It’s not a job you study for (but you can learn somehow), and yet it definitely is a job that allows you to live and earn a lot of money. It is a job that did not exist 3-4 years ago and that today many boys and girls would like to do, what was once called influencer and is now called creator, one of those jobs that you never know how to explain to grandparents and parents, those who in the nineties they told you “study, otherwise you won’t find a job”. Here, this work is not studied but is found and how. And every year it moves hundreds of thousands if not even millions of euros, also in Italy. But how do you do it? How do you succeed on social networks?
“Above all we need two things – he told us Eugenio Scotto, one of the founders and CEO of One Shot – that is valid contents and talent in expressing them. If you can put them together, then that person’s profile will work. ” And putting them together is precisely the work of One Shot, one of the main talent agencies in Italy, founded in May 2017, based in Milan, with about forty employees and collaborators and a team of 40 creators, of which about twenty very large and important, such as Elisa Maino, Cecilia Cantarano, Marta Losito and Mattia Stanga, whom we met at the end of 2021. “The idea of the creator who starts creating content in his bedroom, in his comfort zone, where he feels safe and not bad if he makes a mistake, is still valid. And very often this is how it starts – said Scotto, one who has discovered many talents in his career – But only this is not enough: 90% of them, if not adequately supported, it goes out and disappears within a couple of years“. What do you need, then? “Today young people know better how to approach social media than 15 years ago, but what we need is exactly what our agency does: give a strategy, create a content calendar, a schedule, enhance the skills of each individual creator, give maturity and concreteness entrepreneurial to those who at first are only youthful enthusiasm. And also to establish relationships with companies, to help these boys and girls to imagine their future, perhaps also making them grow on other media ”.
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How to start and where (and how long does it last)
According to Scotto, another important thing is not to be in a hurry and not try to forge ahead: “The ideal is start at 16/17 years old, when there is greater awareness of what is happening around us, also because before the world of the Internet can be a bit dangerous. And remember that there is nothing to study, there are no molds or recipes, because each of these creators must have the ability to bring something of his own, his own talent, possibly something that others do not have “. A bit like in other fields that have to do with expressiveness, where it exists who can sing, who can dance, play, tell stories or otherwise entertain.
As for where to start, the advice is predictable: “From TikTok, which has changed its strategies a bit in recent years, because its algorithm (that’s how it works) it really rewards even the non-famous with lots of views and lots of visibility, if the content is good, ”he explained Benedetta Balestri, managing director of One Shot. Because really, as they say, “on TikTok you don’t have to be famous to become famous”. The important thing is that there are no boomers, as Scotto told us with a smile: “Fifteen years ago, the kids started from YouTube, then the parents arrived and they moved to Facebook (about ten years ago), 5 years ago they fled to Instagram and now they are all on TikTok ”.
There remains the question of how long a job like this can last: can it be done over 40? Or is it likely to be a little ridiculous? “The important thing is to evolve, look ahead and not stop – is Scotto’s reflection – If Paolo Bonolis had remained to do Bim Bum Bam, yes that would have become ridiculous. But it didn’t, it evolved, changed and kept up with the times “. Here, the important thing is this: continue to find ways to capture people’s attention, to keep them there for 30 seconds or even for a minute, even in a hectic world like ours, in which 30 seconds seems like an eternity. .
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How much you earn, and the role of the agencies
In this, that is, in trying to keep up, agencies can help: “When we were born, the research activity of creators, what we call scouting, was fundamental – he recalled Matteo Maffucci, One Shot creative director – We contacted them to get them into our team. Now we don’t do it anymore and on the contrary we are forced to say a lot of no to those who would like to work with us ”. Because? “Because we want to focus on the creators we have, give them the attention they deserve and enhance them – added Maffucci – There is a single person who takes care of each of them, follows them, helps them to express their creativity, even with writing activities of lyrics to be used as a kind of script for videos “. Again: to give concreteness and substance to what is perhaps initially only an inspiration, a suggestion, an idea.
In practice, One Shot looks for companies and brands with which to use specific creators, but it is also sought by companies that want to invest in communication on social networks. And that’s where the real money comes from: “We do not pay our creators a salary, which is something we consider unfair, but some of the biggest even bills one million euros a year“. A million euros a year in Italy? But really? “Really – confirmed Scotto – Some of them have bought a house with this job, others have become so important that they have practically gone out of business”. IS the case of the ubiquitous Khaby Lame (who is not in the One Shot team), who “is now too big for Italy, in the sense that too high figures are needed to hire him “. He is now at the levels of Charli D’Amelio, the very young American from 100 thousand dollars per post, but getting there is anything but easy. And there is a very specific scale of values to climb.
“TikTok is so large, in terms of the number of users and content created, that the indicators are expanded compared to other social networks – explained Balestri clearly – On TikTok, 100-200 thousand followers are few, at 500 thousand you are a micro creator and it is only when you exceed 1 million that you can hope to invoice hundreds of thousands of euros “. There is an exception: “If you have even only 100,000 followers, but on a very specialized profile (all about hunting, fishing, make-up, being a mother and so on, ed), then you will have a value for companies in that sector, because your followers are all potential customers. And then the brands will be willing to invest in you and maybe communicate through you “. Making you earn.
Working with social networks
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Why does social advertising work?
This has not always been the case, in the sense that it is only in recent years that this market, that of communication made through social media, literally exploded, eroding budgets traditionally dedicated to something else. To be precise, in the last 5 years, that is more or less since the arrival of Musical.ly, the Chinese social network from which TikTok was born: “They democratized a market that was previously reserved for a few and in which it is easy for boys and girls to enter, because any smartphone is really enough to create quality content”, they told us again from One Shot
And perhaps their luck (and skill) was basically just this, that of be on the right site at the right time: “Having started with Musical.ly allowed us to be close to young people and their language immediately, to understand it and to understand how to use it to do business, more easily and quickly than others”. Another acceleration occurred a couple of years ago, more or less at the end of the first coronavirus lockdown: “Many companies, including luxury ones, got in touch with us because they wanted to have a presence on social media, because they understood that they had to be there and that it is the most direct way to establish contact with the public – Balestri told us at the end of our long chat – From social networks you have an immediate response and you immediately understand if the campaign works or not . They are such an important showcase that a social campaign now costs more than a TV campaign“. Which is perhaps the thing that most of all explains how important this work is. That didn’t exist 3 years ago.