EP293: What To Know About Influencer Marketing With Nathan Piland | Hollywood Branded

In today’s episode, Stacy sits down with Nathan Piland who is not only one of our agency team members but a music artist and a social media influencer, who has built a very engaged audience of over 4.2 million on TikTok. The two discuss the ins and outs of influencer marketing. Nathan shares what he thinks influencers should look out for when working with a brand, and also, why he believes brands should generally let influencers have more of a say in creating branded content. He also shares what the first steps are in becoming an influencer, as well as how long it takes for influencers to create videos for partnerships. The two also touch on Nathan’s fake pregnancy stunt which quickly earned him 250,000 followers more.

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Speaker 1 (00:00):
Welcome to Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid them). Here’s your host, Stacy Jones.Stacy Jones (00:14):
Welcome to Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid them). I’m Stacy Jones and I’m so happy to be here with you all today. And I want to give a very warm welcome to Nathan Piland. Nathan is not only one of our agency’s team members at Hollywood Branded. He’s also a music artist and social media influencer who has built a very engaged following of over four million viewers on TikTok. His approach is unique and leverages his love of comedy and music, and he inspires others to be authentic and live their life at their fullest. His topics include a range of social issues, including mental health, LGBTQ+, and marginalized communities. Nathan started posting YouTube videos and Tumblr content when he was just 12 years old. And he learned how algorithms work and what type of content gets audiences actually engaged.
Over the last seven years, he’s used TikTok to build awareness of his own music and has created brand sponsored content for a number of top brands and companies, including Trailer, Bang Energy, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Atlantic Records, and so many more. In 2020, Nathan started the influencer house, Playhouse LA, where he lived in a California mansion and threw brand sponsored COVID friendly events with companies like Jim Beam, Caritas, and Faria. Today, Nathan works with our team to use his knowledge to build influencer campaigns and help manage them. Today, Nathan and I are going to be chatting about what is needed to create a successful TikTok following and how brands can better work with influencers. We’ll learn what works from Nathan’s perspective, what should be avoided and how some businesses just miss the mark. Nathan, welcome. So happy to have you here today.Nathan Piland (01:50):
Thank you for having me. It’s great to be on.Stacy Jones (01:52):
You are very welcome. So for our audience, if you’re not looking at Nathan, you need to go to his TikTok. Nathan, what’s your TikTok?

Nathan Piland (02:01):
Nathan Piland. And then my last name is like land of math pi, P-I land

Stacy Jones (02:06):
Piland. And when you’re there, you’re going to see that Nathan is a very colorful guy. And when I say that, he has a rainbow beard right now, he has purple hair. His rainbow beard has purple, blue, green, yellow, and orange in it. And he has a feather in his ear. So Nathan is a personality on top of being an influencer and he is a very fun loving guy.

Nathan Piland (02:30):
Well, thank you. I appreciate it. Yeah, it’s great to be on. I’m excited to talk about all things social media and TikTok and all this stuff that we’re going to get into today.

Stacy Jones (02:40):
Awesome. So what I’d like to start off is having you share a little bit about yourself and what got you to be this influencer and how you got here. What was your journey?

Nathan Piland (02:52):
Yeah, so I moved to Los Angeles when I was 21, which was a very interesting time to move to Los Angeles. I started on the app Musical.ly for my professional career, which got bought by ByteDance and turned into TikTok. I started a music career about three years ago, utilizing my following and pushing my market towards my music. I’ve worked with a lot of different brands as a consultant for social media. I’m now working at Hollywood Branded as a social media coordinator, which has been very fun. And I just really want people to be inspired by me to be their most authentic selves and just enjoy life to the fullest with nothing is off the limits. If you want to be a singer, you want to be a doctor, you want to be an astronaut, you can do it. It just takes hard work.

Stacy Jones (03:45):
So Nathan, what made you think that you wanted to be an influencer? Was there something about it or was it just that you really loved creating content?

Nathan Piland (03:54):
In a bittersweet way, I just had no friends in middle school. I was a weirdo. I’m still a weirdo, but in middle school it was a little weirder to be a weirdo. So I just spent all my time on the internet watching YouTubers. I would be on the computer probably 12 hours a day, just watching and consuming content. And I absolutely loved the idea of making content. So I was like, “Let me do this.” All my heroes were YouTubers growing up. So I wanted to be one myself. And I started posting YouTube videos when I was 12 and then Tumblr in high school was a thing for me. And I’ve just always enjoyed creating content on the internet. And I have friends now and I’m more marketably weird, but still definitely weird.

