Ground Control to Major Tom.
We have a problem.
The wild wild west influencer marketing industry continues to be a sh*t show and self-reporting by the very people who have a horse in the race is just one of the biggest reasons why it’s getting a bad rap.
All of the platforms that match brands and influencers, agencies, publishers, media companies, apps, and at this point, what seems like every Tom, Dick, and Harry, getting into the space, including influencers themselves, who have a horse in the very race they created, self-report their metrics to the brands that pay them to create the content.
It’s like grading your own homework. Sure you might knock off a few points here and there for this and that, but you’re probably still giving yourself an A, maybe an A-.
Brands Paying Fake Accounts & Influencer Fraud
And there’s plenty of real news that highlights the fraud in the ad serving business and the Influencer Marketing industry is no stranger to it either.
Between all the bots, fake accounts, and marketers not knowing what numbers really matter, the latest news is about how one Influencer Marketing Shop Created Fake Accounts to Prove That the Industry Is Full of Ad Fraud.
In an AdWeek article, MediaKix wrote that they created two fake accounts and spent a total of approximately $300 on one and $800 on another for fake followers and engagement for the accounts. Within a few weeks, brands offered the bogus Instagram influencers a combination of free products and money that totaled more than $500.
Brands need and should demand standardized, independent third party reporting.
As a brand marketer, you need unbiased, accurate, and independent measurement of your influencer marketing campaigns.
In my last role as VP, Global Creative and Content Marketing at Marriott International, I found the solution in SYLO.
It’s what Nielsen ratings are for TV. Can you imagine if networks reported their own viewership numbers and ratings? The industry would be a mess. Influencer Marketing shouldn’t be any different.
SYLO provides full transparency and verification of the metrics you require and has built additional measures to provide a fuller view of performance and campaign understanding. Brands want to know whether they have partnered with the right creators, with the right type of content, on the right social platforms — SYLO provides these answers.
What’s to Hide?
Some of you will disagree that the industry needs this, especially those from the platforms, agencies, influencers, and media companies that bundle reporting into everything else. I hear you, but if your numbers are accurate and there’s nothing to hide, why wouldn’t you want to provide the third party verification to your brand partners? It would only help strengthen the companies claims, grow your business, and help add credibility to all of us working in influencer marketing.
And in full transparency, like how a brands influencer marketing campaign results should be reported, as an advisory board member to SYLO, I have a horse in the race for the need of third party measurement, but I have no numbers to hide, and I believe that this will truly help add value and credibility to influencer marketing.