Episode 43 of the Influencer Marketing Lab podcast where Arron Shepherd co-founder of the Goat Agency talks about influencer marketing accelerating into a $100 billion industry.
The Influencer Marketing Lab podcast is sponsored by Tagger the data-driven influencer marketing platform and social listening tool.
Welcome to episode 43 of the Influencer Marketing Lab - a weekly podcast tracking the growth spurts and growing pains of influencer marketing.
This week I'm in conversation with Arron Shepherd - serial investor, entrepreneur and co-founder of the Goat Agency the social media agency he founded in 2015 alongside Harry Hugo and Nick Cooke.
In this episode we
- Forecast influencer marketing's growth as in industry to be worth $100 billion in 2027.
- Look at why lack of scale has held the industry back and why that has now changed.
- Examine the drivers and restraints affecting advertisers becoming social-first advertisers.
- Consider what the Inflexion investment has brought to the agency.
- Reimagine the advertising holding group
Arron Shepherd biography
Arron Shepherd is a serial investor and entrepreneur with years of experience in the digital marketing industry.
At 23, Arron moved to Dubai and became Global Director of Business Development at The First Group. By 2012 Arron co-founded Sportlobster; where he built a team of over 60 staff, on-boarded over 2 million users and completed successful partnerships with Cristiano Ronaldo, the NBA, Crystal Palace, Sky and many other major sports brands.
After working client side, Arron together with former Sportlobster colleagues Harry Hugo and Nick Cooke, discovered the power of influencer marketing to drive real value for brands, this drove them to establish The Goat Agency and scale this to a wider market. Goat is the leading influencer marketing agency globally and has been named the 4th fastest growing agency in the world and the number 1 in Europe.
6 years later and Goat has over 180 staff, 3 international offices and runs global campaigns for the likes of Malibu, Lidl, Uber and more.
Arron’s industry experience has not only given him insight into what is required to deliver fast growth, but with his experience as an Investor, Founder and Agency Director he is uniquely positioned to offer insight on all aspects of entrepreneurship and influencer marketing.
Arron Shepherd interview transcript
Scott Guthrie 00:00
I'm in conversation with Aaron Shepherd, serial investor, entrepreneur and co founder of the goat agency, the social media agency he founded in 2015, alongside Hugo and Nick Cook, welcome to the influencer marketing lab, Arron.
Arron Shepherd 01:50
Thanks very much for having me, Scott. Appreciate it.
Scott Guthrie 01:52
Let's get straight into it. We first met in 2019. This was a for a panel discussion I curated and moderated at London's QE two conference centre. I remember the event well, for a couple of reasons. One, because Ben Jeffries was from influence that was also on the panel. And there was some good natured rivalry, I remember at the time, but also I remember the event because of your forward thinking views on attribution, and measurement. So it's great to finally get you on to the podcast.
Two years on from COVID. Looking back, how has the industry changed?
Arron Shepherd 02:29
That's a good question. I think it's really grown up over the last two or three years. I mean, it's obvious that that brands have gone through a digital transformation, which has led them to value digital and social within that to a far greater extent. But I think the big difference is what brands expect from influencer and social has, has changed radically over the last two, three years.
I think fundamentally, it is about the measurement of that we had always seen influencer marketing and social as something that is a full service performance lead channel. And that when you do influencer marketing in the right way, you should be able to show the value of that up against other channels in a binary way, measuring Rojas and things like that, that has changed how brands see influences specifically from a sort of PR thing, which I think it has been for lots of lots of people in the industry for the last five or 10 years, it's been a sort of an extension of their celebrity PR or their journalism, PR.
But actually, we've always thought it should be compared it up against paid media up against TV up against out of home and the other core channels that get for measurement. When you do that social and influencer outperforms those channels enormously, you know, the, the fundamental reason for that is, that is where consumers spend time, right?
And my macro message around the digital transformation is spend your money accordingly to where your consumers spend their time. And so the reason fundamentally that brands need to spend more money on social is, it's where people spend most of their time. You know, I think any any sort of major event like COVID makes people rethink what they're doing. And that certainly happened beginning of 2020, there was sort of an immediate pause of okay, what's going on. And then within four or five weeks, it was okay, we can't stop advertising. But we can't keep doing what we're doing, particularly when nobody's outside. So that gets rid of out of home and, you know, radio in the cars to work and lots of other things. As people started to rethink their marketing mixes, they started to invest more in social digital.
