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- Business Insider is recognizing the leaders who are helping shape the careers of YouTube influencers in 2019.
- We are highlighting 14 power players of talent management, based on who is successfully assisting creators in their digital businesses.
- These talent managers help their clients diversify their online brands, build lasting partnerships with companies through influencer marketing campaigns, and even develop consumer products.
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YouTube creators are dominating the influencer space, with millions of followers and brand deals that earn them strong incomes.
Each year, new creators are breaking into the industry, and the demand for managers to help them sustain their success and growth has increased.
Business Insider is recognizing the power players who are helping shape the careers of these stars in 2019. In this inaugural list, we are highlighting the top 14 YouTube talent managers who are assisting creators with their digital brands and businesses.
These talent managers help their clients diversify their online brands and build lasting partnerships with companies through influencer marketing campaigns. They also often assist their clients in developing consumer products and merchandise, which has been popular among influencers in 2019.
The landscape has changed over the past few years as YouTube has evolved as a platform.
The once popular multichannel networks (or MCNs) that dominated the online-talent space — signing up hundreds, and even thousands, of clients — have experienced a decline, with some major players shutting down.
As this shift has happened, firms with smaller rosters of top clients have risen to the forefront. These new power players have developed expertise in the many facets of the influencer world in 2019.
Reed Duchscher, who managers creators like MrBeast (24 million YouTube subscribers), told Business Insider that he focuses on helping clients create and structure new businesses and build out their internal teams.
“One core reason I think YouTube talent managers are important is due to the fact that most successful channels are run by young people,” he said. “We’re seeing 15- and 16-year-old kids garner hundreds of millions of views each month, before they even graduate high school. We help them avoid the pitfalls of working through this industry.”
Managers earn revenue by receiving a cut of the influencer’s earnings, which typically ranges from 10 to 20%, depending on how much the manager does for the client, according to industry insiders.
To form this list, Business Insider relied on a mix of our own reporting, nominations from readers, and industry experts to narrow down the finalists. We chose them based on their experience in the YouTube influencer space, their responsibilities, and their influences on the business of being a creator.
The power players are listed in alphabetical order:
Amron Lopez – talent manager, Authentic Talent and Literary Management
Amron Lopez, a talent manager at Authentic Talent and Literary Management, assists clients in the digital and international department of Authentic Talent.
He began his career at Creative Artists Agency in 2011 and previously worked at Big Frame as a talent manager, with a background focusing on building the careers and brands of talent spanning Hollywood and Asia.
Lopez has helped clients like Olivia Rouyre and Amanda Pavillard in brand partnerships and in extending their careers past YouTube. The lifestyle vloggers are also known for occasionally being featured in the top YouTube star Emma Chamberlain’s videos and social-media pages (8 million subscribers).
Lopez has built relationships with brands like Acuvue, Maybelline, and Coach — and established deals with companies like Facebook, YouTube, Nestle, and Smart Telecommunications.
Talent includes: Ranz and Niana (9 million and 8 million subscribers, respectively), Luke Korns (2 million subscribers), Olivia Rouyre (678,000 subscribers), Amanda Pavillard (182,000 subscribers). He has worked with Kian and JC (3.6 million subscribers).
Ashley Rachel Villa – CEO, Rare Global
Ashley Rachel Villa leads the female-focused and female-run management company Rare Global. She is both a manager and a lawyer, and she consults for brands and entertainment entities within the digital-media space.
She manages top YouTube influencers like the YouTube personality Wengie, who has 13.9 million subscribers on her main channel under the same name. Wengie is best known for her DIY and craft videos, like “DIY Edible School Supplies” with 48 million views, or “How to Sneak Candy in Class” with 44 million views.
Rare Global recently started a division of “midtier” influencers, providing clients between 200,000 and 800,000 followers with strategy and mentorship resources.
Before founding Rare in 2015, Villa was a legal counsel at StyleHaul, the YouTube multichannel network. There, she worked on agreements in digital media, fashion, and beauty.
Villa gained experience as a lawyer in film and entertainment at Lionsgate Entertainment Corp.
Dan Levitt – CEO and founder, Long Haul Management
Dan Levitt is the CEO and founder of Long Haul Management, a digital-first management firm that manages a client whose channels have over 20 million subscribers, as well as several of YouTube’s top gaming, sports, and pop-culture stars.
Levitt also serves as an executive producer on the Streamy-winning YouTube Red series “MatPat’s Game Lab” and has previous experience working for companies like Big Frame, Disney, and Columbia Records.
He’s conducted branded integrations with major media brands, including Google, Netflix, Nike, Adidas, and Nintendo. And he has assisted his clients in recurring partnerships with companies like SeatGeek, Hulu, Dollar Shave Club, and Audible.
Talent includes: MatPat (Game Theorists/Film Theorists/GT Live, totaling 20 million subscribers), Kristopher London (1.9 million subscribers), Jesser the Lazer (2 million subscribers), CashNastyGaming (3 million subscribers), Qias Omar (1 million subscribers).
Digital Brand Architects – Christina Jones and Hilary Williams Dunlap
Digital Brand Architects is a talent-management firm representing creators and publishers. DBA has a products division, Digital Brand Products; a podcasting studio, Dear Media; and is partners with the conference series and platform Create and Cultivate.
