There’s never a dull day when it comes to the world of influencer marketing. There’s always a new product going viral, a new trending sound on TikTok, a new emerging talent on a social media platform, or always someone or something controversial going on.
So when it came to light a few weeks ago that there was a new type of influencer on the scene, the ‘de-influencer’, you could say I was a little intrigued.
What is a ‘de-influencer’?
This new ‘de-influencer’ is doing the rounds on TikTok, influencing viewers and followers on what products not to buy and what trends to not buy into.
Quite the opposite of what an influencer was intended to do, and quite the opposite of what every brand and company wants an influencer to do.
As we know, influencers are the most lucrative forms of advertisers in today’s modern society. There’s no denying how much ‘influence’ an influencer has on a product going viral and selling out at the delight of the business that owns the viral product.
So when influencers are telling you not to buy something and influencing you in the opposite way that you are used to, you can see that it may be a little worrying to influencer marketers like myself.
Why the ‘de-influencer’ is important in today’s society
Even though I work in influencer marketing and this is my bread and butter, I see the ‘de-influencer’ as a breath of fresh air.
In today’s world where we’re being advertised to every second we’re on social media, when we watch TV, when we listen to a podcast, when we take public transport to work, it’s refreshing to see a post that tells us what we shouldn’t buy into and what we really don’t need.
You might think you need the Uggs, the Dunks, the Dyson Airwrap, every new product from Charlotte Tilbury, the cargo pants, the Stanley cup, and the Airpods Pro Max, but you don’t.
Social media would make you think that you do in order to be cool, be on trend and keep up with these influencers, but the honest truth is that you really don’t need them.
Is it just a trend?
Or is the de-influencer here to stay?
A lot of content creators and influencers are jumping on the de-influencing trend at the moment on TikTok, telling you the things you don’t need to invest in – no matter what others on social media might make you believe.
In order to keep making a living as a social media influencer, I think this may be just a passing trend. I’m not sure many content creators or influential creators would want to label themselves as a ‘de-influencer’, otherwise brands won’t be lining up to work with them.
However, if we look at this another way, there have always been de-influencers in the influencer world as this is realistically, how the social media influencer came to be.
The art of the review
In pre-historic times when influencers were firstly bloggers and journalists, product reviews were everything.
Particularly in the beauty and fashion worlds, bloggers and journalists would purchase or be gifted new releases and give their honest opinion on whether the product was worth the reader purchasing.
Before affiliate links came into play, or commission or paid partnerships, you could trust that these influential people would give their honest review – whether good or bad – and you would know whether to buy into a new product launch.
So you could say that the de-influencer was firstly the original blogger who would tell you not to buy that Dream Matte Mousse as it doesn’t sit on the skin longer than two hours, but now we live in a world where according to most beauty influencers, every new product is worth your money (because they’ve been gifted the product, maybe work on a paid basis with the brand, and don’t want to tarnish a relationship or possible future campaign).
The de-influencer is very much welcome in the world of social media influencers
This is why I’m very much here for the de-influencer, as we need content creators to start being honest about products that are worth it and that really aren’t.
No matter if you’ve been gifted a new product from a famous brand, I want your honest and scathing opinion. What should I be spending my money on?
There are too many positive reviews on social media and not enough realistic and relatable reviews, so the more influencers that start to be honest and tell their audience what they shouldn’t be spending money on, the better.
As long as it isn’t either of the brands that I work on, I’m fine with it.