Taryn Williams is the poster girl for the hashtag #GIRLBOSS – she has taken over the world of social influencer marketing, by launching an online platform, TheRight.Fit that connects influencers, models, and bloggers to leading brands, photographers and other casting professionals, to connect for ongoing work opportunities.
Taryn, you come from a background of modelling, having experience with what goes on; did this push you towards forming your own modelling agency, WINK in 2009?
I had been in the modelling industry myself for about five years and also worked as a producer (events and advertising photography) so I had really seen the industry from both sides – the talent and clients. I absolutely loved the industry, but I could see there were so many inefficiencies and inequalities.
Talent was generally waiting 60-90+ days to be paid, agencies and clients didn’t have a great relationship, and there was a real ‘rule by fear’ management style of agents to talent.
I wanted to create an agency that treated everyone – talent and clients – with decency and respect and ensured talent was paid within seven days, irrespective of when clients paid. And so WINK was born out of this.
What was your modelling agency’s point of difference?
We’re Australia’s leading commercial modelling agency, with over 650+ models Australia-wide. We still to this day, pay all of our models within 7 days of a job. We celebrate diversity, representing talent from 15 – 74 years old, of all different ethnicities, sizes and skill sets. We are an extension of our client’s team, they know that we are vested in the success of their campaign and go above and beyond to make sure they have a great experience and outcome.
What led you to create TheRight.Fit?
I could see that our industry was ripe for disruption. There was a move to smaller bits of snackable digital content, a need to feed always on social channels with a vaster array of engaging content, a move towards authenticity in the type of talent in campaigns, and of course the advent of the social media influencer.
I knew that by building on the back of ensuring talent was paid in a timely manner I could create a marketplace for all creative talent (models, influencers, photographers, makeup artists, videographers, stylists etc.) I could build a platform that helped clients get access to top-quality talent faster, more efficiently and more affordably than through traditional agencies.
Can you explain to us the power of Social Influencer Marketing?
95% of brands believe influencer marketing to be an effective tactic, 71% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on a social media reference, and 87% of brands see it as an effective way to create authentic brand content. On average, businesses generate $6.50 for every $1 invested in influencer marketing. With the Facebook algorithm changes reducing the number of eyeballs a brand can access organically, it’s even more powerful now than ever before.
What has been your favourite campaign on date via TheRight.Fit?
Oh gosh, there have been so many!! The global Veuve Cliquot video campaign was fantastic and incredibly eye-catching. Working with AAMI Insurance on their International Women’s Day TVC was also a highlight as it’s a cause close to my heart.
The business world is not always a breeze, how do you deal with the hard stuff?
I have an amazing team of mentors, advisors and board members. It’s important to have people external to the business to give you some perspective and help ground you. Learning how to delegate and ask for help/support was something that didn’t come naturally to me, so it’s definitely a work in progress!
What is some advice you would give yourself in the early stages of start-up?
Celebrate the incremental victories. It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day grind of startup life, and miss the ‘wins’. It’s important to stop and recognise how far you have come. And for your team to take stock of their achievements. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, and you need to celebrate the victories along the way to make it an enjoyable journey.
What is one thing that comes to mind, that you feel is important for CEOs to always keep on top of?
Vision. Your team, your investors, and your clients are looking to you for the vision and direction of the company. It’s hard to work on the business when you’re ‘in’ the business. But it should be a priority for a CEO to set time to focus on the strategic long-term vision and ensure that all people with a vested interest in the company are aligned on these.
Taryn Williams will be sharing her startup success story in more detail at Myriad 2018, Brisbane.
You can also watch her interview with Chris Bath here: