I would like to tell you about an experiment:
At the end of August 2020 I received an unexpected email from the PR manager of an international brand “Blissbody”, saying: “We came across your Instagram profile “hannalie.t”, and LOVE your style. We’d love to have you as one of our Brand Ambassadors. To celebrate our new Sportivo collection, we want to give you a FREE pair of leggings so you can post a picture of you wearing them and drive more exposure to our brand. Being an Ambassador will also get you commission from the sponsored post(s)! An easy way of making money with Instagram! I’ll leave below some key points:…”
At first I was very sceptic, because one has to be it feels these days, since news about scams are all over, which makes it very hard to trust people. But I decided to do some research into this brand before making assumptions. I had a thorough look at their Instagram account and their website. Wondering why have they ‘chosen’ me based on my Instagram:
I don’t really have anything in common with their brand, perhaps just ‘yoga’ but I don’t post pictures of myself doing yoga – I’m way to sensitive about my body especially after picking up so much lockdown-weigh AND I stopped smoking- which only makes me want to nibble all the time.
Personally I don’t spend that much on my ‘outfit’ – yes I love wearing leggings underneath my thrift-store dresses, but theirs is quite expensive when translated to Rand.”
But if one day I do decide to become brand conscious, I could get 40% if I agree to become an Ambassador by just paying for the shipping, then take a photo of myself wearing it and post it to Instagram. Sounds easy enough, but the shipping from the UK alone would basically be the price of 2 pairs of leggings from Mr Price in S.A, and I know that I cannot possibly do the same type of photo which normally are associated with their hashtags, but ok…I’m game to see if this is legit. (worst case scenario= I won’t be able to buy 2 pairs of leggings for a while, or best case scenario I could score a pair of possibly very fancy leggings, and it would give me some insight into the life of an ‘ambassador’ – which makes me wonder if it is almost the same as an “influencer”. I mean, how hard can it be?
“Expanding your idea of what an influencer is, is so important,” Sherman said. “Because it’s everyone. It sounds very philosophical, but it’s just so true.”
I found the quote above from a very interesting article on the National Retail Federation’s website – https://nrf.com/blog/how-influencer-marketing-helps-brands-build-authenticity
In the end I did learn from the same article why brands like Blissbody ask people to be ambassadors for their products:
Powell added a quick list of actionable takeaways: Invest in influencer marketing; diversify your brand’s use of social platforms; remember that it’s about creating community; and invest in digital workflow. She believes 2021 will be about relationships: “Healing, mending, moving into the future together,” she said. “See your influencer partners as that.”
After some deliberation with my husband and friends, I did pay the shipping costs. After about 2 months I wrote them and email to say I haven’t received my leggings yet. I received a very quick and courteous reply:
We have checked your account and we saw that your order has been shipped, but we are unable to provide a tracking number because a number of packages are experiencing delayed or missing tracking information at the moment. Your package may take a few more weeks to arrive because the Coronavirus outbreak is slowing down postal services globally. We seek your kind understanding and patience regarding this matter.
Eventually I gave up and haven’t bought any leggings since then but today I received word from the post office that a parcel arrived!
So….Starting the weekend with a new pair of leggings. “Thank you MyBlissBody for sending me these adorable leggings! Get teh for 15% off using my code hannalie.t15”
Would I do it again, you may ask….no I don’t think so.
Well, maaaayyyybbeee…..only if it is for alternative footwear next time;-)