Photo via Wikimedia Commons
The popular reality TV show “The Bachelor” has not only helped contestants find love while giving viewers an entertaining show, but it has also created a launchpad for influencers. Contestants from the show have as many as 1.3 million followers on social media and have created a career out of it by working with brands and promoting their products. This is only one of the many examples of how brands have used influencer marketing to increase revenue and attempt a new approach to marketing. Influencer marketing is taking over social media and is the modern, effective way to target audiences and promote brands.
To better describe influencer marketing, it is a social media marketing strategy that uses endorsements and product mentions from influencers to promote a product or brand. Influencers, such as contestants from “The Bachelor,” have a large social following and target a specific audience. This is exactly what drives brands into utilizing these influencers to promote their products. Advertisements practically fill Instagram feeds due to the high volume of companies that are sponsoring these influencers. The Bachelor franchise contestants typically fit the categories for fashion, beauty, lifestyle and fitness themes. Because of the target audience that is reached, the brands that fit within those categories are the ones who will work with these influencers.
Hannah Godwin, a former Bachelor contestant, is a prime example. In one of her recent Instagram posts of her and her boyfriend Dylan Barbour — also a contest from “Bachelor in Paradise” — she captions the picture “running a few last-minute errands before we hit up vacay this weekend!!! Also been livin’ in this set from my collection with @justfabonline. #justfabambassador[.]” Justfab is one of the many brands, along with Glossier, BioClarity, Revolve, Sephora and many others, that effectively use influencer marketing. These companies work specifically with influencers that fit the target audience of their product.
Some companies are still skeptical about influencer marketing because of the few times that it has gone horribly wrong. In 2017, Billy Mcfarland and artist Ja Rule gathered over 400 influencers to promote the “Fyre Festival” that ended up being a total scam and a complete disaster. The festival’s all-inclusive luxury tickets, that cost $1,500, sold out completely and ended up deceiving investors a total of $26 million. This incident has made others more cautious of what influencers they work with so that their authenticity is not questioned.
Although the incident has made companies more cautious, it certainly has not slowed down the growth of influencer marketing. According to Forbes, market analysts predict that the influencer marketing industry will be worth $15 billion by 2022 which is a rise from $8 billion in 2019. Instagram, which is the prominent media platform for influencer marketing according to eMarketer, is predicted to grow to 112.5 million US-based users in 2020. With these numbers, it is inevitable that influencer marketing will do nothing short of taking over the marketing world.
The next time you are scrolling through Instagram and see a sponsored post, remember that influencer marketing is another step closer to taking over the world.
Riley Rochon is a junior majoring in media and culture at West Chester University. RR900350@wcupa.edu