we’re doing is an interesting filter for what is and what may come. I asked Joe to come on and talk to us about the landscape, the future, the opportunities and more, you’ll get to hear that conversation today on the show. This episode of wind fluence is presented by it and well I guess I can say we since it’s my day job, we help brands solve a couple of big problems. We also have free solutions for creators you need to know about as well. For the brands out there, what we do best is source authentic and high performing user generated content you can use to fuel your paid owned earned and shared content strategies. UGC performs better, we help you get as much of it as you want. If you also want those users to post the UGC on their channels, and become influential voices for your brand. Our software solution helps make that happen to for you creators. When you authenticate in the is platform. We have a free media kit you can use to market your influence your content, your channels to brands, you can customize it then pop out a PDF or a web version to share. You can even create different versions for different clients on the fly. We also have an incredible referral program that pays you 20% commission on the first year’s revenue from any brand you refer to Or you just fill out a form, we handle the rest if the client signs with us, whatever they pay us 20% to you for a year, you can learn [email protected] And if you’d like to be set up with a call with me to personally show you the platform, and how it can benefit you and your brand jump over to Jason CIP IO, fill out that form and we’ll set up some time to talk I will literally be the person showing you the platform Jason is building a community commerce Marketing Super app that has something in it for you and your business. Come see us the ever changing landscape of influencer marketing influencers agencies and more. Joe gal Yes, a from viral nation is next on influence.

Jason Falls 4:17
Joe, I’ve been a longtime admirer of your work viral nation has been a player in the influencer space for some time now give us a quick backstory on how the company came about why and how did you get started in the influencer space?

Joe Gagliese 4:30
It’s not an elaborate or sexy story is, you know my business partner Matt, who’s the co founder of viral nation today used to be late for everything. And I found myself always I found myself always waiting in a car lot for him to carpool to our job at a bank at the time. And I thought I fell in love with the app Vine. So I was an early user of the app Vine and I fell in love with some of the personalities on there just literally waiting for them and scrolling drew it and one day went to him. And I said, You know what, Matt, I swear, these kids are worth a lot more than what it looks like they’re, they’re being used for today. And I was like, Would you have any propensity to want to help me to figure out how to monetize these guys, and he’s like, let’s go. So, you know, that’s really the precipice of how we got into the creative space, we just saw these young, these young kids on on Vine, you know, doing, you know, what felt like, at that time, 15 million views in a weekend, and you’re thinking, Oh, my God, like that, that’s, that’s a magical, like, if you think about how much TV is making, how much, you know, these, these these massive entertainment companies are making, and these kids are making 50 million views a day and you know, living in their mom’s basement and can’t afford a car, like let’s do something about it. So that’s how we got kicked off. We started by representing talent, quickly pivoted into an influencer marketing company, when we realized that, you know, relying on the inbox of the Creator to sustain their livelihood was not the right way to do it. So we went out and built a marketing company to be able to kind of bring brands into the fold. That, you know, the timing on that Jason was just impeccable, the the business really took off, and then we hit this, this, this, this silo where it was like, getting brands to spend more required them to really understand what was going on. So that’s ultimately what kicked us into technology. And from there, it’s been talent, marketing and technology. Today,

Jason Falls 6:24
it’s amazing. So how long between your launch and when vine died, because I know that had been a hard day for you. You know what, it was

Joe Gagliese 6:35
probably about two years in to the company. And what was interesting at that time, I don’t know if it was just good luck or what it was. But you know, a lot of the creators that we had built relationships with had been diversifying across the platforms really early. The guys like, you know, Jake, Paul, and David dobrik. And, you know, literally pawns, and these types of folks who, you know, were just naturally becoming superstars in their own right, and we were tied to those types of folks. We also got about eight to nine months of a heads up from vine that that could be happening at that time, which was huge for us. So, you know, we, we, we pivoted, we spoke to as many of our creators as we can we help develop relationships with the other platforms, we tried everything we were launching musically at that time. So, so we were able to get through it, but also Jason, keep in mind, we were 150 of the size, we are now maybe even smaller. So it was it was it was easier to turn that ship. Whereas today, I think, you know, when those those rumors circulate about tick tock and stuff like that you’re sitting in a boardroom going like, oh, boy, like that would be a big shift. It makes the last shift, not even speed, like training. But yeah, it was it was it was it was interesting. Funny enough, Jason, we actually ended up hiring two or three of the creators who couldn’t make the shift. And they actually still work here to this day, I was with one of them this morning, said, You know what, you’re an expert at this stuff. Yeah, you weren’t able to translate it to another platform, but we’d love to have you be a part of our journey. So you know, I corporatized some of the Viners to into roles in the company. And it was an interesting time.

