Amplify launches Fan Culture

Amplify’s very own Head of Insight, Bexy Cameron, writes a column in the Metro exploring our documentary FanCulture: An exploration into the role fans could, and should, play in brands and marketing.

Bexy Cameron is the creative mind behind the recent film ‘FanCulture – the Evolution of Influence’. She is an academic, filmmaker and creative director.

By day, she is Head of Insight for marketing agency Amplify in London. The film “FanCulture’ is an exploration by the agency into the role fans could, and should, play in brands and marketing.

We all know the strapline - you either love or hate Marmite – and most fall into either camp pretty securely. But can you really be a 'Super Fan' of this taste dividing spread? Or does this take fandom a step too far?

In January, I met Seamus Waldron, Marmites most ‘famous’ fan. When I visited him in his country home part of me was expecting to find a geeky Marmite hoarder, cupboards bursting full of everything from jars to Marmite inflatables. Instead, I found a creative chap whose ‘love’ of Marmite includes; running the ‘I Love Marmite’ website, starring in homemade marmite ‘tasting films’, penning tongue in cheek gangster raps and creating recipes from garlic bread to gravy (all including Marmite of course).

But perhaps more astoundingly, Seamus has become the unofficial spokesperson for Marmite across two continents.

The last few years of my professional and academic life has been dedicated to fans, and it is increasingly clear across music, brand marketing, film and television industries; the fans hold more power than ever.

Seamus’s story is part of a film that explores this fan power; by interviewing academics, marketeers, and most importantly, the fans themselves. It reveals how their fandom, far from causing ridicule, has enabled opportunity. Opportunities allowing a PlayStation fan, Ollie, to become a professional gamer performing on stage in Sweden, Emily, a fan whose influence through her blog inspired Nike to fly her to San Francisco to run the marathon and Kevin, a fan of SoulWax whose knowledge of the band was so much greater than their managements they shut down their website and hired him as their social media manager.

Fans are passionate, creative, vocal, and incredibly powerful. Welcome the rise of the fan.

Click here to watch Amplify's documentary, Fan Culture: The Evolution of Influence