Before the interactive platforms of social media, Public Relations was predominantly a one way conversation. Traditional PR being the communication process that builds beneficial relationships between an organisation and its publics, engages media tactics like press releases, sponsorship and media outreach.
Whilst these are still important factors in the industry, the internet has created a new focus for PR strategists which is engaging with content and social media influencers.
In the age of ad blocking software with over two hundred million people installing the software last year, brands were needing to find ways to bring authenticity to their products and their marketing campaigns.
Enter stage left: Influencers
If you have social media, you are surrounded by influencers. If you’re reading this blog you are surrounded by influencers. The influencer market has become so saturated that my Instagram feed consists mostly of people that I don’t personally know. By definition, a social media influencer is a “third party endorser who shape audience attitudes through blogs, tweets, and the use of other social media”.
As people, especially millenials, move away from traditional media and traditional celebrities, brands are looking to influencers who now steer trends and set agendas. Because of the persuasive power of social media and the way in which we feel we ‘know’ the people that we follow, their endorsement of a brand makes it all the more legitimate. In turn, this is completely changing the way that we relate to labels and products.
As brands become increasingly engaged with influencers, so too do their budgets. Subsequently, and influencer has to develop a very strong tone of voice and image to stand out from the crowd.
Here are some examples of Australia’s top tier social media influencers…
Fashion: Yan Yan Chan
In 2009, Yan Yan Chan started her own blog that coupled with her incredible dress sense and impeccable photography skills, allowed her to to become one of the most influential (and international) fashion and lifestyle influencers. Yan Yan has collaborated with multiple brands like Tiffany and Co, Uniqlo, Calvin Klein and ASOS, just to name a few on her overhwhelmingly cool resume.
Fitness: Tammy Hembrow
Australian mother of two Tammy Hembrow is one of the world’s most talked about fitness figures. Tammy has 6.7 million Instagram followers and over 720 thousand YouTube subscribers and a personal brand that continues to grow. Due to her high levels of relatability and accessibility brands continually enlist her as part of their campaigns to gain access to her followers and influence as well as being incorporated into her content. For example, Tammy is a part of Khloe Kardashians “good squad” or she is very often seen with a branded ‘skinny tea’ or protein shake.
Lifestyle: Tash Oakley
Tash Oakley spends her days jet setting from one island to another and has built up a significant cult following just through having a decadent and admittedly envious lifestyle. Her substantial social media presence has followers totally enamoured and dedicated to knowing where her clothes are from, what her beauty regime is and what she eats every day. Tash is a walking talking PR campaign for and endless amount of brands.