Jason Falls 8:12
That’s, that’s plenty smart. And obviously a good reason why you’re still around and still kicking. Now. You alluded to this a second ago, I know you’ve expanded over the years to, you know, from talent management to now you know, tech software stuff you’ve got, I guess the agency side of things is still certainly very apparent. Give everyone a sense of all the different sort of divisions of what vn does, and, and maybe who they do each for,

Joe Gagliese 8:35
ya know, I’d love to, you know, part of the challenge with barrel nation has been just keeping up with everything. So we’ve never been able to really have a website, or a brand that’s kept up with where we are. So you know, a lot of the time Jason, I get asked that question like, you guys do all that. It’s like, yeah, we do, we just were a little slow at, tell him the story, you’ll be seeing our new brand coming out, hopefully next two, three weeks across the board. But so so far, all nation talent group has now grown to over 1000 creators that we represent exclusively, to my knowledge is the largest in the world. And the whole thing there, Jason was like, you know, and how familiar you are with the space is, is it’s not all about brand deals for creators, brand deals, create, you know, that, that that that income for them, and the time they need it, but it’s not a sustainable, lifelong enterprise at that point. And what we realized about two and a half years ago was like, Oh, my God, you know, all of us all these companies who are just doing brand deals, relying on the inbox of these creators and hoping for the next big home run. You know, frankly, we’re doing these guys a disservice. So I tasked the president of our team to just over two and just just over two years ago, sorry, not two and a half, just over two. I said to him, I said, John, I need you to do a study for me. And I need you to figure out every possible scenario where a creator can make income and I want you to bring it to me in a report that has them all broken down. And he did that and it was Everything from, you know, podcasts, OTT content syndication, starting their own brands starting their own merchandise, creating UGC content for brands, original productions. And he had this whole list of like, if I was a creator, these are all the potential ways that I can make money. And he didn’t know why he was having that meeting with them, Jason and then at the end of the meeting, I said, Okay, John, do you have a year to make that whole list come true. And we need to be the best at each one of those things. And he looked at me like you, you, like I do the receptive mode of this. So so we, we spent the better part of a year and a half getting that all up to scale. So now viral nation talent. You know, truly, in my perspective, Jason’s become like the place where creators get the 360 degree a service and, and it’s no, it’s no rip to the, to the Creator space, it’s just you know, you have a group of individuals with a lot of power and a lot of opportunity that don’t have the right acumen. So what ends up happening is these guys get passed around, kind of like dirty laundry, they got, you know, one company doing their merch, one company doing a brand deal, one company is bringing them on TV, and you know, no sophisticated business person can manage a business in that way. So my goal was to kind of go, go under the radar, build out what I thought the future of of a great talent representation company look like and put it in action. So I’m proud today to say that every single thing that was on that list two years ago has been completed, actually, as of last week, the last one finished. And to boot, we developed the technology to also run the agency that’s, that’s going in, in the next week or so here. And Jason, the idea being transparency, creators don’t really understand what’s going on in the background. And sometimes they can misinterpret that for a lack of effort. So we wanted to create we created an app called Creator plus that all of our creators we represent our into, and they basically get to see like a CRM, what brands are my agent talking to? What stage of the deal are those that what are they doing and, and we’re trying to really transform the game as it relates to creators because my feeling is, you know, viral nation can make a lot of money in the short term, or we can build enterprises in the long term. And that’s kind of how we look at that business. And it’s been really fruitful. And then, and just for scale, Jason, like, you know, our hopes this year is to do over $100 million in deals for these creators. So it’s become a very significant p&l and a very significant operation. Then viral nation marketing group started out as influencer marketing guys, we only did influencer marketing campaigns. You know, we were like, well, we represent all the craters, we know this stuff inside and out, let us run the campaign for you. And that naturally evolved and I don’t know if you