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Ogo: Writing the new playbook for influence

Looking back on 2021, internet culture was the culture, fueled by the quickly growing yet still nascent creator economy. Through his work on TikTok, Ogo helped spotlight the next generation of breakthrough and often underrepresented creators. Ogo is a social media marketer who runs his own influence marketing group, Thirteenth. When I look towards 2022, I see Ogo bringing more creators to the forefront and helping shape their impact on society and culture as a whole. I recently caught up with Ogo, who shared his thoughts on the creator economy.

1. For many creators, brand deals haven't yet settled into a steady income stream, and instead are a series of one-and-done paid posts. But Gen Z creators thrive in sustained, meaningful relationships.

Ogo: “TikTok is tough because it can get very inconsistent. Their checks might last four months, but it’s tough to be like, ‘I don't know how I'm getting paid in six months.’

“It would be smart if there were more brands who signed creators like an endorsed athlete.‘For a year you're with us, here's what that contract's gonna be worth and here's what we need out of you.’ And from both ends, brands and creators, [it’s] a good middle ground that fits both of our goals and objectives and is mutually beneficial.”

2. The rise of TikTok correlated with stay-at-home orders, but as we reemerge to our IRL lives and obligations it's important to be sensitive to creator fatigue and burnout.

Ogo: “A lot of burnout happens from people getting uninspired, but also feeling the need to continue what it is they're doing because it's what pays the bills. And it’s almost like [TikTok creators] feel bad taking breaks for themselves because you always see someone else posting. A lot of them built [their followings] on working habits that were only sustainable in 2020: with nowhere to go and nothing to do other than making content and working. Now it's a hard adjustment finding, like ‘okay, well how do I still get my work done, be productive and have a life outside of that?’

“Going into next year, it's really about mindfulness and trying to separate a little bit from all this.”

3. Highly-produced content is thriving on TikTok as young filmmakers take to the platform to embrace long-form storytelling.

Ogo: “There's a lot of potential [for] 3D animation or stop motion like “Ralph the Rabbit.” It was made by the Humane Society, and it was a four-minute film. Someone independent of them cut it up and put it on TikTok and got nearly 40 million views between the four videos. It had a really great storyline, but it also had a message behind it on animal cruelty. For climate change and other pressing topics, people are asking how to put out meaningful content that resonates. Investing in high-quality content lets you be a thought leader.”

The past year taught us that the entertainment on our phone screens is now as valuable—if not more so—than the big screen. And though this new creator economy is just getting started, 2022 will be the year internet culture crosses over from scroll-stopping to scroll-defining. Ogo’s work is a testament to the latent value in this new field and is a change-maker to watch as next-generation internet talent forms a new creative vanguard.