Having fans means being in a relationship (whether you like it or not). Often times, this relationship is with a group of people -or groups of people – too large to know at a personal scale.
Fans relate to brands because of shared values and experiences. This is very similar to being in a relationship, friendship, partnership with another person.
Brands – and people – can become “objects of fandom” which comes with a unique set of rewards and challenges. When everything we know is competing for a share of our attention, providing value to fans helps brands maintain and grow their share of attention organically.
What Fanthropologists Do
I help brands in entertainment, music, lifestyle, and storytelling, navigate the fan-brand relationship and speak the love languages of their fans, and communicate with fans, both online and offline.
My most recent work has been with Theorist Media, working with owned and operated properties as well as Theorist’s strategic consulting clients largely helping brands understand the unique fandoms that live on YouTube and how to optimize content and packaging to best reach them.
In 2016 I was part of a research team working on a year-long, foundational, anthropological market research study of fans and fandom. We looked at the role fandom (of anything) played in the everyday life of fans, how the fan experience was universal regardless of the object of fandom, and how the fan experience was different depending on the object of fandom.
Before that I was working for ZEFR, to help understand and categorize the discrete communities on YouTube so that brands could best reach the most relevant communities on the platform.
My M.A. is from UCLA in Critical Media Studies, where I studied fandom, transmedia storytelling, social media entertainment, and experience design.