At the beginning of last week, a chain of pizzerias sent out a press release about Ibai Llanos and a related product. “Ibai Llanos creates” The toughest “, a pizza to your liking that can only be tasted at Domino’s this summer,” sold the headline of the note, which presented it as the “pizza of the gamer generation.”
The pizza had already been presented in a direct on Twitch and, therefore, the brand could already talk about vein data (it was “in the top 3 of the most requested pizzas on the Domino’s website”). A few days after the press release, an email marketing campaign by the chain also presented the pizza to all its customers.
Domino’s movement was striking – in part – although it was just one more chapter in a trend that has already been sweeping the US first and then globally.
The big brands, especially those from fast food chains, have been allying themselves, sometimes in a more organic way, others via payment agreements, with different influencers and other popular characters on the networks to create linked products. The most recent example is in the McDonald’s campaign with BTS, which is already directly a co-branding action and not just the launch of a special product that will be successful.
But at the end of that same last week, a new agreement between a brand with Ibai Llanos became popular: Amazon Prime Video has just signed the gamer as an ambassador for the service. “We call him ambassador. This basically means that Ibai Llanos is going to spend a lot here,” they explained after the announcement from Prime Video, as VerTele reports. It is not the first time that Prime Video has announced such a signing in recent months.
Not long ago, the bestselling writer Juan Gómez-Jurado announced. Even so, in the case of Gómez-Jurado it was very clear why they were signing him and what role he was going to have (he is a search engine for stories). In the case of Ibai Llanos, the presentation itself has humorously played the distraction (“He gives us an ability to create nonsensical things. What is coming is incredible”). It is clear that they sign the gamer because he has a lot of pull and opens new audiences.
Two different agreements presented in the same week: are the brands obsessed with Ibai Llanos?
The Llanos pull and what it says
These brands are not the first that in one way or another have been associated with Llanos throughout this year. The streamer has been an official La Liga commentator on Movistar and is one of the Eurosports signings to be a commentator for the Olympic Games. This last weekend he also made headlines because he has acquired the rights to broadcast the Copa América in Spain on Twitch, which he will comment on.
The reason for these maneuvers and which brands – many of them outside the traditional universe of gaming content – are allying with Llanos has a clear explanation. Beyond the fact that brands highly connected to the streamer’s ‘natural’ audience fit his profile, Llanos has become quite popular even outside of the eSports arena and in a very positive way. Many people know who he is, because his profile has been very present in the media in recent months.
This presence is also linked to a positive characterization, something that brands value when connecting with influencers. The case of the Andorran youtubers had a massive echo, which had a very negative impact on the reputation and brand perception of its protagonists. You had to live under a stone so as not to have known then that Ibai Llanos was one of the influencers who did pay taxes in Spain and that he was transparent about that and why he did it.
Also, and going back to what led you to increase your visibility, it is also possibly the effect of doing your own personal branding work. At the beginning of the year, Llanos left the eSports team he was in and announced that he was going to create his own project. He was going to focus on his own brand.
An article at the time in El País spoke of him as the “King Midas of the new internet.” His public image was growing and growing and he was diversifying beyond eSports (his interviews of him, for example, included basketball stars or the singer of the moment).