Influencers are a dime a dozen in The City of Angels, so to build a strong foundation in any aspect of the space is very much hit or miss. Unruly is among the branding agencies that has managed to not only attract top-tier talent but also execute campaigns effortlessly and effectively.

Founded by social media gurus Tara Electra and Nicky Gathrite, the company boasts clientele that includes YouTuber Tana Mongeau, models Abby Rao, Sofia Bevarly, Hannah Palmer and model-DJ, Charly Jordan.

Hannah Palmer
Photographer: Garrett Stone, Unruly Agency

Hannah Palmer

Unruly prides itself on creating high quality, unique content and developing highly thought-out strategies to share the content with their audience in a way that’s authentic and engaging, says Unruly’s Director of Talent, Jacqueline Rahhal.

Unruly Agency
Photographer: Garrett Stone, Unruly Agency

Jacqueline Rahhal, Unruly Agency

My goal is to make every client feel like they’re the most important client in the company. I take the time to be present and create a space where they feel heard and that their best interest is our top priority” – Jacqueline Rahhal

What makes Unruly Agency especially stand out in a male-dominated industry is the company is primarily female-driven.

“I think it’s very important that a company like this is being made by women, for women, Hannah Palmer says. In the entertainment and social media industries, especially, women need a place that supports them and encourages a real community. I’ve found that in Unruly. It’s incredible something you don’t see very often, and I’m grateful to be a part of it.

A big part of that female-led success comes from Director of Strategy, Natasha Niknejad. As an influencer herself, she knows a thing or two about leveraging a social media following into a full-time career.

Unruly Agency
Photographer: Garrett Stone, Unruly Agency

Natasha Niknejad, Unruly Agency

“With all the knowledge I got from the inside, I’m the talent’s right hand. I help them build strategy and push them to show their authentic selves and create a brand online.” – Natasha Niknejad

As for Abby Rao, who has experienced her past share of drama in the influencer space, she values the pillars of the company, which are deemed by Rahhal as, trust, respect, professionalism and community.

Explains Rao: No matter what, I can trust them. That’s one thing extremely rare in this industry. They truly care about delivering, and they take their side of the partnership very seriously. I also love how they take the time to make everyone feel special. I really feel like they’re paving the way for how future agencies should operate.

Fellow Unruly model Sofia Bevarly echoes Rao’s sentiments.

“Girls were always being taken advantage of and made to feel uncomfortable”, she says. “Now having women step up and take on the leading role of this industry, we feel more empowered to do more with our brands. We understand and empathize with each other. To me, women are harder workers. Once we know what we want, nothing literally nothing and no one can stand in our way.”

Sofia Bevarly
Photographer: Garrett Stone, Unruly Agency

Sofia Bevarly

Knowing that the agency I work with is run by a majority of women is something I’m really proud to be on board with.” – Sofia Bevarly

But like with any successful influencer business in L.A., it’s a work hard, play hard mentality. We throw one hell of a party, Rahhal says. Our events really bring our talent together where they can network and relate to one another. It’s really special in an industry where you often feel alone or misunderstood.

So, how does one receive a coveted invite to sign with the team?

Unruly Agency
Photographer: Garrett Stone, Unruly Agency

Rachel Brink, Unruly Agency

We’re very particular on who we chose” – Director of Operations, Rachel Brink

“Engagement is a big part of our process. We tend to look not only at someone’s following, but the number of fans who are engaging with them on a daily basis. The following doesn’t always come into play, as someone with a smaller following can have higher engagement than someone with a large following. For example, if someone with 50k followers has 50k followers that are fully engaged, they have what it takes to be a star.

Ultimately, the brand is a business with money on the mind, but at the end of the day, they pride themselves on taking care of their team and maintaining a strong bond.

“As cheesy as it sounds, we’re genuinely like a family, Brink says. “I often leave work with a big smile on my face from being so incredibly proud of our team. Our employees are incredible. They’re always supporting each other in and out of work. Whether someone has a rough day, needs help with strategy or has something new and exciting happening in their lives, you can bet to see them running to help or celebrating their amazing news.

Content written in partnership with Amir Bakian

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