And because it is the best returning channel brands will never ever go back, you know, until consumers start spending their time elsewhere. But right now, you know, I think when brands spend 6070 80% of their budget on social, they get better and better returns. It's very unlikely they're going to go back to the sort of pre K Over five to 10%.
Scott Guthrie 05:02
Absolutely Arron and teasing out digital spend from analogue spend is a tale of two fortunes analogue, as you say in decline digital in its ascendancy and 2020 was the first year that the lines on the graph crossed digital for the first time became more valuable than analogue in terms of advertising spend. You mentioned celebrity PR and journalism, PR, sometimes called Media Relations.
I think what you're referring to here is that our channel is becoming more nuanced. Under the umbrella term influence of marketing, you still get this evolution of media relations. The COVID pandemic threw up many examples of this, the World Health Organisation and the UN and listed influences to carry important messaging around social distancing and wearing a face covering. So influencer, marketing became legitimised as a communications channel.
And that legacy continues. The UN Refugee Agency recently put out a call to agencies and creators to encourage their networks to donate towards the Ukraine conflict. Earlier this month, 30, top tic TOCs influencers were invited to a special White House press conference, to provide key information about the war unfolding in the Ukraine. And another lasting legacy from the COVID pandemic is the great acceleration to embrace social commerce.
Arron Shepherd 06:30
The social commerce is obviously very, you know, linked and what the pandemic did was push everyone to DC brands, people are at home buying products. And so there's more and more brands have to get a digital first offering in place, the only way to advertise that digital first offering is obviously using digital channels. So, you know, as more and more brands spend more and more time, you know, inside essentially relying on DTC, then they obviously have to do the same from an advertising point of view.
And that's, that is definitely not going to go backwards. You know, there's no, there's nowhere in the world where that is happening, you know, everywhere things are getting more and more delivery based, less and less retail focused. And the smart brands have made moves around that. And I still look today at Brands piling heavily into retail. And just wonder, you know, where is the insight that's leading them to this decision? Because everything I see pushes me towards the to say, Yeah, has to be going back to the point of is it performance is it not is if I think influences is beautifully positioned to be able to deliver niche content to niche audiences at scale.
The scale bit, is what has always held influencers back for the last three or four years or influencer agencies back is where they were just going to use 10 influencers. And you know, they'll come to our PR event and it'll be nice. Now brands realise actually, we can use 10,000 influencers, we can make this a global programme, this can drive $10 million of sales for the month, and they start looking at it in a very, very different way. But it is that ability for each influencer to be niche and authentic with their audience that makes this work so well.
Scott Guthrie 08:17
When we think about the media, we think of everyone from I don't know, the Financial Times and The New York Times down to the Daily Express or the sun or something. And I think within the cadre of influencer marketing it's increasingly sophisticated, increasingly nuanced. It goes back to what your objective what your corporate and what your communications objectives are. But scale is obviously hugely important. Another element we haven't touched on is, is where it sits in the marketing mix. Do you have a point of view on that?
Arron Shepherd 08:44
Well, it's becoming an increasingly dominant channel for many brands, you know, I think for the most successful brands on the planet, they have a social first advertising policy, where everything they do centres around social, you know, a brand, like Gymshark would be a good example of that. They still make TV ads, and they still are doing billboards, they're about to open a store. But fundamentally, when they think about their marketing, they think about what's going to work on social, and then they use those other channels to push people back towards social, and D2C. And so social first is something that really didn't exist five or six years ago, you know, it was very difficult for brands to build a billion dollar plus brand, just using social influences.
Now, there's so many people that have done it Dollar Shave Club and glossier and countless others. The most successful fast growing brands in the world all have that philosophy. Most of the old traditional brands are still at five 10% max of spend on social and influencer.
And all of those, in my opinion will move to North of 50% social first, and again, it just goes back to where do people spend time? Where do people spend time and where are people spending, you know, three, four hours a day on social, and they are not spending that time on TV, nowhere near it. But yet, there are lots of brands that still spend more money on TV and social, it just doesn't make any sense.
Scott Guthrie 10:16
So there is there's been platform agnostic, but also channel agnostic. And I think it's maybe doesn't have to be either or I think, to your point about being social first. But an activation might start off on tick tock, but then more fun to Instagram. I think some there are some interesting data supplied by Whalar at the end of last year that showed that if you see a piece of content on YouTube, for example, on a YouTube ad, you're less likely to skip the ad, if you've already seen that a creator, talk about that piece of content on TikTok, for example, and you're more likely to hang around on Instagram, for example, as well, and on a TV ad, so it's kind of one feeds the other.
