Influencer Marketing: How to Tell the Scams from the Legitimate Opportunities
If you have a large enough following and good engagement on Instagram, it is only a matter of time until you are approached by a business for influencer marketing opportunities. Getting approached for opportunities like this can make you feel like your hard work is finally paying off. One thing you might not know is that scams are floating all over the internet and Instagram has not been spared. So, how do you tell between a real opportunity from a scam or a fake one?
They Contact You Through Your Comments
This type of illegitimate opportunity starts with a comment on one of your posts. You may see someone whose bio says they are a marketing manager or sales representative leaving a comment telling you to get in touch for a great opportunity.
Legitimate businesses and brands will never get in touch with you this way. They will get in touch with you through your direct messages, and if they cannot, they will find other ways to reach you.
Additionally, legitimate brands and businesses have dedicated profiles that they use to get in touch with potential influencers. They go through their main accounts or verifiable accounts of someone who works at the company, usually a high-level marketing manager.
A Promise To Help You Grow Your Numbers
Once you get in touch with a brand, they may offer you appealing products or services that are enticing for you to promote. The catch is that they want you to promote these products or services in exchange for being featured on their page or profile in some way.
Legitimate businesses want influencers to send people to them and not the other way around. They will, therefore, never lead the conversation this way, at least not initially. They may feature you in the future, but that is after you have proven you can create content that matches what they are looking for and are driving some numbers and sales.
Some brands will reach out to you with a great opportunity to become their ambassador. They will then tell you they have chosen you because your profile caught their eye, and you are the right fit.
The catch is what is known as the “discount trap”. This is where they will give you a great discount on products you may like, and you only have to show these products to your audience. If you really like this product and do not have enough experience, you might think this is a fair exchange, but it is not.
Think about the time and effort that goes into creating a good post for a brand you are promoting. Having to pay anything so you can “work” for a brand or business is a red flag that should not be ignored.
The Shipping Scam
This is where a brand or business offers you a coupon code, so you do not have to pay for the products they want you to promote. However, when you add payment details to get the products for “free”, you will be bombarded with a massive international shipping fee. Needless to say, this is a scam.
There are legitimate influencer marketing opportunities for the right influencer and brand. However, influencers have to be on the lookout for scams and people looking to take advantage of their influence.