Seriously? I wouldn’t recommend that you do. When it comes down to it, there have to be other ways of raising awareness in your target audience group that are probably more effective.

Yes, yes, there are product categories that are bang out of options (I’m thinking savoury snacks and sliced bread, don’t know why) but even then – even then – there’s got to be something, right?


OK, there isn’t. But I still don’t think you’re looking for influencers, or for simple celebrity endorsement. You’re probably looking for ambassadors.

The three things are not the same and although all have ‘influence’ over the audience, roughly speaking one is a product of his or her environment, the second has a touch of sparkledust and the third actually may have done something to deserve it.

Let’s explore that further.

We’re told that influencer marketing is a form of social media marketing involving endorsement and product placement by individuals, groups or organisations with a supposed level of knowledge/expertise in a particular field (and breathe).

All well and good – but we’d be kidding ourselves if we didn’t recognise that ‘influencer’ is a synonym for youtubers, tiktokkers and instagrammers with enormous followings based on – erm – stuff. Lifestyle. Attitude. Looks. And it’s all about the money.

Clearly this is all about glitter-by-proxy which, incidentally, is not a charming little village in the Cotswolds. A definition would be something like – a form of marketing involving endorsement of a product, organisation or service via the proximity of a well-known face who might, or might not, have something in common with the product, organisation or service that they are (tacitly) endorsing.

In reality, what we’re talking about is the presence of a celebrity at your photoshoot, product launch, supplier luncheon or corporate event – a presence that you’ve paid for and which makes everyone attending, or looking at the pictures, feel a bit warm and fuzzy.

A very different thing indeed. Ambassadors are experts in a particular field, or well-known public figures, with whom a product, organisation or service has a long-term contractual agreement guaranteeing their participation in certain types of promotional activity at certain pre-agreed levels. But, clearly, your ambassador isn’t going to be any Tom, Cressida or Harriet.

They’re going to be someone who fits – who has knowledge or expertise you want to share, who has qualities you want to be associated with, who is aspirational and relevant in the way you want your product to be.

I mentioned savoury snacks earlier and there’s a case in point – Walkers Crisps and footballer turned pundit turned household name Gary Lineker. There’s a whole other article in exploring why Lineker is (was, or became) such an asset for the brand, and we won’t go into it here.

All this goes to say that it’s very easy, in today’s hyper-connected world of social media likes and follows, to assume you and your asset need an influencer.

Fact is, you probably don’t. But if you really, really do – ask the question.

“Do I actually mean ‘influencer’?”

And if you’re not sure – drop us a line on


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