The luxury of buying yourself an influencer
Who are these influencers that we keep hearing about? Creatures of the Web, they often started out with a blog, a page on Facebook or Instagram, or, more recently, a YouTube channel. Not all of them are illustrious “nobodies” who created a place in the sun through social media: increasingly, they include personalities, journalists and models who exert a real influence on their hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of followers.
In the world of fashion, beauty and anything related to lifestyle, two platforms currently seem to win over the public: Instagram and YouTube. Twitter is still used as a newswire and Facebook is still very popular, but my social media experts use it to share what they’ve already published on their blog, well aware that Facebook could leave them high and dry, closing their account and removing all the content on their page.
As brands increasingly seek out these Web influencers, hoping a new product will rate a blog entry, or a mention on Instagram or in a YouTube video, their rates keep rising. Brands are sometimes ready to pay tens of thousands of dollars for a top model to broadcast the photo of a product on her Instagram account, because her images can instantly attract thousands of “likes” around the world.
For us PR experts, it’s not always easy to assess the value of influencers and their work, because brands often are seduced by a large number of subscribers without really knowing their profile or consumption habits. That said, influencers are the stars of the communications world, and it will be more and more difficult to convince them to talk about a product without remuneration.
We will certainly be revisiting this subject, which has been getting coverage in several media, including the New York Times and La Presse +: