The recent disquiet over celebrities and influencers visiting Nelson Mandela Bay and barely igniting a blip on the Social Media merry go round bears reference.
On Saturday 14 September the Weekend Post’s Zizonke May wrote an article title; “Celebs fail to ignite #sharethebay tagline” within which the question was asked if locals were even aware that a groups of 12 celebrities (including Khanyi Mbau and Cassper Nyovest) and some of SA’s top influencers had enjoyed a free vacation sampling the delights of Nelson Mandela Bay last week.
How these junkets work is that expectant product owners host celebrities and influencers for free and expect massive exposure in return. Sometimes it works and oftentimes it doesn’t as the contracts can be verbal, murky or just plain ignored by the seemingly entitled living high on the largess and kindness of tourism product owners.
On of the sponsors, No5 by Mantis, provided 5 rooms for the celebrities in a total package worth R36 000.00. No5 by Mantis PR Officer, Mandisa Magwaxaza believes that the company did not get value for money for their sponsorship as the celebrities failed to post or tag any posts properly saying; “Our staff were bullied. When I raised my concerns with the group I was told; Do you know how much it costs for Cassper to even tag you in a post? R50000!”
The hope is that these celebrities and influencers will get more tourists to the area and products.
Let’s examine the flaws in this system:
- Celebrities and Influencers do NOT live in the real world
- Their followers KNOW that they are paid to endorse products, leading to a diluted sales message
- Their real worth to any social media campaign is extremely hard to quantify
- Any social media post is essentially very short lived – it has to be heavily promoted to gain any form of traction
- Followers DO NOT expect honesty from the celebs when products are being reviewed
- The valuation of posts is in essence a very subjective science
- Celebs and influencers expect to ONLY be paid for the numbers they have as followers and NOT for any engagement or business that may accrue
- Consequently the RISK is very one sided and mostly on the part of the product provider.
Back to basics
In order to make any such campaign work properly the following needs to be done:
- Choose the proper fit: e.g. influencers that post mainly about fashion, high living and city orientated stuff are NOT going to be particularly influential if your product is something like Whale and Dolphin Watching or Survivalist.
- Be clear about your expectations: Coach your influencers BEFORE they arrive to sample your product and send them a TEST photo/video/tag campaign BEFORE you allow them to enjoy your free offering. Then track that test campaign. Make your decision whether to continue with the influencers based on your test campaign.
- Partner in a meaningful way with your influencers: Offer a TRACKABLE incentive that can be given to followers of your chosen influencers – offer a specific time based discount/upsell to followers that book within a certain period. Collaborate with your chosen influencer on a charity of choice and track that.
- Consider Affiliate Marketing: Enter into a long term agreement with your influencer offering an exclusive booking commission for product sold by your influencer – track it and only pay commission once the equivalent value of your freebie has been reached.
- Employ a company to track your AVE: Spend the money on a media monitoring company that can track and trace your campaign and give you the Advertising Value Equivalent of your campaign. (The AVE to No5 by Mantis from this post on MyPE will be in the region of R17 500.00 – MyPE is tracked by www.newsclip.co.za. MyPE exists in the real world and in contrast to Casspar Nyovest understands that that value is not the COST of doing a post but the Advertising Value Equivalent cost should No5 by Mantis want to pay for advertising in MyPE – a space OWNED and paid for by MyPE and not BORROWED from Facebook or other Social Media spaces)
- DO NOT FORGET SEO: The world of Social Media is a fleeting one – too many things compete for our attention and we do not even use social media to do meaningful research. Choose then an influencer or celeb who is aware of the power of a well developed web site SUPPORTED by Social media – any article posted on a web site will have a much longer shelf life than any social media post. Any decently qualified online publisher will have got to grips with Search Engine Optimisation and will give quadruple bang for the buck over any person based SOLELY on Social media.
A recent viral event – Sometime Rainer is Photographed more than close to a Whale’s Mouth – was tracked for AVE by the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality and, for the day of 12 March 2019 only, the Advertising Value Equivalent for the keywords ‘Port Elizabeth’ was R81 Million.
MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL:
If you only want to deal with celebs and influencers who are looking for a freebie and will ONLY write good stuff about your product then YOU ARE DEAD IN THE WATER.
People these days know when you consider them stupid and are trying to pull the wool over their eyes.
Rather then use someone who will talk straight and honest about your product – IN MY DAY WE CALLED THEM JOURNALISTS!
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