Very recently there has been an upheaval in the media and social media world. Has the time of accountability in influencer marketing arrived? Global consumer company advertiser Unilever made a shot across the bow announcing there needs to be more transparency, less bots and false likes. At Cannes Lions, marketing head Keith Weed insisted on more honesty from both the influencers and social media platforms, especially Instagram. If a man in charge of an $8 billion annual ad budget speaks, media listens. By taking a stand against the fraudulent side of the influencer business, Weed deserves our applause. The international brand will no longer work with influencers buying engagement. The open secret is now out. Denial is no longer an option.
Black and Paper quit the sharing site in 2017 due to our lack of trust on the site. How do the algorithms work? Why are certain profiles promoted more than others? There are so many questions unanswered. Many wannabe influencers have no choice, turning to bots for relevance. Trust or authenticity are out the window. $1.000 buys 100.000 followers, all fake!
Influencer marketing has it benefits. There are genuine influencers who work hard and have skills, but the field has now been taken over by greed. The desire for freebies. Influencer news of late has been negative, The Atlantic reported on five star hotel resorts flooded with requests for free rooms from everyone with an Instagram account. The travel influencer who posted photo shopped images of himself in locations, another article reported on the level of false comments on certain post as high as 70%. The thirst is real! Earning upwards of $5000 a posting would tempt anyone.
Is it any wonder why Black and Paper stopped using Instagram? We got support from some, treated like herpes from others but the journey continues.
Thank you Unilever, happy to know we are on the same side.