It’s amazing how much the blogging landscape has changed in five years. Where once there seemed to be a bevvy of blogging agencies including Nuffnang and The Remarkables, who always popped up in blogging conversation, the blogging landscape has never really been the same, and it’s a good thing.
At Nuffnang’s peak, you’d find very few Australian bloggers who didn’t have the Nuffnang ad unit on their website. For many, it was the first step to monetising their blog. The ad unit code would display ads and track website traffic to determine suitability for ad and sponsored content campaigns, all managed via a dashboard.
Soon the conversation within blogging groups turned to how few ads appeared. It was also a pet peeve of bloggers to be paid by cheque months after performing agreed work and, because of this, many bloggers found themselves either negotiating payment options and terms or declining opportunities altogether.
After Nuffnang Australia closed its doors, it was obvious something had gone awry. At the beginning of 2018, there were still influencers on Nuffnang’s books owed thousands of dollars. We are unsure of where this currently stands but, it hasn’t boosted blogger confidence.
Nuffnang also had the Blogeratti arm of its business. Think of it as the talent agency of the blogging world. It’s here that Nuffnang represented top influencers with big numbers and connected them with top brands. And, just like a talent agency, Bloggerati had contracts with its influencers and took a cut from influencer earnings. These bloggers weren’t free to collaborate with whoever they liked, it all had to go through Nuffnang. Talk about losing control over your own blog!
The Remarkables Group ran a similar set up to Nuffnang’s Bloggerati, another ‘talent’ type set up representing a handful of approximately 25 top influencers and matching them to brands, creating strategies, managing schedules and making evaluations. At the end of 2016, The Remarkables Group decided to wind down the representation of bloggers in order to focus on supporting brands with influencer strategies instead.
Let’s say goodbye short-sightedness
With literally thousands upon thousands of eager Australian bloggers, the focus of these two ‘talent’ agencies seems a tad short-sighted. They potentially cut out a massive portion of highly influential bloggers when opting to represent only the ones with the big numbers. It poses the question. What actually is influence?
What we’ve seen time and time again are bloggers with brilliant numbers, but who don’t bring the expected value to a campaign. We’ve had bloggers with audiences a third of the size bring greater value in terms of engagement and conversions because of the engaged community they have built, one in which the blogger has built trust and connections. Unfortunately, Bloggerati and The Remarkables did not appear to support these ‘little blogs who could’ very often.
An influencer marketing platform on a different level, Tribe isn’t a blog advertising network but an advertising company that works with social media influencers only. Tribe is for brands that want beautiful imagery which represents their brand and that they don’t have to curate themselves. Brands simply run a campaign, influencers submit their images and the brand selects the ones they want to purchase and promote.
Is influencer marketing better with Tribe?
Of course, as humans, visual imagery is extremely influential, we buy, we eat, we even smell with our eyes. However, this type of marketing cuts out the power of SEO and forgets about the power of storytelling.
What about the mother who wants to read tips about breastfeeding her newborn on her favourite Australian Mummy Blog, not just see a pretty picture of a breast pump in a flat lay. Or the woman who needs help cooking a particular recipe instead of just seeing a photo in her feed.
The thing with sharing images on platforms like Instagram is that their lifespan is incredibly short. On the other hand, an influencer who writes a sponsored post in their unique voice and with the right keywords can potentially reach people month after month when their article is found in Google search. Now that’s got to be better value for a brand?
Who to choose for influencer marketing now?
Bloggers are more knowledgeable than ever these days. They know what they want, they have a strategy and goals. They don’t want a big agency representing them; they want control, they want opportunities and the chance to be given a good hot go. Let’s face it, bloggers know their blog and audience better than anyone, it’s what we love to embrace because it’s usually these bloggers whose audiences engage the best.