Are influencers brand concerned? Do they ask the right questions? Do they make effort to ask if they met the brand KPI’s?
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There is a huge talk around influencer marketing and how unauthentic, impractical and money grabbing it has become. unfortunately, this topic cannot be swept under the carpet and hope it will disappear or solve itself out.
I have worked with influencers for long enough to experience how money had been a bigger factor of all things for them. I firmly agree that most influencers do not care less about brand effectiveness and productivity. As harsh as this might sound but it is the truth and to prove that, let me quickly challenge digital agencies and ask if they have met any influencers who had asked these simple following four questions:
- From the campaign stats gathered, Did I meet the brand KPI’s?
- I heard something disturbing on the news about the brand X, is everything well? Be Brand Concern
- I would like to know more about the brand history and how it got to where it is now? Brand updated and knowledgeable
- I saw that I did not meet the KPI’s expected of me, Is there a room for improvement? Where and How can I improve?
If the answer is NO to most of these questions, then influencers have proven themselves to be money grabbers and if it is a YES answer, then they have proven themselves to be credible and authentic influencers.
Everyone will agree with me that no one is perfect, which is why people are curious and learning new ways of doing things and it is vital that influencers seek ways to develop all the time. Influencers collaborate with brands with the hope to Influence their market into a brand they are already using, love and passionate about. Influencers help brands reach out to their target market, both reachable and unreachable and by doing so, influencers authenticity works magic for brands.
I believe that these following questions matters for influencers:
- By accepting to work with brand X, Are you honest and positive that it is a brand that you already use, love and passionate about?
- Are you comfortable to write honest copy and content for it?
- Do you ever think it’s not so much about the money you are getting out of it but rather endorsing the brand that is close to your heart?
If the answer is YES to all the above questions, then you are on the right track but if it is a NO, then you are definitely in the influencer marketing industry for the wrong reasons and there’s still a chance to do better.
I recently had a deep conversation with a colleague who is proudly against influencer marketing due to these following reasons, He believes that:
- Influencer marketing is one-sided beneficial (He calls is wishy-washy, meaning it is ineffectual)
- Influencers care less about the brands they are working on
- Come to think of it, why do we even have to educate them on a brand they already use, love and passionate about?
- Influencers do not make any effort to learn about the brand new product launch
- We often write copy for them, the very same copy that goes live on their social media platforms while getting paid in full for not doing even half the job they are paid to do.
- We often have to remind them to mention and tag our brand names on their posts, at times we remind them to type out our brand handle names right.
He then lastly said, he respects influencers who are governed by certain agencies because then, companies put money where there is a higher possibility for brand KPI’s being kept and met.
I don’t know how this makes influencers feel, but having to listen to all of these valid points being said about the industry that I do find joy in really made me feel uneasy and disappointed. Influencer marketing industry has been the career journey that I have enjoyed the most and would wish that it develops than to see it failing.
Let’s rather not shy away from this topic as if it has no effect on brands but rather get into it and talk it through.
Remember that, If a brand is approaching influencers to collaborate with them on a campaign. They are asking them mainly because they believe that they fit for their brand but it is up to an influencer, to be honest as to whether the brand relates to their community or not. What I am trying to say is that, Do not say yes to a brand you are not in love with.
What has been said about influencers is not to say that they have no potential but it is important that they place themselves under categories they are passionate about so that everything will come easy for both influencers and the agencies. As soon as they start collaborating with brands, it will be easy to go for brands that fit their community. By doing so, it leads to influencers asking the right questions that might lead to greater future opportunities.
I urge influencers to start investing in brands they are working on and to make that happen, the key lies within their true self. The minute they talk about something they love, the curiosity will rise and the right questions will keep following and everyone will rightfully benefit. As an influencer, you might secure your chances for a long relationship with many brands.
Remember that there is always a room for improvement, thrive to see the brand you working on succeeding because you had a voice and know you added value.
Yes, we live in a competitive, money grabbing world but think of brand longevity and securing your place with every brand you working on. Be passionate and enthusiastic. Show interest so that clients will see that you care and might consider you for upcoming campaigns or even as an ambassador.
It would be cool to hear influencers and digital agencies take on this topic.