Digital influencers poised to become 'more powerful'

The digital influencer bubble is not going to burst and influencers will become a "stronger and more powerful voice in marketing", according to a leading beauty marketer.

Fish: created the 60-Second Hair Challenge competition along with James
Fish: created the 60-Second Hair Challenge competition along with James

Krista Byrne, marketing manager at KMI Brands, which manufactures toiletries under brands including Fish, Orla Kiely and Ted Baker, told Campaign that digital influencers have the "authenticity element" and "that credibility sells". 

According to Byrne, KMI – which co-founder and former chief executive Will King describes as a "boutique Procter & Gamble" – is increasing its focus on influencers. The company is still headed up by Herbie Dayal, who co-founded King of Shaves and is the founder of KMI brands.

KMI manages its digital influencer programme through its in-house PR team.

Byrne explained: "Men’s print is a dying breed and in the ones that are still around – GQ and Men’s Health – there is barely a mention of grooming or styling in there. 

"The environment has shifted and the mass-market everyday guy has drastically shifted his media habits – so we need to shift too."

Earlier this month, KMI’s haircare brand Fish partnered digital influencer and male-grooming expert Robin James to launch the Fish 60-Second Hair Challenge. The competition invites consumers to film the best hairstyle they can create in 60 seconds and upload the video to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #60SecondHairChallenge. 

King founded KMI and his eponymous shaving brand King of Shaves in 1993, adding Ted Baker fragrances in 1998 and Fish haircare products in 2001. King sold his shares in the business when it split from King of Shaves in 2009.

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