Most of you know I spent the last five years or so at Cornett, a very good advertising agency in Lexington, Kentucky. Being an influencer marketing strategist at an agency is both fun and challenging. When you’re at an agency, you get work with a variety of clients, so you don’t get lulled into the same ole, same ole if you’re just working on one brand. 

But, clients need cajoling. Educating. They don’t always know how influencer marketing works. Sometimes they don’t even really believe in it. And more often than not, they try to turn it into a programmatic ad buy and say, “Just tell them to post about the product and tell people to buy it.”

Certainly, not all clients are like that. Some push the envelope and bring cutting edge ideas to you. Others trust your judgment and vision and let you build concepts that may move the needle. Or even win an industry award or two. 

Zach Walker knows all about the ebb and flow influencer marketing at an agency. He is the social media director at The Motion Agency in Chicago. Influencer marketing is one of his charges there. 

He’s worked with brands like Oscar Meyer, Burt’s Bees, Triscuit, Kool-Aid and Fireball Whiskey, which we actually have in common. I also found out he’s actively running an influence marketing effort for the smart app capabilities of my garage door opener brand. I’m kinda bummed I wasn’t on his list.

Then again, you don’t listen to me because I can give you good advice on smart home appliances, right?

I invited Zach to sit in with me on Winfluence to talk about the unique linchpin position of leading influence marketing for an agency, get his thoughts influencer compensation, coaxing clients into investing in the practice, and a lot more. Just a show full of good tips and tricks for those of you in similar positions … or those brands, creators and partners who work with agencies to get better feel for their perspective on what we do.

This episode of Winfluence is presented by, the community commerce marketing platform. One of the family of apps in’s arsenal is turning heads at brands and agencies. And that is our Community Generated Content application. It helps you source UGC on scale for paid and organic social creative and beyond. To learn more about’s user-generated content solution, visit

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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.

Winfluence - Reframing Influencer Marketing to Ignite Your Brand

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Zach Walker Transcript

[00:00:00] Intro: Do you want Instagrammers or TikTok ERs to post about your brand? Or do you actually wanna engage creators who influence their audience to buy your product? If you’re in the ladder of those two, you’ve come to the right place. Welcome to Win Influence, the Influence Marketing Podcast. 

[00:00:25] Intro/Outro AUDIO: Hello again, friends. Thanks for tuning in to Winfluence, the Influencer Marketing Podcast. Most of you know I spent the last five or so years at Cornet, a very good advertising agency in Lexington, Kentucky. Being an influencer marketing strategist at an agency is both fun and challenging.

When you’re at an agency, you get to work with a variety of clients, so you don’t get lulled into the same old same old if you’re just working on one brand, but clients need cajoling, they need educating. They don’t always know how influencer marketing works. Sometimes they don’t even really believe in it, and more often than not, they try to turn it into programmatic ad buys and say, just tell ’em to post about the product and tell people to buy it.

Certainly not all clients are like that. Some push the envelope and bring cutting edge ideas to you. Others trust your judgment and vision and let you build concepts that may move the needle or even win an industry award or two. Zach Walker knows all about the eb and flow of influencer marketing at an agency.

He is the social media director at The Motion Agency in Chicago. Influencer marketing is one of his charges there. He’s worked with brands like Oscar Meyer, Berts Bees, Triscuit Kool-Aid, and Fireball Whiskey, which we actually have in common as a former client. 

I also found out he’s actively running an influence marketing effort for the smart app capabilities of my brand of garage door opener.

I’m bummed I wasn’t on his list, but then again, you don’t listen to me because I can give you good advice on smart home appliances. Anyways, I invited Zach to sit in with me on Winfluence to talk about the unique Lynchpin position of leading influence marketing for an agency, get his thoughts on influencer compensation.

Coaxing clients into investing in the practice and a lot more. Just a show full of good tips and tricks for those of you in similar positions, or those brands, creators and partners out there who work with agencies to get a better feel for their perspective on what we do. Zach Walker from the Motion Agency is coming up on Winfluence.

This episode of Influence is presented by, the community commerce marketing platform. One of the family of apps in’s Arsenal is turning heads at brands and agencies, and that is our community generated content application. Think of it as a user generated content tool that can fill your content cofers,

but the images and videos are from real customers, fans, and followers that buy and use your products or your client’s products. Cipio’s, community generated content app identifies the content creators in your brand community, your customers, social media followers, people who talk about similar topics online and sources authentic customer driven content for you to license, co-own, and leverage across paid, earned, shared, and owned channel.

Need creative for a new ad campaign? Pull that UGC looking for the perfect video to show off a product benefit. Your UGC content library probably has it. To learn more about building your UGC content library and using’s community generated content application, visit That’s 

Learn more there. Sign up for a demo and let fill your content library with authentic user generated content. The role of agency influence marketing strategist will dig into that and the issues around the industry with Zach Walker next on Winfluence.

[00:04:12] Jason: Zach, you and I have a, common former client I believe, tell me what you can about your time working with Fireball Whiskey.

[00:04:24] Zachary: Yes. Love it. It’s always great to come across folks that have worked in the same brand at different times. So, yeah. I was fortunate to work on Fireball whiskey for about two and a half years, in a previous agency role, where we were their AOR, so the agency of record.

So we did everything from their organic social, their paid social, and also obviously influencer marketing as well. So, it was a really great time, I think. I’ve been really fortunate to work on a bunch of different iconic brands and when the opportunity came to work on one of the most iconic spirit brands out there, I jumped at the opportunity.

So, we actually did a multi-market influencer campaign with one of our partners at the time, which is Popular Pays, and they essentially enabled us to work with a little over a dozen influencers all across the country. And I think from a strategic standpoint, we were trying to find ways to, connect a variety of interests to Fireball Whiskey.

So obviously everyone thinks about any sort of flavored whiskey or even just fireball in general, it’s very like out and about. You’re at the bar, you’re celebrating with friends, maybe you’re tailgating and obviously there’s so many influencer opportunities you can go down that route. So for us, we worked as a team and with our client, to think about how else can we introduce Firewall Whiskey to other interests.

And so what we ended up actually doing was partnering with a wide variety. So we partnered with a chef who likes to have a couple of alcoholic beverage beverages while they cook, we partnered with a gamer, which was a really unique opportunity where we basically were like, hey, fireball can be, your pre-game of choice, so your beverage of choice while you’re streaming. 

And then obviously, your typical nightlife or your lifestyle influencers that would say, hey, before we go, or before we go to this show, Fireball’s gonna what we called Ignite the night, at the time. So, it was a really great opportunity.

It ended up being really successful for the client, not only because we’re introducing the brand to new consumers, but also because the way we structured that agreement and that campaign was so that our client could use that creative, for their own marketing efforts after the campaign concluded.

[00:06:28] Jason: Yeah, that’s good stuff. I helped, bring Fireball to a previous agency, probably one or two before they came to you, where I worked, I helped lead strategy for them there. And then after I left, I think the agency held onto ’em for another year or two, before they moved on and eventually landed with you guys.

The thing I really loved working on Fireball was it’s a brand that, like it or not, has a very passionate fan base. I remember one young lady in Tennessee. The word fireball tattooed across her chest, and she wasn’t an outlier. She was, one of a lot of people who had obscene body art and whatnot around, and not obscene in the inappropriate way, obscene in the, oh my goodness, that’s a huge tattoo kinda way. 

I wonder if you experience work differently when you’re plugging into a brand that has that air of community or something bigger than you. Is it, does that change how you feel about the brand?

[00:07:26] Zachary: Yeah, definitely. I want to think, I saw that as well, people love Fireball. It’s a very love it or you hate it brand, and I think you’re absolutely right in terms of, when you have such an engaged audience that is truly, brand advocates, people that’ll talk about Fireball Whiskey or any other brand to anybody.

I always like to say like a true brand. Is somebody who will talk to you on the airplane about, or a complete stranger about a brand that they love. So, you’re absolutely right. I think one, it makes the work a lot more fun because you’re reaching people that truly enjoy what you’re putting out there, whether it’s social media content or influencer partnerships.

But two, it also helps finding the right influencers because, there’s a huge challenge between, I feel like a lot of influencers, whether right or wrong, are trying to look for any opportunity that may fit for their brand or may fit for their personal brand, regardless of the connection.

They may have with their partnership. And so I think when you have a brand like Fireball, when you’re finding out people that wanna do influencer partnerships, they’re the right folks. They’re like, I love Fireball, I’m already drinking it, so sign me up. To your point, you’re not gonna find people that are like, I don’t wanna drink this brand of whiskey unless I really love it, or maybe the compensation is worth it, but yeah, it definitely makes it a lot easier. 

I even think about. We did a surprise and delight opportunity for Wayne Cohen to the Flaming Lips. He is a huge Fireball fan and we ended up sending him like a little package at one of his shows, a few days later, he ended up posting it, on his Instagram free of charge and it ended up being like a really engaging post, not only for him, but also for us as a brand. So I think, anytime you can lean into those moments you definitely should.

[00:09:06] Jason: Yeah, for sure. So, I started out because we had a common client, but I guess I should circle back a little bit and for the benefit of the audience out there, take us through your background a little bit. I know you started, I think, in the FinTech space, but what led you, take us through the path as quickly as you can.

What led you to the motion agency and where’d you pick up your sort of skillset and knowledge along the way for influencer marketing?