Arron Shepherd 10:57
Success for most brands is things going viral on social. You know, I think the best billboard ads of the last two or three years are not billboard ads, where there's 5000 billboards up all over the country. There are billboard ads, where there's one billboard like the Dracula example BBC did a couple of years ago, where they stake two billboards. And so during a time lapse, created a shadow of Dracula on a billboard. Now, obviously, if you walked past that billboard, you wouldn't see anything. But the 12 hour time lapse was genius.
And that 12 hour time lapse, that's 30 second video was seen by probably 20-30 million people on social right now, you could argue that was a billboard campaign. But I would argue it's a social campaign, and you're just using a billboard, as an asset in order to go viral on social, but the whole purpose of it was to get more attention on social, you just happen to use another channel in order to do that. And that is really when I say social first, that is what I mean, I obviously spend a lot, you know the bulk of your money on social, but then use those other channels to make social work better, as well.
Scott Guthrie 12:11
So social first, rather than influencer marketing being the add on the afterthought, if there's any flex left in the budget, after most of the money has been ploughed into a television campaign, social should lead and the other channels should fall in line behind
Arron Shepherd 12:29
exactly that exact I mean, the Christmas ads, I always think is a great example of that. Right? Everyone jumped up and down about how brilliant all these Christmas ads, I mean, I actually think that pretty saved me to be honest, there are all these, you know, emotional ads, that sort of blending together. But you know, brands spent 567 million making those ads, and then 3040 50 million, putting it behind TV. But the table you see about who's won the Christmas ad is who's got more views on social. And if they took that 5 million for production and 50 million for distribution, and gave that to an agency like ours on social, they they get 10 to 20 times the views, right, but they're just so stuck on, it's got to go on TV, but it doesn't. It doesn't John Lewis could drop their ad this Christmas, and not put it anywhere near TV, spend the money they would have spent on TV on social amplification, and it will be their biggest ad ever. And at some point, someone will do that.
Scott Guthrie 13:29
So why are they stuck in this rut? Why are they bowing to the the power of linear television? Is it bad advice? Are they too timid to move?
Arron Shepherd 13:38
It's both? I think there's a lack of understanding. You've got people that I mean, if I mean, there are agencies where all they do is create TV ads and run TV ads for clients, right? And they'll be making that John Lewis ad for the last 10 years. And there is no way that agency is going to tell the client Oh yeah, by the way, we think you should make this not for TV spend half a million rather than 5 million, don't spend 50 million on the media spend 10 million on social media, they're just not going to tell them to do that. Because it doesn't suit them. Right. So you have a bit of a problem in that you have agencies telling clients what they want them to do. And you also have a lack of understanding from clients, right?
If the CMO of John Lewis, the next cmo comes in and is completely digital first, then they're more likely to do this. But if there's someone that's worked in TV for the last 15 years, then they're not going to do this because it's going to be outside of their comfort zone. You know, but if all of a sudden the GymShark cmo became CMO of John Lewis, I promise you, they will change how they do things. So it's partly to do with the people at the brands who are being educated like everyone else, right? They're not social natives.
They're probably going to be mid 30s to mid 40s, rather than mid 20s, where they're, they're completely glued to social and that will change right We're starting to see decision makers age down and, and therefore have more of a social first attitude to it. But you know, these things take time there are relationships involved, they've worked with that other agency for five or six years or 10 years. And honestly, those are the reasons things don't happen. People are the reasons that things don't happen. Whenever I'm talking to a CEO of a, I don't know, 100 million pound business or a 200 million pound business. As soon as we show them the results, they'll move budget. Yeah, literally on the phone call with me.
Because why wouldn't they, but a big organisation, even if you prove to them, you will save $10 million. If you do this, there'll be half a dozen people in that organisation that don't think you should do it for another reason that you're unaware of. Right. So that's just the general complication around big business, lots of stakeholders, getting everyone bought in, you know, and I don't think there's anything malicious, it's just people do not innovate particularly quickly, they actually tend to drag their feet and resist that innovation.
And that's what we've seen, you know, for the last seven years, I've been telling brands go social first, it's all about influence all about this. And, you know, no one wanted to hear it. Now I see the same people that dismissed it two or three years ago saying what I said, two or three years ago, now, the word social first, I'm not aware of anybody else that used that before we coined it, right? We've been calling ourselves a social first ad agency for three and a half years. And when I first started saying it, people were like, what social first, now everybody is social first. But they don't really understand social first, they just know that social is a buzzword, and they're going to need to jump on it. Listen, I certainly don't want to criticise and there's a huge number of people doing enormous innovations for really big brands, putting their necks on the line, and benefiting for it.
