Instant Product Placement

Product placement is nothing new.  It is an advertising technique that has been around for years.  The mechanics involve using a celebrity endorsement or some other form of popular influence to promote a brand.  The idea is to drive sales and gain popularity with the help of these influences. The brand pays for their product or service to be mentioned by the celebrity or featured on a commercial or in a movie.  For examples of product placement, simply refer to movies or commercials where you will see celebrities using beauty products, drinking sodas, wearing specific clothing, and name-dropping their favorite brands and designers.  These days, however, product placement takes on a whole new meaning.  With new forms of communication and advertising via the online and mobile arenas, there are new opportunities for product placement.  Social media is one such arena.  Today, celebrities and social influencers have the ability to reach millions of fans and followers through their social media accounts.  For example, when Kim Kardashian wears a new outfit and posts a picture on Instagram, nearly 100 million followers will see it.  Instagram has nearly 700 million monthly active users and 400 million daily active users.  This can be a big draw for companies looking for new ways to reach consumers. 

Influencers can be paid to sponsor a product or service through their social media account.  The benefit is that many of their followers will consider them a trusted source and therefore be more motivated to check out the brand.  Similarly, you can purchase social media followers; whereas your brand appears to be popular and well-liked by thousands or even millions of other followers.  As with anything, however, there are risks involved.  There is the chance that you invest on renting or purchasing followers but actual engagement is very low.  Here are a few tips to keep in mind when negotiating the purchase or rental of social media followers.

Know Your End Goal

If your goal is simply to have a large follower count, than you can use choose to rent or purchase followers at a reasonably cheap price.  However, these followers will likely be robots or inactive accounts.  If your goal is numbers alone, this might be a viable option for you.  Conversely, you might want to ensure that your followers are real people.  After all, you could end up losing a lot of credibility if your customers find out that those followers aren’t real people.  In this instance, it would be worth it to pay more for real accounts. 

Determine a Length for Your Campaign

Most influencers want to know how long they are going to be in the game before they sign up for something.  Knowing the length of your campaign on the front end could end up saving you money.  If you are only planning to purchase or rent followers for a short period of time, the influencer might be willing to offer that at a lower price than if you wanted to borrow their followers for an entire year.

Consider Various Forms of Compensation

Most influencers will be willing to negotiate their compensation.  Depending on the campaign, you might have to be prepared to pay cash but in some cases the influencer might be willing to take other forms of compensation.  Be prepared to offer free services, swag, products, or discounts to the influencer as part of their compensation.