Stacy Jones (04:50):
I think everyone should be embracing their weirdness. It’s what makes you special.

Nathan Piland (04:54):

Stacy Jones (04:55):
Yeah. Okay. So you started off in, you mentioned a moment ago with Musical.ly and that turned into a whole new adventure into the land of influencers, because that was… For anyone who doesn’t know what Musical.ly is, can you share what that was and the type of content and how it differs from what content’s out there for today?

Nathan Piland (05:17):
Yeah, there’s a lot of content on TikTok that would be Musical.ly inspired, but TikTok has such a broad spin of content for whatever you’re into. Musical.ly was just lip syncing. So you could do comedy lip syncs. The primary lip sync type on Musical.ly was popular songs. And so you would film a video in two times speed which means the song was slowed down and it was the cringiest thing to watch, but people would just go (singing) and they would just move their camera around with their phone and do a little dance thing and lips sync to the song. And it was pretty cool, but definitely TikTok, I think it’s more evolved. There’s more room for different types of content, which I like.

Stacy Jones (06:07):
And there’s more room for brands, because Musical.ly wasn’t really that brand-driven at the time. It had some things, there was also a very young demographic that was on the platform.

Nathan Piland (06:18):
Yeah, very young. Music artists would promote their songs on Musical.ly, but very few.

Stacy Jones (06:27):
And now, were you also on Vine?

Nathan Piland (06:29):
I was not on Vine. I was a consumer on Vine, but I was not a Viner.

Stacy Jones (06:34):
And Vine was that whole six seconds and then gone. So TikTok is brought as something that’s a little bit more robust because it started off as 15 seconds, now you can do 60 seconds. And so there’s actually content you can make.

Nathan Piland (06:46):
You can make up to three minute videos now in TikTok.

Stacy Jones (06:48):
Really? That’s awesome.

Nathan Piland (06:49):
Yeah. Long, long content, but short form does better typically.

Stacy Jones (06:53):
Okay. So when you work with a brand, how do you approach it? Do you reach out to brands? Do brands reach out to you? Typically, how do you create a brand partnership?

Nathan Piland (07:09):
Yeah, a lot of my brand partnerships have come from in-person relationships at different events or through friends of friends. But a lot of them have also come from them emailing me or a management company emailing me about an opportunity or I reach out. Typically, I’ll reach out to about 10 brands before I get a secured brand deal, just one. But typically if a brand comes to me, it’s way easier success partnership rate.

Stacy Jones (07:43):
Well, because they’re hungry and they’re interested versus you mining the field of being like, “Hmm, are you interested? I’m interested in you.” But at the same time, when you do reach out and I think this is something brands need to understand that if you have an influencer knocking on your door and actually telling you that they like your brand, that it’s an authentic fit for them, you’re going to get content potentially that’s better than when you’re knocking on other people’s doors.

Nathan Piland (08:11):
Correct. I agree with that.

Stacy Jones (08:14):
And when you’re reaching out to brands, do you just say, “Hey, I’d like to work with you,” or do you come in with a strategy or how do you approach?

Nathan Piland (08:21):
Typically, when I will reach out to a brand, I will let them know that I’m interested in their product or whatever they are producing. And I’ll explain a little bit about myself, why I’m interested in working with them, the type of video I’d like to make, a potential ROI, and then my one sheet, which if you guys don’t know what a one sheet is, it’s just all of my metrics, popular videos that I’ve done before, popular brand partners that I’ve worked with and popular brand partnerships that have been successful. So things like that, my demographics.

Stacy Jones (09:02):
And all of that’s available to you obviously in the background of TikTok that’s open to you that the brand might be able to have some access to through different software that they subscribe to, but not to the level of analytics that you actually have access to.

Nathan Piland (09:16):

Stacy Jones (09:18):
And then in the inverse, when the brand reaches out to you, what’s the typical approach

Nathan Piland (09:23):
To respond back to them?

Stacy Jones (09:26):
No, if a brand… Do they just knock on you? Do they DM you? Obviously they reach out to your management as well. But how are you typically hearing from brands?

