It’s no secret that influencers are slowly becoming less and less authentic as brands clamber to work with them and take advantage of their large follower base. However, The Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) has recently released a report highlighting that brands are at risk of severe reputational damage due to the lack of care in following the proper guidelines when working with influencers. Fake reviews and misleading/unproven claims are on the rise and the CIM are concerned that brands don’t understand the implications that they bring.
Despite hefty fines and court battles, brands could expect to take huge reputational hits once consumers see through the lies. Chris Daly, chief executive of the CIM said, “38 per cent of the people we spoke to as part of our research told us they would lose trust in an organisation or turn off from it on social media if they discovered that content the brand claimed to be real wasn’t genuine.”
Earlier this week, angry Twitter users backlashed against Noel Edmonds after he posted a claim that an electronic box manufactured by Swiss firm EMP pad could cure cancer.
Although EMP pad didn’t breach any advertising rules as they said it did not agree with comments he made on Twitter “in any way, shape or form”, the ASA are still going to be reviewing marketing claims on the firm’s website.
Sports nutrition supplier, Protein World also recently came under fire after The Sun, who have been carrying out their own investigations, claimed that the shakes – which are said to help weight loss – have “17 times more carbs than claimed on the label”.
Although the brand has not yet been investigated by the ASA as a result of these claims, one could argue that the dozens of reality stars such as Ferne McCann from TOWIE are posing with a product that could potentially make people put on weight – claiming that it helps them stay lean.
These insights come two weeks after the ASA reported that The number of digital ads being investigated this year has been double that of TV campaigns looked into by the watchdog.
This demonstrates the changing landscape of advertising regulation and how the number of internet cases will continue to grow faster than those of the small screen.