Opera Event: Solving the Problems in Influencer Marketing

Too many brands view influencers as paid mercenaries, which is the wrong approach.  The name of the game in advertising has, and always will be, authenticity.  Influencers who only endorse the highest bidder will find their actual influence start to erode and those brands paying the big fees will see diminishing returns on their advertising investment.

We’ve assessed dozens of influencer marketing platforms over the years and they all tend to employ plenty of fancy jargon pertaining to “proprietary databases” of X million influencers, “streamlining” your workflows and campaigns, and using “AI-powered” tools to measure your campaign results.  The bottom line for us has always been, how to identify the best platform, which connects the brand to a bunch of authentic influencers at scale.

We have found that authenticity and scale are often inversely correlated in the world of influencer marketing.  You can pay the Kardashians a lot of money to get scale but we find the authenticity and engagement lacking.  Or you can find the perfect micro-influencer, who really captivates her audience of 5,000 followers.  But that won’t really move the needle for a major brand.  The holy grail for us has been, finding a company that can identify and mobilize thousands of influencers to passionately espouse the values of a brand/product/service they actually like.  We’re pleased to report that we found just that and lead the investment round in Opera Event.

Opera Event’s secret sauce is “teams”.  “Teams” has become such an overused word that it has lost virtually all of its meaning.  We’ll elaborate.  We’re referring to a group of people who has organically come together out of a mutual interest in a topic – maybe a music group, maybe a pro sports team, maybe a favorite hobby like fishing or gardening.  You can refer to these groups as fan clubs, supporters or followers.  We’ll just stick with “teams”.  These teams were formed out of genuine interest and affection, which reduces the mercenary risk we described above.  It also improves compliance to brand values and reduces toxicity levels because if you want to join the LA Lakers fan club, rest assured, they won’t tolerate most of the garbage that fills Twitter and Instagram on a daily basis.

Then, the company needed to find a way to mobilize and manage all of these fans so as to amplify the benefits to the team and to any corporate sponsors.  That is where Opera Event has invested all of its time and money; to create a technology infrastructure capable of guiding “ten thousand influencers as easily as managing ten”.  That quote comes directly from one of their customers.  The social media world can be a very unruly and chaotic place.  Frankly, we wouldn’t want to be in the business of managing influencers.  We would rather create tools to help existing teams recruit and manage their fans or help brands create new teams.

The company’s roots are in eSports so they started helping eSports teams manage their most valuable asset, the fans and all of the cache they bring with them.  Opera Event is growing quickly in eSports and also launching into several other verticals this year.  So if you’re a brand with loyal followers, a pop culture icon or a subject matter expert in anything from poker to gardening, come say hello.  We’re pretty sure that Opera Event can help you grow your business.

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