Nathan Piland (09:34):
They’ll email me a lot. If it’s an email that just sounds really… I’ve learned how to vet out the bad ones. So some of them I don’t even respond to, but if a brand seems really serious and it seems less spammy, I’ll respond back with my rate. If they’re very, very interested and their email is very long and it encompasses a lot about the opportunity, then I will take a lot more time in my response and potentially even giving them a video idea and what the partnership could look like from start to end.

Stacy Jones (10:13):
So let’s dial into that a little bit more. So for all of your brands who are out there who are just like, “Oh, I’m going to shoot off a dozen different inquiries,” or a hundred inquiries or however many inquiries as you spam influencers, trying to figure out who you’re going to work with, what you’re saying is if someone actually sits down, puts together a detailed campaign in the initial first reach out, you’re going to take that more seriously than if it’s just, “Hey, Nathan, we’re interested in working with you”?

Nathan Piland (10:43):
Right. Some people don’t even take the time to change the spam email to, Hey, Nathan, there’s be hi, whoever. And that’s a no good thing, because I know that you’re not actually interested in me, you’re probably just spamming this out to thousands of people or hundreds of people. But if someone actually takes the time to be personal with me, then I’m more likely to want to work with them and then send them a carefully thought out response that would take me however long to write.

Stacy Jones (11:14):
Is there anything that are red flags that you see besides the fact they don’t call you by name and it’s super, super short?

Nathan Piland (11:21):
If they have a lot of spell errors and it seems like it might be a bot, or if it’s a short email with a link to click, where I’m like, “I think you might be trying to get my information,” it might be a scam. So I won’t even click the link if that looks suspect.

Stacy Jones (11:42):
So a website address, if you recognize the brand website you might click too, but if it’s a suspect weird Bitly random thing, you’re just out of there.

Nathan Piland (11:50):
Yeah, because I’ve had friends lose their YouTube accounts just by clicking a link from a brand sponsor, a fake one.

Stacy Jones (11:58):
Right. And this happens and that happens with YouTube. It happens on Instagram where you’ll have someone take over the account and then mine it and push out and collect dollars from it. And you can’t ever get it back if they change your password. And then is there anything else that ever acts like a red flag in the early days of communications with the brand?

Nathan Piland (12:22):
Usually, I will try and bed out the rate quick. Typically, on TikTok, I charge a $10 CPM, which would be cost per thousand. I like to know how a company values views. If it’s something like a $1 CPM, I usually won’t work with a company. So I usually like to figure that out before we get into the nitty gritty emailing back and forth.

Stacy Jones (12:51):
And so for our listeners who don’t know about CPM, I know a lot of you guys do, but a CPM, Nathan already said, cost per thousand. It’s tricky because it’s CPM and so you think that it should be million, but it’s because of the Roman numerals and so it is thousand. But what it means is if he has a $10 CPM for every 1000 followers, he charges $10 in order to get in front of them. And so if you have a four odd million follower base, that starts to add up, but a lot of brands will look at that and say is engagement there? Is there… That’s the second area to drill down and do.
What is engagement? Is it real followers? In Nathan’s case, it is real followers. He has very authentic, real followers. And there’s a lot of inspections that you can do to make sure that it makes sense. And as you just said, there’s also people who come to you with a dollar CPM for you to be able to consider and say yay or nay and start negotiating. When you’re looking at the Kardashians, and they have just many, many hundred million plus follower base.

Nathan Piland (14:02):
289 million is what Kim Kardashian has in Instagram

Stacy Jones (14:03):
Insanity right now. Easy. And so with that, if you are looking at a $10 CPM, all of a sudden that scales up to being just in the land of ridiculous as expense. So that’s where you start getting a little bit more ability to negotiate down. So there’s a little bit more balance into the cost structure. And you’re looking at dead accounts. When you have 200 million accounts, you have bots, you have a lot of other things. So it filters down when you start lowering that CPM.

Nathan Piland (14:30):
And if you follow Hollywood Branded on TikTok, we just did a TikTok about how Kim Kardashian charges about a million dollars plus equity per Instagram post.

Stacy Jones (14:38):
And that plus equity is a new thing for her, by the way. So it used to be that she would just do the post, now she needs a little chunk of the business that is built from that post too.

Nathan Piland (14:51):
Which makes sense. I mean, it’s smart. She’s going to build up the business.

