Influencer marketing is no longer a nice-to-have but a must-have for marketers in 2018. What does the original tastemaker and lifestyle guru, Martha Stewart, think of Influencer Marketing? Our panel at this year’s Social Media Week aimed to answer that and take a deep dive into the balance between community and individualism on social media with the help of Martha Stewart, Patrick Janelle, Courtney Spritzer, and moderated by Stephanie Cartin.
From their favorite platforms to the lines they won’t cross on social, our conversation focused on the importance of authenticity. Below we detail some of the key takeaways from our panel.
Instagram can feel extremely curated at times, and while influencers attract followers with their gorgeous feeds, does it feel inauthentic?
Patrick Janelle explained that it is less about hiding the bad, but focusing on the best.
“Obviously, I am not showing everything in my life on Instagram, part of the reason is that we are showing the things that we like and what we aspire to.” Janelle continued, “I try my hardest to create really beautiful images on Instagram, and it’s not because I am trying to hide something that isn’t authentic, but more about celebrating the things that are the best parts of me.”
Another way to show your day-to-day on social? Instagram Stories!
“We typically see the highlight reel of your life on your feed, but what I love about Instagram, is now we have Stories and it doesn’t have to be so perfect.” Courtney Spitzer shared. She reminded the audience that Stories are for in-the-moment content and aren’t meant to be curated.
To drive sales and continue to generate awareness, Martha Stewart Living partners with influencers to film a Facebook Live. As one of the testers of Facebook’s Live capabilities, Stewart shared why she believes it is one the most productive and useful ways to produce a 30-minute television show at a fraction of the cost, “It is a very effective method of getting across to a very broad audience instantaneously, and of course, you can watch it later.”
Stewart and Janelle are macro Influencers with loyal followings, but over the last year, micro influencers grew in popularity due to their niche and highly-engaged audiences. From a brand perspective, how does one determine which strategy is best?
“It all comes back to goals and a brand’s budget,” Spritzer stated, “typically, we recommend micro influencers when a brand needs to create content because it’s a cost-effective way to generate Instagrammable content.” She also mentioned that micro influencers are great due to their immediate impact on a brand.
While she checks on her brand’s social media accounts daily, Stewart shared that she limits her personal time to less than five minutes a day on Twitter and ten minutes a day on Instagram.
In Stewart’s opinion, her daily blog where she shares places she visits and teaches her audience is the most important content she produces for social media.
She reiterated to the audience that it’s important not to spend your whole day on social and you’ll never find her sitting in her car scrolling through Instagram all day!
Both Stewart and Janelle’s brands centered around experiences, but how do they balance the experience and intimacy of the events with activity on social media? For Janelle, it’s about identifying key moments of the night, “It’s finding a moment when I can document something in a way where I feel like I am fully conveying the experience.”
Jannelle believes we are constantly building stronger social relationships by discovering new interests and evolving with the ever-changing social world. And believes social media will go where each user decides to take it.
“Social media is in the hands of each individual user to blaze their own trail.”
Whether you’re a micro influencer or have a brand as big as Martha Stewart’s, the biggest takeaway from our discussion was the importance of remaining authentic to your true self and interests. Tweet us @socialfly with your thoughts on the conversation! Watch the full conversation here.