[00:09:29] Zachary: Yeah. So, going back a few years, I guess I think for me, I’ve been in one form of agency life, one way or another. I got my first real agency role, working for McGarry Bone, which was the Dentsu Aegis network, where I worked on a lot of great CPG brands. Brands like Oscar Meyer, Lunchables, Kool-Aid, all helping out, influencer marketing and social media.

And for me, I really just got my feet wet, just getting in there, learning out what works and what doesn’t. and I’ve been really fortunate not only to work on big brands like that, but also challenger brands, brands that nobody ever heard of, or that they’re just trying to establish themselves in their respective categories.

And that’s a whole other challenge in or of itself. but throughout my career I’ve been either working on, there have been agency side for the majority of my career, where I’ve worked at both big agencies, smaller ones where I worked at on Fireball whiskey. And then I also went brand side for a couple years, where I was in the cannabis industry in two different roles, also leading up all things social media and influencer marketing. 

So, definitely a lot of, trial and error. And then definitely a lot of great managers in my career that helped guide me on the right path in terms of setting, and executing successful influencer campaigns.

And then where I’m at now, which is the Motion agency we’re about a midsize agency here in Chicago, where we work on a variety of B2B and B2C clients, and thankfully I was approached by motion about an exciting opportunity to join their content team and, got a chance to meet my current manager, the rest of the team that I manage, and a lot of the leadership team.

And it felt like a really good fit and I’m a little, I’m close to about a year in and it’s been really exciting to, jump in and help execute stuff that was already in motion. And then, starting to build out some of the newer projects that I’ve been able to build, from scratch, so, agency life has definitely been a part of my career one way or another.

And then I think even my time on the brand side really helped me better understand how to execute influencer partnerships and really understand some of those challenges that brands face.

[00:11:28] Jason: Yeah there’s no doubt that, if you’re a lifer, on either side, whether it’s brand or agency or even, now I’m over on the software side, so if you’ve been a lifer in any one of those three in our industry or any other niche in our industry, you’re gonna learn so much and benefit so much more if you take an opportunity to cross that, line a little bit and see it from a different angle, see it from a different side of things. 

And of course, I always also, because I started out in the marketing space anyway, as a blogger and so within our niche, I was quote unquote an influencer, if you wanted to call it that back then. We didn’t really use that term back then, so I’ve felt very fortunate to have multiple angles. 

I’ve been brand side, I’ve now been on the SaaS side of things, I’ve been at an agency, I’ve been an independent consultant, and I’ve been a creator, and so having that sort of multifaceted view of things I think really advantageous. So I’d certainly encourage people out there, to do that. 

I want to go into influencer marketing specifically. You’re the social media director at Motion, so obviously influencers fall under that category there. Is that something that just naturally expanded from social media content and campaigns for them? Or was there a point maybe before you came along when someone raised their hand and said, hey, we need to be recommending influencers to clients?

I’m curious how the practice evolved there cause I’ve been at agencies where it didn’t exist at all, and I’ve been at agencies that have done it in some form or fashion over the years. I’m just curious what motions history is?

[00:13:02] Zachary: Yeah, definitely. So Motion actually started, or actually about to celebrate our 17th anniversary since Motion’s founding. So we started as a PR agency and then similar to that group, to denoting that we, our clients started to raise their hands and were like, hey, we would love some help on the social media front, and then that shifts into, hey, we’d love to explore influencer marketing.

so I think there’s definitely that progression as brands look and say, hey, look what our competitors are doing, look what other cool brands maybe in a different industry are doing. Is there an opportunity for us there? 

And so, I’m actually really grateful that influencer marketing falls under our, content department at motion, because you’re right there are some agencies where influencer marketing can fall under PR,

I’ve seen it fall under media, or digital media, and I think for better or worse it can be I guess it can be a pro or con either way, but, I’m on the boat of you want the folks that are in it every day, eight plus hours a day learning, breathing it in. And so for us it really just made sense to say, hey,our content team is already looking at social media.

We’re already creating content that we understand that resonates with our clients’ audiences. So why don’t we now bring in that influencer component and say, how do we take our learnings from a content perspective and tie that together with our influencer marketing? It’s definitely important I think when you have subject matter experts that are in field, working in it.

And then I think you’re right, there are some companies that still don’t see the value of influencer marketing, which I think is really an interesting take, but, I’m sure there are plenty of interesting takes all out there. So, very grateful that Motion has decided to see that the value of that we can bring to our clients and, it’s become a pretty consistent thing that we offer, for both our existing and potential new clients.

[00:14:44] Jason: Yeah I’m sure there’s some executives out there, probably more in the B2B space these days, but I’m sure there’s some executives out there that still don’t believe in social media in general, and I, came to fruition in the marketplace when social media marketing was first formulating.

