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Introducing Niche: the social media startup that connects top-ranking content creators to brands

You don’t have to be a vet­er­an con­tent man­ag­er to appre­ci­ate that when a social media start­up bags $550,000 dol­lars in seed fund­ing less than six months after being found­ed, it’s like­ly to be pret­ty darned hot. And that’s the rep­u­ta­tion that New York-based Niche is clear­ly very hap­py to be build­ing.

Tal­ent meets brands

Co-found­ed in June this year by Dar­ren Lacht­man and Rob Fish­man (erst­while social media edi­tor at The Huff­in­g­ton Post), Niche con­nects its com­mu­ni­ty of influ­en­tial, pop­u­lar social media cre­ators with lead­ing brands to help the lat­ter “super­charge their social pres­ences”.

The more ques­tion­ing con­tent man­ag­er may be won­der­ing how Niche can stand out from the crowd when more estab­lished out­fits like Adly have been mak­ing mon­ey from celebri­ty-fueled social media mar­ket­ing cam­paigns for some years now. But to date, Niche cre­ators between them reach a 75 mil­lion-strong col­lec­tive audi­ence. Impres­sive stuff.

Cre­ators get a pro­file that pulls togeth­er all their accounts and con­tent from oth­er social net­works. They also get ana­lyt­ics which show them what con­tent is engag­ing peo­ple (and what isn’t). All for free of course; and they get to make some mon­ey if they take part in mar­ket­ing cam­paigns.

The ana­lyt­ics gives valu­able insights to mar­keters too, who can scan leader­boards dis­play­ing the most pop­u­lar Niche cre­ators. With a lit­tle help from Niche, they can link up with them and devel­op cam­paigns.

The human touch

Niche cre­ators, accord­ing to Fish­man, have mind­share but lack tra­di­tion­al sales struc­tures. And, he says, Niche’s brand part­ners “are dying to work with these peo­ple, but they don’t know how.” Although the start­up focused ini­tial­ly on Vine, it now extends to all major social net­works, includ­ing Twit­ter and Face­book, and it will add oth­ers as they gain trac­tion.

Niche has a glit­ter­ing and grow­ing list of part­ner brands on board now, includ­ing Gap, CBS Films and Rel­a­tiv­i­ty, but it also has plen­ty of star­tups sign­ing up, such as Handy­book, Blue Apron and Lyft. The cam­paign it helped run for Relativity’s film “Romeo and Juli­et” is cred­it­ed with increas­ing the movie’s social media fol­low­ing by thou­sands of users.

Fish­man says “The human touch is very impor­tant to us” and con­tent man­agers will see why: the com­pa­ny takes a high­ly cus­tomized, hands-on approach to every cam­paign.

Niche has undoubt­ed­ly found a pop­u­lar niche.

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