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Under the Influence

Claire Oswald // 31st July 2018
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Intern-al Issues is a fortnightly blog written by our Intern Claire that looks at the latest issues and trends in digital marketing. Enjoy!

It has been in all over the news – the Aussie Government slammed for using social influencers for a health campaign.

Was it wrong? Parts of it, yes. Was there a method to their madness, I believe so!

If you don’t know what I am talking about, then let me give you a quick run-down. Late last year, the Aussie Government launched its ‘Girls Make your Move’ Campaign. The campaign focusses on “inspiring, energising and empowering young women to be more active.” By tapping into influencer marketing, social media Influencers were employed to promote the initiative. Unfortunately, some of those influencers had previous backgrounds not fit for positively promoting a healthy lifestyle, and as a result, the media went into overdrive!

As a dance teacher (the other half of my double life), I teach tweens and teens, or Gen Z as us marketers refer to them. A month ago, I took my students over to Melbourne for a dance festival. At the same time, YouTuber Bella Fiori was also in town for the opening of a cosmetic store. Now before this trip, I did not know anything about the beauty blogger, but I certainly knew everything about her afterwards. My students went CRAZY for her, and it was then I realised just how invested young people are to this new type of celebrity.

Influencer marketing has gone from experimental to an extremely powerful, tried and true strategy, especially for our younger audiences. Gen-Zers are considered ‘digital natives’ – they essentially grew up with an iPhone in their hand, and as opposed to Millennials, they have never really known life without social media. Gen-Zers have replaced TV with streaming sites and are trusting social content over tradition advertisements. They are a new type of audience and are changing the traditional means of marketing.

The ‘Girls Make Your Move’ campaign targets these socially connected tweens and teens. The influencers used in the campaign were ones with a huge Gen-Z following, regardless of what else they were promoting. When it comes down to it, the government should have done their homework. Brands need to be aware that by using influencers, they are doing just that, influencing. By marketing to a younger (and vulnerable) demographic, brands need to be mindful of the power and INFLUENCE behind them. Social media breeds transparency so brands must do their due-diligence before implementing any type of influencer campaign. While there was good intent behind the use of social media influencers, the execution lacked thought and care. Yes, the Aussie Government made mistakes, but it’s one we can all learn from!

 Girls Make Your Move InfluencerGirls Make Your Move Influencer

Photo Source: @staceyyallen and @ella_victoriaa

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