DBA was acquired by United Talent Agency, an agency representing artists and other entertainment professionals, this year.
Christina Jones, the vice president of talent at DBA, and Hilary Williams Dunlap, the senior vice president of talent at DBA, assist clients across the travel, family, fashion, food, home, and beauty verticals.
Jones’ clients have scored partnerships with companies like MAC and Johnson & Johnson, and her clients include influencers like Patrick Starrr (4 million subscribers). Starrr is known as one of the top YouTube beauty influencers online and as one of the first “men in makeup.”
Dunlap identified a brand and retail partner for her client Marianna Hewitt, a lifestyle and beauty influencer. The denim collaboration with DL1961 sold at Nordstrom and other retailers. She also helped her client Camila Coelho attend the Met Gala with Diane von Furstenberg.
Talent includes: Camila Coelho (1.2 million subscribers), Marianna Hewitt (297,000 subscribers), Patrick Starrr (4 million subscribers), Nyma Tang (1 million subscribers), and Bretman Rock (6.6 million subscribers).
Gleam Futures – Maddie Chester and Briony Gaffer
Gleam Futures is a talent-management firm behind popular UK vloggers like the beauty and lifestyle influencer Zoe Sugg, known as Zoella online (11.6 million subscribers), and the lifestyle mommy vlogger Louise Pentland (2 million subscribers).
Maddie Chester has managed Sugg and the Zoella brand since 2013. This involves generating and negotiating deals and opportunities, including publishing and product licensing, brand-product collaborations, app development, and brand partnerships, as well as advising on PR and charity strategies.
Briony Gaffer is a talent manager with experience in influencer campaigns like the YouTube star Niomi Smart’s campaign with L’Oréal Botanicals. She has also helped clients in negotiating multiple ambassador roles with brands such as Dior Beauty, L’Oréal Paris, and Armani Beauty.
Talent includes: Zoella (11 million subscribers), Victoria Magrath (628,000 subscribers), Niomi Smart (1.6 million subscribers), Lewys Ball (395,000 subscribers), Sean Elliott O’Connor (459,000 subscribers).
Jack Reed – CEO and cofounder, Millennial Entertainment
Jack Reed is the CEO and cofounder of Millennial Entertainment, a YouTube-focused management firm.
He works with top content creators and social-media influencers, like David Dobrik, who has 14 million subscribers, and various members of his Vlog Squad.
Dobrik has expanded his digital brand with recent TV experiences, like hosting Nickelodeon’s 2019 Teen Choice Awards and appearing as a judge in the upcoming show “America’s Most Musical Family.” A recent survey by the investment-banking firm Piper Jaffray found that Dobrik was US teens’ favorite person to follow on social media.
Reed has assisted clients like Dobrik in building partnerships with SeatGeek, Honey, Electronic Arts, and Chipotle.
Reed got his start in digital talent after reaching out to Dobrik once the star began to gain popularity online from his short-form videos on the defunct social platform Vine.
Jordan Worona – CEO, We Are Verified
Jordan Worona is the CEO of We are Verified, a digital-talent-management group with clients like the popular YouTube vlogger Tana Mongeau (4.9 million subscribers).
Worona specializes in working with online influencers and has previous experience working with digital talent at both Studio 71 and Fullscreen.
Worona is known online for managing Mongeau and her wildly popular YouTube channel and career. Mongeau, who recently had a viral wedding with her fellow YouTube star Jake Paul, has featured Worona across her social platforms and on videos like “My Manager Teaches Me How to Drive (I Almost Killed Us),” which has 1.6 million views.
Worona also assists Hunter Moreno on his merchandise line Make Sure Your Friends Are Okay, and he helps the influencer Trisha Paytas (4.9 million subscribers) with her monthly subscription box Glitter Bitch Box.
Clients include: Tana Mongeau (4.9 million subscribers).
Naomi Lennon – president, Lennon Management
Naomi Lennon is the president of the social-media-influencer talent-management firm Lennon Management.
Since 2009, Lennon has managed some of YouTube’s biggest influencers, including the beauty influencer Rachel Levin, who goes by RCLBeauty101 online and has 14 million subscribers.
Lennon has negotiated and overseen campaigns for clients with top brands like Ford, Covergirl, Clinique, Pepsi, and Target.
Lennon Management has expanded to include influencer product lines, investments in digital startups, and a musical-artist department.
Lennon is also an executive producer for the digital-entertainment studio New Form Digital’s “The Fourth Door,” starring the actress Monique Coleman and the YouTube star Joey Graceffa.
Petar Mandich – chief talent officer and cofounder, Addition Management
Petar Mandich is the chief talent officer and cofounder of Addition Management, which focuses on the distribution of content and the creation of original programming across platforms, as well as assisting clients in expanding to product merchandise to enhance their digital brands.
Mandich works with leading digital talent like Joey Graceffa (9 million subscribers on YouTube), who is a New York Times bestselling author and the driving force behind the YouTube Originals show “Escape the Night.”
Mandich is the executive producer on all four seasons of Graceffa’s series, and he got his start in artist and music management at The Collective (now Studio 71).
Talent includes: Joey Graceffa (9 million subscribers), iJustine (6 million subscribers), Erin Robinson (190,000 subscribers), Evelina (1 million subscribers) and Jennifer Zhang: JENerationDIY (2 million subscribers).