From TikTok Star To Creative Director in Residence

Why beauty brand Too Faced hired TikTok creator Sara Echeagaray as its first-ever Creative Director In Residence

Today’s Edition

  • Too Faced hires TikTok star Sara Echeagaray as its first-ever Creative Director in Residence

  • NBCUniversal launches social media support to help athletes ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games

  • TikTok dispels myths about TikTok Creator Marketplace and branded content

Too Faced Hires TikTok Star Sara Echeagaray as its First-Ever Creative Director in Residence

Too Faced / Instagram

Beauty brand Too Faced has appointed 21-year-old TikTok star Sara Echeagaray as its first-ever Creative Director in Residence. With a massive following of 7.7 million on TikTok, 530,000 on YouTube, and 300,000 on Instagram, Echeagaray, a talented creator and actor, will contribute to various aspects of the brand, including product development, social content creation, photoshoots, and brand campaigns throughout their year-long partnership.

How it Will Help Too Faced

By bringing Echeagaray on board, the brand can tap into her expertise, knowledge, and skills that have helped her develop a highly engaged social media following and global reach. Echeagaray's biggest impact will be in amplifying the Gen Z voice in the brand. Because of her track record of creating engaging content and being a Gen Zer with her finger on the pulse of digital culture, Echeagaray can help Too Faced tailor its marketing efforts to resonate more effectively with the Gen Z demographic.

What makes Echeagaray's addition to Too Faced unique is that she isn't primarily known as a beauty influencer. Although she doesn't frequently share beauty-related content, this actually works in the brand's favor. Echeagaray's unique perspective can help Too Faced continue to be known as a serious beauty brand while resonating with consumers that have wider interests.

The Benefits for Echeagaray

Not only is the brand benefiting but there are also perks for Echeagaray. Besides a new revenue stream, she has the opportunity to contribute to the development of a brand that has been around for over 20 years and gain firsthand experience in the inner workings of a company. This experience can be leveraged in her future entrepreneurial pursuits.

Creators As Full-Time Employees Emerge

Echeagaray's appointment adds to the increasing trend of brands hiring creators as full-time employees or consultants. This phenomenon, while sporadic in the past, is gaining momentum this year, which is one of my big bets for 2023. While the beauty and fashion industries have been at the forefront of embracing in-house creators, this trend is spreading across various industries. Other examples include Jack in The Box appointing Kodie Turner as its first full-time Twitch Creator, Sophie Jamison, being named as Nerf's Chief TikTok Officer two years ago, and more recently, taking the same role up at kitchenware brand Made By Gather.

Unlocking the Full Potential of Creators

As ambassador programs have become routine in influencer marketing today, the next evolution for brands is to unlock the full potential of creators by bringing them into their businesses in full-time or consultancy roles.

Since the concept is still new, the playbook is being created in real-time, but brands can take a number of approaches to identifying creators for these roles. These include everything from traditional job application processes to social media contests, tapping creators they are already working with, and even transitioning current employees who double as creators.

NBCUniversal Launches Social Media Support to Help Athletes Ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games

International Olympic Committee

NBCUniversal has launched Fortius, a production company dedicated to helping Olympic athletes strengthen their brands in preparation for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. Fortius will pair experts across NBCU’s portfolio of companies, including Bravo and NBC Sports, with 15-20 Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls to help them develop a content strategy, track performance metrics, and more. Athletes expected to be part of the program include volleyball player Jordan Thompson, surfer Carissa Moore, and Paralympic wheelchair rugby player Chuck Aoki.

Social Media Is A Must

While athletes prioritize their athletic performance, the increasing overlap between sports and social media necessitates allocating time to their digital brand and presence. With access to experts, athletes can kickstart or enhance their digital presence, enabling them to maximize one of the defining moments of their athletic careers.

Viewership and Engagement for the Olympics

NBCU's support for athletes is part of its strategy to optimize viewership and engagement for the Olympics, for which it has paid a hefty $7.75 billion for broadcasting rights until 2032. With a decline in US viewership for the Tokyo and Beijing Games and unprecedented coverage of the Olympics on NBC and Peacock this year, driving viewership and engagement will be key. Athletes can play a significant role in attracting viewers, especially younger audiences who primarily consume sports content on social media platforms. By sharing their stories and backgrounds on Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube, athletes can connect with these fans and encourage them to tune into events.

