A New Chapter in Influencer Marketing?

Posted 23rd March 2021

A unique element of influencer marketing is the genuine and organic level of engagement that real people bring. Users are inherently attracted to creative content, honesty, relatability and the down-to-earth-ness that real people possess. 


However, new moves in the influencer marketing industry have seen a change to the typical organic format that creates influencers. UK Television giants Channel 4 have decided to partner up with TikTok, in order to “super serve young audiences.” As explained in the linked article, the move is part of a new digital strategy planned by the channel called ‘Future4’ – designed to focus on streaming services and social media in an effort to target younger audiences – which will allow Channel 4 to post branded content on TikTok with the platform’s pre-approval. 


This marks an interesting turning point in the world of influencer marketing, rather than creators building an audience and getting engagement organically as done previously, large brands like Channel 4 want to get in on the action themselves by partnering up with TikTok and getting their own pre-existing TV stars to become “influencers” on the app. The partnership means the exclusive content uploaded onto Channel 4’s account featuring these influencers will be boosted, and they’ll hit the ground running in terms of engagement and views. 


Up until recently, creators and brands alike have had to learn to master the art of generating engagement themselves – normally without paid boosts or advertisements. This involved employing organic techniques such as search engine optimisation (SEO), uploading at optimum times, eye-catching thumbnails/graphics, clever or enticing wordplay and more, all in an effort to maximise their overall engagement at no cost. Utilising these techniques alongside creative and high quality content makes for a winning combination in a digital influencer. 


Though with the news of this Channel 4/TikTok launch and partnership, as well as a number of other brands who have really begun to prioritise the growth of their social media platforms, it looks like the influencer space could be changing dramatically. We look forward to seeing the changes that will be brought about through the increase of big media business in the influencer marketing space, though we hope that the influencers who rise up organically will remain an integral part of social media platforms.