Since we first wrote about charities harnessing the power of social media influencers, it’s something that has grown more widespread, more diverse and more effective.
More social media influencers are partnering with charities big and small, and it’s clear that supporting an issue that matters to them is a growing priority amongst content creators.
While the idea of a charity reaching out to to raise awareness is well established… We thought we’d share some of the other interesting ways social media influence can be a force for good proactively.
Instead of waiting for a charity to slide into their inbox, influencers are forming their own movements – and using their highly engaged audience to build momentum.
Health blogger Lea Lou (@iamlealou3) used the inspiration of her own pregnancy to start a go fund me campaign contributing to Every Mother Counts an organisation devoted to providing pregnant women in developing countries with the support and professional medical attention they need.
It’s a perfect example of an influencer who not only shares their personal values on social media, but galvanises an audience around something close to their heart.
And, as a brand or even an established charity, offering your backing to people like Lea could be an excellent way to demonstrate to a new audience that you care about the same things – and you’re willing to stand up for them.
Ok, a common criticism against influencer marketing is that content creators are social media mercenaries with little or no affection for the stuff they’re paid to promote.
The reality is that good influencers are rarely motivated by money alone – particularly if they’re being paid to champion something they don’t actually believe in.
Instead, we’re seeing more content creators – who could be making big money posting about fizzy drinks or lipstick – getting involved with good causes who typically can’t reward them with anything more valuable than a free t-shirt.
A perfect recent example is Alex Miller (@mralexmiller19905) who has become incredibly well-known (and therefore incredibly appealing to brands) through his appearance on the UK reality show Love Island.
But while a reality TV star could be forgiven for raking in as much income as he can while people are interested, Alex has also chosen to turn up to a major media event in a t-shirt promoting Mental Health is Trending (@mentalhealthistrending) – a movement aiming to shine a spotlight on real experiences of mental health.
Created by Helen Hope (founder of sustainable fashion brand @heartknoxx who also created the t-shirts) Mental Health is Trending earned national media exposure thanks to someone prepared to use their influence to get more people talking about an important cause.
Influencers creating their own good causes and supporting independent charities is one thing, but are they actually going to help change the really big issues?
Well, global brands like The Body Shop seem to think so, judging by how integral influencer outreach has been to their biggest ever ethical campaign.
#ForeverAgainstAnimalTesting is a collaboration between The Body Shop and Cruelty Free International and has so-far gathered over 7 million signatures10 from people who want to see animal testing banned across the world.
Their ultimate aim is to petition the UN to put a stop to the practice – and with such a mighty target in their sights, they have turned to key influencers to help them.
As well as an amazing amount of influencers showing off their campaign t-shirts on Instagram The Body Shop worked closely with superstar pet photographer @thedogist (3.2 million followers) and @louboutinanyc (200k followers) to not only build support online, but also to participate in the first ever animal protest outside the UN headquarters in New York.