Commentary

Social-Media Influencers Prove Critical To Campaign Success

Can ad campaigns still achieve relevance without the help of influencers, or some other social component?

Not according to analysis of the winners from last year’s Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA) Effectiveness Awards.

Conducted by WARC, the review found that nearly every campaign entered into the international competition included a social element, while 71% of the winners were heavily invested in social.

The best campaigns used social media to attach what WARC calls “shared meaning” to brands.

To promote its True Match foundation, for example, L’Oréal Paris put out “23 Shades, 23 Stories” -- a campaign that relied on influencers to convey the brand’s inclusive message.

Along with social-media influence, other trends embraced by IPA winners included a more sophisticated understanding of emotion-led campaigns and more flexible TV buys. Among last year’s winners, for example, 55% cited “emotion” as key to their creative strategies.

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Meanwhile, two new documentaries are casting social influencers in a far less flattering light.

Albeit from difference vantage points, “Fyre” on Netflix and “Fyre Fraud” on Hulu take viewers behind the scenes of the Fyre Festival. They explore how influencers helped market what ultimately became one of greatest fiascos in event-planning history.

After the event imploded in 2017, the Federal Trade Commission stepped in to ensure that marketers and influencers were clearly disclosing their connections.

The fallout didn’t end there.

This week, a judge decided some of the festival’s top social promoters -- including Kendall Jenner -- can be subpoenaed to determine how much money they were paid to promote Fyre Festival.

Still, by 2020, influencer marketing is on track to become a $10 billion industry, according to forecast from marketing firm Mediakix.
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