Has Influencer Marketing Gone Too Far?

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Innovative companies are constantly seeking new ways to boost website traffic. Blogger outreach is one of the tried and true strategies employed by large corporations and small businesses alike. Put simply, companies leverage the expertise and exposure of bloggers and other influencers to raise awareness of a new product, service, or website. 

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Awarding Scholarships For SEO Might Cross A Line 

An interesting trend on the rise is trading scholarship cash for quality content, backlinks, and clicks. For example, a law firm might offer a $1,000 scholarship to the best submission of an assigned essay topic by a prospective college student. The firm receives multiple high-authority backlinks when the school district or apps like Scholly post a link to their application. Later the firm posts the winning essay and receives more hits and publicity for their philanthropy. 

Blogs Can Amplify Your Message Exponentially 

Successful bloggers don’t just run a website or write articles; they develop a community where the members follow each other on social media, like posts, and form relationships. By posting genuine, authentic content and interacting with others, the blogger becomes an influencer of the community. Their voice is amplified by their followers and so on. 

Companies Give Bloggers Free Products In Exchange For Reviews 

Companies engage these influencers to spread a genuine message about a product or service. There’s no fancy marketing language or professional pictures. The followers hear about an experience from a trusted community member. An example of this type of influencer marketing you may have seen is when a resort or cruise line gifts free trips to travel agents who share the details of their adventure and can recommend a trip from personal experience. 

Blogs Are Businesses That Co-Brand Marketing Content 

Many bloggers make a living from their work through advertising or monetizing product recommendations. Although blogs may begin as a way to share expertise or a personal story, ambitious entrepreneurs transform it into a full-time marketing gig. These capitalists want a product review to succeed and go viral as much as the sponsoring company. Although bloggers make a small income reviewing products, the real money is in clicks, shares, and followers. 

Scholarships Are No Different Than Contests Or Giveaways 

Companies have used giveaways and contests to force sharing on social media in the past. This method is highly effective for building backlinks and raising SEO authority, but the random selection lacks the influencer model that makes blogger outreach successful. 

Using a scholarship award in this manner may seem transactional to cynics, but both parties benefit. It’s an innovative way to try blogger outreach and approach search engine optimization while defraying the costs of college for students instead of advertising. 

The Impact Of Influencer Marketing 

A successful blogger outreach campaign can make an outsized impact on your business. It can be time-consuming for small businesses to promote a product this way, but the method establishes key relationships and builds brand loyalty in the long term. 

Luckily, there are industry experts and tools like Traackr, an influencer management platform, that can identify potential partners and help you manage the relationships. Done well, it’s an incredibly successful way to increase traffic and drive sales and revenue.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post about whether influencer marketing has gone too far and new college scholarship opportunities for SEO, social media, and blogging influencers.

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