At a time when influencer marketing has taken a rage in the marketing industry, some serious concerns have started to rise amidst the brands, businesses, and targeted audience. The concerns states:
- Is influencer marketing an ever growing boom?
- Will influencer marketing keep strengthening its niche in the world of marketing?
- Are the results delivered effective and successful?
- Is the marketing tactic delivering high ROI (Return on Investment)
Adding to this, the other most important concern is whether influencer marketing is seriously growing or has reached to a point where the bubble is almost ready to burst. Bubble fit to burst, of course is a very thoughtful and serious consideration that has shaken the marketing arena, not to a much high extent as of now but does have created an impact.
To have a better understanding of these two scenarios, let us have a deep insight into the positive impacts and the negative thoughts the industry is creating.
Going by the positive stride of influencer marketing:
- It has become a billion dollar industry
- The market did reach $2.38bn just before the beginning of 2019
- More than 75% brands are planning to spend more on top social media influencers
- More and more brands are trying their fate and gaining high success rate with specific programs like airbnb and zaful sponsorship programs
- Brand endorsement has experienced new dimensions with influencers
Then let us move to known some of the signs that display the approaching danger of bursting the bubble:
- Gradually frauds and fakes are coming up and partnerships are becoming risky
- Authenticity and trust factors are becoming a rising concern
- If the influencers are genuine the brands go on a height but if by chance the influencer you choose does not turn out to be authentic, your brand is under stake
- At certain stages the results turn to failure. A live example of this is the disingenuous partnership of Scott Disick and Naomi Campbell.
- At times influencers even lose trust of customers when they fail to update for a sponsored post
- Influencers these days are also seeking help of instapods that is a tool working to enhance followers and likes in an inorganic manner
All these factors are however plaguing the industry and hence people nowadays are claiming that the market has given enormous with no claim of 100% genuineness and effectiveness. The same is now ready to burst because it has reached its maximum potential and will further be used with inaccuracy.
Furthermore, let us step into understanding how the measuring of ROI is failing and leading to increased number of frauds with influencer marketing. There is no doubt that even today the amount spent on influencer marketing is on a rise and marketers are keen to pay as much required. However, the concern here comes with the fact that these marketers and brands are not even aware how much does influencer charge or how they calculate their fees.
Look into your own self and think wisely have you ever calculated the fees of your influencers. I guess for most of you the answer would be a ‘No’. This is because majority of marketers take into consideration the effectiveness of the marketing campaign without bothering about how much the third party in between you and your customers is extracting from your budget.
The ready to burst bubble does not just end with these portrayed concerns. Even further if you go, you will come to a realization that these days technology has made it easy for everyone to create fake social profiles and the same is taking place with influencers. A clear example of this is the demonstration of MediaKix that revealed two fake accounts with stock images and each having thousands of followers. This in turn did show high engagement ratio but the fake personalities on social media channels and their fake stories of engagement narrated a completely different story of misleading tracks and failures.
To confirm the failure stage of influencer marketing, Wall Street Journal conducted a survey while interviewing several brands who were disappointment with the results of influencer marketing program. The survey clearly stated reduced engagement along with inflating number of followers having fake accounts and this in turn leading to cynicism. As a result many brands blank of what actually is happening pulls back their campaign from the influencers.
Sadly, many brands are still playing a blind game and constantly investing more and more without even understanding where exactly the budget is creating an imbalance. Some even support the theory that one spoiled apple does not spoil the entire fruit basket. Even if few accounts fake and even if few influencers are playing fraud, the narration does not discredit the complete industry. To support the good influencers, the Influencer Marketing Association is taking necessary initiatives in view to protect and safeguard the ethics of the influencer marketing industry.
Having a thorough and strong discussion on both the aspects of influencer marketing, the majority believes that the billion dollar industry projection under the bandwagon of digital communication is soon going to lose its essence. We often do believe that influencers are the answers to all digital marketing needs but if you think wisely on the concept then you will come to a conclusion that they were never the answers but just a mode of communication. With this, let us to a watch time when the bubble will burst but with aspirations of something better coming your way in the world of media and digital communication.