Tell us about Handled Agency and how have you been scaling an agency for success?
Handled was officially launched in July 2021. I began working on it as a solo entrepreneur, then started to build a team early 2022. We’re now a team of 4 🎉
Initially I founded Handled to provide social media marketing services to business owners who were either time poor or lacked social media knowledge. We worked with startups and various small businesses, offering everything from social media management, email marketing, Facebook ads to influencer marketing.
In scaling an agency, we have now streamlined our services to focus on brand partnerships, social media strategy and influencer management.
What kind of clients do you work with?
We work with brands who want to learn how to use influencer marketing to promote their products and services. We also work with influencers, empowering them with the knowledge they need to monetise their work through brand partnerships.
We are currently building a network of talented content creators who we help to secure brand partnerships through consultations, resources and knowledge sharing. We also manage a small roster of talent, investing in their longer term goals beyond social media partnerships.
We have collaborated with companies in the food, beauty, education and lifestyle industries so far. We are pretty fluid in this area as long as the partnerships make sense for both the brand and influencers we represent.
How has influencer management changed over the past few years?
Talent management and influencer management have now become interchangeable terms. Talent management used to mean representation for actors, musicians and artists, but it has since evolved to include social media influencers.
Influencers are becoming more knowledgeable about how brand deals work and confident enough to represent themselves. Transparency has become very important in the talent management industry. We’ve heard horror stories about agencies exploiting talent and underpaying them, but the industry is slowly becoming more open about that.
What kind of influencers should brands be aware of when they are looking to amplify their campaign?
Brands should look beyond follower counts and assess the level of influence the person has before collaborating. Some influencers are great for creating aesthetically pleasing content and perhaps bringing brand awareness. Others are able to convert their followers into customers for brands, increasing website traffic, link clicks and sales. It’s important to establish the brand’s goals first, then approach the correct influencers to help meet those goals.
How does charging commonly work for influencer campaigns?
Influencers charge based on a number of factors including campaign deliverables, campaign duration, usage rights, exclusivity and return on investment for the brand.
They usually have a base fee. For example £700 for a feed post. Then other fees can be applied depending on how the brand wants to use that content, platforms it will be shared across and whether the brand wants the influencer to work exclusively with them. Exclusivity means the influencer won’t be able to accept brand partnerships with similar brands for a certain period of time, so it’s worth charging for that. The fees outside of the base rate are usually where a lot of money can be made for influencers who have that knowledge.
What are the challenges that you face in scaling an agency?
The influencer marketing industry is a game of who you know, hardcore networking and building long term relationships. We’ve been doing talent management since Feb 2022 and the biggest challenge is being the new agency on the block. We’re learning as we go and cracking the codes on how this all works along the way.
What’s coming up next for Handled?
We want to continue the conversation on influencer pay transparency in the industry and also empower influencers through knowledge sharing. 2023 for us looks like introducing key partnerships with other movers and shakers in the industry and also hosting in person events for our creator network and the influencers we represent.
We’re always open to having a conversation with other agencies, brands and influencers
Get in touch
Email: [email protected]