More and more, brands are choosing social media influencers as partners, but now it appears that the trend is infiltrating digital publishing, too. Refinery29 just launched Here and Now, a talent collective of major personalities from YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, etc., according to a release from Business Wire. Each member of the group has their own following and reputation, which they’ve built independently—like Lauren Curtis (3.1 million subscribers on YouTube), Casey Holmes (nearly 1 million subscribers on YouTube), Danielle Bernstein of We Wore What (over 1 million followers on Instagram), and Justina Blakeney of The Jungalow (1.3 million followers on Pinterest). The team was selected based on a shared aesthetic and audience with Refinery29, and will work closely with the site to contribute content (including customized content for Refinery’s brand partners) and amp up the reader experience.
Smashbox is the first to partner with Here and Now, and Refinery29 is working with the collective to create video and social content to support the makeup brand’s Camera Ready BB Water Broad Spectrum SPF 30. The media will be distributed across the collective’s social channels, in addition to Refinery29, boosting the reach by—well, millions.
“The power of influencers, particularly in beauty and fashion, is undeniable. They have real, authentic relationships with their subscribers and fans, and their reach is immense,” said Beth DiNardo, global general manager at Smashbox. “We’ve done such great work with Refinery29 in the past and are very excited to collaborate with them on this new influencer initiative. We really feel that they ‘get us,’ so we can’t wait to see what this partnership brings.”
Nathan Coyle, Refinery29’s head of business development, will now serve as GM of Here and Now. “The Refinery29 audience spends so much time on the platforms where Here and Now’s talent have established followings, craving the real-time and relatable content they are producing daily,” said Coyle. “This new collective will create more opportunities to provide content that speaks to every aspect of our audience’s life, while vastly extending our reach across multiple platforms straight out of the mobile social core.”
Collaborations aren’t new to Refinery29; just last month the site partnered with Bezar to launch an exclusive collection of artwork hand-picked by in-house talent. But choosing social media influencers as partners is a major tweak to content strategy. So is this the beginning of a new media trend? We’ll find out soon enough.