12 ways influencer marketing will change following new FTC guidelines

11-17 15:00

Changes in social media brand affiliation are upon us as  the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) recent crackdown   on two YouTubers proves that influencers need to make their brand relationship clear to followers. With 21 warning letters also sent to a flurry of social media influencers requesting brand affiliation clarification, a new FTC Endorsement Guide has been issued as a result.  

To find out  the effects of these new guidelines, I asked a panel of entrepreneurs from  YEC   the  following question:

How do you think this will affect  the  state of influencer marketing? Why?

Their best answers are below:

1.  The  cream will rise  

As with all big platforms, when they first launch,  the early adopters win big. Then  the scam artists and gamers show up and pervert  the point of  the platform. Once  the platform reacts to reduce  the impact of people gaming  the  system,  the platforms often see a huge run-up in success over several quarters. I think influencer marketing will see a rise in quality and a drop off in wannabes. –  Brennan White Cortex  

2. It signals a positive maturation of  the  category  

The FTC updating its Endorsement Guides is a sign that influencer marketing will soon become a significant slice of  the marketing stack. Building consistency around practices and information is a net positive, as this category continues to build momentum amongst modern brands. –  Jeff Epstein Ambassador  

3 . Influencers will become pickier  

Having to disclose sponsorships is going to lead to influencers being more selective about who they work with and  the kinds of photos and content they share. It’ll be more important than ever  for brands to research and target influencers in their niche, rather than taking a blanket approach. –  Leila Lewis Be Inspired PR  

4. It won’t affect very popular influencers much

I don’t think it will make much of a difference  for  widely known influencers. Most people today are sophisticated enough to understand that such relationships exist, so disclosure isn’t going to shock anyone very much. At  the  same time, as influencer marketing gets more popular, people will be more suspicious of fake “influencers” who aren’t known  for  anything outside of social media campaigns. –  Shawn Porat Scorely  

5. Brands will focus more on value than deception

In  the early days of influencer marketing, many brands were happy to disguise paid reviews as organic. This was terrible  for consumers. Since  the industry was unregulated, sponsorships weren’t always disclosed. Now that full disclosure is provided upfront, this encourages brands and influencers to focus more on creating a compelling story that audiences are excited to hear, even if it’s paid  for . –  Firas Kittaneh Amerisleep  

6. It will raise  the bar  

Influencer marketing has become saturated in  the last few years and  the definition of “influencer” has become rather loose and vague. I think this type of disclosure will make consumers more wary of this type of marketing, making it harder to pass off any type of generic promotion as influencer marketing. –  Kalin Kassabov ProTexting  

7. Influencers will have to shift focus

Brands will have to find new, cutting-edge ways to connect with consumers in real time. Brands that have partnered with influencers on traditional social platforms will now have to expand their focus to messenger apps, such as Snapchat and Facebook Messenger. Within  the  apps, influencers can build groups in which users can share content in a harder-to-track environment. –  Blair Thomas eMerchantBroker

8. More influencers will create their own products  

As with every nascent industry that starts unregulated,  the government watches and then figures out a way to tax, protect consumers and exert its control. There will be more red tape but  the influencer space will continue to grow. I imagine more influencers will create their own products and do collaborations as opposed to straight ads like previously. We’ve already seen this shift begin. –  Codie Sanchez Www.CodieSanchez.com  

9. It will lead to less obvious selling techniques

The  delivery of information about a product or service will be more about  the  benefits and how it has impacted that influencer, versus straightforward selling techniques. While there will be disclosure,  the  tact and style of  the  delivery will change so that viewers don’t automatically think they are being sold to just because it says they are. –  Murray Newlands Sighted  

10. It will grow trust

As an affiliate marketer, I have seen some extreme examples of deception in our industry. By keeping marketers honest it’s going to greatly increase  the trust that people have using  the internet to make purchasing decisions. By giving upfront notice of a sponsored product,  the viewer can make a more informed decision and know to keep researching if something feels misleading or overly “salesy.” –  Bryan Kesler CPA Exam Guide  

11. Brands will have to be more careful about who they pay

FTC prosecutions focus on  the brands that pay  for influencer endorsements rather than  the influencers. As  the FTC ups its game where paid endorsements are concerned, brands will be forced to exercise more caution and move marketing dollars to influencers who are transparent about being paid. Influencers will follow  the money, so we can expect to see greater transparency throughout  the network. –  Justin Blanchard ServerMania Inc.  

12. It’s all about  the quality at  the end of  the day  

It depends on  the quality of  the content in my opinion. If it is a puff piece where you can tell someone is only giving a positive review of something because they got paid, it will probably lose its effectiveness to some degree. However, if it is an honest and authentic review or promotion, then I believe it will still have impact because people do need quality guidance from people they trust. –  Justin Faerman Conscious Lifestyle Magazine  

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