14th June 2019 – Arii, a social influencer with over 2 million fans on Instagram is considered popular but she couldn’t even get the fans to buy 36 T-shirts. She has tagged many of the brands for exposure to make a living.
Not long ago, she decided to launch her own brand T-shirts but the response was lukewarm. The plan ultimately folded as she sold less 36 T-shirts in total. All the fans merely ‘promised’ to support and like her posts on her Instagram account but most of them simply ignored her plea to buy her T-shirts. According to Mashable SE Asia, she posted her confession on social media that prompted many to discuss the effectiveness of influencer marketing and if the influencer bubble was meeting its end. Who would have thought a popular influencer with 2 millions fans could fail in launching her own brand?
“I was getting such good feedback that people loved it & were gonna buy it. No one has kept their word.” She said.
So what really happened to Arii?
Jack Appleby, an advertising veteran, said this shouldn’t have been the case for Arii. Moving products for an individual with strong social media presence is not a cause for concern.
“Most creators in the 2 million plus club can move hundreds, if not thousands of units with relative ease. For this brand launch to have failed so severely means gigantic mistakes at every step,” he told Adweek.
The bubble will always remain as having millions of followers doesn’t equate to monetary conversion. Most social media users follow popular figures to look for inspirations or purely entertainment. They don’t look at them as a source to spend their cash on.
“In her past content, she might not have been used to selling or prompting her audience to go buy her favorite fashion pieces.”
Scrolling through her photos, I noticed that captions are often brief, even in shots where she wore endorsed garments. Shopping instructions, links, and sales announcements were lacking. In essence, her followers were “trained” to be viewers, not shoppers.
Besides, there were only two posts promoting her clothing line, and she wasn’t actually wearing products from them in either of the photos.