From one client to a global force: Journey of Mad Influence with Gautam Madhavan

Abha Garyali Peer |

Gautam Madhavan, a 26-year-old entrepreneur, leads Mad Influence, a highly successful full-service digital marketing agency. The agency had humble beginnings in 2018 with just one client, but it has rapidly grown since then. Today, Mad Influence manages twelve to fourteen campaigns daily. Their early adoption of influencer marketing has propelled them to prominence in this global trend.

In an exclusive interview with Adgully, Gautam Madhavan, CEO & Founder of Mad Influence, sheds light on the company's comprehensive scope of work.While emphasizing that Mad Influence is indeed an influencer management agency, he emphasizes that their services encompass more than just connecting content creators with brands. The company also specializes in digital marketing, social media management, content creation, and offers consulting services for businesses. Additionally, Madhavan discusses the rationale behind expanding Mad Influence to the Middle East and shares insights into the company's future aspirations for the region. Here are some excerpts from the interview:

Can you please share your entrepreneurial journey?

My journey in the world of entrepreneurship has been quite a dynamic and exciting one. I founded Mad Influence with a vision to revolutionize influencer marketing. It all started with a passion for connecting people and brands through the power of social media. Over the years, I've learned to adapt to the rapidly changing landscape of digital marketing and influencer collaborations. From humble beginnings, we've now grown into an international player in the industry.

What inspired you to launch ‘Mad Influence’ and ‘Mad Studio’ at such a young age?

The inspiration behind launching Mad Influence and Mad Studio at a relatively young age came from recognizing the immense potential and impact of influencer marketing. I saw the power that influencers held in shaping consumer behavior and driving brand engagement. Mad Influence was born out of the desire to create a platform that could bridge the gap between influencers and brands, making it accessible to a global audience. Mad Studio, on the other hand, was established to provide creators with a space to unleash their creative potential. Youth often bring fresh perspectives and a willingness to take risks, which can be advantageous in the digital landscape.

The trend of social influencers has significantly risen in the past few years. How do you measure its success?

The success of the influencer marketing trend can be measured in various ways. One key indicator is the engagement and reach of influencer campaigns. We closely monitor metrics like likes, shares, comments, and click-through rates to evaluate the impact of influencer content. Additionally, the conversion rates and sales generated through influencer collaborations are vital performance indicators. As the industry evolves, we also consider the authenticity and relatability of influencers as key factors in success. Ultimately, it's about the value that influencer marketing brings to both brands and influencers in terms of increased brand awareness, customer trust, and revenue.

How do you connect Brands with Influencers? Do brands look for a certain Influencer for their campaigns?

Connecting brands with influencers is at the core of what we do. We offer a marketplace platform where influencers and brands can register and connect. Brands often have specific criteria for the influencers they want to collaborate with, such as audience demographics, niche relevance, and engagement rates. Our platform allows brands to search and filter influencers based on these criteria. Alternatively, influencers can also apply for campaigns that match their expertise and audience. We believe in facilitating a seamless and mutually beneficial partnership between brands and influencers, ensuring that the right fit is made for each campaign.

Mad Influence has recently forayed into the Middle East? What made you do so?

The Middle East presented an exciting opportunity for Mad Influence due to several reasons. First, the region is witnessing significant growth in influencer marketing, with a diverse and engaged audience. Second, Dubai, in particular, is a multicultural hub with a large number of expats, making it an ideal place for pilot projects and micro-influencer campaigns to target specific audiences. Lastly, Dubai's strategic location allows us to work with various time zones, which is crucial for managing global influencer marketing campaigns effectively. These factors made the Middle East an attractive market for our expansion.

What can you say about the influencer marketing platforms of the Middle East? What can you predict about it?

The influencer marketing platform in the Middle East is rapidly evolving and holds immense potential. We anticipate that it will continue to grow, driven by the region's diverse and digitally active population. As influencer marketing becomes more mainstream, we can expect to see innovative campaigns and partnerships emerging from the Middle East. This region has the opportunity to become a global hub for influencer marketing, and we aim to be at the forefront of this growth.

Have you formed alliances with social influencers or brands in the UAE?

Yes, we've formed valuable alliances with both social influencers and brands in the UAE. We've had the privilege of collaborating with some well-known names in the region, including influencers and celebrities. We've also partnered with brands in various industries, including real estate, tourism, FMCG, lifestyle, and consumer products, to execute influencer marketing campaigns that have proven to be highly successful. These alliances have not only allowed us to expand our network but have also enabled us to create impactful campaigns that resonate with the local audience.

Mad Influence has collaborated with and offers advice to the biggest companies on social media channels including YouTube, Meta, Sharechat, Moj, MX Takatak etc. Will this be in the MENA region as well?

Absolutely, our expertise in collaborating with major social media channels and offering advice will extend to the MENA region. We believe in leveraging the full spectrum of social media platforms to create comprehensive and effective influencer marketing strategies. The Middle East presents unique opportunities, and we will continue to work closely with brands and influencers to utilize platforms like YouTube, Meta, Sharechat, Moj, and MX Takatak to drive successful campaigns in the region.

What will be your strategies for making Mad Influence successful in the MENA region?

Our strategies for success in the MENA region will revolve around understanding the local culture, consumer behavior, and the influencer landscape. We aim to establish strong partnerships with regional influencers and brands, ensuring that we offer tailored solutions to meet their specific needs. Additionally, we'll continue to invest in technology and data analytics to provide insights and performance metrics that will drive successful influencer marketing campaigns. Our goal is to become the go-to platform for influencer marketing in the Middle East and make Dubai a global hub for this rapidly growing industry.