PaperCity Magazine

September 2018- Dallas

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Page 69 of 167

68 M ore than a decade ago, Tina Craig launched Bag Snob and became one of the first to step into a new frontier: the fashion blog. Since then, she has navigated numerous digital frontiers (Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram), cultivating a loyal following and securing her major status as an influencer. Now she's acting as a guide — along with blogger and former attorney Lynsey Eaton and lifestyle publicist Suzanne Droese — for those managing their own digital empires. And helping them make millions while they're at it. Last October, the trio formed a new- frontier talent-management agency, Estate Five, to help influencers make strategic moves and form lucrative partnerships with big-name brands. Their select roster of clients — which includes Jane Aldridge of Sea of Shoes (203,000 Instagram followers) and Heather Clawson of Habitually Chic (154,000 Instagram followers) — wields much power. "It's unbelievable to access their numbers on the backend and see how they are influencing and changing the way people purchase," Eaton says. "Not just how they purchase, but the way they operate their lives — the way they live their lives." The industry of social influence is still vastly unchartered territory, even for established names, which is why Estate Five set out to do things differently as a boutique agency, Droese says. "We're kind of like big sisters or even mothers. Sometimes we're therapists." Craig looks up from her phone and adds, laughing, "I'm doing therapy right now!" In addition to their deep book of contacts and strategic counsel, the first-hand experience of Estate Five's founders offers a degree of comfort to clients whose businesses are based on their personal identities. "It's easy to get stressed out because you're being judged by your appearance or your next post," says Craig. "You're only as good as your next Instagram story — let's be honest here." In a seemingly saturated world of social influencers, is there room for new voices? When Estate Five signed Instagram's Diet Prada in October, the fashion whistleblower had a meager 30,000 followers. Today, it is upwards of 650k. In June, Time magazine included Diet Prada on its list of 25 Most Influential People on the Internet, alongside Rihanna, Kanye West, and Donald Trump. Rapid successes like these contribute to the biggest misconception in the industry: that being a social influencer doesn't take hard work. The Estate Five team has kept up with the industry's breakneck speed by staying constantly connected (Eaton admits to sending a few emails while in labor with her son earlier this year). "Look, I'm working right now!" Craig says, having just posted a quick Boomerang. "I thought it was a good scene." It is precisely that hustle that has led Estate Five to open a second office in Beverly Hills as well as an outpost in New York City — all shy of a year after launching their agency. It's rapid success, yes, but bolstered by a tremendous amount of strategy, knowledge, and powerful relationships. UNDER THE INFLUENCE BY LISA COLLINS SHADDOCK. PHOTOGRAPHY DANIELLE SABOL. HOW THREE DALLAS WOMEN ARE RESHAPING THE BLOGOSPHERE — AND LEADING SOME OF THE INTERNET'S MOST POWERFUL NAMES Tina Craig, Suzanne Droese, Lynsey Eaton

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