Stacy Jones (14:55):
It’s all a business. So a lot of people out there think influencers and they don’t necessarily think that it is a business. They think that it’s people who are just like, “Oh,” and they’re fun and free time just making content, having the life online, showing off. It’s not though. It’s actually a true business. It takes a lot of time. Can you share with us how much time it actually takes to ideate or the process, even if it’s not time, what’s the process to come up with the content that you’re going to be posting, whether it’s branded or not branded?

Nathan Piland (15:28):
Yeah. I used to go to about three to four collabs a week, that would be about eight to 10 hours long. And me and my friends would just trade off videos depending on how many there were. So one person would get a video and then it was the next person’s turn, the next person’s turn. We would usually come up with our ideas beforehand. Our processes were all different. For my process, the night before or on the Uber ride over, I would be looking through viral sounds or viral trends and then basing skits around those because my channel’s a lot of skit-based videos. But everyone’s process is different. My friend [Katia 00:16:12], she writes out her scripts in a typical script form and she’ll print it out and then she’ll hand it to whoever needs it. And she has a actual video guy that she hires with a red camera. So that’s always a fun time.

Stacy Jones (16:29):
Does she memorize the scripts or is she using that and being able to actually [crosstalk 00:16:33]-

Nathan Piland (16:33):
We just read it as it goes. We do memorize it as we go. We’ll look over it once or twice before we film, but the shots are so cut up that it doesn’t really matter.

Stacy Jones (16:47):
How does that differ when you’re working with a brand versus just free styling it? Even though you’re coming up with strategy, is it the same process or is it a little different?

Nathan Piland (16:55):
Yeah, it’s the same process. Typically, if a brand, if it’s a good partnership and we’ve been talking back and forth and we’ve really figured out a way to utilize what they want in their messaging on my channel, then I will take two to three times as long to come up with a video. And then I’ll make it, edit it, send it to them for approval and then if they like it, I’ll post it.

Stacy Jones (17:21):
And that can actually be a pretty lengthy process, I’m assuming.

Nathan Piland (17:23):
Yeah, a month.

Stacy Jones (17:25):
A month! That’s not as long as [inaudible 00:17:27] going to be like, “Yeah, it’s going to be a day or two.” So this is over a month that you typically have your turnaround for big partnerships.

Nathan Piland (17:34):
For big ones. Yeah, the big ones. It’s like a little one is not going to be given as much time because it’s not as big. They’re not paying for consulting and multiple edits and revisions.

Stacy Jones (17:52):
And that is something that we have heard from influencers, length about revisions. How do you feel about revisions when brands ask you to do revisions?

Nathan Piland (18:02):
I don’t like it. That’s why I usually make brands give me a down payment before I even conceptualize the video and make it, because I could make it with no money down and send it to them they’re like, “We don’t like that. Do this.” It’s like, well, I’ve already put in 10 hours. Now I have to schedule another whole thing and get everyone else’s schedules aligned if there’s multiple people in the video for them to potentially even say no again. So if there’s a down payment down, there’s a little more negotiation that can go into it.

Stacy Jones (18:39):
And so do you negotiate re-edits or re-shoots with that kind of upfront?

Nathan Piland (18:44):
Yeah. And then if a brand wants to license the video for a year, then that’s also something that would be an additional cost.

Stacy Jones (18:55):
And that’s also something that all of you listeners need to clue in on is that you do not just get rights to the video when you do an influencer partnership. It does not mean it is yours to repost. It does not mean it’s yours to embed in your website, unless you have actually negotiated those deal points as part of the term of your agreement.

Nathan Piland (19:14):
And typically influencers are fine, which it should be communicated, but they’re typically fine with you re posting. But if you’re going to run an ad campaign on YouTube or movie theaters, which I’m speaking from personal experience for both of those, without a telling them, that’s not okay. And then you have to get the license for it. But typically the brand partners I’ve worked with, they’ve been good about paying for the year license to use it as an ad.

Stacy Jones (19:42):
And so typically they would have rights to it for a year to put paid media behind it in whatever way. And then that year comes up and they either say yes, we want to renew at an additional rate or the term closes out.

Nathan Piland (19:56):

Stacy Jones (19:57):
Are there any other things that brands should know with working with influencers or you?

