The Drum Awards for Marketing - Entry Deadline

-d -h -min -sec

Marketing Influencer Marketing Travel

How Step turns influencers into culture curators to provide new ways for users to explore the world

By Open Mic | Open Mic



Opinion article

May 24, 2021 | 5 min read

Step is the new app that combines social media, culture, and travel to provide a new way for users to explore the world. Here, Influencer CEO Ben Jeffries sits down with Step co-founders Robyn Nicholl and Rachel Rockowitz to discuss how they are changing the game in culture exploration.

How Step Turns Influencers Into Culture Curators To Provide New Ways For Users To Explore The World

How Step turns influencers into culture curators to provide new ways for users to explore the world

Firstly, tell me a little bit about Step and when a user would find it most useful?

Robyn: "Step is the app for finding, saving, and sharing recommendations for places!

"It can be used in everyday life to explore your own city - try out a restaurant you didn’t know existed in your neighborhood, go and spend the day in a new area of town you are unfamiliar with, stay up to date on where your friends have been, explore maps populated by our Culture Curators… I can’t tell you how many places I now have on my list to check out in London since we launched, it's amazing.

"That being said, the app really shines when you travel and most acutely feels the need for relevant, trusted, and up-to-date recommendations."

What gave you the idea for the app?

Rachel: "We were constantly sending our friends recommendations from our home cities or places we had traveled to and were, equally, always asking our friends for recommendations when looking to go somewhere new. There was nothing in the market that felt like it solved this issue in the way we wanted it to and, thus, the concept for Step was born."

How is Step changing the game?

Rachel: "We really found that we couldn’t trust the majority of reviews that were out there on other platforms, which is why we strongly felt that peer-to-peer recommendations were the most valuable. As a result, on Step, you only see places, comments, and photos from the people you choose to follow. It's totally opt-in!

"We also plan to implement a “green leaf” sustainability identification system on our app so that users can make informed and conscientious decisions on the places they are visiting and recommending."

Who is Step’s target audience?

Robyn: "Step caters specifically to millennials and Gen Zs in that we have focused on building a core community of “Culture Curators” who are creative leaders within these generations, who now act as our Step ambassadors - bringing their communities along to the platform with them.

"I think Step also sets itself apart from other apps in the space by opting for a minimal, modern, design-build, which took inspiration from typographic layouts in design magazines. This build appeals to a more design-centric millennial audience."

How do you navigate being co-founders?

Rachel: "We have known each other for our whole lives and have shared a lot of the same experiences growing up which I think has sculpted our outlooks on life in similar ways. We both have quite different skill sets though, which are complementary and mean we don’t step on each other's toes too much!"

Do you have any future plans for Step that you can share?

Robyn: "To become a truly global platform! There are so many features that we wanted to build out of the gate but we ended up scaling back massively to build our MVP, focusing solely on the core functions. Now that we are live and have users telling us what they want, we will be building new features monthly according to feedback and will be focusing on expanding our global reach.

"We are also currently working on building a suggestion-based algorithm that will help users to find new and relevant people and places on the platform."

Step: Culture Map is now available to download via the App Store.

Marketing Influencer Marketing Travel

Content by The Drum Network member:


We are the originators of influencer marketing.

Influencer is an agency built at the intersection of creativity, data, and technology with a unique ‘people power & platform power’ approach.

From big brand launches to shifting perceptions and from riding fast trends to driving footfall, Influencer builds ideas with impact to deliver outcomes that drive your business forward via an unmatched client experience.

Campaigns are underpinned by Influencer’s game-changing proprietary technologies, which are supercharged by official partnerships and data integrations with the world’s leading social platforms for real-time and accurate reporting. Influencer is an Official Global Marketing Partner of both TikTok and Meta.

We believe the more tangible, scaled outcomes that creators produce drive impact beyond just likes and impressions. Influencer is championing the ‘True Human Influence’ movement; on a mission for creator campaigns to be judged in the same way as other media activations - underpinned by measurement partners such as ThisThat, Neilsen, and Relative Insight.

Founded by OG YouTube creator Caspar Lee & entrepreneur Ben Jeffries, Influencer has been helping brands navigate the ever-evolving influencer marketing landscape since 2015. In that time they have developed valuable knowledge, experience, and technology that have enabled them to deliver thousands of campaigns, for hundreds of brands in markets across the world. Today, Influencer has a team of 120+ of the best talent in the industry, working across Europe, North America, and the Middle East. From Google to Coca-Cola, from Amazon to Microsoft, and from TikTok to Meta - they work with companies, brands, and agencies across every vertical, building meaningful relationships between brands, creators, and their audiences.

For more information visit or email

Find out more

More from Marketing

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +