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A Year In Gifts | Shifting Influence with @mossonyi

With the gifting season fast approaching, we’re taking a look back at our work with Not On The High Street, celebrating the gifting moments throughout the year that keep us connected to our loved ones.

Through our ongoing partnership with Not On The High Street, ‘The Home of Thoughtful Gifts’, we’ve strived to elevate the level of storytelling we can offer by leaning into emotive moments that remind us what is truly important.


Whalar has always been committed to helping brands realise the true potential of influencer marketing. For many, the school of thought was that this industry was defined by Instagram and social metrics as the main indicator of success.  

We’ve always had a different approach. And, in light of a refocusing away from likes as a key performance metric, a greater understanding of the power of what independent creators can offer is becoming vital in standing out from the rest.

How Does This Work in Collaboration?

Investing in larger-scale creative projects that exist ‘off the grid’ enables Whalar talent to produce fresh and unexpected value to brands. To further our collaboration with Not On The High Street, we focussed in elevating what we are able to offer from our community to our partners.

We paired a premium creator and bespoke brand together to produce a highly creative video that symbolised a ‘Year in Gifts’. This was inspired by our year-long Instagram campaign, to offer the brand a full circle asset of true creative value.

Check out the video and further insight into the creative process below.


Bringing a Case Study to Life | “Always On” Becomes “A Year in Gifts”

Prior to the video, our year-long collaboration with Not On The High Street’s Always On campaign, focussed on moments - anniversaries, back to school, birthdays - to give each partnering creator independent structure to make the campaign their own. Over a period of 12 months, each creator built narratives derived from the moments they associate with ‘giving’ to sustain momentum throughout the year.

Introducing | Content Creator and Creative Director, Onyi (@mossonyi)

Onyi’s content spoke to both the creative quality and social engagement that made her the ideal ambassador for the brand. As the highest performing influencer from our collaboration with Not On The High Street, Onyi had both the engaged following and solid creative groundwork to develop her vision on a larger scale. Alongside Onyi, our aim was to elevate the expected standard of influencer marketing within the wider marketing ecosystem.

In short, we wanted to challenge ourselves.

Understanding the commercial value of ambassadorship programs, we decided to celebrate the campaign by producing an overarching asset that encapsulated the agenda and creative identity of the collaboration. Every moment we shared in the video was derived from Onyi’s original work from the campaign. We wanted to translate her creativity from Instagram on a larger creative scale.

Working with Onyi, we delved into the themes behind her content and developed it so that her creative vision could play out throughout the year within one cohesive video. In other words; How could we condense 12 months of gifting and giving into 2 minutes?

Why Did we Think This Would Work?

Instagram is an ‘instant’ platform, this is a blessing as it allows people to share directly and authentically, but it also makes it slightly more difficult to engage with a long-form narrative. Users are not seeing a curated thread of the campaign if it sits on a regular feed - we viewed Onyi’s project as the ultimate supplement to this. The ideal digital asset for the brand to work alongside a year-long campaign.

Increased Production Value for Influencer Marketing

The video was produced and shot in-house alongside Onyi’s personal creative duo-brand. Together we completely shifted focus towards creative licence and emotive storytelling. To produce year-long relevance for the brand, the structure of the video followed the ‘passing of the seasons’, punctuated with the gifting moments and brought together in one continuous shot for creative fluidity.

As shown in the video:

- Summer | Wedding Anniversary

- Autumn | Get Well Soon

- Winter | Christmas

- Spring | House Warming

- Summer | Birthday

This project illustrates an essential part of our message; that Instagram is just the beginning of influencer marketing and independent creators hold the key for brands looking to unlock relevance at scale.

We’re Whalar and we’re on a mission to liberate the creative voice.

Directed by Whalar’s @emilyfredasharp. For more information on how brands can scale up their influencer projects, please contact studio@whalar.com.