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5 Things Influencers Wish They Could Tell Brands But Don’t


There’s a lot of misinformation about working with influencers, which is why we created our free brand guide. For the most part, we’re professionals so we bite our tongue because you’re the client and likely already have set campaign parameters. At the end of the day, we both want the partnership to be a success so it’s time for a little honesty.

Since every good relationship requires trust and a mutual respect, here are a few things we wish you would understand about working with influencers.

“Good photos don’t just happen.”

Hours and hours went into planning and styling that shoot from location scouting to sourcing props and outfits, before even the lighting and editing. There were probably 50+ variations of the same shot just so we could get one that works (but that we’re still probably not 100% happy with being OCD perfectionists). Being an influencer doesn’t mean just showing up and snapping a photo.

“People don’t just get followers.”

While you may not think being an influencer is a skill or that we just got lucky, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We put hours and hours into Instagram every day engaging and cultivating those relationships to build an audience. There’s a lot of thankless (and uncompensated) work that goes on behind the scenes to grow your follower base. For some it’s not a hobby, it’s a full-time job.

“Let me tell your story in my own words.”

We don’t want to parrot your marketing materials or sound like an ad. Sure you can provide some key messaging, but we know what will resonate best with our audience in terms of talking points and tone. Loosen the reigns and let us do what we do best – be creative.

“Numbers don’t mean everything.”

Yes, you can look at our follower count and my engagement percentage, but they don’t tell the whole story. Look at the types of comments we’re getting, and see the number of saves and shares that are happening behind the scenes to see if our audiences are complementary to yours. Don’t expect a huge sales boost immediately after one post or even a campaign. Influencer marketing is top-of-funnel, a brand play. ROI is important, but results are not going to happen overnight.

“Please compensate us fairly.”

While we’re sure your product, destination, hotel, whatever is great, until we can pay our mortgages with it, cash is king. You wouldn’t ask your lawyer, doctor or plumber to work on a barter basis, why should we? You probably even pay your interns a modest amount. Photography and videography are highly in-demand skills, which you know, wanting to work with influencers in the first place. We’re not sure where the stigma of paying for creative services came from, but that’s exactly what this is – a service. We’re creating something for you and providing access to our built-in distribution channels. All we want in return is to be compensated fairly for our work and to feel valued.

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