Mess-up makes the industry stronger

Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

Many people say Influencer marketing is an up-and-coming field. Not only so-called brands but also SME started to deal with influencer as their marketing strategy nowadays. In fact, there are a lot of best practices in the influencer marketing field. On the other hand, unfortunately, there are some failures as well. From my perspective, we don’t have to worried about it. Whether human being or others, mess-up makes us stronger. I guess looking back at past fiasco and then giving thorough thought to them is very meaningful. As far as I know, iconic failures are as below.

Elle Darby

Elle Darby is one of the popular YouTuber. Since she tried to stay at an Irish hotel (White Moose Cafe) in exchange for a sponsored post, the owner in the hotel got mad at her and then revealed her offer in the hotel’s Facebook page. After a while, she responded to this disclosure while crying on her YouTube channel.

When I knew this kind of episode, I thought we couldn’t avoid it. This incident includes a sensitive and subtle problem. As she thought, her post deserves much money. In fact, many influencers often stay at hotel’s room free in exchange for the sponsored post. On the other hand, as a matter of course, the hotel makes a profit as an accommodation fee. If hotel guests don’t pay the money, they will get nowhere at all. If I were the hotel’s owner, I might have gotten angry about her offer. In retrospect, the third person like agency should have negotiated with the hotel-side. When the influencer tries to communicate with a sponsor directly, I feel there are a lot of risks or seeds of trouble.

Logan Paul

As you probably know, Logan Paul is also one of the popular YouTubers in the US. I think not only American but also others of the world like to watch his video. In fact, he already has a massive number of subscribers in his account and it seems that he earn huge amounts of money as a favorite YouTuber. He might be a typical YouTuber because he is young, cheerful, and eccentric.

He went to Japan and then shot a video for YouTube in Aokigahara, which is named the most popular site for suicide in Japan. Understandably, theme “suicide” is a very sensitive topic, but he played a hilarious role as usual. The foreign YouTuber visited our home country and then he insulted the dead with humorous intention. He looked so from the standpoint of the local people in Japan. I think the Japanese are calm and quiet people compared to other foreigners, but the Japanese got mad at his rude behavior and he had a backlash from not only Japan but also the rest of the world. After that, He apologized to everyone and made a new video which seriously treated suicide issues. I watched it, and I felt purely he dealt with this sensitive theme earnestly. However, unfortunately, he had huge criticism because of another video. Needless to say, many people got disappointed at this result. I think he brought a negative impression about so-called YouTuber to the world.

Scarlett Dixon

I think this case is very complicated. Scarlett Dixon is one of the popular Instagrammers (influencers). I have followed her account (scarlettlondon), and I often get impressed by her view of the world. I really think her photo has high quality and I believe she is one of the earnest influencers. However, she had criticism after posting a sponsored picture which included Listerine. Why did her post have a backlash? As mentioned in the opening sentence, this case is complicated. Some people say, “The product and her view of the world were different from each other too much.” If this is the reason why her post was inundated with negative comments, it means that well-considered casting is critical for influencer marketing. She insulted nobody. She didn’t do a bad deed at all. Nevertheless, some Twitter users started to criticize her, and then she was threatened with death eventually. This incident made me consider a lot of things seriously as an industry player in influencer marketing.

Fyre Festival

I would say this is the king of mess-up in influencer marketing. This historical scandal was dealt with by two primary streaming services like Netflix and Hulu as a documentary program. Other than them, many articles treated this topic so far. Maybe, you already know this chaos.

Simply put, Billy McFarland who was an entrepreneur tried to hold luxury and garish festival, Fyre Festival along with Ja Rule, one of the famous rapper. However, everything has failed because reality and their advertisement were very different. As a result of that, Billy had to go to jail. I have seen so many failures in the marketing campaigns, but I have never seen the person who went to jail except for Billy. That’s the reason why I named this event the king of mess-up.

Why did I pick this topic up? That’s because Billy took advantage of many celebrities as their marketing strategy. Many models and budding actresses made a sponsored post on their social media account out of the blue. According to some information on the internet, Kendall Jenner, one of the celebrities that Billy cast, was paid $250,000 as her monetary compensation. As you see, this is typical influencer marketing. As a result of this marketing method, many users decided to buy an expensive ticket. So, influencer marketing proved to be effectiveness and powerfulness. Ironically, the failure of the event let many marketers notice the potential of influencer marketing eventually.

As described above, the influencer marketing industry had a lot of fiascos so far. As long as you see them, you might get disappointed at this marketing method. If so, I’d say again, “Don’t worry about it!” Many industry players already recognize these issues. Many people have explained why transparency and authenticity are critical in this field. Many companies have provided various solutions like a new marketing tool or platforms. Many experts have tried to weed out vanity metrics and then find out something new like tangible or valid metrics. Once again, mess-up makes the industry stronger unless we keep our eyes off these negative history.



Influencer Marketing Specialist/Digital Marketing/Entrepreneur/Start-ups/Japanese Market

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Influencer Marketing Specialist/Digital Marketing/Entrepreneur/Start-ups/Japanese Market