6 Social Media Archetypes for the Modern-Day Brand Influencer

Long before there was social advertising, there were archetypes. Not archetypes of brands, per se, but archetypes of the people we all admire and aspire to be. Those archetypes have shifted over time, from heroes of lore to sponsors of brands. But which heroes fight best for which brands is still an ever-evolving story even for the most socially savvy marketer.

Working with sister agency Edelman, United Entertainment Group—an entertainment, sports and lifestyle entertainment agency—will aim to sort this out with the launch today of its proprietary Functional Intelligence platform, f(IQ), which taps influencer databases, social listening tools and engagement rates to pair marketers and influencers across social channels. "It's part art and part science," explained COO David Caruso. "It's not a media buy. You really have to look at the story you're trying to tell and who can authentically tell that story with the effective reach necessary to affect your business."

While analyzing data for brands, UEG found a number of emerging social media archetypes for 2016 and 2017 that illustrate what types of influencers are gaining traction with their fans in a way that drives results for brands. To discover talent, f(IQ) analyzed influencer reach, relevance, authority and accessibility with followers before combining it with ROI for marketers. Here are six that stood out:

1

The Well-Rounded Life

Description: It’s no longer just eat well or work out. Brands increasingly support all-around healthy lifestyles. 
Brands using this archetype: Adidas, Banana Republic, TAG Heuer, Smartwater 
Stats: Hannah Bronfman’s 333,000 Instagram followers see her 360-degree approach to health.

2

The Team Player

Description: Online comedy is no longer a one-person show. Friends are creating squad-like content focused on collaborating across channels.
Brands using this archetype: Coca-Cola, Dunkin’ Donuts
Stats: Jake Paul’s Team 10 works with a Rolodex of influencers that share content, with 18 million daily views across channels.

3

The Personal Touch

Description: Marketers want fashion icons with their own identity and personality beyond a brand.
Brands using this archetype: ColourPop, Target, GQ
Stats: Jenn Im’s audience includes 1.3 million Instagram followers and 1.7 million YouTube subscribers. Users post 10x more for #OOTD (outfit of the day) than the Instagram average.

4

The Gaming Star

Description: Brands are beginning to scout esports players with big personalities and followings. But before sponsoring full teams, they’re looking for solo players.
Brands using this archetype: Slim Jim, Tinder, Red Bull
Stats: Matt Haag (aka Nadeshot) creates evergreen content for his 2.7 million YouTube subscribers and 1.9 million Twitter followers.

5

The Quirky Cook

Description: Humanizing the kitchen experience is the flavor of 2016, evolving from the Zen-like style that led online chefs and food stylists for years.
Brands using this archetype: Barilla, Subaru, Dysh, Hormel
Stats: Rosanna Pansino’s baked sweets for geeks have earned her a massive following of 7.2 million on YouTube and 2.1 million on Instagram.

6

The Adventurer

Description: Travel is no longer just one trip. Influencers are creating lifetime narratives that create storylines that blend across journeys.
Brands using this archetype: Marriott, Skype
Stats: About 35 percent of Jackson Harries’ 1.8 million Instagram followers have stayed engaged for three-plus years.

This story first appeared in the October 31, 2016 issue of Adweek magazine.
Click here to subscribe.