A novel term is circulating on TikTok these days: "deinfluencing."
This buzzword, boasting over 100 million TikTok views, essentially denotes a counteraction against the endorsement and recommendation of trendy, often pricey products by influencers.
This movement is not only embraced by the TikTok community but also by creators who openly discuss products one shouldn't purchase.
To Deinfluence, or Not to Deinfluence
The ripple effect of "deinfluencing" has raised questions about its impact on the influencer industry as a whole, an industry worth billions through brand collaborations.
Some experts argue that, despite the rebranding, promoting budget-friendly alternatives in response to expensive influencer-endorsed products still falls under the category of influencing.
The Deinfluencing Trend
"Deinfluencing" videos frequently feature individuals showcasing stockpiles of influencer-promoted products they've accumulated. Some aim to reduce excessive spending by deinfluencing themselves, while certain influencers hesitate to contribute to overconsumption.
Emma Austin, a social media marketing manager, is a prominent voice on TikTok advocating for deinfluencing. She provides money-saving tips and encourages conscious purchasing in light of the current economic climate. According to Austin, this trend empowers consumers to make decisions based on their preferences rather than blindly following opinions.
Brands That are Deinfluencing
Brands such as Stanley 1913, Charlotte Tilbury, and Olaplex have been mentioned in deinfluencing content. While Stanley refrained from commenting, the other brands did not respond to inquiries.
Is this the dawn of the influencer era's demise? Austin doesn't believe so. To remain relevant amid deinfluencing, Austin suggests brands partner with influencers precisely aligned with their niche, boasting strong reputations and active engagement within their community.
This is where microinfluencers might excel. Sinead Norenius-Raniere, VP of Product and Influencer Marketing Strategy at Cision, emphasizes that microinfluencers possess the ability to effectively connect with niche audiences and navigate the delicate balance between paid and organic content.
Ali Fazal, VP of Marketing at creator management platform Grin, underscores the shift from one-time activations to ongoing partnerships. This evolution aligns with authenticity, as consumers are more likely to perceive genuine endorsements. Fazal envisions a future where paid placements coexist harmoniously with organic content.
Fighting Influence with Influence Ironically, the very existence of the deinfluencing trend showcases the endurance of influencing. While some leverage deinfluencing for mindful spending, others use it to promote similar, more affordable products.
Influence Isn't Going Anywhere
This highlights that influence isn't dissipating; it's evolving. Claudia Ratterman, Director Analyst at Gartner for Marketers, acknowledges the trend's intention to redirect purchasing choices.
Nonetheless, she points out that even if the shift is toward cost-effective alternatives, the core concept of influencing remains as people continue to look for the next appealing item, regardless of the underlying message.