|A project management tool that helps manage and centralize brand partnerships is now available for busy influencers. / Photo credit by Thananit Suntiviriyanon via 123rf|
Fashion influencer and blogger of WeWoreWhat Danielle Bernstein has had “influencer” as her job title for a decade. On October 1, she debuted Moe, an online community tool for influencers. Bernstein noted, “None of the [platforms] out there address the needs of influencers themselves.” She wants to put power back into the hands of influencers, and Moe was created by someone “who knows the workflow best.”
How It All Began
Bernstein checked her email in August 2013 prior to the New York Fashion Week, and one message caught her attention, reported Hayden Field of business website Entrepreneur. Having 2.2 million followers (to date) on her Instagram account WeWoreWhat, it was not surprising that her inbox would be overflowing with emails. The influencer worked with a few different interns. She also expressed her frustration in managing her online brand.
|MOE was the brainchild of Bernstein and Paretti competing against management tools Trello and Monday. / Photo credit by Eduard Bonnin Turina via 123rf|
When Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) graduate Moe Paretti emailed Bernstein to express her interest in her brand and she profited from it, the influencer could not help but reflect on the graduate’s email and think: Okay. Paretti did not want to be a blogger. Rather, she wanted to help Bernstein to see if she “could be of any help.”
The women met at a coffee shop on Bleecker St. and Sullivan St. in Greenwich Village, New York City. Paretti wore a Zara romper and a pair of biker boots, her hair styled in a slicked-back ponytail. Bernstein thought the woman was adorable and asked two questions: “Do you want to be a blogger?" and "Are you going to kill me?” Peretti answered with “no” and “maybe,” respectively.
Six years later, their partnership has grown along with Bernstein’s WeWoreWhat brand and her “clothing line offshoots.” Today, Bernstein and Peretti’s bond has evolved into something more concrete: MoeAssist.com, a platform that carries Paretti’s name.
What Is MOE Assist?
Stylized as “MOE,” it is a project management tool that helps influencers manage and centralize their work and brand partnerships and generate invoices. Influencers using the platform will need to pay $27.99 per month, with the first month free.
MOE’s successful launch was owed to Bernstein’s family and friends’ seed-funding round, raising $1.2 million in just three months from fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff and other private investors. Pitching MOE enabled Bernstein to have an on-the-spot course in selling an idea. Hence, her advice for budding entrepreneurs is to prepare for the investors’ questions. One must also have a profitability plan and a revenue timeline.
Bernstein and Paretti worked on the platform last 2018 after the former’s frustration in moving her brand partnerships boiled over, specifically with regard to the long email chains she needed to reference. Berenstein recalled that there were a couple of times when she and her teams missed a hashtag or used the wrong phrasing. Those instances helped her conceive MOE.
Before, WeWoreWhat’s project management system involved documenting dates and details on Google Calendar’s Events. Projects, deadlines, and campaigns were also tabulated in Excel and Paretti’s composition notebook. Now, MOE’s competitors are Trello and Monday. However, Bernstein argued that the above-mentioned tools are not optimized with how influencers conduct their business. For instance, Trello and Monday lack “invoicing and payment functionality.”
With MOE’s partnership with Stripe, influencers will be able to generate an invoice and accept payments within the platform itself. Bernstein said, “Getting paid on time is one of the biggest pain points of the influencer industry.” The product is geared toward micro-influencers and for people who don’t have a MOE account, and influencers who don’t have an agent or a team.
How Does MOE Work?
Imagine an influencer having a partnership with Revolve, a clothing brand. They will click to add a new project, type the brand name, client name, relevant dates, payment information, payment point of contract, and whether it is separated into different sections. When the influencer clicks on the project, they will see a list of social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and the like.
They will also see the project’s components like event appearances and travel. Once the influencer clicks on one social media channel, they can view their planned posts and captions, the number of posts stipulated by the contact, the brands they will tag in the photo, and the hashtags they will include. As for the payment, the influencer can auto-generate an invoice and choose whether they will send it to themselves or to the client on the payment due date.
Challenges and Future Plans
Bernstein plans to implement a collaboration feature that enables influencers to share projects with brands, receive comments on campaign or caption drafts. She also intends to incorporate user feedback to help her introduce new features. Bernstein cannot code, thereby delegating the task to freelance developers, which she finds frustrating. She commented, “We're launching a product that's really, really good, but in my eyes, it’s definitely not perfect yet.”