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Good morning to the over 10,000 of you now reading The Publish Press. It's been 132 days since we started this journey, 39 issues have been sent, and 118 stories from the Creator Economy have been told. If you’ve been enjoying the newsletter and know someone else who would too, we’d love it if you could share it with them. Let’s build this community together.

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In Today’s Issue 💬

 What Emily Zugay’s viral logos teach us about the power of TikTok

→ How Cameo is expanding their creator monetization offerings

→ Unpacking LinkedIn’s $25 million Creator Fund

Emily Zugay’s Viral TikTok Takeover 

Has anyone noticed the TikTok logo looking a little different recently? And while we’re at it, something’s up with Tinder, Nascar and The Washington Post too. Enter: Emily Zugay, the TikTok creator who has been whipping up a storm on the platform, with her tongue in cheek logo redesigns for brands

On September 8, Emily posted a TikTok that began “I graduated college with a degree in design and I redesigned some popular logos I think we can all agree are ugly”, before showcasing her satirical attempts at re-designs for major brands, like Starbucks and Apple. In the week since sharing this viral TikTok, it has been viewed more than 12 million times, and Emily has gained more than 300,000 followers

After her first attempt went viral, Emily crowdsourced inspo for her next logo victims from her own TikTok comments, with fans of the overnight trend suggesting recognizable logos to get a dose of the Emily treatment. TikTok even got on board, changing their profile picture to Emily’s new design, for their 56 million followers to see. 

But the award for best brand engagement has to go to the Detroit Lions, or as Emily rebranded them “detriot lines”. The NFL team snatched up the new and ‘improved’ logo for their official profile, in addition to printing it on team shirts, although players weren’t so impressed.

Our Take

Often, brands can miss the mark big time on social, with their attempts at piggybacking on viral trends appearing cringey or ill-timed. Emily’s logo ridiculousness offers the perfect example of brands interacting with a creator in a way that feels fun, authentic and engaging. We’ve seen this kind of virality on TikTok many times already this year, but you just don’t see it on any other platform. Do you think the Publish Press logo could do with an Emily redesign?!

Cameo Launches A New Service For Fans

2020 was the year of the celebrity Cameo. Last year, bookings on the platform grew by more than 350%, with 10,000 new creators joining the service, like Tiger King’s Carole Baskin. Now, Cameo has launched its new product Cameo Calls, which will allow fans to chat one-to-one with their favorite celebrities and creators, for up to 15 minutes. 

Cameo Calls are an upgrade on calls offered by the platform via Zoom, which were introduced in June 2020 and phased out in April of this year. Now, the talent sets the duration and price of the call, of which the average is $31 a pop. Last year, Cameo’s top 150 creators each earned at least $100,000 on the platform.

Our Take

With the introduction of Cameo Calls, creators will have access to another option to monetize fan interactions and their extended community, especially while meet and greets are still up in the air. The question is, will these intimate fan interactions continue to translate once IRL events are truly up and running again?

LinkedIn’s $25 Million Creator Fund 

Lately we’ve seen platforms like TikTok and Instagram scramble to create infrastructure around their community, ensuring a payday for creators providing valuable content. Now LinkedIn is getting in on the action, with the launch of their $25 million Creator Accelerator Program.

The inaugural program operates over 10 weeks, for 100 US-based creators chomping at the bit to get access to the incubator-style coaching, plus access to LinkedIn’s built-in creator network. Additionally, accepted participants will have the opportunity to be featured on LinkedIn channels, and a $15,000 grant to help them build their own communities. The program coincides with the launch of LinkedIn’s competitor to Clubhouse: “We’ll be starting to test audio with a small pilot group in the coming weeks,” said Chris Szeto, senior director of product at LinkedIn.

Our Take

While LinkedIn’s Creator Fund is a drop in the ocean compared to TikTok’s $2 billion investment in creators until 2023, it’s a safe bet for a platform that’s struggled to get the same kind of traction as other major social platforms. With this new creator accelerator, LinkedIn can incentivize a different type of creator that we don’t see on TikTok or YouTube. For those of you interested, the deadline to apply is October 12!

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