Date Posted: Monday 11th March 2019
Following our industry codes of conduct outlining The Influencer’s Guide by the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) and Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), we caught up with blogger and Content Editor (Global) at Revolution Beauty, Charlotte Jones to find out what she thought about the new guidelines.
"Transparency is extremely important in the industry. I understand why the new regulations have come into play. There has been a number of influencers who haven’t disclosed being paid for an ad, yet they have been paid a large sum of money. This is untrustworthy and it’s ruining the real ‘influence’ the industry once had. However, BBC Panorama recently highlighted how one-sided the media is when assessing the influencer industry. It’s a one-sided argument and the view is biased. We never see or read about the people who are being totally transparent and honest with their audience. There are many!
"As far as I’m aware the ASA do not do enough to involve the influencers doing the job in their decision making, nor the consumers when creating these rules."
Print Vs. Online
"In my personal opinion, a few of the new guidelines are a step too far. The way the influencer world works is no different to the way traditional media works. For example, magazines and newspapers have always been #gifted samples to test, try and write about in the publication. They do not have to disclose that this has been gifted. Why not? Why shouldn’t the consumer reading that article know it’s gifted, as per the new guidelines? I think it’s important to mention, the products featured in the magazine/newspaper will always lean towards the advertisers products. Is this an honest review or is it a commitment to the advertisers to keep spending ad money to keep the publishers alive. I’ll let you decide. Equally if the magazine has been paid money by an advertiser to create an advertorial feature or advert, this is just like paying an influencer for a piece of content."
Shift in Influencer Marketing
"I’ve seen a shift in influencer marketing already because of the ASA guidelines. The longevity of the influencer industry is being questioned and the investment of paid campaigns vs. the ROI. There are no standard set rates across the board, the numbers vary everyday. Influencers, agencies and managers base their fees on what the influencer is worth. Is this subjective? I’ve been in this industry for 7 years and I’ve still yet to be told the real reasoning and ROI behind extortionate fees. What’s the hypothesis? Numbers are being plucked out of the air and brands are questioning it. I’ve also seen a shift in working with influencers due to the negative press. The term “influencer” has become a dirty word. With the focus on content creation, some brands are starting to move away from the word ‘influencer’.
"I have a lot of positive things to say about influencers/content creators. Some connect deeply with their audiences and can influence people, this comes with power and responsibility. There is a responsibility to protect the younger audience especially and ensure they are promoting responsibly. Many talented content creators disclose their paid ads. Those who haven’t declared should be penalised, but the disclosure should stop at monetary exchange in my honest opinion.
"I’m a content creator myself and I work for a Global Beauty brand, working with ‘influencers’ on a daily basis, so I understand the views of both sides."
Charlotte Jones in 'Media Contacts'
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