And so I spent, a good 10 years of my career just trying to convince people to, open up a Twitter and Facebook account, and now we want to get you to use influencers. And so I’ve seen that sort of head-to-head and we’ll talk a little bit about, working with clients on that on, in the second half of the show, I wanna get to that in a little bit. 

I’m curious though, really quickly touching on motion again, when a new client, and I’ve seen this done a dozen different ways at different agencies and brands, but when you guys have a new client, are influencers automatically baked into everything you do or is it client dependent?

I know, you’ve got some interesting clients that aren’t your typical consumer brands, but you’re using influencers with them. So I’m curious, is it an all or nothing, or is it just dependent on the need?

[00:15:48] Zachary: No, that’s a really good question, Jason. I think the short answer is we lean more towards it should be thought about anytime we’re thinking about our client’s needs, but I think the caveat there is, what’s the purpose. So I think, for example, if we have a client or a potential new client that maybe is launching a new brand, and awareness is a big goal for them.

Influencers are a great opportunity, you should already be thinking about that because you can use those influencers to reach your target audience at scale, and usually in a quicker or more efficient manner. But then also too, maybe there is, or there are some brands that, the connecting the dots between influencer marketing and their current goals is not always clear.

But that’s also where I really love content creators as well, because I think when you run into those examples where there’s either pushback or hesitation about should they explore influencer marketing, it’s usually somehow either related to timing or budget, which is why content creators can be a really great opportunity because

you can leverage the professional, quality of their content, whether it’s photos, videos, stories, reels, you name it, but often do it at a lower price point, but also making sure that you’re creating content that will resonate with your audience. 

I don’t think every brand needs to work with influencers, there’s obviously certain exceptions, but, if you’re trying to stand out in a cluttered timeline and, as we all, organic is struggling to reach audiences at scale. influencer marketing is another opportunity to say, hey, we’re here, if you’re interested in what we’re doing, definitely check us out.

[00:17:19] Jason: And so just for the audience’s sake, I just wanna clarify, when you talk about the content creators, you’re talking about an influencer who you are engaging just to create the content, not necessarily to publish it on their channels, and I believe that’s right. Correct me if I’m wrong, and then I would distinguish there’s, kind of three different tiers. 

There’s influencer content, which is content that’s primarily used for the influencers channel, but you as the brand can certainly use it if you negotiate that correctly. And then in your terminology, there’s, content creators who you’re only engaging to create content that the brand uses.

You don’t really care about their channel necessarily. And then I would go one step further, and then there’s the user generated content, which is people who are organically already creating content around the brand for one reason or another. Either they love it or, part of what they do, and then the brand identifies them and says, hey, you’ve already published this, can we have permission to use it? Is that a distinctive, three tiers of what you’re dealing with?

[00:18:15] Zachary: Yes, and I love that breakdown. and so yeah, you’re right, when I’m talking about content creators, I’m talking about influencers or people with large followings that have an eye for creating content. And I think what’s always really interesting too is there are some folks like, there are a few photographers in Chicago that I love the style of their creative work.

They’re always publishing local magazines here, but they don’t publish any sponsored content. They’re strictly just capturing videos of photography, and then letting those brands repurpose those. And then I love user generated content, for one of our clients, they’re a, multi chain luxury seafood restaurant.

And, we have a whole content series that it literally leverages UGC so, they’ll visit one of our clients’ locations, they’ll post content like you would at normal, any normal dining experience, and then we sift through that, we search for all the tag content. We see which fits for the brand, which is high quality, which is already driving a lot of engagement.

And then you’re right, we reach out to those folks and say, hey, thanks for coming to visit one of our locations. We love the content you created. If you’re interested, we’d love to be able to repurpose that content and publish it on our own channels, and nine times outta ten people are excited about that.

They want that to happen, whether it’s self-serving and they want more eyeballs on their content, or even if they just know, it goes back to that brand advocacy point. This brand that I already love loves what I’m doing, sign me up. So yeah, I think anytime you can think about content from an influencer standpoint or how you wanna source content in those three ways, I think is a really smart tactic.

[00:19:47] Jason: For sure. One client that you and I, talked about offline a couple days ago. I’d love to know more about in terms of their influence, work is a brand of a garage door, that I literally just bought about six months ago. it’s a smart garage door and that you have an app, that I can use it to control, the opening and closing. 

It also logs when that happens and such, so, if my family is ever the subject of an episode of Dateline, then there’s some data there to back that stuff up and we’ll be in good shape. but if you can take us through building out the thinking and targeting there, cuz I think a garage door and a garage door opener is an interesting use case.

It’s not a consumer product that I typically think of when I think of influencer marketing?

[00:20:29] Zachary: Yeah, definitely. So the brand that we’re talking about is Chamberlain or LiftMaster. If you own a home and it has a garage, you probably have some sort of garage door opener or even garage, door owned by one of those two companies. and you’re right, so we were tasked with, our client came to us and said, hey, we have this exciting partnership that’s coming out, with two big retailers, one was Amazon and one is Walmart. 

And essentially, anybody that owns it’s called MyQ Enable Garage. So that’s that smart technology that you’re talking about. If you have that correct garage door opener or the MyQ adapter, you’re able to essentially have your Amazon and or Walmart deliveries delivered directly inside of your garage,

fully secure, safe, and you don’t have to do anything. So to your point the challenge was, hey, first we have to get the word out about this amazing partnership, but let’s also be realistic and go, this isn’t a fireball whiskey. This isn’t a branded shoe, this isn’t makeup, it’s a garage door opener, so how do we sell in this particular product? 

And so one influencers made a lot of sense, but then two, from a creative angle, we talked about it in terms of, really solving that pain point. So this was right around the holidays when we were building out this campaign. And so when you think about the holidays nowadays, it’s porch pirates, people stealing your deliveries before you get home.

it could be just the weather, if you live in a suburb or somewhere a little more rural that maybe there’s not an enclosed space for your packages to be delivered. Holiday presents, Christmas presents, New Year’s Eve, birthday presents, they could get ruined by the weather. And so really we thought about it, how do we work with influencers to talk about those pain points?

So we partnered with a wide variety of influencers. For example, we had one person who, was traveling all the time. So he was in, somewhere in Southeast Asia and he basically posted from this iconic, beautiful, beach bungalow type of location and was like, got his computer up and he is like, don’t worry about it.

I ordered all the kids’ holiday gifts, and I can relax at home or I can relax on vacation, knowing that because MyQ, is able to partner with Amazon, my children’s holiday gifts are gonna arrive safely, they’ll be secure when I get back, and really just leaning into those pain points and talking about it from that perspective,

because if we said from the get go, hey, check out this cool garage door opener. It’s not really the sexiest thing to talk about, but when you reframe it in terms of that pain point you really connect with consumers and so, it was definitely an interesting, campaign approach, but it was really exciting to see the content come to life.

It was exciting to see not only our client able to envision influencer marketing for their brand because from a brand perspective, they’re like, I don’t really know if this is the right fit for us but then, we worked together, we came with some solid strategy, and really worked together to create content that made a lot of sense.

And then we also worked, together with the creators to ensure that we had usage rights, for their creatives so that the brand could then repurpose those throughout the year and turn that holiday campaign into more of an evergreen year long campaign because those same pain points are still valid in March, they’re still valid in the summer, they’re still valid in next winter.

[00:23:40] Jason: Yeah. I saw on TikTok the other day, as I was, infinite thumb scrolling like I do. I saw a guy, I think he’s in Denver, who he was having a problem with porch pirates. He didn’t have a garage, he was in like an. Apartment or building in the downtown area and so to combat that, he started emptying his cat’s litter box in the boxes, and he would put them back out on his porch.

[00:24:05] Zachary: Yep. Say it. Guy it reminds me of those like the glitter, not glitter bombs or glitter boxes, where you, but no, it’s the same thing. If I was if I lived in a suburb or a more rural area, I would say don’t even worry about filling those boxes with your cat’s glitter.

Like just buy us MyQ product and go to work and not have to worry about it, or go on your vacation and not worry about being home in time for your packages.

[00:24:30] Jason: I have it, I use it. And my only follow up question is why was I not on your damn list? 

[00:24:35] Zachary: I don’t know, but, we’re starting that conversation up again this year. So, I’m sure when our clients get to see this video or hear from the podcast, they’re gonna, say, let’s get this guy on board.

[00:24:45] Jason: I hope so, but as I pointed out in the introduction, I’m not exactly, people don’t listen to Winfluence or follow me on social, to learn about smart home appliances.

[00:24:55] Zachary: No, that’s fair.

[00:24:56] Jason: Topically I’m not relevant, I understand.

[00:24:58] Zachary: if we can find a creative angle in, I will definitely be thinking about you, Jason.

[00:25:02] Jason: We’ll do a live stream from my garage and I’ll just hit the button and the damn thing will go up and down the whole time, it’ll be great. 

We’re having fun today talking to Zachary Walker from the Motion Agency. When we come back, we’re gonna talk turkey influencer compensation, including some ideas you may not have thought of to make that piece of the puzzle a little more efficient.

Stay tuned. 

 Welcome back to Winfluence, talking to Zachary Walker. He is the social media manager at the Motion Agency. Handles influencer marketing for their variety of clients. 

Zach, one of the topics that comes up from brands all the time when talking about influencer marketing is the rising cost of creator collaborations.

It’s been, a year or so now, but I actually had an instagramer once who asked me for $7,500 for a single reel. No licensing or white labeling for the brand and this person had, I think 42,000 followers. Now, I took that to mean she just wasn’t interested in price herself outta anything reasonable for me to say yes to.

But I do think that creator compensation is something that, tends to be trending up and a little outta hand in some cases. How do you approach creators and pricing and budgets and negotiating so that your clients get great value, but at a reasonable price?


[00:26:23] Zachary: Yes, Jason, that’s a great question and I think, you’re right. I see that trend too in terms of compensation continues to rise. I think part of that also, it’s almost, ironic, I feel like there are more influencers than ever before. So supply is really high, but for some reason prices continue to go up.

So maybe that’s one of those the whole other podcast I gotta dive into, but, it is a big challenge and it’s something that we’re very conscious of for our clients because, one, it’s usually very expensive. So whether you’re talking about somebody for $7,500, I was like, oh my gosh, that’s crazy,

but I also get it too, everybody’s, trying to make a living. 

But, I think, the big thing that we really take care of is the vetting upfront. I think that’s what’s really important for brands and I think that’s how agencies, SaaS providers, you name it, can really showcase the value for brands that want to get into influencer marketing is like making sure that these influencers not only have authentic audiences, but they’re also engaged and they’re also relevant to the target brand.

So, whether you’re looking at like a company like Cipio or a Popular Pays or a Tagger, those companies that have audience insights are very important. So I think when you’re able to evaluate those audiences and say, Hey, 95% of this influencer’s audience is real, authentic users and their interests aligned with your brand, I think that’s when you go, okay, let’s.

I think too, you wanna look at previous partnerships. Now obviously you don’t wanna compare app campaigns that are from different industries, but it’s also a good, reference point where you can say, hey, typically this influencer drives this many engagements or this many impressions, that’s always a great point to start.

And then I think two, and we talked about it a little bit with usage rights, I think that’s how you can really extend the value of your influencer partnership. So if you can go to our brand and say, hey, it’s gonna be five grand for a real a story series and an infeed, maybe a carousel post sounds like a lot, but not only are you getting that content, you’re able to use that however you want.

So if you wanna white label it, if you wanna put it on your website, if you wanna put in an email marketing newsletter, there are really ways where you can extend the life of that creative, and I think that’s an easier way to sell in that work, and then at the end of the day, you really gotta make sure that you’re getting the most bang for your buck, so, that’s part of the influencer marketing, like any vendor, 

where you have to evaluate, what am I getting in return for the compensation? And, some influencers, they get that, some influencers don’t, but when you’re able to say, hey, for this price or this budget, what are we really looking to get out of it? So if budget is tight, maybe you wanna work with micro influencers so you can extend that budget a little bit and say, hey, we can work with five influencers instead of two.

If we work with more regular macro or, mid-tier influencers. I think that’s always a great opportunity. And then, like I said, anytime you can get usage rights for your content and perpetuity is great, but even a year is still really usable. So just a few ways to think about that, and hopefully, provide a better ROI for your client.

[00:29:22] Jason: So while we’re on that topic, I’m curious, do you think it’s right or fair, for a brand’s agreement. And sometimes these agreements are handled with the middle person, the software company or the agency or whatever, is it right or fair for a brand’s agreement to include universal perpetual licensing for the content?

And the reason I ask that is because most brands want that user-generated content is filling the content coffers that brands need full for social media campaigns, ad campaigns, other collateral. And when I say UGC in this regard, I’ll lump it all together. Influencers, content creators, users, it’s more effective, it’s more authentic, et cetera.

Most creators, especially micro influencers or those without a ton of exposure to what licensing even is, they don’t know any better than to say, you have to pay me extra for that, but in my experience, the ones that do have that exposure and experience for additional, they ask for additional compensation for licensing, which I think is fair.

But they sometimes price it as if they’re getting royalties from selling a platinum album and they can retire on the fees, and I’m sorry, a handful of pictures from an instagramer isn’t worth 25 grand a year in licensing, which I’ve seen asked for. So I’m curious what’s right for those licensing agreements for a brand to ask for and what’s right and fair for the creator to ask for in return?

[00:30:48] Zachary: That’s a really good question. I think from a brand perspective, I think it never hurts to ask. I think you know that saying the worst case you get is no, or, I need to increase the compensation to reflect that change in the agreement. So yeah, we instruct our clients or recommend to our clients, put that usage rights in.

Sometimes, for example, you shoot for the moon , but you ask for usage rights in perpetuity. Some influencers will say yes right away. Some may say, I don’t offer it in perpetuity, but you can have it for a year or three years, and then, some influencers will say no, but I think going into that is the right approach in asking.

I think when you think about it from a perspective of, let’s say an influencer quotes you for a set of deliverables, maybe usage rights are not part of that original agreement, or when they send back that rate, make sure that’s clear. And then I think on the influencer side, it is totally acceptable, and totally, responsible to make sure that you’re being compensated for the work that you’re doing.

