New podcast miniseries: Understanding the complex world of influencers

In this first episode of the Influencer Pulse Check podcast miniseries, CEO, Nicole Webb, speaks with Group Account Director, Katie Eastment, about highlights from IMPACT’s 2023 Influencer Pulse Check research.   

From post saturation, gifting and choosing platforms, Nicole and Katie uncover why the world of influencers and content creators isn’t as spontaneous as it seems. 

In fact, for brands wanting to generate authentic content, there are a number of complex elements that need to be carefully planned out prior to any curation.   

More isn’t always better. Sometimes it’s just more. 

Believe it or not, despite the hours of scrolling through content in your feed, some influencers will limit the number of branded posts they create for clients. 

It’s quality, not quantity, for almost a third of creators (31 per cent) who prefer to limit sponsored content to just one to two pieces per month.  

An additional 15 per cent will develop three to four pieces a month, and only eight per cent will venture to five to six pieces in a four-week period. 

On the flipside, 46 per cent of creators say they have no limit, siding with influencer managers who have an appetite for more, rather than less content. 

To gift, or not to gift, that is the question 

It may not be widely known, but there is an etiquette to gifting strategies in the content creator world.  

The first step is to make sure you and the creators you are working with are aware of how gifting must be disclosed on social platforms.  

From both a sustainability and brand fit (for both parties), it’s best practice to check with a creator before sending them product. And that includes if you’ve worked with them before.  

When gifting, you should never expect or request coverage as this is the role of sponsored content. Lean into the relationship and demonstrate what it would look like to work together. If it suits both parties in the future, then follow through on it. 

Having an ‘always on’ gifting pipeline ensures your ‘go-to’ partners can be the first to trial new products and you have a pool of new creators who you can partner with quickly. 

Authenticity matters when it comes to gifting. The overwhelming majority of creators (92 per cent) will post about a gift occasionally if they love the product/campaign, if it is meaningful, will help people or if they need new content to share. This is up almost 10 per cent since 2021.  

From the influencer manager perspective, one in two managers will advise their clients against receiving or posting gifted products. However, if ‘gifting’ coverage is a priority, focus on unrepresented creators.  

Navigating platform choice

Your objectives and business targets will ultimately determine the channel best suited to your campaign.  

Influencers say TikTok is the platform where they see highest engagement (54 per cent), but more than three-quarters of creators (77 per cent) prefer making content for brands on Instagram.  

Almost two-thirds (65 per cent) of influencer managers say that Instagram delivers the highest engagement for their clients’ branded content.  

Research says Instagram is still the winner when it comes to influencer marketing, due to its social commerce capabilities and tenure in the social media space. However, TikTok’s wide offering of engagement and sharing options is better suited to increasing brand awareness, nurturing audiences, and encouraging user-generated content on sponsored posts.  

Is your brand or business about to implement a social media or influencer campaign? Remember to consider the four key rules for working with influencers and content creators, taken from this year’s IMPACT Influencer Pulse Check: 

  1. Interrogate objectives before scrolling for partners.   
  2. Consider authenticity for the brand, creator, and community.  
  3. Provide creator support, but champion creativity 
  4. Test, trial and test again.

To learn more about the IMPACT Influencer Pulse Check results, discuss best practice recommendations, or how you can work better with influencers and content creators, contact

IMPACT’s next podcast in this series will be talking to the people who manage influencers and content creators. We get their take on what their clients are looking for when working with brands.

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