And there'll be a lot of marketing directors and CMOS that will jump into a digital first strategy and their career will really blossom because of it because they'll have a huge impact on that business. And, you know, fundamentally that's my message to people is take the risk, it's worth it.
Scott Guthrie 17:04
What you're describing might be down to the FUD factor or fear, uncertainty and doubt that some agencies might instil in a client by introducing suspicion and uncertainty around influencer marketing. Ie Why change a winning formula of advertising on free to air linear TV for a new channel of influencer marketing. It might also be of course, down to a factor of corporate life, that bureaucracies often stifle risk taking, or simply a lack of knowledge about the effectiveness of social and subcategory of influencer marketing.
Scott Guthrie 19:39
Listen, we've talked about the industry environment, the outside world. Let's shift focus now to the inside world. You're now a year into Inflexion's investment into the Goat agency, has this meant any changes internally?
Arron Shepherd 20:03
Hmmm fundamentally no. The three of us as founders are still in material control, we're still the majority shareholders. And so the business is still run in the way that it was before. There are a few extra bits of structure and process that are added in, that will help us as we move towards a potential IPO and things like that. But, you know, thankfully, they've been a brilliant partner with us, they absolutely back us , believe in our vision and what we're trying to achieve and, and are very much you know, behind us in doing it, rather than sort of trying to dictate at all, and they've been a really, really good partner for us. And they opened doors for us that scale that we couldn't have opened before. But they also believe in ours and the team that are running the business. So it's a great combination, to be honest. And it's been a step change for us. But without, you know, we haven't become a corporate business, if that makes sense. We're still incredibly focused on data and optimization and learning quickly and acting quickly. And that is our DNA that's built through the business. Hopefully, we'll never get rid of that.
Scott Guthrie 21:16
Well, it sounds as though you found the perfect partner in inflection. They enable you to carry on doing what you do best, but they bring with them scale, their contacts, book, and processes. Yeah. I want to turn now to the future. Goat launched in 2015. The size of the industry was puny compared with today. The industry was worth half a billion dollars, then this year, it's set to top $15 billion. How big do you think it will be in five years? You've already mentioned that social might make up more than 50% of the marketing spend. But how big is the slice of cake where the icing reads influencer marketing?
Arron Shepherd 22:03
Yeah, it's a great question. I believe we're gonna go to north of 20% on a on an influencer point of view. Now that includes organic influence. It includes paid media behind influencers and a few other things. When people think of influencer marketing, they just think of it as basically product placement and someone posting about it. And actually, that's like 20-30% of it. There's so much more from that we're using influencer content to dark post, we're doing all sorts of different things. That entire influencer ecosystem, I believe, is going to go to above $100 billion, right? If we look at a global ad spend of about $650 billion, I think we're going to go to North of $100 billion on influencer. And I think we'll go to to that 50% level on social, which would take us to, you know, sort of $325 billion social $100 billion influencer, that that sort of level.
Scott Guthrie 22:54
And what's the timeline for achieving these rates? And for tipping $100 billion dollars? Would you say five years? Are we looking at achieving this growth in 2027?
Arron Shepherd 23:06
I believe within five years, everyone will be at that level, the fastest growing businesses are doing it right now. You know, and if you look at if you look at who the major holding companies are, if you look at the likes of p&g, and Unilever and people like that, and see who who are they buying, which brands are they buying right now? All of them are social first, all of them. Whether it's $1, shave club, or Paula's Choice or something of that ilk, right? These are all very fast growing DTC brands with a social first 70% Plus social first ad model. So if the biggest holding companies in the world are buying those brands, but their legacy brands are spending 5%, then it's pretty obvious what's going to happen over the next five or 10 years, right, they're gonna, if they want 70% Plus social first brands, then they're gonna start moving their legacy brands to that. Now, maybe it doesn't go 70%. Maybe it goes from five to 20, and then to 30, and then to 40. But they are putting their stake in the ground if the type of businesses they're looking for.
Scott Guthrie 24:14
So the 100 billion dollars, that's the whole ecosystem up from today's $15 billion. Is that right?
Arron Shepherd 24:21
I think that 15 billion probably includes the ecosystem. So I think we probably got that, you know, a six times growth from here six, seven times growth.
Scott Guthrie 24:31
Within 60. Yeah, yeah.
