The IAB South Africa's Digital Influencer Marketing Committee has launched their Document on Definitions. With influencer marketing predicted to grow to approximately $13.8bn in 2021,according to Influencer Marketing Hub, industry members and consumers have not had a definitive guide to work with - until now.
Despite the meteoric growth of influencer marketing, discussions around defining the practice have been few and far between, making South Africa one of the first countries to interrogate and define the discipline that has fundamentally changed the way brands and consumers use digital media.
By agreeing upon a set definition of not only influencer marketing, but of the various tiers and categories that comprise the industry, the committee aims to support all who work in or with this digital marketing niche. As such, standardising the practice is crucial in order to safeguard the interests of all stakeholders. Importantly, it helps to enable the industry to present a united front with the shared goal of growing and supporting South Africa’s digital influencer marketing industry.
Formed in October 2019, the IAB SA Digital Influencer Committee provides guidance to the digital media and marketing industries, empowering them to make educated decisions regarding best practices for influencers in the digital space. Chaired by Stephane Rogovsky, founder and director of R-Squared Agency, the committee’s overarching mandate is to “uphold the best interests of consumers”; while these definitions serve stakeholders, they are ultimately in the best interests of the intended audience: consumers.
Committee objectives include providing clarity as to how to best measure the performance and ROI of influencer marketing campaigns. In addition, an ongoing focus is to work towards further demystifying the industry, as well as clarifying how standard digital marketing metrics can be applied in the context of influencer marketing. Upcoming projects include white papers, benchmark reports, the IAB Insight Series, as well as a podcast.
According to Rogovsky, “It’s not unusual to be in a meeting with different campaign stakeholders like the brand, the creative agency, the media agency, and the influencer marketing partners where everyone has a different understanding even though they’re using the same words or phrases. In the same way, when marketers are proposing metrics or analysing results, you will often find conflicting standards or the same metric being used for vastly different outcomes. What we aim to do is synergise the understanding of the industry, to set the best practices that will afford all players the protection they need, and enhance the opportunities out there, for the continued growth and success of this young, vibrant, and exciting industry.”
This set of definitions is one part of a larger exercise that will see the Digital Influencer Marketing Committee provide quarterly updates on their work. The second phase of the project will entail the addition of influencers to the process in order to ensure that influencers’ realities are aligned with the work of the committee.
Paula Hulley, IAB SA CEO, said, “Influencer marketing is a rapidly growing segment, with an increasing amount of marketing spend being allocated towards it. This set of definitions will enable the IAB SA to effectively empower all industry stakeholders, from brands and agencies, to influencers and consumers. Our thanks go to all who contributed feedback and input in the various roundtables and discussions that preceded the launch of this definitive guide.”
The IAB SA Digital Influencer Marketing Committee’s Document On Definitions is available for free to all industry members and can be downloaded here. The IAB SA is also hosting Episode 31 of the IAB Insight Series on Digital Influencer Marketing on 21 October 2021 at 11am. The webinar is free and open to the full industry to attend. You can register to access the webinar here.