Influence, prey to too many clichés? This is the feeling of Aurélie Siou, Director of Influence & Public Relations of Cision France, at the origin of a book which collects the testimonies of media, communication and digital experts around digital influence. , in a context of denunciations of the excesses of certain influencers. Interview.
After being received in November 2022 at the National Assembly, alongside other actors (agencies, influencers, etc.), to work on the status of influencer and its supervisionCision continues to preempt the subject of influence regulation. The media relations management tool collected expert testimonies (legal, tech, prospective, etc.) and condensed them into a book unveiled on January 24, in digital format. In summary, in particular, several questions: “Trust, authenticity, proximity, experience… what are the mechanisms that make us “follow” and “listen” to an influencer?” ; “What role do the media have in the visibility of influencers?” ; “What legal responsibility for the influencer, the agency, the brand? ; or, again, “Should we distinguish organic influence from monetized influence, “natural” influencers from “product” ones?” (see the summary of the book at the end of the interview).
To explain its approach, Cision also publishes its Manifesto for responsible influence and calls for the advent of a “professional, positive and ethical” influence. We asked Aurélie Siou, Director of Influence & Public Relations at Cision France, and author of this book, to give us a inventory of influence in 2023 and its exchanges with the political world.
Emarketing.fr: What are the challenges of influence marketing today?
Aurelie Siou : “Above all, issues of understanding and acculturation. Evangelization on the understanding of the ecosystem of influence is more necessary than ever and there is still a long way to go. This is the main reason why we wanted publish a white paper entitled “Digital influence by those who do it.” Who better than experts on the subject to shed much-needed light? Who says influence thinks reality TV. It is an established fact. Whether it is public opinion, politicians or the younger generations, influence is too often apprehended solely through the prism of the French exiled in Dubai and the stars of reality TV, which represents only 1 % of influencer market. An over-mediatized and over-exposed microcosm. Who says influence thinks influence marketing or influencer marketing: this is another established fact. But influence is so much more than that! Influence is the result of an influence strategy and the message deployed through influence communication.
Do you think regulation of the influence sector is essential?
The regulation of the sector of influence has become essential in view of the excesses that are practiced on social networks – endangering the health of others, highlighting misleading and fraudulent advertisements such as the sale of products, services, financial investments, counterfeiting, CPF scam, sale of false administrative documents, misinformation, normalization of irresponsible behavior. Nevertheless, it should be remembered that 99% of actors in the influence market have been self-regulating very well for the past ten years without the need for intervention from anyone.
The year 2022 – and early 2023 – has been a pivotal year and great progress has taken place, such as the creation, a few days ago, of UMICC (the union of influencer professions and content creators ). Stay at define the status of influencer (an overused term) and influencer agentto resolve the prejudice of the lack of transparency in the economic models and remunerations for brands and influencers and to prohibit the double practice of agent of influencers and consulting agency in influence marketing.
What have you learned from the working meetings organized at the National Assembly at the end of 2022?
“The single influence market does not exist. It is a protean market”
That things move forward and that the contours of professional influence take shape, but, also and above all, that the commitment and action of the actors and actresses of virtuous influence, of which I am a part, begin to make their voices heard ! We are at a turning point: the organic, virtuous, positive influence of expertise and exemplarity regains its letters of nobility ! Commercial, mercantile, monetized influence must become more responsible, more ethical, more framed, more legal. First of all, we had to ask the following question to Aurélien Taché (environmental deputy from Val-d’Oise who tabled a bill aimed at “to regulate commercial and advertising practices related to the influence market on the Internet”Ed): what influence are you talking about in your bill? Because the single influence market does not exist. It is a protean market. The influence comes from an Anglo-Saxon term, there are many nuances.
What is shocking today is the lack of real penalties towards the influencer or influencer agent when it promotes dubious products, or encourages unsafe practices. Scams are certainly an anchor but should not be the main objective of this fight. It is quite the opposite of the influence linked to the profession of communication which is the fact of positioning a brand message. An organic, positive, lasting, transparent, legal influence, within which the message is taken up, appreciated and creates commitment. It is the effect of good communication which is long-term, visible and multi-channel. And, ultimately, far removed from the reality TV stream.
We were invited to the discussions because Cision has been a partner of communicators for 150 years and we have always been able to support brands, convey and amplify their messages and protect their reputation. Every day, we see impactful and positive communication strategies that make sense and make brands shine. Every day we see so many unsuccessful influencer campaigns bordering on bad buzz. Messages committed without real legitimacy, partnerships with influencers disconnected from the values of the company, dubious legal framework… Poorly put together, these campaigns place brands in the spotlight.
Contents of “Digital influence by those who make it” :
– Influencing and Communication : State of play of the influence market. Trust, authenticity, proximity, experience… what are the mechanisms that make us “follow” and “listen” to an influencer? What is deep influence versus light influence? The micro-influencer to sell and the macro-influencer for notoriety or the opposite? What are the differences between B2B and B2C influence? How to manage a crisis when the influence slips?
With Emilie Cabanié / Andréa Bensaid / Nicolas Bordas/ Frédéric Fougerat / Camille Jourdain / Guillaume Mikovski / Clifford Mahu / Julien Morisson /
– Influence and Media : Are influencers a threat to journalism? What are the differences between a journalist and an influencer? Do we confuse influence and influencer? How to bring influencers and journalists together? What role do the media have in the visibility of influencers?
With Philipp Schmidt / Bruno Maltor / Julie Mamou-Mani / David Creuzot / Lucie Beudet / Myriam Roche /
– Influence, Abuses & Legislation : what missions for the DGCCRF and the ARPP? What legal responsibility for the influencer, the agency, the brand? What legal, tax and social status for the influencer and his agent? What are the mistakes to avoid when collaborating with an influencer? What is the Responsible Influencing Certificate?
With Alain Hazan / Gaelle Loinger-Benamran / Mohamed Mansouri / Sandrine Cormary / Audrey Chippaux /
– Influencing & Tech : without tech, no internet, no social networks, but how do digital pioneers use influence, what strategy for what results? Are the champions of French Tech and its entrepreneurs on the Next40 list influencers like the others? How do you become an influential entrepreneur?
With Fabio Gauthier / Guillaume Ferrand / Emmanuel Vivier / Thomas Benzazon / Arnault Chatel /
– Influence & Business Strategy : What place for leaders in an influence strategy? How to build and defend your network of influence? Should we distinguish the organic influence from the monetized one, the “natural” influencers from the “product” ones? How to involve your CEO in an influence strategy to embody your brand?
With Marion Darrieutort / Antoine Lévèque / Edouard Fillias / Caroline Faillet / Bruno Fridlanski / Constance Henault / Charlotte Euzen / Jérôme Bondu /
– Influence, Trends & New Worlds : Are new forms of influence emerging? Can influence positively impact our lives? Do influencers have a role to play in “educating” consumers on more sustainable and responsible lifestyles? Can influence and sobriety be compatible? Is the future of “impact influencers”?
With Samir Amellal / Gilles Babinet / Karine Tisserand / Natacha Quester /