The Rise of Celebrity Status Influencers : Influencer Marketing

With the abundance of content in today’s digital age, brands are jumping to promote their services and products through influencers. Celebrity endorsements have been around for decades, and companies have traditionally spent billions to endorse their products. However, with the boom of influencers who are now also becoming brand ambassadors and models, appearing in offline and online ads, they offer plenty of benefits over utilizing celebrities.

The obvious benefit is that they are much less pricey than celebrities. They also are much more likely to share personal stories and images, offering a candid insight into their lives and engage with their followers through comments and messages. According to QuestionPro, 92% of consumers trust an influencer more than an advertisement or traditional celebrity endorsement, while only 17% trust friends and family for shopping recommendations.

Let’s look at 3 of the hottest new influencers making a boom on social media!

1. Tube Girl – Sabrina Bahsoon

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< Sabrina Bahsoon’s Viral TikTok Content (Source: TikTok sabrinabahsoon) >

If you’ve been on TikTok recently, you’ve almost certainly come across her videos on your “For You” page. Better known as the “tube girl” (“tube” referring to the London Underground metro), Sabrina Bahsoon is a law student living in London, who recently shot to fame. Her content is quite straightforward- she films herself lip-synching to a song in the train, using camera angles with sharp turns and a zoomed-out effect. The wind in the train is a bonus affect, making her content look like a music video. But it’s really her confidence that radiates and has drawn so much attention. Her videos are shot in the train amidst busy commuters, but no matter how packed it is, she is completely unfazed.

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< Tate Mcrae’s new song reaching no. 9 on Spotify (Source: TikTok tatemcrae) >

With 715K followers as of October 2023, her first TikTok in the tube was posted at the start of August, and has garnered over 12M views. Others benefited from her popularity as well. She uploaded a dance to a preview of the song “Greedy” by Tate Mcrae, which shot up to the number 9 on the Spotify global charts when it was officially released. The hashtag #tubegirl has drawn over 500 million views on TikTok in a matter of weeks.

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The initial response to her content was quite negative, with people saying her videos were “embarrassing” and “a nuisance to people on the tube”. It’s understandable, as in this day and age, people are extra careful in public spaces, mainly keeping to themselves. Regardless, she has garnered many fans, and many other TikTokers have posted their own versions. From filming in trains worldwide (there’s even an attempted filming in a Korean subway) to shy people attempting it as a challenge to gain confidence, she is a huge trend.

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< Bahsoon walking at London Fashion Week (Source: Getty Images) >

Even global brands have taken notice. Bahsoon was already a signed model, but her TikTok popularity quickly grabbed the eyes of many global brands. She has since walked the runway at M.A.C’s runway show at London Fashion Week.

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< Singer Bella Poarch (Source: TikTok sabrinabahsoon) > < Sabrina at the Valentino show (Source: TikTok hypebae) >

Along with strutting down the runway, she has also caught the attention of musicians like Troye Sivan and Bella Poarch, who have made cameos in her recent posts. She has also created contents for Valentino’s brand channel, in true “tube girl” style, of course! In this digital age, a single viral video can change everything, and Sabrina is a true example of that.

2. Whitney Simmons

“It’s a beautiful day to be alive!”
That’s fitness influencer Whitney Simmon’s signature introduction phase that opens every video of hers. Click into any one of her videos, and they’re bound to instantly put a smile on your face. She radiates positivity, smiling even when doing the toughest workout routine with the heaviest weights. Her content consists mainly of workout routines, get ready with me videos, and meal prep videos. Through her fun narration and simple tutorials, she makes working out at the gym look fun and exciting, instead of daunting, which it can be for first timers.

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< Fitness Influencer Whitney Simmons (Source: LifeandStyleMag) >

Back when she worked in marketing, the gym was her escape from work. Fast forward to now, it is her full-time job and she has amassed over 2.2M subscribers on YouTube and over 2.4M followers on TikTok. Whitney is a role model loved by many not only because of her content, but also because she is very open about her struggles such as depression and body image. She has taken the same approach to her psoriasis, which is a condition that causes itchy, scaly patches of skin. At first, she says she would hide it for fear of making people feel uncomfortable, but now openly embraces it as being a part of who she is.

< Simmons is open about her struggles with psoriasis (Source: Womenshealthmag) >

Aside from posting social content, Whitney has a fitness app and is also an international brand ambassador for Gymshark, which we previously mentioned as being a brand that successfully used influencers and brand ambassadors to become a multi-million business.

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< Simmons promoting her new collection with Gymshark (Source: Instagram whitneyysimmons) >

She has a longstanding relationship with the brand, and aside from posting content featuring their apparel, has collaborated with them to release multiple collections, which have all sold amazingly.

3. Zoe Gabriel

Zoe Gabriel is a normal teenager in Singapore teenager who went viral on TikTok for an unconventional reason. She posted a video in January, thanking her father for her “first luxury bag”, as she excitedly unboxes it on camera.

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< Zoe’s TikTok video that went viral (Source: TikTok zohtaco) >

However, some netizens shamed and mocked her for considering Charles & Keith to be a luxury brand. In response, Zoe posted a video addressing the comment, calmly but tearily explaining her humble upbringing and how she is grateful to her dad who worked hard to buy the bag for her.
Both videos went viral with over 5 million views, and she was invited by Charles & Keith themselves to tour their headquarters and have lunch with the founders. They say they were impressed with how maturely she handled the situation, which resonated deeply with them.

< Zoe modelling for Charles & Keith for its International Woman’s Day campaign (Source: StraitsTimes) >

She was then unveiled as Charles and Keith’s “brand community ambassador” for their International Women’s Day Campaign. Since then, Zoe has also received love calls from various places, from restaurants wanting to host her and her family to cosmetics brands inviting her to their events. Most recently, she also became the content creator and ambassador for low-cost carrier Air Asia.

Whether it’s inspiring others through confidence (Sabrina Bahsoon), showing expertise in a certain field (Whitney Simmons), or being loved for being humble (Zoe Gabriel), what they have in common is their genuineness and passion. In the end, it is all about having creators of all kinds who can share brand messaging in a way that feels like a genuine recommendation from a trusted friend.

Carrying out a campaign with influencers or brand ambassadors is not as easy and straightforward as it may seem, involving many processes like proper screening to find the right person, relaying deliverables like posting contents and photos in time, and applying feedback quickly. Brand ambassadors are no longer reserved for only celebrities either. Rather, utilizing influencers can help build more brand trust and induce engagement from consumers.

Whatever your needs are, look no further than to Avocado Giant! We drive exceptional results thanks to our meticulous selection and execution process, acting as the perfect bridge between our clients and the influencers. Contact us today for more information!