I agree, I don’t think any influencer content is worth 25 grand in perpetuity. I think with 25 grand, I could do a couple of shoots photo and video shoots that would get as high quality, but maybe even better, depending on the shoot. So I think, from an influencer perspective, estimate the value of what you’re bringing to the table.

So, for example, if you’re an influencer that you worked with a brand previously and maybe they’re kind enough to share, how your content is driving revenue for their brand, next time you get an influencer partnership and say, hey, brand. in a previous partnership, I gave them usage rights for a year and it ended up, bringing in an additional 10 grand in revenue for the brand. 

I think, when you have those figures, it enables you to say, this is what I believe the value of my content is worth, as well as the intellectual property essentially behind that content. 

And then like any partnership, there’s always negotiation, but I think it’s totally fair on both sides from a brand to one, make that ask and then two, from the influencer side or the creator side and say, I understand what the value is, or now that I recognize what you want to use my content for, I would wanna make sure that I’m compensated, to a point that I feel comfortable with.

[00:33:02] Jason: Yeah. As part of an extension of that same, conversation you mentioned, earlier about talking about the non-monetary benefits, if you will, of a partnership. Whether it’s be, trying to convince the creator that here’s extra value or trying to create the brand that you’re getting more value out of it.

I’ve actually tried to illustrate those non-monetary benefits, as a litmus test. So I’d love to get your sort of reaction to this. So maybe you reach out to a creator and, let’s say they’re, a big creator that asks for a lot of money or whatever, and so I go to them with a smaller amount of money than they really ask for, but I’m saying, hey, maybe there’s access to executives or the product team.

Maybe there’s involvement in brand events on top of content creation, maybe it’s, product as part of the compensation, maybe it’s, a longer term vision for the relationship. Here’s one brand, you don’t have to hope comes calling in six months. Let’s do a monthly retainer thing so that you have some degree of guaranteed income.

The litmus test then is if the creator ignores all that and they only want dollars for deliverables, I assume then they aren’t gonna be great at delivering the authenticity that’s gonna make this collaboration work. So that might move them down or off my list, fair or not?

[00:34:17] Zachary: Yeah. Honestly, I think that’s fair and I think for a couple reasons. I think one, you’re right, I think , you as a brand or as a service provider or as an agency, you wanna make sure that you’re finding the right creators to partner with your brand. And I think to your point, if, for example, somebody is only focused on the money, maybe it’s not the right opportunity or maybe they’re not the best fit from an authenticity standpoint.

So, I think it is a balancing actor, in terms of like how much of that pushback is I wanna make sure I’m getting compensated for what I believe I’m bringing to the table. But also two, if you’re completely disregarding the other aspects of it, of what you’re offering or what you’re potentially putting together, I think that is something to watch out for.

And so, I think something that we try to do with our influencer partnerships is, think about it from a long-term perspective. So if we’re like, hey, we’d love your content, we’d love to partner with you throughout the year, creating multiple pieces of content, that kind of gives them, from a influencer or creator standpoint, they go, hey, I have,

a little bit of income that’ll be consistent over the year, or maybe it’s a big lump sum upfront, but I can split that out or spread that out throughout the year. So I think that’s always a great opportunity. I think too, you hit on, from a, the value of a product, it’s a little bit different if you’re a shoe brand and you go to an influencer and say, hey, we’ll give you $300 worth of shoes, so you maybe get two pairs of shoes.

that’s not really a great monetary value, but I have had clients in the past and current clients where , one of their products, has an MSRP value of over a thousand dollars. So not only are you getting compensated for the actual content that you’re creating, you’re also walking away with something that is a pretty hefty chunk of change.

So, I think it’s definitely a good litmus test when you’re evaluating those partnerships, because if somebody’s only focused on the money, one, that doesn’t mean that they’re a good fit, but then two. They may just be looking to potentially just churn out this partnership and move on to the next one.

And I think what you really wanna do is find somebody who’s, I really love this brand, or I’m already buying your products and now I wanna make this partnership official, or This is the first time I’ve heard of your brand, but it really resonates with me as an individual. those are the folks you wanna find.

And I think. . When you find those right creators, the details and ironing out the final agreement goes a little more smoothly because you realize that this seems to be a good partnership, and really you just wanna make sure that all parties feel good, after everything’s signed and dotted.

[00:36:41] Jason: True. Always good to have these conversations and discussions. I think it’s even better when the audience hears ’em because, we have a tendency to operate our work in somewhat of a vacuum away from others doing the same work, which is why I think podcasts like this are fairly useful for folks.

last question for you, Zach, before I let you go. We’ve got a lot of trends and topics popping up on the horizon in the industry. AI is hot right now, The Metaverse is still hanging out there. Virtual influencers, Ebbs and flows in that conversation. Certainly the pay gap, to gender and or race is still a discussion and an issue that we need to keep talking about.