remember Jason, but at some point in probably around 2016. A bunch of CMOS came out guns a blazing and saying, you know, influencer, marketing is a fad. Influencer Marketing sucks. Influencer Marketing, not scalable. We were sitting there going, Oh, my God, are they right? I don’t think they’re right. But like, we’re gonna be young guys who don’t know. So what if they’re right? So that actually triggered us to have a have a meeting and I just said, Okay, well, let’s go attack the marketing agencies a little bit and getting let’s ruffle their feathers. So what we started to do was, you know, we went from influencer marketing, to own social, so developing, managing and growing brands, socials, to doing paid social to doing performance marketing, to doing content. And really, my goal was to create like an agency of record for companies who are led by social in the future. And, you know, I’m not predicating any innovative knowledge at that time. I think I was a little bit naive, but I’m happy it worked out that way. Because Pharrell nation marketing group is just over almost, it’s getting to almost 300 people, Jason, and we’re operating the internals of some of the coolest brands in the world, ranging from their Creator campaigns, to their socials, to everything and it’s all managed through technologies that we built. So that company has become really, really strong. And then we have our own nation technology. And Jason, for us, it was like, it was like, first it was proved to a brand that influencer works. That’s where our technology started. Then we ran into this issue where it was like brands didn’t want to spend money on creators because they were so scared about what could happen. And that was actually, you know, Disney’s one of our larger clients, and it was them early that was really pushing us to say, Guys, if you don’t find a solution to protect us here, you know, I don’t I don’t see how we can really scale this channel and being the crazy Canadian guys we are I went to my partner, Matt. And I said, you need to build a tool right now, that mitigates this problem, but he’s like, Oh my god. Okay. So two years later, Jason, we released viral nation secure, it’s a fully it has over 13 patents on it. We’ve worked with the platform’s in tandem. And really, what it does is it allows us to do a social media background check on creators and individuals across all their socials. That’s all opt in. It’s all consensual, it’s no big seeing eye. It’s just part of the relationship between the brand and the creator or HR and whoever that person may be. And then we built a monitoring system so that when things go live, we have the luxury of being a We’ll have to get in front of things before they become large issues for brands. But really, the goal was Jason, like create something that acts as like the Norton antivirus, the social media for these big brands. What we didn’t anticipate Jason was like, all the different adjacent industries that came after us, we just signed a deal with the Canadian government with the US government we’re doing, you know, we’re working with some of the biggest sports leagues in the world. We’re working with some of the biggest HR professionals in the world social media, as you know, Jason’s become a very dangerous place. And it’s so damn powerful in a good way. But it’s so damn powerful in a bad way. And we’ve been seeing that a lot over the last six weeks. So that tool has become very significant. And a big anchor of our nation that we have that just quite frankly, makes us very hard to compete with in that category at that scale. Then we attack the employee advocacy world. So one of the things that we realized was like, There’s no way that brands are going to pay us Jason to create content for the next 10 years for their social media. We’re not the company agencies who are running social needs to kind of learn the internals, learn the culture, it just didn’t feel right. So we looked at like HootSuite and LinkedIn and companies who are doing like these kinds of corporate shill factory, you know, share the CEOs post and, and getting into that advocacy world. And we said, Wait, if we treat employees of an organization, like creators or like influencers, and we can teach them and empower them to learn how to create content to empower themselves, then we’ll get the same outcome. So we launched in power at Social Media Week last week, we built our own social media management platform, we have our own generative AI suites, and the technology side and the technology business is really boom for us. We have over 100 engineers in Canada. So really, what I’m trying to do, Jason is how do you how do you take social and make it an enterprise thing? How do you take social and really wrap your arms around it from creating creators, monetizing creators to developing brands, entire social strategy and merging the two? And we’re close man, it never seems like we’re there. But every day, I feel like we’re inching closer.

