What is the difference between American bloggers and Russian?
I came across an article today by an entrepreneur who does business in America. He shares his opinion on the experience of working with American bloggers and claims that there is a cardinal difference between them from the Russians. Personally, I have never worked with American influencers. But it was interesting for me to read and understand what are the peculiarities of the American mentality for maintaining Instagram. After all, everything “new” on Instagram is tested and appears in America. And then it comes to us. This article was written on behalf of Andrey Kono, founder of @naturalshilajitresin based in California.
My article is a short retelling of his experience and personal opinion. His perception of business reality can be subjective. Therefore, if you have an opposite opinion or addition, please write about it in the comments.
Betting on influencer marketing
Let me remind you that influencers – (from the English influence – “to influence”) – people whose opinion matters for a certain audience. They are also called opinion leaders. They express this opinion on their Instagram pages, which they treat as full-fledged media. For some, blogging is a real job that they approach with full responsibility. And this means you need to be able to negotiate with brands, comply with agreements, coordinate everything on time and release it “into the online world”.
Andrey made his main bet on promoting his product on such bloggers. The first difference he announced between American and Russian bloggers was the different approach to work. For American bloggers, any cooperation should be “on the level”, as if it were happening between two large companies. Andrey reports that it is unacceptable for American bloggers to take an advance payment and disappear or not get in touch. In the US, everyone values their reputation and this behavior is considered unacceptable. If you have a different opinion from Andrey, please write to us in the comments.
Long-term vs one-time cooperation
Working with millionaire influencers, Andrey has done well with microinfluencers. He explained this with his promotion strategy. Initially, he paid bloggers simply for advertising. But this approach has its own “nuances” and for his business it turned out to be a “losing strategy.” Here are the main reasons:
- Finding a blogger with an audience that is 100% suitable for your product is quite difficult. The audience is always divided into segments. And it may turn out that only a small fraction of the blogger’s audience is suitable for you. And the blogger has to pay 100%.
Short-term cooperation with a blogger provides a short period for promotion “in the rays of the importance of his opinion.” Today a blogger collaborates with you and advertises your product. After a couple of days, he might as well advertise a competitor’s product or something similar. Then you have no “ad echo” effect. That’s it, his audience switched to other products.
American marketing and advertising approach is very different from Russian reality. This is facilitated by other budgets, mentality, more advanced channels of communication with the consumer, legal issues. Long-term strategies, the conclusion of contracts for years with all possible prescribed situations – this is the American approach. This is also practiced in Russia, but not all companies can afford it. Therefore, if for you the word “strategy” is not just a set of letters. This means you realize the importance of systematic and systematic work to promote your product / service.
Yesterday I saw crayfish for five rubles, but big ones. And today there were three rubles, but small. (c)
In order to change a losing strategy to a successful one, Andrey changed his approach to cooperation with bloggers. But not the direction. Instead of spending his advertising budget on millionaire influencers, he opted for long-term partnerships, but with micro-influencers. With each such micro-influencer, he creates an advertising campaign, the goal of which is to sell his product. The profit is divided according to the agreement.
Personally, this approach reminded me very much of an affiliate program. When you are offered to buy something through someone else’s referral link. You get a discounted product, the owner of the referral link gets some interest or reward.
According to Andrey, micro-leaders are happy to cooperate on a long-term basis. But when you tell the same thing to your subscribers for a very long time, it “burns out”. And he no longer perceives information about the product as meaningful. Since cooperation is based on the division of profits, in this case, “selling beautifully” lies exactly on the shoulders of micro-bloggers.
Natural vs Photoshop
Andrey claims that in Russia, especially among beauty bloggers, there is a tendency to actively use Photoshop. Yes, what about bloggers. Every tenth Instagram user uses, if not filters, then special applications “for beautiful photos”.
In America, naturalness and “authenticity” are increasingly appreciated. But in defense of Russian bloggers, I will say that there is a certain segment that is not afraid to be itself on its page. But whether they will be trusted to advertise some product is another question.
The credibility of the blogger is formed on the basis of the problems that he can deal with. The user sees more than just a beautiful picture. And a person who has solved his problems with the help of some product or service. It makes sense. As such an example, Andrey cites his collaboration with a woman beauty blogger who had problems with acne. She allegedly solved them at the expense of the cosmetics that they created for problem skin.
I am for naturalness in terms of photos. But in Andrey’s words about cosmetics, I see direct advertising. Any sane woman knows that the problem with acne is solved in the first place by diet. Cosmetics are a supportive factor. But not the main one. And if we are not talking about adolescents and hormones, then in this case Andrey just chose the right blogger to advertise his cosmetics.
Instagram doesn’t sell
These are not my words. These are the words of Andrei Kono, who claims that people do not buy directly from Instagram. They say everything is bought mainly through Amazon Prime or on the website. But I doubted these words again. Instagram does so much to get people to buy goods on the network. First, I introduced trade tags with a link to the seller’s website, then I created an @shop page to advertise products / services for small and medium-sized businesses. Now he is actively testing new shopping tags with top companies that allow you to buy goods directly on Instagram. I think that if Andrey’s words were true, then Facebook would not have publicly announced that about 50% of users buy goods on Instagram. Therefore, I disagree with his opinion on this matter.
I completely agree that there is a difference in attitudes towards maintaining Instagram through the difference in our mentality. I personally noticed this by monitoring posts from American friends. Claiming that someone is more professional is not entirely ethical. Any country can have precedents. The principle of “combing one size fits all” has long been outdated. The fact that marketing is more “advanced” in the West is not new to anyone. They have different realities of life.
Friends, if you have experience of communicating with American bloggers and you have something to add or refute, please write in the comments. Happy promotion!