“Instagram Wannabe-Stars”: A Swayy Analysis
As The Atlantic’s recent article attests, Instagram influencer ‘wannabes’ have left hotels drowned by a “deluge of requests”. With hotels and restaurants receiving “at least six requests” a day from “self-described influencers”, many have opted out of influencer marketing entirely despite the enormous proven value the right influencers can bring. The lack of options available means that the process can’t be handled in a safe and transparent way. Although the process may seem unmanageable, however, these problems can easily be solved as the breakdown below shows. As a response to The Atlantic, Swayy would like to offer a point-by-point breakdown of the solutions we can offer.
Hotel Influencer Pain Points
1. Inundation of collaboration requests
Every hotel worth their salt receives requests for “collab stays” now. Sifting the real influencers from the wannabes and checking brand alignment manually and on a case by case basis is grossly inefficient, time consuming and frustrating.
In response, you can manage this easily. Swayy offers a specific email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to which all influencer requests can be forwarded and dealt with. You can also compile them into a spreadsheet (which most hotels already do) and then upload to Swayy to be vetted, so our tool does the work for you.
As mentioned, through Swayy hotels can create their own lists of influencers who’ve approached them and compile inbound requests into a spreadsheet. These can then be uploaded onto our system to be checked and evaluated. Only influencers who pass rigorous checks can sign up to Swayy; they must pass both our fake follower detection and be pre-vetted for quality control purposes. Those that pass will then be added to the hotel’s unique contact list so they can invite them to any existing/future campaigns they run through Swayy, keeping everything in one place.
The value inequality between “two posts on Instagram to like 2,000 followers” and a “10-day” trip to the Maldives is obvious to anyone, but it doesn’t have to be so one-sided. Specific deliverables are set out on every Swayy listing, allowing hotels to set their own terms through a ‘do’s and don’ts’ section. Every influencer can then see what’s on offer before they even make contact to start the process on a professional footing. Venues can also amend/tailor their requests on a case-by-case basis, and then settle them under our ‘Formalised Agreement’ tab. This gives both influencers and hotels the optimal environment within which to start building their mutually beneficial win-win partnership.
4. Instagram Direct Messages
Instagram Direct Messaging or a constant bombardment of emails to the hotel’s general email accounts can be dealt with by managing all influencer correspondence through Swayy chat (think Facebook messenger). This protects both parties by making sure that all contact is managed through Swayy. The “vague one line emails” mentioned in The Atlantic article are avoided entirely this way.
Access to all stakeholders is also possible so anyone (GM, Revenue Management, Marketing etc.) can login anytime from anywhere to extract the info relevant to them. This gives maximum transparency and peace of mind and saves everyone time and hassle.
5. Influencer demographics & brand alignement
Instead of filtering through irrelevant off-brand influencers, Swayy lets you choose between high-quality influencers and their pre-vetted content. Properties can target both macro and micro-influencers for their respective audiences, setting a region for their exposure and enabling venues to quickly determine whether or not an influencer is aligned with the own values.
6. Cold-call emails
Although the meaning of “influencer” has become very loose, an influencer’s presence on Swayy predicates an affiliation with travel-based social media. We narrow the “vast majority of cold-call approaches” down to a formal application process putting the relationship on a professional footing. Each influencer profile lays out their metrics, previous travel collaborations (with links) and all social media links. If it’s materially relevant, it’s on there. If there’s something specific you wan’t to check further, just start a chat and ask the influencer.
7. Irrelevant applications
Although Kate Jones, marketing and communications manager at the Dusit Thani, asserts that “only about 10 percent of the request she receives are worth investigating”, this figure balloons when all the applicant influencers are pre-vetted, bot-free, and offer relevant audience demographics. Through Swayy, the number of influencers worth investigating will jump to as much as 87%. An 8x increase in relevance.
With this in mind, we showed Kate our solution and this is what she had to say about it:
“This is super impressive.” Marketing & Communications Manager at the Dusit Thani. (We of course also asked for permission to quote her).
8. The influencer “entitlement mentality”
The “entitlement mentality” of so many “wannabe” influencers is likewise avoided by something as simple as our feedback system. Working with influencers who have both a high Swayy feedback score creates a level of professionalism often missing from cold-call emails. Swayy’s tool helps venues to manage requests in an organised, orderly and accountable manner, allowing hotels to retain full control through our transparent, closed-loop process.
9. Extra deliverables
Our influencers can offer “more than just social media posting” through their flexible deliverables. If you’re looking for a drone expert or someone to train staff in social media, it can very easily be added to your formalised agreement through Swayy. And if you have any questions throughout the process, we’re easy to reach and happy to help.
10. Making sure the benefits are mutual for both hotel and influencer
Our system also helps the influencers themselves. As professionals who are often themselves very busy, the importance of trusted and experienced host venues shouldn’t be underestimated. Through Swayy, influencers gain access to hotels already “prepared for influencer stays”. In simple terms, Swayy helps them optimize and organize influencer visits whilst maintaining full control.
11. Growing an influencer/business relationship
We offer an end-to-end solution, solving hotel frustrations beyond the first touchpoint of influencer interaction. Whether it’s building an influencer/venue relationship or controlling deliverables, Swayy grants you more than just a database of trusted contacts.
On average, Swayy clients used to spend 56 minutes trying to track down all relevant information and then examine an influencer’s “aesthetic”, tone, and previous work to make sure they’re the “right fit”. But with Swayy’s tool, it takes as little as 8 minutes to create a listing, evaluate an influencer, check their work and rate them. In an industry where time is scarce and enormously valuable, Swayy will help make your life significantly easier.
In summary, Swayy streamlines the entire process. From the discovery stage to influencer reviews, the entire relationship between business and influencer can be navigated quickly and safely. Not only does this take major steps to protect all parties involved, but it dramatically increases the number of influencer requests specifically relevant to your venue worth looking into.
So far, we’ve answered every problem “Instagram Wannabe-Stars” pose to help our clients around the world.
By Angharad Miller