Hi, this is Amanda Perelli and welcome back to Insider Influencers, our weekly rundown on the business of influencers, creators, and social-media platforms. Sign up for the newsletter here.
In this week’s edition:
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Clubhouse Media Group has built a business running a chain of TikTok influencer mansions.
Some talent, who lived rent-free, said CMG’s CEO often yelled and would try to set them up on unwanted dates.
One former house member said CMG management treated their lives like “a game.”
Dan Whateley, Sydney Bradley, and I reported on how living rent-free at content mansions wasn’t the Hollywood dream some TikTok influencers anticipated.
CMG mansions like Clubhouse Beverly Hills are home to a rotating cast of Gen-Z TikTok stars who live there rent-free.
Some sources said there was a volatile atmosphere at the homes, and that the CEO spoke to them in ways they found to be inappropriate and, at times, misogynistic.
Some influencers said the CEO inserted himself into the personal lives of CMG house members — many of them still teenagers — in a manner that made them uncomfortable.
“They were just trying to manipulate all of our roles in the house, almost as if we were playing characters instead of being ourselves,” one former Clubhouse BH member told Insider.
Clubhouse Media Group provided Insider with the following statement:
“When Clubhouse Media Group formed, it endeavored to bring an earnest, professional approach to the content-house industry, an industry that is still very much in its infancy. As a startup, we have had our share of learning lessons and challenges. Thankfully, we’ve also gotten a lot right. It has been through our challenges that we aim to grow, learn, and course-correct for the good of our team of creators, our employees, and the industry as a whole.”
Check out the full story, where some influencers say the CEO fostered a toxic atmosphere, here.
TikTok is now the second most popular platform for influencer marketing, right behind Instagram.
68% of 163 enterprise marketers surveyed by the agency Linqia said they planned to use TikTok for influencer marketing in 2021.
Sydney Bradley broke down some key takeaways from Linqia’s recent report:
Marketers care most about return on investment (ROI). About 65% of marketers surveyed said ROI was their top concern when investing in influencer-marketing campaigns.
Vertical video is key. One in three marketers surveyed by Linqia said that vertical video was “extremely important” to their influencer-marketing plans for 2021.
Budgets are healing after a rocky 2020. 71% of respondents who already knew their 2021 budgets indicated that spending on influencer marketing would increase compared to 2020.
“TikTok is here to stay and brands know that,” Brian Sorel, the COO of the influencer-marketing company NeoReach, told Insider in January.
Check out a full breakdown of all the major social-media platforms, here.
Abby Roberts is a popular British-based TikTok beauty influencer with 16 million followers on the app.
Soon, Roberts is moving to Los Angeles to expand her business and to launch a YouTube beauty show.
Molly Innes interviewed Roberts about her marketing strategy and investments in bitcoin and property.
“I get a lot of US-based brands wanting to work with me, so I kind of try and market myself more to US audiences,” she said.
Check out how Roberts grew to become one of the biggest makeup creators on TikTok, here.
This week’s top trending hashtag on TikTok:
Each week, we will be highlighting a trending hashtag on TikTok, according to data provided by Kyra IQ.
This week’s top hashtag: #Promszn.
The percentage uptick for the last 7 days: 1,983%.
This trend is centered around prom season starting, and creators are showing off how they are getting ready for the event.
This week from Insider’s digital culture team:
The word “cheugy” went viral on TikTok and was the subject of a recent New York Times report.
The term (pronounced chew-gee) has been making the rounds on TikTok over the past month or so.
It signifies a certain out-of-touch aesthetic that’s difficult to define, but easy to identify.
Insider reporter Palmer Haasch wrote that the term is similar to more familiar descriptors like “basic” or “local.”
More on digital culture: