sketchy instagram marketing

I you haven’t just joined instagram yesterday, you’ll know that a lot of the content you see from the fashion bloggers you follow is paid content. paid content meaning the blogger received a certain amount of money for an instagram post. and in my opinion, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. we need to stop pretending that it’s a bad thing that online influencers are being compensated for their work.

however, there are certain marketing strategies that companies are now using on instagram that are really crossing the line. and this is not meant to throw shade at the bloggers that promote these products; I don’t think they even know exactly what’s so wrong with these products.

the usage of special promotional codes that bloggers give out to their followers has been around for a while now. I think there is nothing wrong with bloggers giving out codes at all. the idea of receiving a code that I can use to buy a product for less money than it is actually being sold for on the website is great.

but now companies are giving these bloggers the chance to promote their products with 90%-off codes. most of these products are teeth whitening kits or electric facial brushes (you know the rotation ones that are supposed to work wonders on your skin). the bloggers make it seem like these products have retail prices of over $100, i.e. saying they are worth $100, and they are giving their (mostly very young) audiences a code with which they can buy the products for as low as $10. seems like a great deal. I have gotten a lot of proposals from these kind of companies lately. in their e-mail approach they are actually all telling me that their products are worth several hundred dollars. so again, not throwing shade at the bloggers who accept these offers. they actually are being told they will promote premium products and think they'll help out their followers. 

but it gives their followers the illusion that they are literally saving $90 while purchasing these products. however, these companies never set out for their products to be sold for $100, and they are probably not even worth the $10. the audience will trust the online influencers that what they are buying is an absolute premium, luxurious product worth a lot of money. and yes, these products might all actually work. there is nothing wrong with promoting teeth whitening kits; but there is no need to make it seem like they are worth a lot more than they actually are. it is in fact a very cheap marketing technique targeting those who don’t quite understand how they are being lied to.



here are two companies that you might have seen giving out these 90% off codes through online influencers on instagram: