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Influencer Sessions: Get To Know @melinamerkhoffer

Nov 23, 2023

Influencer Sessions

Influencer Sessions: Get To Know @melinamerkhoffer

We caught up with Olympic gold medalist coach, Melina Merkhoffer, to discuss all things snowboarding, social media and storytelling. Read on for an insight into Melina’s world.

Tell us about your background and how you started to build your following.

I’m the first ever female snowboard coach to win a gold medal at the Olympics with the Austrian Team. We were basically the dream team of snowboarding. I’ve also got some national championships under my belt and even made it to the finals at the Universiade Halfpipe event, which is like the Olympics for students.

I got my start in social media when everything just started. I was simply sharing my life as a snowboarder, which is quite comical anyway, and I was giving out awesome snowboarding tips.

Which platforms do you predominantly use?

I definitely use TikTok the most. I am still posting regularly on Instagram but the platform that makes it way more fun is definitely TikTok. 

Which is your favourite for posting and which is your favourite for community engagement?

TikTok is also my favourite to post on because the entire process of making and editing videos within the app is so easy and simple. It’s a lot of fun to just get creative and I feel like TikTok provides all the features that I need and love.

What type of content do you create (video/static etc), and which type works best for your audience?

I love making videos, especially on TikTok. My vlogs are performing really well, and lately, I’ve been trying a new format, telling my story of being a 29-year-old learning gymnastics skills, and I’m all about showing that age is just a number. You’re never too old to have fun and learn cool stuff! 

@melimerki

These are the moments 🥹 #snowboardtiktok #vlog

♬ original sound – maria!

In your own words and experience, how would you define “influencer marketing”?

Influencer marketing is like your cool friend who introduces you to awesome products that make your life better.

Why do you think influencer marketing is so powerful today?

Social media, especially TikTok, is a game-changer for small brands. You don’t need big bucks to pay huge influencers to get noticed, just some creative storytelling and a really good understanding of the audience and their behaviour on the app.

Have you worked with brands before? How do you decide which brands to work with?

I’ve had the chance to work with some big-name brands like German insurance companies, Jack Wills, brands in Snowsports, Austrian destinations and regions and many others. It’s a blast to create content that makes these brands shine and also happy.

How do you think influencer marketing will change over the next 12 months?

I think we are going to see more brands working with smaller creators, as their views (especially on TikTok) are sometimes just as highly valued as big influencers. I think influencers have to come up with really creative concepts, to really make the collaboration stand out. A simple video where you show the product and promote it with a code is not enough anymore. It is more about storytelling in my opinion (which I love).

How has influencer marketing changed since you began working within social media?

It became super professional. Back in the days I just got products and an email that said what I would have to say. Nowadays everything is super professional. You get briefings, you get contracts and most of the time there are big agencies that are making sure everything runs smoothly and control the entire process from reaching out to me, sending briefings, meetings, communication, approval and posting.

Do you use any software to help create and edit your content?

I use InVideo to edit my vlogs and sometimes Lightroom to edit my pictures. But that’s pretty much it. My content isn’t super aesthetic, but I’d rather show them fun and relatable photos and videos.

How do you balance your online and offline lives? 

To be honest, offline does not really exist anymore. As I produce so much content, I am pretty much working every day. I definitely try to have some hours in the day, away from my phone but my screen time is absolutely embarrassing. Not proud of that. But I just love what I do and it makes me very happy. When I am on my snowboard or watching a movie in the cinema or I am on a holiday with my boyfriend, the phone stays at home though.

Which influencers inspire you?

I find inspiration in athletes who take their social media presence seriously, such as Andri Ragettli and Scotty James. Their approach to utilising these platforms is not only commendable but also highly effective. I admire how they seamlessly blend training insights with entertainment, making their content not only informative but also engaging. Also, the Instagram account of “Little Fitness” has had a great impact on me. Her unconventional and creative training videos have ignited a renewed drive within me to regain my strength and gymnastic skills. 

Where would you like to take your career as an influencer?

Absolutely, I’m all in for some big growth! With the season revving up in October, I’m practically bouncing off the walls with excitement. I’m gearing up to drop some entertaining content from the mountains that’ll have everyone buzzing with excitement to get back on the slopes and in the park.

Our influencer marketing agency and social agency are located worldwide, with our agency network based in the USA, UK, UAE and China.

If you want to find industry insights, visit our influencer marketing and social media blogs.

@ Socially Powerful

Author

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Ella Proctor

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