Alice: Did they think [the marketing agency] that because you were already an influencer and had those relationships with other influencers that you would be better positioned to try and get free content?
Steph: It wasn’t the marketing agency, it was more the clients. I would explain at length that if you want to work with influencers then there needs to be some kind of budget available because there are lots of influencers who are going freelance or full-time and it’s a huge industry.
I just remember days of email chains going back and forth with clients and them saying that they wanted 50 or 60 pieces of content from influencers a month and they would send out the product, and I would ask ‘ok, what’s the budget for this campaign?’ And they’d say, we don’t have a budget for this campaign, they’re getting the product, what more do you want?
And I’d have to sit back from the computer and just breathe… It took a long time, but just before I left, I was able to create a document and talk about what influencer marketing is and how powerful a tool it is and added facts and figures. I sent it around to a lot of the clients, and then they did opt to put budget into influencer marketing, which I’m really happy about.
Alice: Do you think a lot of the resistance came from a lack of education around the industry?
Steph: Yeah, definitely. I think when it comes – particularly – to brands who have been around for a really long time, and perhaps catered to a specific audience – mid-thirties, forties – and they didn’t really understand the millennial audience and that we’ve got a whole new form of media, which isn’t advertising directly, it’s people listening to people who are genuinely talking about a product that they love.