What are the big things that you think are gonna affect the way we do our jobs with influencer marketing in the next, I don’t know, 12 to 18 months, from your perspective?

[00:37:26] Zachary: You hit on so many good topics. I’d love to talk about each of ‘ em 

[00:37:30] Jason: That’s my job, just, I’ll throw it out there and let you answer the question.

[00:37:34] Zachary: No, that’s great. I really do love the idea of, I’ll focus on two. I’ll say one is Ai, I think whether you talk about, AI influencers where you’re like, these people have a mil, people, these accounts have a million followers, and it’s not even a real person.

that’s always interesting, but something that I’ve really been exploring recently is using AI to create additional creative assets. So essentially generative Ai, where you can say, take this logo or take this product and then basically create multiple backgrounds or multiple use cases of that product and then let a brand utilize that.

I think that is such a fascinating concept because, if you’re able, I’m a huge fan of showcasing how a product fits in a consumer’s life. So, if you’re a shoe brand showcase, people wearing the shoes out and about, whether it’s for exercise, whether it’s lifestyle. So I love the idea of being able to leverage AI to create multiple creative assets based on one Image. I think something that’ll be, I’ll go to the other side and think something that’s challenging or has got me worried, is the ability to provide accurate or a better ROI when it comes to influencer marketing. I think, from a paid social standpoint, we all have heard or seen or experienced, how paid is now really the only way you can reach influencers or reach consumers at scale unless you’re leveraging influencers.

And so for me, one, you had that challenge of how do I connect the dots between an influencer’s piece of content and an end result for my client if they don’t necessarily, have that e-commerce set up, up if it’s an e-commerce brand, it’s very easy to track. You have an influencer post, maybe it’s a promo code, or they have their own url that’s, accustomed to them, and you can just track that data. 

But if you don’t have those things, or if you’re doing an influencer campaign that is awareness focused, it’s really hard to go to the client. And really, our clients have a really hard time going to their leadership team and saying, we spent X amount of money, and I can show you what these stats look like, but it’s really hard to equate and say, here’s this uptick in performance or sales or website traffic. 

So for us, when we evaluate influencer opportunities, we really want to make sure that those influencers have a track record of doing whatever we’re hoping for. So if it’s awareness focus, like I need to see proof that you’ve been able to drive awareness, whether it’s reach, impressions, views, you name it.

If you’re driving sales, I have to see that because it’s really hard for me to go to my client and say you spent 25 grand or 50 grand or a hundred grand and I don’t have anywhere near that in terms of a ROAS or a return on their investment. It’s really hard sell and it’s obviously a difficult conversation.

So, those are the two things that keep me up at night. One’s positive, one’s a little negative, but, I always say social media is always evolving and it’s part of the game and influencers are part of that.

[00:40:27] Jason: That’s true. Great stuff, Zach. Hey, remind everyone where people can find you, the motion agency and all that such on the interweb?

[00:40:34] Zachary: Yes. You can find us the Motion Agency at We’re based here in Chicago, but we have clients all over the United States, so, definitely check us out. And then, I’m also on social media where I share my social media insights, news learnings, influencer marketing as well, you can find that on my website at

And then I’m also on social and I’m sure we’ll be able to, connect in the future.

[00:40:58] Jason: Awesome. We’ll make sure the links are in the show notes Zach. Appreciate the insights man. Really appreciate you spending some time with us today.

[00:41:05] Zachary: Same here, Jason. Thanks for having me on and I’m glad to join a long list of exciting and amazing social media professionals. So thanks for having me on.

[00:41:13] Jason: Awesome. 

[00:41:14] Intro/Outro AUDIO: Love these conversations. I always take something useful out of them and I hope you do too. Be sure to connect with Zach on LinkedIn. You can check out his website at, and by the way, that’s Zach with an H, Zach, so We’ll make sure that those links are in the show notes.

So the only URL you really need to remember is In case you weren’t aware of it, I used the domain as a short URL, and the guest on each episode is the rest of it. So, last name, all one word, lowercase. So if you need to hear the interview with like say Jay Bear from a couple of weeks ago, you just go to

If you ever wanna browse the archives, you can go to So instead of .co, click on articles in the upper navigation. And each episode of Winfluence is also a blog post entry on the big website there. I do hope you are enjoying Winfluence, if you are, why not share it with someone who might as well.

Send them to or share a link to this episode on your social network of choice. If you have a moment, drop Winfluence a rating or review on your favorite podcast app, we are on them all. The show is now on video as well, just look for Jason Falls, Winfluence on YouTube to see the show, as well as hear It. 

Winfluence is a production of Falls and Partners and presented by The technical production is by MPN Studios. Winfluence airs along MPN, the Marketing Podcast Network. Thanks for listening folks, let’s talk again soon on Winfluence.

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