Jason Falls 17:04
Well, it sounds like you’re you’ve built kind of this sort of all in one place for brands to go for creators, and certainly beyond that. But I’m curious there there are. When I look out at the landscape, I see this big fragmentation of who does what their big agencies that do the big brand big budget thing, too many of them now are bleeding over into like, you know, Hollywood style talent of agencies, in my opinion, but there are also agencies and software companies that focus on micro influencers. Is it really feasible for one company to serve all paths to influencer marketing? Or is that even what you’re trying to do? So

Joe Gagliese 17:40
So we’ve we’ve that that mission we’ve already completed. So we do that. And we do it? Well, from macro celebrity to mid tier to ambassadorships across the board, everything creator in one place, we’ve nailed that. And that’s been the secret success of viral nation marketing. But what we’ve needed to do in order to achieve that Jason is really set our targets at specific companies and have really strong criteria to the companies that we work with. So we work with large enterprise clients, for all nations make the barrel nations integration of all those things make sense when it’s at scale, and it goes long, it’s very difficult, like you’re saying, to do it in a fragmented manner, in like these smaller doses, which is what influencer has been for a long time, you know, we want influencers around our q4 Winter campaign, we want, you know, to do this ambassador program, to get people to test our products, we made a decision about five years ago to say we’re gonna stay out of that arena, we’re gonna focus on the big enterprises across America and the globe, and we’re gonna figure out how to operationalize them. So I think that I’m agreeing with you, in the sense that it is next to impossible to do it at that medium to to small business layer, but when you get into the enterprise, and you can make the investment in the team and the technology to do it, and you’re committed, then it’s possible putting your shoe at door in this space, it becomes very cumbersome and very difficult really quickly. And we’ve just found that, you know, our position is is on the enterprise side and the big scale side and to the comment around you know, the agents the amount of competition in the Creator spaces is pretty surreal. And I think the issue being Jason that the barrier to entry is so damn low, right at the end of the day, you know, we’re asking everyday people to talk about our products and and that doesn’t take you know, insane acumen to put together it’s also become such a large trend that you know, you have big companies around the US marketing companies, PR agencies, etc, going like I want a piece of that pie and that’s natural. So yeah, and I almost see them as startups but big brands don’t right so so there’s just there’s a lot of confusion in the Creator space around who’s the best and who’s what and etc. And we’ve been just kind of heads down and fight in our path in the area we feel most confident. Very nice.

Jason Falls 19:51
We’re talking to Joe gal yes a the CEO of viral nation, one of the leading influencer marketing agencies talent management solution. providers in the business. When we come back on when fluence we’re going to talk about how AI factors into viral nation’s approach and software, how brands can adapt to the changing influential influencer landscape as well. Don’t go away. Hey, gang. Before we get back to the show, I want to share a little bit of information with you about an event coming up that I’m going to be a part of, that I want you to be a part of. If you are a longtime listener to the show, you know that I am heavily involved with the influencer marketing show in New York City each year. I am one of the two co hosts of the two stages there in New York and that is coming up June 20 and 21st in New York City, IMS, New York navigating the Creator economy, an unbelievable list of speakers, both from the brand side the thought leadership industry expert side, lots of folks from the top agencies will be there lots of the great solutions providers and thinkers in the space are going to be there as well. It is really an amazing event. It is put on by the Hello partner folks who are based in the United Kingdom and the influencer marketing show started there. Last year, they brought it to the United States for the first time, I was honored to be asked to co host last year up in New York City. They’re at the New World stages and it’s coming back to the same venue again June 20 and 21st 2023 just coming up here in a few weeks. The the website to go to to learn more is influencer marketing There’s a couple of different shows. So make sure you click on the New York version and book your tickets. I can’t wait to see you there. I will be co hosting one of the two stages again this year and also co hosting a panel where some folks and I are going to explore the creative gap in influencer marketing execution. So we’re gonna talk about the difference between just a laundry list of sponsored posts and actually having sharp creative concepts to drive your influencer marketing strategies forward. Influencer Marketing Show New York City go to influencer marketing Click on the one for New York book your tickets. I’ll see you there June 20 and 21st. All right, let’s get back to the show.