Nathan Piland (20:02):
Influencers are typically younger. It’s a very new free flowing industry. Influencers can be hard to communicate with sometimes, but giving them, I guess, the benefit of a doubt sometimes because influencers can be hard to work with in a prideful way. Influencers think of themselves very highly. In my opinion, I think a little bit too highly, but not in a way of how they price, but just the way that they carry themselves, I think is sometimes a little too much. But when you go into talking, if you’re going to speak directly with an influencer, not a management who’s used to the business lingo really dialing in with the influencer to make sure they understand their contractual agreements and just all the things that they would need to know from a business standpoint.

Stacy Jones (21:03):
When you get a really big booky contract, do you just go eeks on that? Or do you not… Anyway, you might not care anymore because you have a manager who can work with you, but does that send you in recoil? Are you okay with super massive amounts of paperwork?

Nathan Piland (21:19):
Anything over a thousand, I just send to my lawyer. So it’s not too bad. They’ll walk me through it, any parts that are weird or if there needs to be revisions. But typically if it’s really long for something that doesn’t need to be long, does weird me out sometimes. Are you trying to throw something in there that I don’t understand or something? But I always just send my lawyer anyway. And the big, big companies do have those typical long contracts. So if it’s a huge company, then it’s like, okay. I know Nike’s going to have a long contract.

Stacy Jones (22:01):
What else? What is it that brands do that sometimes raises your eyebrow and you’re like, “Hmm, why do they do this?”

Nathan Piland (22:08):
If they don’t pay on time, if they’ll go back on something that they initially said, even if it’s a small thing. I had a brand that I was working with that said that if I turned in this one survey, or if I just turned in my submission for the campaign by a certain date, I was going to get an extra $200 right up front, which she was like, “Okay, $200.” So I had turned it in by then. And then without it being put anywhere, listed as this was part of getting paid that extra amount, I asked them about it, about the $200 and they were like, “Oh, well, you didn’t message us about it.” And I was like, “Well, you got the submission, you talked to me about that.” So I just thought that was shady, because also it was just like, it’s just $200. I don’t really care too much. We have more coming up that’s more sizable than that, but it just seemed weird business ethics to me, because it’s also just like it’s $200. It doesn’t seem like that big a deal.

Stacy Jones (23:27):
And I think what happens at a lot of brands is that they get very entry level team members who are put in charge of their influencer marketing and they’re not necessarily themselves so polished in the ways of business always and dialed in. And so then you have a young 20 something year old who is working with influencers of all ages. And a lot of influencers are young, but not always. And communication can sometimes go awry when it’s just not as professionally dialed in.

Nathan Piland (23:57):
Yeah. Definitely true.

Stacy Jones (24:00):
Is there anything else that brands do that you’re sometimes going like, “Huh, this is interesting,” or that they could be doing better?

Nathan Piland (24:12):
I think brands typically should let influencers help them make the content. A lot of times brands will give a script or an idea and you could tell that it’s just not by someone dialed into to the market of either TikTok or Instagram or whatever the campaign is going to live on. They’re just not really that dialed in as a consumer/creator. So the ideas that they come up with sound like a mom from Facebook writing a TikTok video. And it’s like this video’s not going to do well. You want it to get views, but it’s not going to do well because my audience isn’t going to align with this content. It’s going to seem so out of place and it doesn’t even make sense on this platform. Especially if it’s going to be a big campaign with a lot of dollars behind it, really work with your influencers to help utilize the best ROI. You want to get the most ROI out of it, so work with them. They’re professionals, they know what they’re doing, they understand the platform. That’s why you’re hiring them. So trust their expertise on that.

Stacy Jones (25:30):
And with that said, one of the best things brands can do is at least bullet out the main points and it should be in your contract too. What is the main messaging? Not the words necessarily, not this is exactly what you must say. But what’s the message that this influencer has been hired on to do? Because what we’ve seen is a lot of brands fail to actually educate the influencer on the brand and what the goal of the campaign actually is. So the influencer is set up to fail from day one and cannot accomplish.

Nathan Piland (26:04):
Yeah. A hundred percent. And some brands are like that, at least that I’ve worked with, where they’re so set on their script that they send you. And if you’ll send back, hey, I don’t think this will work as well. Here’s another brand deal I did that did really well. And if there’s certain guidelines or certain things you want me to hit, I could build something around that. And they’re just like, “No.” So it’s like, okay, well, you’re paying me. I’ll make you the video that’s not going to do as well and you’re going to pay me either way. But it’s like it’ll be great to have more creative work in the partnership, because it is a partnership and you’re hiring people for their expertise, not just their followers and engagement.

Stacy Jones (26:53):
And when you’re doing an influencer deal, do you typically get on a call, or Zoom nowadays, and actually talk and chat it out or is it really just pushed out through all email, all written, all exchanges through text?

Nathan Piland (27:06):
Email typically. If it’s a personal relationship, phone call.

Stacy Jones (27:10):
And what would you prefer?

Nathan Piland (27:13):
Email. But if it is a personal relationship then so yeah, just call me. We’ll figure it out pretty quick.

Stacy Jones (27:29):
A lot of your content specifically involves other influencers too. And so when you’re doing a partnership with a brand, are you first telling the brand that it’s going to be multi influencers or is it really just up to you to build out that creative if they haven’t given you a defined script that you have to follow line by line?

Nathan Piland (27:49):
Yeah, usually it’s up to me and I’ll write a skit that makes sense with the deliverables. And then I’ll set up some thing with some friends and we’ll shoot something where that makes sense with the characters that I’ve written

Stacy Jones (28:07):
And for all of our listeners, the things that you’re hearing Nathan say right now, that he’s going to write the script, that they’re going to set it up, they’re going to film. You have to understand that an influencer is all of those things that produce content in a movie or TV show. They are the editor, the writer, they’re the actor, they’re the costume, the makeup artist a lot of times. They are the full kit and caboodle. They handle all of it, whether it’s themselves or with their team that they have, where they have to produce content that you, I guarantee sitting, at home would have a really hard time pulling together because it takes a lot. It’s not easy to do. It’s not just plopping yourself in front of a camera and just going and in one take you’re done and the content goes up. So there’s a lot of value.

Nathan Piland (28:57):
We make it look easy because that’s our job. But yeah, it is a lot. There’s a lot to it.

Stacy Jones (29:02):
Yeah. I think one of my first TikTok videos, I’m pretty sure I spent four hours saying the same thing over and over and over again just trying to make it sound cool. And then of course it didn’t sound cool because I made it sound too rehearsed, but it’s not easy.

Nathan Piland (29:19):
Yeah. It is a lot. There’s a lot to it. And for me, it’s second nature at this point, but I’ve taught people how to do it from someone who might be more of a musician or an actor and they’re like, “I want to get into this space.” And I’ve watched them go through the same things that I went through when I was 12 and in middle school and I was like, “Oh wow. Yeah, it isn’t just a flip.”

Stacy Jones (29:48):
So you have spent the last decade plus, because you’re older than 22, which would be a decade, you said 12, I’m doing math in my head very, very quickly. But you have spent the last decade and half or so creating content. This is second nature to you. How do you think our world is going to be as kids today continue to almost from birth, have their hands on phones and they’re social and they’re making content. How are we going to change?

Nathan Piland (30:21):
I think that it’s already becoming a way where it’s almost like everyone’s famous. And I think people are becoming even more and more and more addicted to content. They just want and crave more and more and more content. I think the traditional or the average amount of hours a user of TikTok spends on the app is about eight hours a day or maybe four, five hours a day, but something a lot. And that’s the average user. And that’s just TikTok. That’s not including Instagram, Twitter if you use it, Snapchat. People just love content. And so the more people that are making it and they’re making more different types of content, I think the better in a way. But I think it is moving to a place where a lot of people will be making content more and more and more so. And it’ll just be a part of our culture.

Stacy Jones (31:20):
Definitely a definite new piece of our culture that anyone who I think is 40 plus is still wrapping their head around.

Nathan Piland (31:26):
Yeah. Yeah. We love sharing everything, everything, which I love it too. But it could be concerning. I just go with the flow because I do love sharing every part of my life, which some people aren’t like that.

Stacy Jones (31:43):
So when you take a look at what you have learned to create content for your own brand, one of the things you’ve done with Hollywood Branded is joined us to help us create better content for our brand. So you have a different way of looking at content and looking at how to create. How do you think brands should be approaching creating their own content? Whether it’s Instagram, whether it’s TikTok, whatever platform it is. What should they be doing versus what they’re doing now?

