Spill-the-Tea is a blog series about all things to do with Influencer Marketing. While I’m a Content Creator and Social Media Manager, I try to write these posts from both sides of the story, the creator and the brand they’re representing. On this edition. On this edition of spill-the-tea, we’re chatting about GIFTED PRODUCTS.
On the last “Spill-the-Tea” post, I began to chat about using hashtags to disclose PAID relationships with brands. So, let’s talk about GIFTED!
As an influencer, I can’t tell you the number of times someone has told me “you’re so lucky” or that they’d like to “work for free things too.” And yup, it’s a pretty sweet gig…but also, it’s a lot more than just sitting around waiting for the next package or invitation to arrive! That said, let’s take a moment to dive into the “free stuff”!
As influencers, we are 100% allowed to receive GIFTED products or experiences and are under no obligation to post about them. Gifted products often arrive from PR companies but can also come directly from the Brand. The hope is that the Influencer will share to their social media and if they do, you’ll see them disclose the gift with the #gifted hashtag! (Note: “gifted products” and “paid-in-kind” products are totally different things.)
When chatting about gifted products (and I’ll chat about gifted experiences in a future post), an Influencer will decide first if they want to post about it, and secondly, where they’ll post…each Influencer having their own personal strategy. For example, often you’ll see a “product reveal” or an “unboxing” in IG stories…but if an influencer really loves the product or is trying to build a relationship with the brand, you might see them do a bit more.
From the Brand’s POV, gifting to influencers is a great way to release a new product or to share a product with a creator who may be hearing about it for the first time and if they like it, will pass that information along to their audience.
From the Influencer’s POV, gifted products can help build your audience, allow you to create new and fun content, establish yourself as an influencer, and more. But, the ultimate goal is PAID campaigns so if the gifted product really resonates with the Influencer and their audience, they’ll likely reach out to the brand or PR company for future work.
Bottom line…while the gifts and packages are fun to receive…nothing pays the bills like cold hard cash!