The Subculture of Microcelebrities or Influencers

Amy Doner

Welcome to Amy’s Spotlight: From Hollywood to Healthcare. The blog will periodically provide commentary from Amy Doner, President and Founder of The Amy Doner Group, an established celebrity and talent procurement agency specializing in the pharmaceutical and consumer healthcare industries. Amy will offer her perspective on the influence celebrity, pop culture and related trends can have on today’s health-minded world and your business.

The Subculture of Microcelebrities or Influencers

Do you envision the public’s ongoing “obsession with celebrity” to continue in 2015?
The new year is barely underway, with celebrities already everywhere and Americans still along for the ride. We’ve watched the Golden Globes and the Screen Actors Guild Awards, while running the race to the Grammy and Academy Awards alongside many of our favorites. Seeing star athletes play in the Super Bowl is practically the equivalent of a national holiday observance. And, we still marvel at – and use social media in reacting to – the creative integration of our favorite celebrities in commercials. While this busy season of celebrity-watching has been all about “appointment viewing” to see our famous icons and idols, let’s not forget the ongoing fascination with seeing celebrities at unscheduled moments in their lives. What park are they taking their kids to in Manhattan? Who is under the Kiss Cam at a Lakers game? Who just walked out of the doctor’s office in Beverly Hills? Who is lunching in South Beach? So, yes, all signs point to the public’s ongoing obsession with celebrity still continuing in 2015.

What trend in celebrity spokesperson recruitment is on an upswing this year?
As The Amy Doner Group helps to create marketing strategies for our clients, integration of a celebrity into the program is still very much “the big idea.” We continue to recommend a celebrity as a voice for a medication, medical condition and/or call-to-action awareness initiative. However, there are even more great options to help define exactly what a celebrity is tasked to do. For example, one significant trend is how companies are learning to harness the strength of small, yet influential, online personalities. They seem to be everywhere – from YouTube to Vine, Instagram to blogs. These new types of celebrities, often referred to as microcelebrities or influencers, are becoming extensions of a media strategy itself as they evolve into social media properties in their own right. These microcelebrities have the ability to develop, sponsor and become the authority of their own content to drive this awareness. It’s as if they are the talent, strategy and media list all in one.

Who are these microcelebrities or influencers?
This subculture of microcelebrities or influencers can be found anywhere and everyone on-line. They range from YouTube sensations such as Zoella, a beauty, health and lifestyle sensation targeting the younger set found at to Vine singers. There are Instagram models to health-conscious bloggers and motivators such as The November Project’s Brogan Graham and Bojan Mandaric – and everything else in between. If they have a story to tell, a message to send and are building up their group of followers in doing so, it’s likely their content is being explored and influencing behavior as we speak.

Zoe Elizabeth Sugg
Zoe Elizabeth Sugg (Zoella)
Brogan Graham and Bojan Mandaric
Brogan Graham and Bojan Mandaric

How can these microcelebrities or influencers fit into a client’s business plan?
Companies can leverage the growing group of microcelebrities and influencers already making a name for themselves and reaching a large, varied non-traditional audience. Their fame makes them a great vehicle for targeted campaigns, especially as they often feel very authentic and organic, with their popularity drawing from a very “grass roots” place. The more relevant this group becomes, the higher-quality content can be. Additionally, companies can also work to promote their own versions of microcelebrities or influencers who reinforce personal interaction with actionable, yet compassionate, messaging. Once these microcelebrities or influencers establish themselves as authoritative via social media, this value can be maximized across other media channels. The Amy Doner Group can work with your team to research and match up the microcelebrities or influencers who can work best to convey your messages.

Parting thoughts?
This year in celebrity and social media influence proves to be an exciting blank slate. The Amy Doner Group can’t wait to see the possibilities in healthcare! Can the success of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge be topped? Only time will tell! For more information about The Amy Doner Group, go to

Post a question or comment here. For more information about The Amy Doner Group, go to