Home News Opinion: The Importance of Authenticity in the Age of Influence

Opinion: The Importance of Authenticity in the Age of Influence

As more and more brands look to work with influencers and creators, Nicola Day says that it’s important that there is a mutual understanding about authenticity and the need to reach the right people.

People don’t come to social media to shop, they come to be entertained and inspired. They’re on a journey of discovery. When people are on that journey, they discover new brands and products out of the blue.

Creators – by which I mean the individuals who invest their time, innovation and enthusiasm in developing content and building communities – have an important role to play in acting as guides on this journey. But why are people drawn to creators in the first place?

The allure of creators

The biggest misconception is that people are attracted to a creator’s fame when it’s actually their creative originality that is key. From dancers to make-up artists, creators have a unique personality or craft that entertains and inspires us, and—most importantly—it offers us an original perspective.

But why is this useful for businesses? Because people trust creators. Around ​​63% of 18-34 year olds say they trust what a creator says about a brand more than they trust what a brand says about itself.1 In this way, creators act as guides and a powerful word-of-mouth discovery tool, helping us to decide which products or brands to consider and purchase.

Have you bought something over the past 18 months because a creator showed you something you liked? I know I have! I have 3 little boys at home and I don’t get out to the shops as much as I would like to. Therefore, I have 2 or 3 wonderful style creators that I follow and my  wardrobe is filled with their recommendations. I rarely go ‘physical shopping’ anymore. And I see this trend with my friends too. In fact, 82% of people discover products and brands across Meta’s family of apps.2

Businesses and creators can work together

So we understand why people interact with creators, but how can business authentically tap into this as a useful tool for marketing? The key to this is storytelling. Content, created by a brand or otherwise, needs to earn its place in a social media feed. It needs to be arresting, engaging and entertaining. Businesses need to find creators that will effectively harness the power of storytelling for their brand.

For example, 82% of people would try, purchase or recommend a brand when the content is ‘inspiring’.4 It’s not enough to rely on a creator’s fame, established trust, or highly engaged audience. It’s about how the creator delivers information. This creative content is crucial to brand success.

When businesses work with creators on a piece of paid content, it has a different job to do than organic content. Paid social content can be shared with spend behind it to help it reach a much wider audience beyond the creator’s own network. Because this content is reaching new people, creativity is as important as the creator delivering it. ​​Which is why it’s necessary to focus on the creator’s craft—a great post is 67% more predictive of positive brand sentiment than a likeable creator.

This has a knock-on effect on how businesses work with creators—they need to make space for creators to do what they do well. If a brand tries to make them an extension of their brand campaign, the collaboration will lose its superpower: authenticity. A creator’s power lies in the fact that their voice and their opinion is authentic to them—it’s not a copy of something else.

The world of influencers is ever expanding. In fact, it is predicted to grow by another $4.1billion this year alone1. Be part of this engaging and creative movement and explore the new frontiers of influence. Now is the time to find creators that will shake up your brand and help new audiences discover your products.

 Nicola Day is Sales Manager at Meta


  1. FBIQ Source: “Discovery-Led Shopping Study” by GfK. Western Europe average for UK, FR & DE, 3221 people aged 18+
  2. 2019-20 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report: In Brands We Trust. Global Media Consumer Research Study, Platforms by Ipsos Marketing, 11/2020
  3. Consumer sentiment surveys from 3,871 respondents  who had seen Facebook branded content ads, 2018-2019


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