June 28, 2023

The Perfect Match: How CreatorForce’s Daniella McBride Pairs Influencers with Brands

Creator and brand matchmaking starts with ForceBrands’ CreatorForce. 

The newest hiring solution offered by ForceBrands connects today's most exciting creators to the most innovative consumer brands. CreatorForce identifies celebrity and creator talent who authentically match brand, vision, and culture.

We caught up with the Head of Creator Partnerships Daniella McBride to learn more.

Alexis Benveniste: Tell me about your role at ForceBrands’ CreatorForce. What do you do for the company and why is your job important? 

Daniella McBride: I’m Head of Creator Partnerships at CreatorForce. Founder and CEO Josh Wand and I work closely together to identify celebrity and creator talent who authentically match brand, vision, and culture.

Working in the entertainment industry for the last 10 years has really expanded my knowledge about the talent world. I have strong relationships in the industry and a deep understanding of the consumer brand landscape. In fact, I helped build a brand incubation business in my previous role and have immense experience in talent scouting.  

Building a new platform and CreatorForce division sets us apart in executive search, and we’re seeing that in real time. We’re able to showcase all the amazing creator companies we’ve worked with, and we’re helping brands find talent. With the talent (Creator and Celebrity) vertical, we have the potential to be game changers — the go-to resource for brands when they’re looking to partner with a celebrity or influencer on a larger scale. It’s truly full circle: connecting talent with brands that already exist and helping to hire the right people to build out the operating teams. 

AB: The creator economy is hotter and more important than ever. Why do you think that is? What is it about our current social, political and economic environment that contributes to this rise in interest and popularity?

DM: People have always been fascinated by celebrities and the entertainment industry. Before there were influencers, there were actors, musicians, athletes and public figures. We have always been enamored by the glitz and glamour. Now, our current environment and the social media industry has changed the game for this world. We can access content more directly. Everyone sees firsthand how much success people can have from working with “celebrities and influencers.” 

Think about When Kylie Jenner was on the cover of Forbes magazine when she became a billionaire. I think that changed the pop culture view of how much an “influencer” or talent can build a brand. Ryan Reynolds is another great example of a creator changing the industry for a brand. Not many people knew that Aviation was a global  brand until Ryan Reynolds became involved. 

AB: What makes a celebrity a good fit for a brand? And vice versa? What makes a brand a good fit for a celebrity? 

DM: Great question. It has to be a pure authentic, alignment with company leadership and dedicated commitment to the business. You can have amazing talent and a horrible product. You can have an amazing product and a horrible talent that doesn’t give you the time to be involved. You must have a combination of both.

When you’re looking to partner with a creator in space, it’s just like matchmaking and dating. Make sure it feels authentic and you feel it's the right fit.

AB: What are influencers looking for when they're trying to find a brand to partner with? What are brands looking for? 

DM: Most of the talent that makes it in the industry has some type of magic — a secret sauce that makes people want to follow them. Maybe they are good athletes, singers, actors, influencers, or YouTubers. They tend to be very smart business people or have teams around them that know how to run the business. 

When you go to the talent, you are going to their team first. I think every talent is different and their team usually knows what they are seeking for deals or business partnerships. You must make sure the talent is interested in the space for the brand. Brands are looking for a right balance between a popular figure and someone who would be a good representation for the brand. Brands are also getting smarter on how they partner with talent. They have seen the success stories and want to make sure the talent is involved and well aligned with the company.

AB: Are there any big no-nos when it comes to brands looking for an influencer who will work with their overall vision and mission? 

DM: At the end of the day, the deal has to be right. If the talent isn’t willing to fulfill certain requirements that the brand is requesting, the deal probably won’t work. If the talent is requesting too much of an investment, sometimes it won’t work for the brand within their budget. The brands are also aware of each talent's reputation. If the talent doesn’t have the right image or commitment to work ethic and deliverables for the brand, it just won't work.

We're looking for talent who are an authentic fit, committed to the vision, business, and work deliverables. 

AB What does an influencer/brand ‘match made in heaven’ look like? 

DM: Ryan Reynolds and Aviation. The story I keep hearing about how it all happened is a dream for many brand partners. Not only did he invest in the brand, he promoted it the right way and the company allegedly sold it for $610M. That sounds like true heaven and success to me.

Interested in building your creator brand or working for one? Reach out to us to start the conversation.

Alexis Benveniste is a New York-based writer and editor whose work has been featured in The New York Times, Bloomberg, Vanity Fair, and other outlets.

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