Jason Falls 22:17
Welcome back to wind fluence sitting in today with Joe gal. Yes, say the CEO of viral nation. Joe, before we went to the break, we were talking a little bit about the technology and the software that you guys have been building AI is a big topic across all industries today. I know we’re we’re having fun leveraging it for how we approach [email protected] where I spend my day time you think AI is crucial for successful influencer marketing today. Why is that?

Joe Gagliese 22:46
Listen, I’m concerned about it. Jason more than I’m excited about it, but not for the reasons you might think. Okay. I think that, you know, part of the power. And part of the allure of why I love the Creator business is because of the authenticity that these guys bring to the table. And there’s a reason why, you know, I’m choosing not to go watch linear television, and I’m watching some guy named hack Smith from Waterloo, Canada make lightsabers right. I think I think the beauty of what we do in the industry we’re in is that people trust these guys. And, you know, my fear, is that at scale, right? If if the human condition starts to question whether something is them or something is not, it’s going to be very difficult for creators to maintain that growth and maintain that power. So that’s kind of the fear I have is that humans will eventually be conditioned to wonder if what they’re watching was coming from the soul of that person or coming from an adjacent place. Right. And that’s my fear from a macro perspective. From from, from a from a more micro perspective, I think it’s magical, right? For all nation hired. Our CTO has a master’s in AI. And I didn’t even know what what AI was when I hired him, Jason, um, no, no tech guy. But you know, my God, we got lucky with him, because I remember him coming in the door. Two and a half years ago, or three years ago, and he was like, Joe, this AI revolution is coming. I don’t care if you believe me, I don’t care if you understand that. We’re going to build an infrastructure just in case it happens. And we’re going to be ready and I thought, you know, crazy tech guy. Let him do his thing. Right. And fast forward. You know, you wake up to CNN and you’re seeing like, chat, GBT, it’s gonna change the world. I’m thinking, Oh, my God, this guy totally saw it. So you know, what viral nation has been doing? Jason is really thinking about it in four ways. We’re thinking about it in the sense of just general optimizations, right? Both on the business side and the creator side. What are those high cost high hours, like high burn areas that can be easily circumvented with this technology to either get more for the client? More for our employees or more for the creators, right creators are an unsung hero in most cases, because they do all this damn work and we all consume They don’t get anything for it. So any way that we can help them to manage to to find those simple efficiencies that make their everyday better, or allow them more freedom or time to be able to work on things that are going to better them we’re in so we’re thinking about it from an efficiency layer. Second way we’re thinking about adjacent is like, Okay, this is interesting. We need to figure out, how do we get it 75% of the way there and then take it the human side, the rest, I think, you know, we have a really great partnership coming together here Now Jason, with, with with Microsoft, and the open AI guys to kind of do a partnership on what we’ve been working on. And you know, they’re there, they’re sitting at the middle of the storm. And when you’re sitting with them, and they’re saying things like, you know, it’s very important that we don’t overdo this, it’s very important that we all as industry and partners show that, you know, yeah, we can find those efficiencies. And yeah, we might be able to give an influencer information like, this is what your audience really wants to hear you talk about, here’s what your audience is really craving right now, here’s what the market is craving, but allowing it to go only a certain extent and allowing the Creator allowing our creatives allowing our strategists to take it the other little bit of extra mile has been an important piece. And then third is, is this idea of data. You know, I struggle sometimes because I’m a very creative guy, Jason at heart. And I’m, I’m, I’m an old school, in a sense. But the reality is that we’re coming into a time now, Jason, where, you know, we can ingest the first party data of, you know, J, or Disney. And we can use that in our machine to say, here’s the best five pieces of content we can think about doing this week on Instagram. And, you know, it’s, it’s scary to think because you’re removing that layer of, you know, five folks sitting in a boardroom coming up with those five posts based on their internal and personal interests, and things that they’re seeing. But I do think that we need to conform to the fact that data is there to tell us what people actually want, we need to go there. So we’ve been thinking a lot about how do you take, you know, the Internet of Things like the chat GBT? Is the open AI is how do you take 10 years of our data from the platforms? And how do you take the customers data and merge it in a way where the outcomes of these new systems and AI point to the right thing for them, and in their tone, and then they’re embodying their brands? So you know, that’s the three ways we’re thinking about it right now. And you know, thankfully, for Brawl nation, we’ve had a hell of a head start. But But ultimately, Jason, who the hell knows, buddy, what’s gonna happen ultimately, with this stuff, we’re just trying to run as far ahead of it as we can and kind of watch watch to see where where the next ball is gonna go?

Jason Falls 27:37
Well, it sounds like you got your head wrapped around it pretty well, and they’re doing good things. You said a lot of things that, that, you know, I’ve thought and that we’ve put into practice as well. I’ve been a big proponent of hey, man, AI is great for creating content, but it only gets you. As you said, 75, I’ve said 80, maybe 90%. There, you still have to add that layer of, of human ingenuity and human intuition, empathy and whatnot on it to make it really full. So we’re all we’re all speaking the same language, which is good. I like that. So to kind of extend from that on Now, another thing that you’ve said recently that I noticed was you said that the individual influencer in today’s world is now the enterprise. I’d love to have you clarify what that means. And then let’s talk about how brands can adapt to that reality.

Joe Gagliese 28:25
I’m so I’m so it’s so cool that you pulled that one because that was mine that I came up with in our SLT conversation as part of our beliefs. Actually, we did a new vision of our own nation, and we have these six beliefs. And one of those beliefs is that is that line. The reason I said that was because you know, Jason, I’ve been I’ve been in so many damn boardrooms, where I’ve been kind of shoot out or told that, you know, traditional media’s is the way and you know, when I’m on the inside, and I’m seeing it, and I described it simply to someone the other day, and I said, You know what, listen, if you don’t get it here, let me let me explain it to, you know, instead of me going to watch CNN, I’m watching Lucy, tell me the same thing on Instagram. There’s nothing crazy about what these guys are doing. They’re just creating a better product that more people want to see. And because of that, Jason, they’re becoming these new media companies. Right? And if you think about the formula of how to create a business, you have, you know, the idea or the innovation, the business plan, the execution, and then you got to go market it to people, right. What’s interesting is that these folks now are creative. They’re brilliant, and they have their own audience. They have the hard part, they started at the hard part. And I view them as new media companies, right, because, you know, I would say that of our 1000 person roster, 800 of them probably do more views than, you know, most national news networks in the United States. Right. And that’s a fact. So if you value those corporations, that those those increments and you don’t see an influencer, becoming a serious contender, you know, I think got another thing coming. And then you know, the reason ality of, you know, just look at the last 12 months, Jason, the brands that are launching on the back of creators are breaking records in across multiple industries. And the only reason for that is because they have their customer base built in. So the way that viral nations viewing the Creator economy in the future is that they’re going to be the tastemakers of what we buy, what we watch, and ultimately what we do. And I think that, you know, we’re still very immature and how we’re looking at these young people. And as they get more sophisticated, as you know, more viral nations and guys emerge, as more people who have pedigree and other areas come into this space, it’s going to mature and when that matures, and people really understand the value, I think that it will be one of the biggest industries in the world. So I think, you know, when I look at a YouTuber who’s getting 4 million views a day, I’m looking at the next Turner, in my mind, I’m looking at the next potential biggest target product ever to hit the shelves, I’m looking at, you know, potentially someone that comes up with an innovation that completely changes the way we do everything. So, you know, and I’m biased, Jason, as you know, but you know, I love creators more than anybody, like more than anything on earth. I like live and like my kids, and for the reason that I think they’re so untapped. And I’m like, feel like every day when I go to work, do some fighting for these guys. I’m trying to figure out how to how do we get there faster, because I’m so tired of seeing creators get caught up in the shit, lose the moment, get taken advantage of not being valued correctly, etc. And I can see it changing, and we just want to keep pushing it forward. So that’s why that’s where that belief comes from that creators will become modern enterprises. Because I believe they will.

Jason Falls 31:40
Well, I don’t disagree with you. But I want to I want to throw out a little devil’s advocate discussion here for you. Because the only problem that I have with the influencer as enterprise approach is that if influencers are the new media channels, and I believe them to be there are literally millions of separate media channels now. And each of those channels or influencers wants to charge based on their reach and audience and such. But none of them really want to work for the proven value metrics of reach, like CPM, which is normally how we charge for reaching awareness plays. And when you calculate the CPM of most celebrity influencers, the number would make any diligent marketing manager choke. Now, is that hypocrisy? Or are we just gonna have to resign to pay too much for what many marketing people would determine to be too little with the influencer channel?

Joe Gagliese 32:31
Jason, can we get a beer and hang out sometime?

Jason Falls 32:36
This is what I do on this show. Man, I love dissecting this stuff and arguing about it.

Joe Gagliese 32:40
No, it’s because you’re right. It’s because you’re right. I think I approached it a little too general. You’re more than right. So I always use this analogy. My dad used to teach it to me, once you give the carrot. It’s hard to take the carrot back. And I think that we created a culture around creators around a group of folks who don’t know the difference. And you set this you start to set these precedents, and social media as a place where you brag. Right? So that doesn’t help. So I think what you have is a bunch of folks trying to be a bunch of folks without the right information and the right knowledge and the right training in order to make those decisions effectively. When I talked about influencers becoming enterprises, I’m probably talking about under 1% of the Creator economy. Those folks that are doing those things the right way. You know, I had a conversation, I had a sit down conversation in New York with one of our big talent the other day, and he said, Joe, do you have any advice for me? And I said to him, yeah, I do, actually. And that’s what triggered me when you said that well, so I wanted to grab a beer with you. I said to him, I said, do me a favor for the rest of this year. He’s like anything, man. I said, try to understand what the brands trying to achieve, and help them achieve it. And he’s like, Well, that seems easy. I said, Yeah, because the problem is that, you know, you have creators who are like, I will not take $200,000 or less for this YouTube video. And then they get a call from SeatGeek and vivid seats, like, do you want free tickets to the next game? And they go and they post about it? 40 times. And I’m sitting there going, you know, it’s so so what I think Jason is just this there’s a huge acumen gap between the people who are doing the business and the people who are effectively implementing the service. And and and I think that, you know, it, there’s a reckoning on that, and I think we’re starting to see it like in our data, our cost, our cost per deal on our talent agency side is down this year. So like that means that on average creators are getting paid less across we do like 35,000 40,000 deals right. So we can see kind of like market data. I think brands are starting to understand that right. And then the other thing too is you have to remember supply and demand, the supply keeps going. As more people get involved, right. And the demand is is I think scaling at a slower rate. So it would be an influencers best interest to say what is the CPM that you’re willing to pay fight to have a better see pm than what they’re paying on a linear channel and do your thing. But understand that people are paying you to deliver something of value to them. And I think influencers too many times get caught up in the rhetoric of the community to say, well, he got this. So I should get this, and I did this. But the reality is you can have two influencers that are identical on paper and one creates 50 times more value than the other. So you need to understand those things. And I just think it’s a lack of acumen, Jason, but I totally agree with you.

Jason Falls 35:28
Sure. Well, and I think the you’re you’re right, that what you’re talking about as influencers is enterprises, you know, that let 1% or less. The problem is, is that sort of middle of the pack, that mid tier and mega influencer, that’s not in the 1%. And they have, let’s say, 50,000 100,000 200,000 followers on their channels, but they want to charge like, they’ve got 2 million. And that’s where a lot of the clients and customers and brands that I’ve worked with in the last couple of years, are running into it. It’s either I have to pay out the wazoo, and I might as well invest in a celebrity at that point. Or I have to use a micro influencer strategy, because I can’t afford anything in the middle. And I think that’s where creators are shooting themselves in the foot right now.

