The newly opened talent-focused production company Ampersand Inc, is expanding its business model into the creator ecosystem. 

To meet the agency world’s spiking need for premium short-form programming to fill pipelines for TikTok and YouTube Shorts, Ampersand has launched a “Creator-Integrated” division to service agency and brand clients. 

“That there is a universe of creativity in what Creators are doing on TikTok is obvious for anyone who has spent more than five minutes on the platform,” says Ampersand’s MD Phillip Detchmendy. “We combine unique insights and understandings of the Creator world with a deep knowledge of the Advertising Agency and Client process.  Our division provides a bridge between that allows work that is both authentic to the platform and on-brand.”

Filling the gap between DIY tech platforms and talent managers who double as campaign managers, Ampersand Creator-Integrated acts as an interface between creators and clients to ensure work that is up to commercial standards while being platform-authentic and collaborative. Designed to be either modular or end-to-end service, the division pulls from a world-class creator pool for all types of marketing needs, including production, content creation, audience insights, and social marketing

“The level of creativity and community-based collaboration we’re seeing on TikTok is boundless, with something new to discover every day,” says Creator-Integrated division lead Lena Katz. “When I was on the brand side and agency side, everyone’s interest was turning toward TikTok, and during my time as a consultant in-house there, I learned that the interest is more than justified. The platform doesn’t just create trends and hit songs – it influences culture and society, for the most part in very positive ways.”

Knowing that many brand marketers struggle to genuinely connect with their audiences on short-form platforms like TikTok, Katz joined Ampersand as an execution specialist and creator strategist who can advise on TikTok strategy or support campaigns in extending across other platforms or all other media channels, including OTA, print OOH and experiential. Additionally, with 12 years of experience in all areas of influencer marketing,  Katz started as a lifestyle journalist and content strategist working for brands such as Sony, Yahoo, USA Today, and Zagat. She sees the TikTok creators of today as the future of publishing, brand storytelling, and entertainment. 

In Ampersand’s first major campaign utilizing creators, worlds came full circle, seeing the division support parent company AOI-Pro in casting creators for a short film to launch Sony Linkbuds globally. Ampersand was able to bring in creators from music, gaming, and Web3 to lend their larger-than-life personalities and creative skills to the campaign across a slate of global media –digital, OOH, stadium, in-flight, and OTA.

Ampersand is the US-based hub of global AOI Pro Network, Asia’s leading creative production company. With offices in Japan, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia, AOI Pro boasts a prolific output of commercial work, producing over 1000 spots per year. The entity has also expanded its creativity to dramatic TV series and film, including the feature film Shoplifters, which won the 2018 Palme d’Or at Cannes.