Arron Shepherd 24:33
Even when I look at a lot of our clients, I would expect to see that level of growth over the next three to five years.
Scott Guthrie 24:40
So does that mean that all agencies and platforms will be able to make hay or will there be consolidation or how is it a good time to be an influencer marketing or will there'll be some winners and losers?
Arron Shepherd 24:52
Now there'll be some winners or losers. I think it'll be a good time to be an influencer marketing because it's there's going to be such enormous growth but some are going to win. In a lot more than others, it's difficult when I look at the landscape, I don't really understand the model that everyone else has got, right? Our model is a trial and error model where we've used over a quarter of a million influences we know who works, who doesn't. Who can sell a $10 makeup brush versus a $30 makeup brush versus, you know, a $50,000 car versus $100,000 car, who can drive click throughs views, it's all data, we then guarantee our results to our clients on the back of the data.
We've got platforms, connect brands to influences, but do not tell them who works, who doesn't work, do not tell them what to pay those influences, who's going to drive sales, who's going to drive engagement, who's going to drive except like, they just don't do that. And in my mind, without that data, it's pointless. Because 80% of the time that you spend money with a random influencer, it won't work. And that's why every brand I speak to they go with us 10 influencers. Two of them were really good eight of them that really work.
And I said, Yeah, I know. That's, that's the reality, right? So if you work with us, we'll only use the ones in the 20%. So I honestly don't think any of the platforms will scale up. Because without the data of who's actually going to work. What are they offering brands, they're just offering them the ability to pay an influencer, which might have been useful three or four years ago, but now it isn't. People want to know who works, who doesn't, how to best use them, what the right call to action is, what mechanic is, etc, etc. So for me, the the winners here are going to be people that have a similar model to us.
Now, I would obviously say that, but you know, someone can try and prove me wrong, we guarantee results to our clients. So if someone doesn't have the data, are they going to guarantee results against us, it'd be very risky for them to do that. But without the data, they're sort of a bit lost. So I think the industry is going to move from isn't it cool that we can pay influencers to post stuff for us, and that a lot of the time it doesn't work to whenever I spend a million dollars, I want to know it returns. And that's what we're seeing now, right is when clients are spending, you know, 10s of millions of dollars with us, they want to compare it up against their Facebook page, or their Google paid or somewhere else where they're spending 10s of millions of dollars.
And they need to see that it stacks up. And the only way you can get it to stack up is by understanding which influences work and which ones don't. For me, that is the only model that and we're not the only people on the planet with that model. But you know, the majority of the people in the industry don't have that model. And certainly all of the self serve platforms, I think have had their day personally. And whenever I've spoken to them, their goal is oh, we're gonna move into a full service agency.
Which makes sense because for me, that's that's the way it's going to be, you know, this is going to be a significant enough spend for clients, that they are going to want real experts that understand it from end to end, but can do the creative can do the strategy can do all of the paid side of it, understand how to make the content in the right way understand how to optimise, etc, etc. For me, that's the agency of the future that all these brands are gonna want. And you can't do that with a self serve platform in my opinion.
Scott Guthrie 28:15
So trial and error, test and learn and pricing stalking frutos at 8020 rule that 20% of creators will provide 80% of uplift, I think
Arron Shepherd 28:25
The real key for us is is focusing on the audiences rather than the influences, right? The influences are just a route to get to certain audiences. So everything in our CRM is about what audiences do they hold, what ability do they have to convert that audience rather than, Oh, this is what this influences into, that's borderline irrelevant? What matters is what is the audience into? It's all about what is that audience going to do when you show them this message?
That's the real key. It's not will the influencer post about it or you know and the price of what the influencer will do it for has to be based on how many of the audience do we expect to convert because ultimately, that will be what is success for the brand. So we understand that success for the brand is actually making their audience care and then buy not always buy but care and then buy. So the influencer has to have the ability to get their audience to care and then buy. And that's the really key data.
Scott Guthrie 29:28
And 60 months or so we'll be working in $100 billion industry. How is the goat agency going to capitalise on this explosive growth? You've mentioned an IPO is that already in train,
Arron Shepherd 29:41
The real opportunity for us is the reestablishment of what an advertising holding group is you know, and I look at the the current groups and doesn't take someone in my position to be able to say, well, they're not doing that well. And they are analogue businesses. is operating in a predominantly digital world and their enormous ships, the turnaround, you know the size of WPP, we might be 30 40% of their business that is literally not fit for purpose in the next three or four years, right, because they have been a very heavy analogue player, they make their money in analogue, and they haven't quite worked out digital yet.
