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The Multiple Faces of Digital Influencers

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There is more demand on generating engaging content to pump through social media platforms than ever before. With almost 90%* of Australians said to own a smartphone with the average person spending 1.7 hours per day scrolling and tapping through endless updates, it’s no wonder brands have woken to the influence engaging content can have. Pushed through the powerhouse of social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat, brands now have a two-way direct line to connect with consumers – at their fingertips.

The 21st century has become such a content revolution that people are opting to step away from traditional jobs, pick up their phone and start posting, tagging and hash-tagging all over the place, and not just as a hobby, now in many cases to earn a living.

Lauren Bath, is Australia’s first fulltime professional Instagramer and has proven that you can create an ambitious and rewarding career out of uploading your happy-snaps. Although the first full-timer, Lauren isn’t the only to catch the social media bug, there are many others emerging on a daily basis across multiple niche fields, such as fashion, fitness, lifestyle, wellness, food and of course travel. Basically if people enjoy it, there is an influencer group dedicated to creating bespoke content around it.

Social media has become a playground for marketeers, but before you get caught up in the fast pace and fancy pictures, you may want to consider just who you want to be endorsing your brand. Careful consideration needs to be given before embarking on a campaign to ensure the profile aligns with the product, company ethos, campaign objectives and can speak the same language as your target audience. Here are a few categories to consider:

The Photographer

Lauren Bath (456k Instagram), Jewelszee (113k Instagram) – Photographically led profiles, amazing picture after amazing picture with huge following. This is how they pay their bills, so fees are inevitable but worth it if big audiences, amazing pictures and well versed professionals are what you are after.

The Niche

Melissa Ambrosini (69.7k Instagram), EXAMPLE – Focused on a specific area such as wellness, fitness, food or fashion. Dedicated to knowing that niche inside out, content is more about telling a deeper story. The influencer often has a smaller following to The Photographer but one that is very dedicated and engaged in what they have to say.

The Social Celeb

Erin Holland (164k on Instagram), Kate Boissett (185k on Instagram) – Mixes in the social “It” scene and attends all the top parties, launches and has a stellar contact book of equally influential friends. They pride themselves on knowing what’s hot before everyone else and setting trends.

The Expert

Stephen Fry (134k on Instagram), Richard Branson (952k on Instagram), David Beckham (25.3m on Instagram) – these people are the Hollywood celebrities of the social media communities. These people are experts in their individual fields. They have huge followings generally and have used social media platforms to transfer their fan-base into one compact community, who they can communicate with directly however and whenever they wish. They have mass appeal and can take a brand to a whole new level, but it comes at a price and often takes more of a brand ambassador role than purely social media. George Clooney for example, sits on the Nestle Nespresso Board as part of his contact which saw the brand go from nobody to a household essential.

James Viles Portrait

Whilst we would all love a George to front our campaigns, budget obviously plays a huge part in who we can recruit, and although ‘The Expert’ may not be an option, it is still important to take a few minutes to consider what the core messaging is about and what is the best way to make it resonate with your target audience. Sometimes it also pays to move some budget around to back influencers and empower them to become more of a brand ambassador.