A well-known person shows a brand product to the camera and all of a sudden the product becomes a bestseller? Those times are over. Over the past ten years, ordinary women who became popular on Youtube or through blogposts gained more and more influence and companies also realised this. They started to pay bloggers to endorse them. A new form of advertising was born.
Now even the confidence in bloggers shakes. According to research from SheKnows Media, women are increasingly weary of those well-known faces. Authentic opinions expressed in customer reviews or on social media are becoming popular. 86 percent of the interviewed women rather trust in opinions and recommendations from everyday people.
» “In the past, women would predominantly turn to bloggers they trusted. But today they are turning to what we refer to as ‘everyday experts’ on YouTube, Pinterest, and Instagram.”
Samantha Skey, CMO of SheKnows Media «
Youtube and Facebook instead of blogs
The women surveyed rely on opinions from experts who have no hidden interests and judge products honestly, critically, and authentically. People who also dare to give a bad review when a product fails. According to the survey 52% of the women can relate to those experts, while only 12% identify themselves with brands and 11% with celebrities.
This also matches the fact that the shopping platform Miacosa, which tried to catch attention with Youtube stars, turned out to be no sustainable business model. After a trial phase of several months the online shop wasn’t continued.
The growing scepticism becomes notable in terms of information behaviour. Social media and platforms such as Pinterest play a leading role when it comes to product information. In the meantime blogs have become the least favourite source of inspiration and information for female customers:
- 58% YouTube
- 52% Facebook
- 50% Pinterest
- 46% Instagram
- 36% Blogs
The potential is no longer high enough to set up a small business
The golden age of blogging seems to be over: bloggers spread their activities over multiple channels; blogging alone isn’t enough to make a living these days. According to SheKnows only 20% of bloggers are paid for endorsing a product.
While it was possible for bloggers to establish a small media company with its own brand in the past, nowadays they pursue far more complex strategies over numerous channels in order to develop their own brands. To avoid incredibility, 69% of bloggers refuse to endorse products that don’t convince them.
Questionable “everyday experts”
With their growing reach even those “everyday experts” are affected. Brands also reach out to them and they are often organised in a more professional way than they appear to be.
This of course raises the question whether those complex social media strategies are perhaps supposed to conceal the experts’ reach in order to appear small and authentic.
What can’t be denied is the conclusion that the golden era of beauty bloggers is over. Trendsetters as Michele Phan have long since become brands or presenters. Anyone who wants to start now must think smaller. Customers have seen enough and are pretty aware that even presumed amateurs can soon become professionals when there’s money in the background.