As with all trends, the “Influencer” trend is a hot topic for companies trying to make their brand well known. Is this really a trend that people should be focusing their Marketing/PR dollars on? Will it really help grow their brand? This is not a simple answer, but if we look closely at what Influencer marketing is trying to accomplish then we can get a better understanding of how it works and if it is worth your money and time.
Influencer marketing is paying people who have extensive followers for their blogs, and on their social media sites, like Facebook, SnapChat, Instagram, YouTube, etc., and having them present your brand. This means you want someone who has many followers/readers that they are promoting your brand to. The goal for the brand is for the influencers/followers to start conversing about your brand thus creating organic fluid conversations that would make everyone want to use the brand being promoted. However, this rarely works.
Unfortunately, what can and does often happen is negative uncontrolled publicity of people speaking ill of said brands or said influencers. Plus, the influencers become like a celebrity being paid to promote goods, with no thought or need to really believe in or understand the brand or product. This in turn creates a false reality of the influencers using these products/brands, and leaving consumers with a bad taste in their mouths. In the end, the only one who makes out is the influencer (financially) and not the brand.
Consumers are too smart to fall for these manipulative influencers which in turn are making influencer marketing another source of “fake news” and hurting your brand in the end.
My thought of the day is to keep your marketing and PR dollars in said categories and let the influencer-marketing trend fade off into the sunset. Stick with grass roots public relations which will reach real media outlets and help your brand grow naturally.