Every media has its tastemakers and influencers

Every media, network, or platform has would-be influencers or promoters who can help connect consumers with creators. Don’t mistake the value of these tastemakers, and be sure to find a place for them to create new value for your platform.

Spotify influencers

Consumers vastly outnumber creators in the music business, yet despite that imbalance, creators and their agents still struggle for attention that leads to sales. Payola in broadcast radio was a recurrent scandal from post WWII until-over-the air broadcast was replaced by streaming.

Now, Spotify influencers are such a fixture in that ecosystem that there are best practices articles on how to reach them. Technically, playlist creators need to disclose any pay for placement deals, and Spotify has legitimized the practice with special tagging

Instagram feature accounts

The parallel to Spotify influencers is Instagram feature accounts (don’t worry, you can follow all the IG influencers you want, but they’re fundamentally different from feature accounts).

Sure, people hate them, but feature accounts are a fixture of the platform and the role they have in the discovery of new photographers and other creators (don’t forget models, MUA, and designers!) has grown along with the competition for attention, likes, and follows.

There’s lots of advice about who to follow in this space, but examples I follow include:

Nearly indistinguishable from feature accounts are commercial accounts that largely feature content from creators using their product or service. Examples include:

Instagram only introduced the ability to subscribe to a hashtag in late 2018 (also consider hashtag strategy), but feature accounts offer something hashtag following can’t: a curatorial eye that rejects spam and selects for content that will entertain and delight current followers, and hopefully grow the following.

Pay for play feature accounts are definitely a thing on Instagram, despite opposition. And then there’s @golden_pricetag and goldenpricetag.com.