Major Sports Leagues Are Helping Their Athletes Too

Fortius mirrors initiatives implemented in major sports leagues such as the NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL. These leagues have established dedicated teams within their marketing and player associations teams over the past few years to support their athletes in developing their social media presence, securing new revenue opportunities, and expanding their fan bases. Colleges and universities have embraced similar approaches with the passing of Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL).

TikTok Dispels Myths About TikTok Creator Marketplace and Branded Content


TikTok has updated its Creator Portal to dispel myths about the TikTok Creator Marketplace (TTCM) that have recently surfaced. These myths include the idea that joining TTCM hurts creators' organic traffic and that branded content underperforms due to the Branded Content Toggle.

TTCM and Branded Content Has No Impact

According to TikTok, joining TTCM does not affect the organic video performance of creators. It cites fluctuations in viewership between organic and sponsored content as normal due to various factors. Additionally, TikTok states that using the Branded Content Toggle does not negatively impact video performance, either. The tool's purpose is to let viewers know when a video "contains a commercial relationship with a brand.”

Why this Matters

By reassuring creators that their organic content's performance will not be impacted by joining TTCM, TikTok hopes to encourage more creators to join its creator-brand collaboration platform, creating a richer pool of talent for brands to discover and collaborate with.

Many creators and marketers believe that the Branded Content Toggle limits the reach and performance of their videos. This has led them to search for alternative ways to disclose sponsored content, which often means violating the platform's policies for branded content. Now, with confirmation that the toggle doesn't lead to videos underperforming, creators and brands should have less hesitation about using it. This will provide more protection for viewers and help TikTok's relationships with governing bodies, who are pushing for more measures around advertising.

More News

  • Instagram explained how rankings work across its platform, revealing that each part of the platform - Feed, Stories, Explore, Reels, and Search - has its own algorithm.

  • TikTok recently launched the Effect House Ambassador Program. The program provides AR creators with direct support from TikTok, access to new and experimental features, invitations to exclusive virtual and in-person events, and opportunities to secure brand partnerships. To be eligible for the program, creators must have reached the Diamond level of the Bonus Badges program, which rewards them for achieving different milestones.

  • YouTube has introduced a search box to Shorts videos, which includes a pre-populated search topic tailored to the video being watched. Upon clicking or tapping the search box, users will be directed to other related Shorts.

  • Snapchat has introduced a new capability for its AI-powered chatbot, My AI, called My AI Snaps. Snapchat+ subscribers can now send photos to My AI and receive a relevant text reply. For example, if a user sends a Snap of their groceries, My AI may recommend a recipe to make.

  • BeReal announced RealChat, a new messaging feature that allows users to share and react to each other's BeReals in a private one-on-one setting. The once-popular app is following in the footsteps of Instagram, TikTok, and VSCO, which have all recently added new messaging capabilities to cater to social media users who want to communicate in more intimate, private settings.

  • updated its Newsletter feature with new monetization options. Creators and writers on both free and paid plans can now generate revenue from their newsletters through paid subscriptions and premium content.

  • ChatGPT started rolling out Shared Links. This feature enables users to generate a unique link for their ChatGPT conversation and share it with others. Recipients of the link can view the conversation and continue it with their own prompts.

Business Insider: 23 Top Creator Economy and Influencer Marketing Experts to Know

Business Insider

Earlier this week, Business Insider published a list (paywalled) of the top experts in the creator economy and influencer marketing to know across LinkedIn, newsletters, podcasting, and more. I was included on this list alongside some of the people I learn from and/or have gotten to know over the past couple of years. A big thank you to the BI team as well as all of you who take the time each week to open up this email or read anything I share on LinkedIn. The support is very much appreciated!

What I’m Reading

  • The Godfather of A.I. has some regrets (New York Times)

  • How NIL experience could change the nature of brand deals with rookie athletes (Marketing Brew)

  • How The Vitamin Shoppe uses social media to update its merchandise (Modern Retail)

Thank You

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