Nathan Piland (32:14):
Yeah. Every platform’s a little different, but really get out of your comfort zone. Don’t feel like it needs to be so rigid. Content is fun, so enjoy it. You want to make stuff that people can relate to/ feel connected to. So if you can create something that doesn’t feel so rigid and makes people feel more open and friendly and more connected to your content, that would be the best way to go about it that I would say. But there’s so, so many things that goes into creating content depending on what your brand is, what your demographics are. There’s a lot that goes to it. But being willing to adapt would be the biggest thing and just being a brand that people feel like they can relate to is really big.

Stacy Jones (33:13):
And when you say that a lot of content is rigid, in your head it’s commercial, is that rigid to you? Is that the connotation or what does rigid mean?

Nathan Piland (33:23):
Rigid. Yeah, just very disconnected. It doesn’t feel like you’re a part of it. It doesn’t feel like this is something you could make. I love what Progressive’s been doing with their commercials or T-Mobile where they have the… In Progressive, they have a friend group that is consistently in their ads. That feels very personable to me. It doesn’t feel so disconnected. I feel more connected to it. I’m like, “Oh, I know these people.” This feels homely and friendly. But there’s a lot of different ways to do stuff. Apple, their commercials are more CGI just showing the phone and how sleek and amazing they’re. So there’s a lot of ways to go about doing it. But even Apple, they’ve been very creative with how they present it to you rather than just, buy an iPhone. They’re not just saying buy an iPhone, you should buy an iPhone. They’re presenting it to you in a really cool, trendy, fun way.

Stacy Jones (34:32):
And it’s a lifestyle and something you’re going to be missing out if you don’t buy an iPhone. And for those who are listening, who have always wanted to be a successful and influencer as you are, including those who have yet to ever do their first TikTok, how would you suggest someone start? What do they need to do? Whether it’s for a brand or whether it’s for an individual, what’s the first step? How do you figure out what to post?

Nathan Piland (35:00):
The first step to starting is to start. You just have to start posting content. You’re not going to ever figure it out or post content if you don’t do it. So the best way would really just to pick up your phone, film a video, whatever you think a good video would be. It could be something you see on the internet already, or you and your friend had a funny dialogue that you’re like, “That’s a good video.” Just start posting content. Post every day and you’ll figure it out and you’ll start to notice trends. And it will never happen if you don’t get started.

Stacy Jones (35:43):
I still want that episode of black mirror to come true, where there’s basically an implant and everything in your life is picked up. So all of the most funny moments that you ever said that you’re like, “Oh, I wish I had that on camera,” actually would be caught on camera.

Nathan Piland (35:59):
I know that would be awesome. I would love to see my life as a movie at the end of it. That would be so fun.

Stacy Jones (36:06):
Well, all you have to do is go to @nathanpiland and you can pretty much just see your life as it is now versus at the end of it, like a movie. And you can just keep on playing it, one after another, after another.

Nathan Piland (36:21):
That is true. That is true. I didn’t think about that. So that’ll be good. I got all this content out.

Stacy Jones (36:25):
One part of your life’s movie that you did was you did a stunt where you were pregnant for a year. What made you decide to do this? What was the big concept and idea behind it?

Nathan Piland (36:38):
Well, me and my friend wrote that concept probably five months before it launched. And we just had the idea we thought it’d be really funny. I think pregnancy content is super cool and interesting and different like female YouTubers who get pregnant and they make a lot of pregnancy content. I was like, “Well, what if I did that?” I would just make the same content, but as a cisgender male. So I had a baby daddy who was my co-writer and then I had an ultrasound, just did all the… And read what to expect when you’re expecting and talked about it, just all the typical pregnancy content that you would see, except as a parody.

Stacy Jones (37:35):
And it was successful.

Nathan Piland (37:37):
It was. It was. Very successful. I gave birth live for four hours and in that four hours, I gained 250,000 followers. The most successful four hours I’ve ever had.

Stacy Jones (37:52):
And so you preempted Lil Nas X with his album launch of Montero where he did the same stunt as a talk show host.

Nathan Piland (38:01):
It got so many millions of views. I honestly would’ve been surprised if one of his marketing team didn’t see that or Lil Nas X himself. I mean, it was all over the internet. I still meet people today that are like, “Oh, you’re with that guy. Wait, you were the guy that was pregnant?” And they’ll remember that. And they’ll be like, “Oh, you were. Oh, wow. That’s so crazy.”

Stacy Jones (38:23):
For last parting words of advice to our listeners today, what would you share for let’s look at three different parting words. One, if you’re a brand interested in working with influencers. Two, if you are someone who would like to be an influencer yourself. And three, for the everyday of us who don’t want to be influencers, but we want to have some content that our friends and family see and love, what would you do? Starting with one, the brand. What would you give as advice of what they should know last parting words?

Nathan Piland (39:02):
If they want to create content?

Stacy Jones (39:03):
Mm-hmm (affirmative). Create content or work with an influencer. I made it very confusing right now for you.

Nathan Piland (39:12):
Build relationships, see what other brands have done and what has been successful, and then try and replicate that in your own way.

Stacy Jones (39:24):
Okay. And if you are a wannabe influencer or an influencer already, or someone who’s a couch influencer, what would you suggest to them?

Nathan Piland (39:35):
Just get started. People always say I want to be an influencer, I want to be an influencer, but they’re not posting any content. So you just got to start posting content. That’s honestly the hardest part. It’s just, you just got to start filming and doing it and posting it to the internet. And don’t second guess it. It might not go huge right away, but you just keep posting content and then you’ll figure it out.

Stacy Jones (39:59):
And how often should you be posting this content?

Nathan Piland (40:01):
Every day. Post every day.

Stacy Jones (40:04):
Every single solitary day.

Nathan Piland (40:07):
Every day.

Stacy Jones (40:09):
That is a lot of content.

Nathan Piland (40:11):
It is.

Stacy Jones (40:14):
So Nathan, thank you so much for coming on today.

Nathan Piland (40:17):
[crosstalk 00:40:17].

Stacy Jones (40:16):
Greatly enjoyed having you. Of course. Thank you all for tuning into another episode of Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid them). I look forward to chatting with you this next week. And until then, if you have any questions at all about working with influencers, celebrities, TV, film, or music reach out, and our team will be able to give you more knowledge about how your brand can power and drive your sales through partnership marketing with pop culture. I look forward to chatting with you then. Take care.

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Marketing Mistakes and How To Avoid Them Reviews 

Must-Listen For Every Brand Marketer (And Owner)

This should be required listening for everyone who owns a business, works in marketing, or is interested in the business of entertainment. Great stuff!

The Best Marketing Podcast Ever!

Stacy is a brilliant branding strategist and she really knows how to bring out the best in her guests! This show is fun AND educational! If you’re looking to understand the world of marketing, branding, digital marketing, influencer marketing and more, look no further. This show has awesome insight into some of the greatest marketing minds out there today, and they provide practical advice you can use in your business today. #FanForLife

Awesome podcast for all marketers!

Keep them coming

Practical and pointed advice.

Stacy does a really great job making this a highly actionable podcast for business owners. With a focus on marketing, she covers a wide range of related topics as well and is always very specific with her questions so that the listener gets pointed advice instead of vague concepts to take away. It’s also really helpful to the hear the why behind any marketing tactic so that we can decide if something sounds like a good fit for where we are at in this moment.

Love this marketing podcast!

Lori has a way of finding new insights to share every week. I loved being a guest, but I enjoy hearing her many fascinating conversations with other marketers even more. Great show!

I love Stacey Jones!

I absolutely loved being on this podcast! Stacey is amazing – real, down to earth, and genuinely curious and interested in learning – this makes for a very engaging conversation and valuable podcast!

Thank you for your podcast! I LOVE IT

I just listened to the episode named Insights To Product Placement Brand Marketers Need To Know, and I really enjoyed every minute of it! There are so many ways to approach product placement in a manner that provides wins for many – and it is not always driven by money. I am looking forward to listening to more!

Stuff we need to know!!

Anyone who is in business should be listening to this podcast! Incredible insights and advice.

Such a wealth of knowledge! 🧠

This is one of the most insightful podcasts that I have ever come across! Stacy does such a great job of sharing her wisdom and I love how she leads meaningful conversations with guests who bring so much experience to the table. Highly recommend checking this show out – you won’t be disappointed!

Awesome Podcast!!!

Stacy, host of the Marketing Mistakes (And How To Avoid Them) Podcast, highlights all marketing and more in this can’t miss podcast! The host and expert guests offer insightful advice and information that is helpful to anyone that listens!
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