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This 20-Year-Old's Startup Aims To Disrupt How Brands And Influencers Collaborate And Get Paid


This 20-Year-Old’s Startup Aims To Disrupt How Brands And Influencers Collaborate And Get Paid

Elijah Khasabo, just 20 years old, is the co-founder of Vidovo – a bold startup with an ambitious mission to upend how brands connect and collaborate with content creators.

From his unique vantage point straddling Gen Z digital nativism and millennial entrepreneurial grit, Khasabo aims to simplify the often complex and fragmented process of facilitating brand-influencer partnerships through the transformative power of user-generated content (UGC).

“Most of my clients, when they first hop on a call with me, they realize some young kid is behind this,” Khasabo says. “I’m young. I founded Vidovo at 19 and I’m 20 currently. It’s been a pretty early startup journey, but it’s been amazing and fun.”  

That unlikely journey began taking shape in Khasabo’s third year of high school during the Covid-19 pandemic. Bored and searching for ways to make money, the teenage Khasabo taught himself about trading stocks before pivoting to grow a Discord community around the pursuit from just 15-20 friends to over 30,000 members through viral marketing on TikTok.

“I started making faceless videos and they just started blowing up,” he recalls. “It really showed me how powerful social media was…I didn’t realize there were levels to these platforms beyond just seeing what my friends were posting.”

This formative foray into harnessing the reach of social media to build an online community and personal brand sowed the seeds for Khasabo’s entrepreneurial awakening in the influencer marketing space. His drive, vision, and precociousness around technology belie his youth as he takes on a multi-billion dollar industry still nascent in finding efficient paths between brands and creators.

This 20-Year-Old's Startup Aims To Disrupt How Brands And Influencers Collaborate And Get Paid

Vidovo’s Two-Sided Platform Connects Brands and Creators

Vidovo’s mission is to streamline the creative process, making content creation more accessible for both brands and creators. “Our goal is to redefine how brands connect with creators by tapping into user-generated content,” Khasabo explains. “If we can simplify the actual creative process, making content creation easier for brands and creators, making the payout easier for brands and creators, in this evolving creator economy, because it’s only growing, right?”

The platform offers a two-way collaboration system that empowers creators to showcase their profiles, services, pricing, and work examples, allowing brands to directly reach out to them. Additionally, Vidovo’s flagship offering, the campaign service, enables brands to create job postings for creators to apply, facilitating a seamless matchmaking process.

“We want to provide creators with the tools, resources, and support they need. Imagine a platform where they can easily sign up, get vetted, and immediately start connecting with brands. And it’s the same for brands — they sign up, come on board, and connect with creators. Being that essential connector, that bridge between the two is what I find truly amazing,” Khasabo says.

Authentic Collaborations Are Key

Vidovo’s approach goes beyond merely facilitating connections; it emphasizes authenticity and transparency in brand partnerships and collaborations. “When I’m asked why Vidovo stands out, I point to what our clients tell us. They’ve tried different platforms and they appreciate our flexibility, high-quality content, and fair pricing. It’s this feedback that truly illustrates how Vidovo is more than just a platform, it’s a community where UGC and influencer collaborations come without the usual limits. We offer an integrated experience that’s all about quality and smooth operation. That’s our edge,” Khasabo explains.

To ensure genuine representations, Vidovo allows creators to submit custom video messages, enabling brands to gauge their authenticity and fit before engaging in collaborations. “Because it’s very hard in this creator economy to actually find who’s authentic and who’s not, without knowing who they are before. So we try to give them as much information as they can get beforehand, so they can identify who would fit best for their brand and their ethos,” Khasabo adds.

This 20-Year-Old's Startup Aims To Disrupt How Brands And Influencers Collaborate And Get Paid

Tapping into the Power of UGC

At the core of Vidovo’s value proposition lies the power of user-generated content (UGC). Khasabo firmly believes in the efficacy of UGC in driving engagement and fostering personal connections between creators and their audiences.

“People like to see people, you know UGC creates that community engagement. It creates that authenticity. And it creates that diversity that you wouldn’t see from a traditional brand advertisement or maybe a static ad, right? It allows for that personal connection between the creator and the actual audience, or an influence on the actual audience.” Khasabo asserts.

Recognizing the importance of data-driven decision-making, Vidovo leverages analytics and insights to shape its product roadmap and strategic direction. “I would say data is the core of our decision-making process and ensuring that we’re able to build off. Because if you don’t have data, you don’t know anything,” Khasabo explains.

This 20-Year-Old's Startup Aims To Disrupt How Brands And Influencers Collaborate And Get Paid

Vidovo’s Plans to Supercharge the Creator Economy Revolution

Vidovo is boldly positioning itself at the vanguard of this seismic shift, with audacious plans to empower both brands and creators like never before. The startup has its sights set on rolling out cutting-edge tools for streamlining content production, management, and monetization at scale. Perhaps most ambitiously, Vidovo aims to establish a comprehensive training ground to nurture the next generation of creative entrepreneurial talent.  

“We’re going to keep on working on building advanced tools, and producing, managing content, helping them monetize their content within the platform as well,” declares Khasabo. “Figure out more ways that they can grow as a creator within the platform, maybe even open up like a training center for the newer creators. That’s something I’ve always wanted to do.”

But Khasabo’s vision extends far beyond Vidovo merely being a transactional platform. “I would like to say it’s more than just a platform. It’s a community and a movement,” he says. “We want to build this into a more empowered creative economy because this creator economy is going to keep growing. Things are going to keep getting better.”

Cecilia Carloni, Interview Manager at Influence Weekly and writer for NetInfluencer. Coming from beautiful Argentina, Ceci has spent years chatting with big names in the influencer world, making friends and learning insider info along the way. When she’s not deep in interviews or writing, she's enjoying life with her two daughters. Ceci’s stories give a peek behind the curtain of influencer life, sharing the real and interesting tales from her many conversations with movers and shakers in the space.

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