Maarten Kesteloot has been in the influencer marketing industry for five years now, an eternity in this quickly changing industry. As a millennial, he likes how social media have been disrupting the status quo of the media industry and he wants to empower influencers and creators to develop a professional media business. To reach this goal, Maarten co-founded Influo with Jan Kindt in 2015.
“As CEO of the leading influencer marketing platform in the Benelux, each day is different. But one thing is sure: every day, influencers, creators and brands come together to share, build relationships, grow and collaborate on Influo,” he said.
9.30 am: I usually arrive at the Influo office around 9.30 am. My apartment and our office are both located in the center of Ghent, which means I walk to work each morning. This is extremely convenient. Plus, I get to start my working day with a walk through the extremely beautiful city center of Ghent. I still haven’t gotten bored of the views of the medieval Gravensteen castle.
Once in the office, I start off my day by going through my emails. Then I check in with my campaign managers and success coaches to make sure all campaigns on the Influo platform are running smoothly. I find customer success extremely important so I like to follow it up personally.
10 am: If there are no urgent fires to put out, I meet with my co-founder and COO Jan Kindt to discuss developmental plans for the business. Influo is in full expansion and things are moving fast, so we meet often to ensure we’re on the same page.
11 am: We call our product manager and CTO into the room and continue the meeting with them. As a technology platform, we must always keep improving and ensure our customers have the best possible customer experience. We go over the roadmap and discuss which features we should build or improve next. I love these strategic meetings, as the sky is the limit and we get to decide the future of our product.
Noon: I have lunch with the entire team. Influo currently counts 14 employees, and we love to have lunch all together. Though everyone is very busy, it’s important to have a break in the middle of the day. It gives me a moment to interact with my team in an informal way and get some laughs in.
1 pm: An important part of my task of CEO is to make sure people are happy and on the same page. After lunch, I typically have one-on-ones with team members to help them with overcoming obstacles they might be experiencing. This might range from onboarding to implementing new processes, evaluating workloads, structuring new departments, coaching new employees, explaining the company’s mission and vision, working through a difficult problem together or dealing with personal issues.
3 pm: Cake o’clock. I have no idea how this happens but somehow there always seems to be cake in the office. The entire Influo team loves cake (especially chocolate cake) and any occasion is a good occasion to bring the sweet stuff: birthdays, work anniversaries, interviews with influencers, all-hands team meetings, last days of interns, etc.
3.30 pm: Update meetings with the brand growth team or influencer growth team. To sustain our international expansion, we created brand and influencer growth teams that are responsible for the acquisition of new customers/influencers. I get an update on the progress of acquisition campaigns or we evaluate the impact of our efforts.
5.30 pm: Influo is growing rapidly, which means we are always searching for more amazing employees. I interview every single candidate together with my co-founder Jan as we find it important that employees are not only good at their job but that they also fit with our company culture.
7 pm: There is a lot of demand for keynotes and masterclasses on influencer marketing, so often my evenings are filled with public speaking engagements. I find it important to help the influencer marketing industry professionalise and help spread the expertise we’ve been building here at Influo. After five years and 1400+ campaigns, we know how to run a good influencer marketing campaign. Plus, it gets the Influo name out there.
If I don’t have any speaking engagements or networking events, you can find me in the boxing ring, on the basketball court or in the kitchen.
10 pm: More often than not, I open up my computer again in the evening to take care of some administrative tasks that I haven’t managed to care of during the day. At this time, it’s quiet and I have time to write up some contracts, make sure payments are being processed correctly or take care of employee administration. I also like to jump on LinkedIn and write down my thoughts on influencer marketing in a post or engage with others on the platform.