So now I'm not saying WPP won't turn it around where it made the right purchases, they may well do. But I think there's a big opportunity for the next generation of ad people to set up versions of S for that may be a less focused on just buying and selling and maybe a bit more focused on the work. But I look at what David Jones is doing, I look at what the jellyfish guys are doing, what brain labs are doing what we're doing. And I think that those are the players to be watching over the next three or four years as they start to buy other agencies and start to build their own groups. And I wouldn't be shocked if in three to five years, we have a slightly different set of groups, we'll still have the traditional ones they might have dropped in value by 20 30%, you'll still have asked for. But I think you'll have three or four other groups that don't look far off s four, that are operating at 50 to 100 million EBIT, and are able to go and win that global work up against the likes of WPP. You know, that is the, you know, the blue sky thinking for others is chasing that, you know, when our big clients decide, actually, we can't keep working with these big holding groups, are we able to go and win that massive chunk of digital work that they inevitably go and find a new partner for and that might take a client from spending 20 million a year with us to to 250 300 million and completely transforms the business? You know, we believe we have the capabilities to do that currently, you know, we're operating globally, we're running across all these things. And I think that these big groups are going to struggle at the next pitch.
Scott Guthrie 32:05
So reimagining the holding company, that's your ultimate aim as it you've mentioned as for capital, the company set up by Sir Martin Sorrell back in 2018, following his three decades and another holding company WPP. So your ambition is to form a new type of holding company, purely digital advertising and marketing services business, coalescing around first party data, digital content, digital media planning, is that a fair summary of your aspirations?
Arron Shepherd 32:37
Exactly? Yeah, it is. It is. And I think particularly as we move from web two to web three, when I say that, that the likes of WPP might have missed social, you know, I dread to think what they think about web three, you know, because now it says that is a whole nother set of ecosystems that either you're in it or you're not, right. There's not many people in it. I think that's going to become increasingly more and more important. For me, the whole thing is part of social, right? Whether it's web two or web three. It's all social, right? Discord is still social. And I think it's going to become increasingly more and more important, and we're just going to continue to move into a digital world rather than an analogue one.
Scott Guthrie 33:24
Yeah. 100%. I'd love to talk ad nauseum about web three, and the metaverse MFTs Italia. But let's save that for another time. There's a whole different episode, I think on that I got to finish up on on this is my my last question, which I always ask guests. It's a fast shifting industry. What are your go to information sources for keeping on top of the social industry and influencer marketing? Specifically,
Arron Shepherd 33:52
Honestly, it's, it's what we see on a minute by minute day by day point of view from the data that we're actually seeing, you know, we're operating at such a scale 1000s of posts a week, that whenever something changes on the platform, we're going to feel it from a data point of view really, really quickly, right. And if click through start to draw for a CPM, still, whatever it may be, we're gonna have 500 posts out there today that are going to give us that feedback.
We work very closely with matter, and are working even more closely with building measurement frameworks for them. And fundamentally, it's data, right and even better is a great example. When they change their algorithm. They don't know what's going to happen, right? They they do it and then we find out over the next two or three days what difference that makes so you know, I always go back to the data. You know, that's that's what we make all of our decisions on what's working, what isn't, and that that's where you're going to understand what is happening in real time right now. In regards to what what's coming?
I think China is is like looking into the future of what social is in the Western world. And I think people don't give China the credit for how advanced they are from a social and EECOM and ditzy point of view. They really have full ecosystems were entertainment, shopping, education, everything is built into a singular platform that allows people to be watching a video, click on the video, it pop up what the person they're watching is wearing.
And then in one, click on buy it. And for me that that level of ecosystem is what is coming next. Right. I think there are some dystopian questions around that. But I, I don't see how we're not walking into that future as we go more and more DTC. As we become more and more happy for one click purchase off our phones. As we become more and more, we find influencers and creators more and more relatable. It just feels like the natural next step. But we I think are at least two to three years behind them.
Scott Guthrie 36:09
Live Stream shopping, for example, is new for us in the West. But it's been a thing since 2016, I think in China, and I think doubled in size, just in the last year, I think from 150 billion to 300 billion. So it's growing at quite a click listener and I could speak all day with us fascinating conversation. But I will close this off now and just say thank you very much. Aaron Shepherd, co founder of the goat agency. Thank you very much for your time and for your insight today.
Arron Shepherd 36:39
Pleasure. Thanks a lot Scott.