Tips on how to avoid falling into the influencer trap and how influencers can actually help you save those pennies!
As a long time “YouTube Beauty Guru” lover, I have accumulated a very large collection of Beauty products over the years. I keep up with the latest launches, collaborations and innovations in the beauty space, and one could say I own a small Sephora in my home. However, as the influencer marketing style grew so did my skepticism of what I was seeing on YouTube… after all it is an influencers job to review products (one can assume) in a positive light.
However, in most instances, it really isn’t the product were buying into: it’s the person. As an audience we’ve become completely enamoured with these people who are “just like us” – except they’re rich, have perfect skin, own designer clothes and jet set around the world. This glamorous lifestyle used to be reserved for celebrities and billionaires, but now it’s just within our grasp if we just buy “X product”. This is the façade we need to break through. No beauty product is going to magically give you this lifestyle.
This is what is causing over consumption of products in the beauty industry (and likely many other industries as well). We buy and buy and buy, but instead of feeling satisfied, it leaves us broke sitting in a pile of eyeshadows palettes we’ll never get through in our lifetime.
So if watching a review on YouTube and buying everything influencers recommend isn’t helping us as consumers, why continue to watch them? The answer is very simple: We as consumers have never before had an unfiltered view of products in advertising.
Let’s think of commercials and print ads for Mascaras…I’m sure you can envision one straight away: a woman with photoshopped lashes and dark eye makeup with a sleek looking tube and a giant close up on a wand that looks like its something you'd see in space, But NEVER the actual product being applied. YouTube allows us to see thousands of people use the same mascara on their actual lashes. Which leads me to my tips on how to use influencer marketing to your advantage as a consumer.
Tip #1: YOU DON’T HAVE TO TRUST WHAT THEY SAY
As rumour has it, influencers are making thousands of dollars giving their opinions on products, which has many wondering, can you trust them? The answer is, you don’t have to. As a consumer, your only job is to WATCH. Watch how they apply the product, what tools they use and what the outcome is. The influencer may have very positive things to say about the product, but it is your job to analyze what you SEE and decide for yourself.
Tip #2: COMPARE
YouTube is an endless resource! There are truly thousands of beauty gurus! So if you’re curious about a product, before you make the investment watch a ton of reviews and compare what you see.
Tip #3 WATCH INFLUENCERS WITH SIMILAR SKIN TONE AND SKIN TYPE TO YOU
This is not to say that if someone has the same skin tone/type as you that you will definitely have the same opinions, however it will help you narrow down the sea of influencers and can give you a better example of what it might look like on your skin. Plus, it can help you shade match if you’re ordering online!
Tip #4: WAIT IT OUT
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve jumped on a new release and then been disappointed. The influencers talking about a product before it launches have been paid by a brand to do so. Therefore, the hype you’re seeing around a new product is a paid advertisement. So be patient and wait for the reviews to come out just after the launch date as these influencers likely used their own money to buy and review the products Usually you’ll find more honest reviews or at the very least a wider variety of opinions.
Tip #5: ASK YOURSELF IF YOU REALLY NEED IT
Of course we want what’s shiny and new! But is it really all that “New” or is it the same shit, different packaging? At this point we likely have an overwhelming amount of makeup as consumers, and we likely have a very similar product (or 5) that are serving that purpose already. Save your pennies and use what you’ve got! You might even have a few products hiding at the back of your drawer that you can rekindle the romance with!
All in all, I love influencers and I think the marketing strategy benefits all involved. However, as the consumer we have to be wary to not fall into the influencer trap of excessive spending! Continue to think critically about what you’re seeing and not be enchanted by the glitz and glamour of an influencer lifestyle!
Save your pennies!