With the focus on influencers and the proliferation of sponsored content, authenticity has never been more important.
All too often the focus is on micro versus power middle influencer selections, the number of followers, or the reach of individual influencers. However, one of the most critical aspects of influencer selection is authenticity.
Authenticity is important and goes hand-in-hand with providing to the audience for influencers to maintain both their own credibility and the credibility that brands look to leverage from their relationships with influencers.
What makes for authenticity when a brand or retailer is paying for content? This is a tricky area since any time an influencer receives payment audiences sometimes perceive it as potential shill. But, influencers know that to lose their authenticity is to lose the audiences’ trust.
So, what are the signs of un-authentic influencer content?
1. There’s no emotion in the content or story
Brands must select to work with influencers who have shown a passion for the previous brands they’ve worked with. But, be careful to identify signs of disingenuous vs. genuine passion. Are they highlighting aspects of the brand that show surprise and delight? Brands will not benefit from influencers simply reciting the USPs and product benefits. They need influencers to relate products to their life, and show how audiences will also personally benefit.
2. There’s no creativity to the story
Nothing shows authenticity and passion more than creativity. Influencers who take the time to roll up their sleeves and put creativity/work into their content give visibility to their passion for a brand. The best influencers do their homework, look at trends, and sometimes strike gold coming up with new usage occasions and interesting ways to show off a product.
3. There’s no personalization of the content
The best influencers will personalize their content with life stories and relate the product through interesting tales of discovery.