Amazon wants to impose its influence on social platforms

Amazon wants to impose its influence on social platforms


For three days in May, Amazon gathered more than a dozen Instagram, YouTube and TikTok stars in the coastal city of Todos Santos, Mexico, as they enjoyed the luxurious weekend that internet influencers have come to expect from the growing number of companies trying to cash in on their online fame.

The online retail giant took over the luxury Paradero Resort and renamed it the Amazon Resort. The outing was for members of Amazon's influencer program, which was launched five years ago and allows content creators to earn money by recommending the company's products through their social media accounts.

Amazon has held events earlier this year in New York and Los Angeles. The company is trying to enter the influencer marketing industry, which jumped from a market of about $1.7 billion in 2016 to an estimated $13.8 billion in 2021.

It is expected to grow to $16.4 billion this year. This reflects the amount of money companies are spending on the increasingly popular marketing channel.

Influencers are seen as key taste makers, who can help companies unlock access to a specific demographic, and often have engaging fan bases. Many social media stars are now getting lucrative deals from major brands.

In addition to the sumptuous meals and spa deals at the Amazon resort, the host company held a workshop to help creators create an Amazon storefront, a dedicated page where they can post shoppable videos and a selection of their favorite products to drive purchases and earn commissions.

Attendees can also stroll through a curated pop-up store featuring items for sale on Amazon. Ray Boyce, one of the attendees, was part of the company's influencer program for about a year.

She said she joined the program after regularly hosting makeup tutorials on Amazon Live, the company's live streaming service, which provided her with some extra income.

Amazon Attracts Internet Influencers To Join Its Program

Boyce turned what was considered a hobby a decade ago into a full-time job. She has more than a million followers on her YouTube and Instagram accounts.

"I now work with Amazon and earn commissions on products that people usually buy themselves," Boyce said. I can make money from that as well as brand deals, YouTube, Tik Tok and everything else.

Amazon is not the first company to allow social media influencers to take luxury trips. And in recent years, after social media makers have proven their worth, brands have invited them on paid trips, usually to promote their latest products, post content that can go viral, and persuade other influencers to join in.

For Amazon, influencers act as unofficial marketers for its online store, which is the company's largest source of income. Influencers are required to apply to join the program, and Amazon studies metrics such as the number of followers they have before accepting them.

“Content makers today are decentralized media companies,” said Ryan Dirt, CEO of influencer marketing startup Influential. They can direct their audience wherever they want through their YouTube, Tik Tok and Instagram channels.

Amazon pays influencers a commission any time a customer purchases an item they recommend. Payments vary depending on the type of product.

But influencers earn more if they promote Amazon games and beauty items, which offer 20% and 10% commissions, respectively.

Amazon clarified that influencers are not required to post content while they are at the Mexico event. But many have, including creator Kirsten Titus, who posted a YouTube video detailing her experience.

"The events facilitate a sense of community among our creators," said Amazon Creative Growth Director. These events are meant to educate, inspire and thank them for being a part of our programme.

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