As we hurtle towards the conclusion of this year’s Love Island – the final is only one week away – it’s easy to forget amid the intrigue, love triangles and handing out of NVQs (if you know, you know) that it’s actually a game show.
However, the prize of £50,000 for the winning couple pales into insignificance compared with what the most popular contestants can go on to earn.
You don’t even have to be in the villa for long. First to be dumped in the current series was Shannon Singh, a former glamour model and DJ turned – yes, you guessed it – influencer, with more than 332,000 followers on Instagram. Despite lasting just two days in the villa, Singh can now command thousands for a single post on Instagram.
Finding love may be the name of the game but contestants will be looking to also find at least half a million new followers on social media, along with brand deals and press opportunities, following in the footsteps of the likes of Molly-Mae Hague, who despite not winning the series has a whopping 4.8 million followers on Instagram, and is landing contracts worth millions of pounds.
Some of the boys may be eyeing the rise to fame of Love Island graduate Kem Cetinay, who since appearing on the show in 2017 has forged a career in TV presenting.
Amid the current crop of Islanders likely to enjoy success as an influencer is Essex fashion blogger Kaz Kamwi. One of the original contestants, Kaz will be hoping her co-ordinated outfits and infectious personality help her attract hundreds of thousands of new followers.
Another big personality is lettings manager and Guide Dogs UK volunteer Faye Winter. Never one to hide her light under a bushel, Faye is open about her cosmetic surgery and has never knowingly shied away from confrontation.
Meanwhile, easy-on-the-eye Welsh bricklayer Liam Reardon may have hefted his final hod after his antics in Casa Amor and subsequent reunion with Millie have made him an island favourite. Even footage of him having a nap went viral.
What makes a good influencer?
At Faith, we work with a range of different influencers, from ‘yellow sticker’ bloggers to reality TV stars and personal trainers. What sets them apart is their passion for their subject – whatever they post about, they actually care about it and are bang up to date with the latest trends. The fact that they’re passionate about their subject also makes them more authentic – today’s consumers can smell a fake a mile away.
Quality of content is also key. Anyone can take a pouting selfie next to a fancy candle; an engaging influencer needs to work hard on creating top-notch content. Depending on the subject, some will spend months creating the right content, from identifying the right location and outfits to hashtag research and working on copy with brand partners.
In a survey, the Content Marketing Institute found only 53 per cent of marketeers deemed their content ‘moderately successful’ with a further 22 per cent describing performance as ‘minimally successful’ – with lack of time spent on content creation given as the main reason for poor performance.
It’s also vital to manage your community. As well as growing a following, much of an influencer’s time is spent answering questions, holding competitions and managing disagreements. Authentic influencers who spend time answering DMs, commenting and liking create a powerful bond with their following.
Great influencer marketing should appear effortless, creating great relationships between the influencer, their audience and the brands they represent; thankfully, beginning your career prancing around in tiny shorts or a bikini and shouting ‘I got a text!’ remains optional.