The modern world has changed the rules of the playbook. Every communication has shifted to social media and consumers look at fellow consumers to inform their purchasing decisions. In the past we looked at companies to see what was the latest trends were and what was the new thing out there. People are now looking at each other and at people with expertise that exude some sort of inspiration. Bloggers, especially Instagram’s fashion stars, can be a source of style inspiration, ideas, and useful tips. They’ve made fashion seem effortless and accessible to common people. While fashion bloggers’ feeds look perfect, the reality is different from the glamorous lives portrayed on social media. Bloggers publish posts sponsored by brands and wear outfits paid for by brands; they’ve turned social media into a moneymaking business. It is being said that the monetization of fashion blogging (influencer marketing) has caused slip in sales and the underperformance of fashion products. Vogue’s creative digital director had some things to say on this matter:
“Note to bloggers who change head-to-toe, paid-to-wear outfits every hour: Please stop. Find another business. You are heralding the death of style.”
But, as time moves forward aren’t we supposed to evolve with it? In the digital era we live in, women are no longer taking advice solely from beauty and fashion magazine. Both, fashion brands and publications, fail to keep up with the quickening pace of digitally driven consumerism.
So what is the so-called “influencer marketing” that is causing the demise of the fashion industry?
It’s a type of marketing that focuses on using key leaders to drive your brand’s message to the larger market. Rather than marketing directly to a large group of consumers, you instead inspire, hire, or pay influencers to get out the word for you. Influencer marketing often goes hand-in-hand with two other forms of marketing: social-media marketing and content marketing. Most influencer campaigns have some sort of social-media component, whereby influencers are expected to spread the word through their personal social channels. Many influencer campaigns also carry a content element in which either you create content for the influencers, or they create the content themselves. Though social-media and content marketing often fit inside influencer campaigns, they are not synonymous with influencer marketing.
The cost per post of an influencer highly depends on the reach, relationship with their followers, and their credibility. Influencers can earn anywhere from below $110 to 100 times this amount $11,006 for content they create in collaboration with a brand. According to the founder of Zaapt, a lifestyle and fashion Instagram star with 1.3m followers was paid $6,104 for an Instagram post. An influencer with 1m followers can expect anything between $6,104 and $24,406 per post. The fee varies entirely on how the engaged the influencer’s audience is and the value of certain influencers.
Influencer marketing is worth it by a long stretch. Although there are many ways brand influence can happen and it seems confusing to determine effectiveness, the statistics speak for themselves. The fashion industry should take advantage of this and find a way innovate and integrate it to their business. Sometimes people get so comfortable with what they already know, that seeing the ROI results difficult. In some way, almost every designer, brand, and model in the fashion industry owes some of their success to the rise of social media and digital content.
What do you think?