They influence you to buy stuff. Stuff that they may or may not make a profit on. From the outside, this is not such a bad thing…right? When you think about your favorite influencer — everyone has one don’t lie — what have they influenced you to buy? For me, @itsmetinx influenced me to buy the Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk lip set. Did I need this? No. Was I in the market for a new lip set? Also no. So why did I go out of my way to buy something if I didn’t need it at all?
Influencers have made it their careers to promote as many products as they can because, to put it simply, that’s what makes them money. Affiliate links. The culprit. If you’re not familiar with affiliate links, they allow the influencer to make a small commission on products they link for their followers to buy. Many influencers make a large portion of their monthly salary on affiliate links alone. The danger in this, is that influencers are quickly becoming walking advertisements more than ever before.
As an experiment, I looked into what it would take to have a creator page on Like To Know It, an app geared towards giving influencers a platform of various affiliate link opportunities to link any items they have or want. I filled out a short application and heard back within an hour. I was rejected. The reason I was given: I did not have shop-able content. Key word, shop-able. The world is quickly becoming disinterested with influencers main platform and companies buying their following with more and more opportunities to become advertisers.
I am quickly becoming uninterested in keeping up with influencers as they spend their time and fill their platform with ad after ad. Sadly, this will only get worse as they continue to make money, so this is only the beginning.
The problem with this, in terms of sustainability, is that when influencers litter their entire platform with ads and “shop-able” content, we will eventually buy something. It’s inevitable. Most of the time, we buy things we see from influencers that they promote and maybe wear it a few times, but in general it’s a waste. The most sustainable thing you can do, always, is wear what you already own and consume as little as possible. The more we consume goods we don’t need, the more goods will end up in landfills. This is a very real problem.
My suggestion to help aid this problem:
Stop supporting influencers who don’t create content but instead create ads. Stop supporting people who promote products they don’t even use or like. Stop impulsively buying the products that influencers are continuously promoting.
We can change things. The world is adaptable if we make a change. We got this.