What’s an Influencer and are they Worth the Expense?

Being the people who bring you Tequila Aficionado puts us in a unique position as thought leaders and influencers, so we get this question a lot.

In short, influencers have anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dedicated fans who trust them and follow their recommendations when it comes to new products. 

True influencers are absolutely worth the spend, but…

Beware of False Impressions 

Influencers have been known to create anywhere from 6-11x return on investment – if you invest in the right ones. 

But what if you get a dud? 

Don’t be one of those brand owners who only looks at the vanity numbers (followers).  If that’s as far as you look, you’re guaranteed to get screwed.

Anyone can buy fake follower accounts (bots) super cheap.

Any kid can take $100 and buy thousands of robot followers and set himself up to look like an “influencer” in 24 hours.  Then he’ll pitch you with a bunch of mumbo jumbo about his massive following and how you can buy a mention on his network for only several hundred (or thousand) dollars.  He’ll convince you he’s well worth it because he’s got some stellar equipment he uses to take great pictures and video, so you should buy now before he gets 10,000 more followers and his price goes up. 

Don’t do it.

It’s like telling a joke in an empty room with a canned laughter recording….But the joke’s on you.

Buyer Beware

There are plenty of people out there calling themselves influencers, but it’s your job to do your due diligence to be sure they’re legit.

How to know if your influencer has any real influence:

  1.   Do they specialize in agave spirits?  Ideally, you’ll want to niche down as far as you can with an influencer.  Someone who specializes in agave spirits will be more valuable to you than someone who covers all spirits – and far more valuable than someone who doesn’t concentrate on spirits at all.
  2.   If their first post was a month ago and they have thousands of followers, that’s a red flag.  Look for someone whose social accounts have been around for years.  It takes years to build a passionate following.
  3.   If they have hundreds of posts and no significant comments (something more than “awesome!” or “great post”), that’s a red flag.
  4.   This is usually a red flag telling you they’re trying to build their numbers by poaching someone else’s followers.  Find that someone else – they’re the influencer you want.
  5.   This will tell you how much follower growth a page has had over the last week.  If their follower count has grown but they haven’t posted anything and have no engagement, they’re buying followers.

True influencers are absolutely worth the spend, but it’s your job to be sure you get what you’re paying for.


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