How modern brands are winning in today's creator economy
Creator management combines all marketing that reaches the consumer through creators into a single framework and solution for your marketing teams. Because when your marketing teams work together as one — centered around your most loyal advocates, influencers, and customers — you reduce customer acquisition cost, increase loyalty and build brand value faster.
“Authenticity means everything at SKIMS. From our product to our marketing, it all has to resonate with our community while staying true to our vision. GRIN has been a true partner to us at SKIMS, helping us amplify our voice to reach a new audience through their platform.”
— Jens Grede | Co-Founder
Why creator management?
When we launched GRIN in 2017, we saw that influencer marketing teams were struggling to hit their goals. This was because the collaboration process between brand & influencer had been hijacked by middlemen such as marketplaces and networks.
In 2018 we created Authentic Influencer Marketing to address this problem — to empower brand teams to own their direct influencer relationships, so they could cultivate honest endorsements to the consumer.
We knew that the key to cultivating trusted content from influencers was for the brand to build relationships directly, not through a middleman. Brands needed to see influencers not as a transaction, but as a real connection to deliver trust to the consumer.
We are now living in a creator economy.
Consumers no longer tune into companies; they tune into people. They spend their free time scrolling through feeds of content from friends, coworkers, athletes, artists, podcasters, and more — making it a whole new game for selling your stuff.
As these things go, only the brands that adapt will survive.
Creators are the catalyst for the new billion-dollar brands.
The latest household brands aren’t created through old-school mass advertising—they’re created through partnerships with creators. Brands that utilize creators as brand storytellers are now the names on everyone’s lips. Their rise to fame results from direct and authentic brand-creator partnerships (not just a pay-to-play transaction), which make for genuine, believable endorsements.
If a partnership feels phony, it’s brand death.
Not to sound dramatic, but it is that dramatic. Today’s consumer can spot a fake a mile away. In a world where authentic, pull-back-the-curtain content reigns, people can sense when a brand endorsement isn’t genuine—and they’ll publicly call you out for it. Not exactly a winning marketing strategy.
In the creator economy, authenticity is everything.
If all consumers want to see is the real deal, it’s simple:
Your creator relationships need to be the real deal. How do you make that happen?
Each creator must:
→ Feel like a trusted, empowered partner.
They need to feel like this is a genuine business partnership (because it is). That means giving them agency to come up with content ideas that make sense for their brand and community, as well as yours. You’re in this together.
→ Know you personally.
To the creator, you must be more than a faceless email address. They’ve met you, they like you, and vice versa. You might even text and ask how their pets are doing. You know, real relationship stuff.
→ Believe in your brand.
The fact that they have 3 million followers cannot be your only criteria. They actually need to know and love your product or service—or their endorsement will reek of #theypaidmetosaythis and your brand will be promptly shamed (if not...eek...cancelled).
These are real connections you can’t fake—or buy.
This changes the game for everyone on your marketing team.
To get creator engagement right, your team needs to shift how they see their roles. They’re not just marketers anymore...they’re managers of authentic relationships.
It’s a department-wide shift—not just for the people with “influencer marketing” in their title. Quality relationships are at the core of every aspect of modern marketing, from affiliate sales to customer advocacy.
Get your whole team on board with this mindset, and watch all your marketing efforts change for the better.
Say no to the middleman
Anyone who stands between your team and your creators is the enemy in the creator economy. You have to get rid of the middleman.
Connecting with creators through a middleman is a one-way ticket to cringe-worthy content. Without direct creator contact, you don’t know what they’re being told or what other brands they might represent. You’re marketing your brand while blindfolded.
When you eliminate the middleman and work personally with creators, the process is beautifully transparent—and so is the content that comes out of it.
Repeat after us: I will only have direct relationships with my creators.
“But GRIN, managing all these relationships sounds messy and complicated.”
We know what you’re thinking.
- How will we identify an army of creators who are aligned to our brand?
- How will we form close relationships with ALL of those people?
- How will we get product into their hands?
- How will we track the thousands of content pieces they produce?
- How will we pay all of these people who aren’t employees?
Deep breaths. This is exactly why we built GRIN.
Want to take a quick product tour?
Watch the 3-min demo.
Enter GRIN’s Creator Management platform
From the influencer, affiliate or content team - to PR and athlete marketing - our all-in-one platform helps you manage every type of creator you work with. GRIN is an end-to-end system for creator management enabling use-cases across every function inside your brand.