Joe Gagliese 36:14
And just to clarify, Jason, when I said under 1%, I meant under 1% of the community, not in like size, because there are guys that we have in the middle or at the bottom who are killing it, because they understand those things in it right. But I agree with you. So so what we’ve seen, what we’ve seen is is is you know, and this is it’s a stupidly simple, but it’s like, what did I get last? Is how these guys were negotiating in the middle. It’s like, what did you know? Yeah, I had a misguided brand, with a shitload of money, and a big PR agency, come and give me 20 grand for a post. And then the next one needs to be the same. Right? So it’s also the market on my side and the brand side and etc, that are coming into the space that is screwing it up a bit too, because they don’t know. So they’re going wrong. He wants 20 Give give them like, there’s too many. There’s no consistency. And that lack of consistency. And that lack of actual knowledge or insights is driving people to make really poor decisions a lot of the time. So yeah, no, I think it’s just I just think it’s, it’s, it’s they don’t have the information to be able to understand, and I think a lot of creators feel like, if they charge less, somehow they become less valuable. Some creators feel like that, you know, I got all of a sudden got taken advantage of I should have done it for more, you see a lot of that mentality. And again, that advice I gave that kid in New York DC was like, just for the rest of the year, try to get with the brand, what they want, give it to the right and then and he’s like, and then he’s like, why? And I say because they’ll come back. Because they spend more money with you. Because they’ll make you an ambassador for the next three goddamn years. They’re not going to run for the hills when they spent 20 grands and you got them 2500 clicks to a website. Right? So it’s, it’s there needs to become a little bit of a balancing act there that both sides need to come and the influencers are hard to move. The brands are already there. But we got to get the creators to understand that it’s about creating reciprocal value and creating a flywheel that makes sense for both sides.

Jason Falls 38:09
Absolutely. Awesome stuff, Joe. And we certainly appreciate the conversation and the wisdom. Certainly you and I should get a beer sometime. I may even try to I’d love to make myself up Toronto to Toronto someday. So we can do that. Yes. Let’s do it. Before we let you go. Where can people find you and viral nation on the interwebs?

Joe Gagliese 38:29
Listen, viral I’m on I’m on Instagram is at Joey viral. And then my LinkedIn is just my full name. I’m not a hard I’m not I’m not hiding. So I’m an easy guy to find.

Jason Falls 38:43
Very good. And it’s Jo Gil Gallus Gallus gal LISI got it is and it’s GA G li ESC GG. Right. Get that right. Okay, get that right. Well, we’re gonna make sure those links are in the show notes as well. That’ll be available at Jason Gala galley. See, here I go screwing it up. Again, the ltsa. You can also go to Jason Click on articles in the upper right and find the episode in that way. Joe, thank you so much again for the time today and your leadership in the industry honored to have you here my friend.

Joe Gagliese 39:17
Thank you. Thank you so much, Jason, the same to you, buddy.

Jason Falls 39:24
Always good to catch up with the CEOs, the big shops to get their take on things people like Joe think very deeply about the crater economy, influencers, influencer marketing, the software solutions, the agency solutions, how brands can leverage them. So that’s why we bring those folks on the show folks to share some insight and wisdom viral nation is certainly worth checking out. If you’re looking to go big on influencer marketing. We’ll make sure those links are in the show notes again, that’s going to be at Jason Gal USA and that’s J OE just like Joe and then G Eight G L I E, S E. So Joe gag ly see Joe gal Yes A is how you pronounce it though. Folks if you are enjoying wind fluence help us grow and tell someone about the show you probably know someone who might want to know more about influence or influence marketing send them to influence or share a link to this episode on your social network of choice. If you have a moment drop wind fluence a rating or review on your favorite podcast app we are on all of them. The show is now on video as well just look for Jason falls wind fluence on YouTube to see the show as well as hear it. Wind fluence is a production of falls and partners and presented by The technical production is by MP in studio when fluids airs along MP and the Marketing podcast. Thanks for listening folks. Let’s talk again soon on winflo

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