Believe it or not, influencer marketing did not start 5 or 10 years ago, with the rise of YouTube and Internet Influencers. Most of us know of the infamous 80’s Michael Jackson Pepsi commercial or the most recent Kylie Jenner Pepsi Commercial. Nowadays, we see more of the latter promoting products to their millions of followers on their social media accounts. However, Influencer Marketing has been around for many years.
What a time to be alive! We no longer have to moonwalk our way into a million-dollar deal. Of course, this depends mainly on what kind of influencer you are. It does not rely on the number of followers you have, but a few other factors come into play. So, what is an influencer?
What is an Influencer?
An influencer is someone, usually considered an expert in a field. This person can affect a consumer’s purchasing decisions due to their knowledge and authority in a given niche. In essence, an influencer’s power to influence consumers rely on the relationship they have with their audience.
What is influencer marketing?
Traackr, a leading influencer marketing platform, describes influencer marketing as ” a process of identifying, researching, engaging, and supporting the people who create high-impact conversations with your customers.”
Even though influencer marketing has become a go-to form of advertising for many brands, it still faces many challenges.
Challenges marketers and influencers face
Followers: Influencers know that the number of followers and subscribers they have affects their pay. Unfortunately, this has created challenges for marketers. Marketers know that fake followers will not bring in any money. They have to spot fake followers to make sure that their influencer campaign is successful and meets their goals. Some signs to help you spot fake followers is the number of comments that an influencer gets on a post. If an influencer had 1,000,000 followers, it would not make sense for them to get 100 comments on a post.
“583M fake Facebook accounts were disabled in Q1 2018- about 27% of active monthly accounts.”
Long or Short term Partnerships: Marketers and influencers both struggle with how long their partnerships should last. Marketers benefit from a long term partnership because an influencer gets familiar with the company. When an influencer is familiar with a brand, they can come up with a better strategy to promote its products. Influencers, on the other hand, have a consistent paycheck, and they don’t have to worry about finding another partnership. However, subscribers and followers may not always like this type of collaboration. This partnership forces an influencer to post sponsored content over and over. Subscribers may lose interest in the influencer’s content.
For reasons unknown, this influencer, “Shalom Blac,” may have deleted her video. In the video, she expressed how grateful she was for her yearlong partnership with Sephora. She also said that she was happy it was coming to an ending because her followers and subscribers expressed how unhappy they were with back to back sponsored content on her Instagram.
Creativity: Another challenge that marketers and influencers face in the industry. Marketers and brands want control over how their message is delivered to the consumer. Influencers chose this path for a reason; they want to escape the 9-5 and freedom over their work. A typical influencer wants creative freedom over their content. The content they produce is part of their brand, and their reputation is at stake. Brands and influencers should discuss creativity at the initial meeting before any contracts are signed.
Salary: Influencer marketing has come a long way. However, unlike celebrities, influencers do not have accountants or experienced managers looking out for them. Influencer pay is still challenging, and many influencers end up underselling themselves. Marketers do not know how to measure compensation because they are so many factors they have to consider with every influencer.
FTC regulations and Requirements: These are “Federal Trade Commission’s attempts to protect Consumers by requiring more transparency around sponsored content.” Reasons why influencers write #ad or #sponsored in their posts. If an influencer posts sponsored content without disclosing that it’s sponsored, they might face lawsuits.
If you have any doubts about FTC, regulations here’s an in-depth guide by Mediakix; The report gives useful information for different social media platforms.
Being an influencer may look and sound like a dream job. However, it comes with many challenges for influencers and marketers. You escaped the 9-5, but you have to comply with government regulations. Creating content has become a small piece of the puzzle; pay continues to be an issue for many influencers. Micro-influencers tend to suffer the most since they do not have the following to back them up. Most marketers rely heavily on followers when deciding with whom to collaborate. They tend to ignore more important factors such as engagement, that affect ROI. Some marketers/brands don’t give influencers creative freedom; this may lead to underperforming content. Influencers and brands/marketers should work together during the campaign to figure out the best strategies that would benefit both parties.
Check out last week’s article: https://christerbelll.com/how-to-write-an-effective-social-media-strategy-social-media-marketing/