How to spot a fake influencer and other tips for working with influencers

Two women drinking coffee and looking at a mobile phone

It’s no secret that influencer marketing has quickly become a staple for many brands. Businesses are devoting more and more of their budget to influencer marketing and the market is estimated to be worth more than $1.5 billion worldwide.

However, along with any “hot new marketing technique” comes the fraudsters. Social media is fraught with fakes – fake news, fake likes and fake followers. Hell, influencers recently showed how easy it was to fake a trip to Coachella.

So how and why should you care? How can you try and make influencer marketing work for your brand? If done correctly, influencer marketing can have a huge impact – giving you exposure to a brand-new audience and raising the profile of your brand to your target market. Here are our top tips on working with influencers.


Before you do anything, think about you it is you’re trying to reach. If you’re a chocolate brand wanting to appeal to busy mums, don’t look to healthy eating vegan influencers. This sounds obvious, but sometimes brands only look at audience numbers and potential exposure, they don’t think about the fit with the person behind the account. Your product needs to genuinely appeal to the influencer and fit with their brand. This way the message will seem authentic and like a real recommendation. Also think outside the box when it comes to audience. A smaller, niche audience of 5,000 of THE RIGHT people is far better than a huge audience of 500,000 people who don’t fit your buyer persona.


A big following is great, but a good giveaway for someone who’s bought followers is a sudden increase or spike in followers. More followers generally mean more money per post – so influencers are always on the hunt to increase their numbers.

It can cost as little as a few dollars for hundreds of followers. You can easily spot someone who’s purchased likes using the free tool Social Blade. Just enter their handle and you get a great overview of their followers over time. True influencers will have a steady growth, a fake will have noticeable spokes of gains and losses.

Once you’ve looked at their growth, also look randomly at some of their followers. If there are lots of inactive accounts, accounts with no followers etc, it’s likely they’ve paid for some fake followers.


After looking at their followers, take a peek at their engagement. Social Blade also offers an overview of engagement on posts. The figure you want to focus on here is the engagement rate, shown as a percentage.

If an account has 100,000 followers and is averaging 2 comments, I’d say something is amiss. Either their content is appallingly bad, and no one is looking, or those followers are fake.

The average Instagram engagement rate is between 1% and 5%. So, if someone has 2,000 followers, you’d expect to see about 100 likes per post.


How many times do you look at a post on an account you follow and see the following?

  • Great!
  • 100!
  • Awesome!
  • Love it!
  • 😊
  • 💯

These generic comments are usually a giveaway of fake accounts. The tech is good on these robot profiles! Some of them don’t just follow, they comment too! Clever, eh! And a minefield for brands looking to use influencers. Take a good look at the comments and see if people are actually asking questions, tagging friends and having genuine interactions.

Also look out for the same people commenting all the time. Some influencers form pods and agree to all comment and like each other’s posts to increase their engagement figures. If it’s the same 5 people all the time, you may want to rethink this partnership.

Followers to Following ratio

A genuine influencer will have spent time building their audience. To do so organically, they will have liked and followed lots of other accounts. So, their follower to following ratio should be pretty similar (unless you’re a Hollywood celeb, then you don’t need to follow, daahling”. If these numbers are radically different, alarm bells should start ringing.

Strategic thinking

If you find the right influencer and want to go ahead, always take it back to what do you want to achieve. Who do you want to reach and what do you want them to do? Are you better to offer a discount to your influencer which their followers can use? Do you need photography, if so, put a contract in place so you can have access to the images once posted.  This may cost more but can be a valuable asset for your business longer term.

Ask your influencer for some stats before going ahead. If they’re worth their salt. They will use some kind of Analytics programme to track their success, or at the very least, regularly check their Instagram Insights. Ask them to send you some reports on their reach and engagement rates too. It’s always worth getting this information first.

Finally, check out who they’ve worked with before and ask how it went! If you see a competitor brand has worked with this influencer, give them a call and see what kind of return on investment they got, how the working relationship was etc. This will not only give you a good insight into your influencer but will also help you build up your business networks.

In short, an influencer has to influence people, have their respect and encourage them to take action. If an “influencer” can’t do that, then they are unworthy of the title. 

If you need help with your digital marketing strategy or want to know more about working with influencers, give us a call – we’d love to help!

Want to get more hot digital marketing tips straight to your inbox? Sign up to our newsletter! We won’t spam you, we’ll just send you little nuggets of social media news when you want them most. 

Success! You're on the list.
Lush bath bomb

Lush UK exits social media (kind of)

The UK arm of cosmetics company Lush has just announced a drastic change to its social media strategy, basically exiting Facebook and Instagram in their traditional forms.

Lush famously do not pay to advertise their products online or offline. They focus on word of mouth, PR, events and partnerships to promote their brand – along with the amazingly strong scent that wafts up all the way up the high street from their stores.

Their media release said:

“Over the years we have created, published and cross-promoted organic content and conversations with the Lush community across multiple platforms and accounts. However, it has become more and more apparent that these genuine conversations with the Lush Community cannot grow without us paying for the reach and engagement. We are proud of what we have built organically using borrowed platforms, but it is time for a change. An audit of our social content and strategy demonstrated that on average, only 6% of our followers are serviced with our content in their newsfeed because we don’t pay to play. So in an effort to make Lush better educated as both technologists and consumers, we’re making the bold step to evolve our social media strategy.

Going forward the UK strategy is to primarily focus and invest more heavily in our owned platforms, where we have seen stronger engagement, rather than rely so heavily on third parties.”

This shift from social media to owned platforms is a bold and interesting one.  Lush will now be directing people to their website, their Lush Player (home to stories and interviews) and the Lush Lab website and app.

Lush will still be playing in the social space, but via staff profiles, partners, individual shop account and influencers.

I love this new approach and the stand they’re taking against the big boys. Driving people to your owned channels can only be a good thing.

If, as a brand, you don’t pay to advertise and rely on organic content, you’re basically talking to 10% of your audience on social media – so why not look for new ways to engage and inspire?

My biggest concern (if I was their social media manager) would be giving the power to the individual stores and staff members. I would imagine Lush are investing in some heavy-weight brand training for store managers to ensure a consistent tone of voice, content theme and visual look and feel for their social media. Creating a cohesive brand across so many subpages is a serious challenge, but if they manage it, these store pages are going to be able to tailor their content for local audiences, drive direct footfall and sales and build genuine relationships with their neighbours.

Stay tuned guys, this is going to be very, very interesting!

Social Media Wanderlust Communications

We’re hiring – Account Manager opportunity

We are looking for a talented social media manager to join our team. The account manager will offer strategic support and implement digital marketing campaigns for our clients. The role will also be responsible for an experienced account executive, approving content and offering support and guidance when needed. This is a casual role, starting at around 10 hours a week, but with the possibility of growing to around 20 hours a week in the future.

We are a social media and digital marketing consultancy based in Perth, Western Australia.

We offer a range of services including:

  • Strategic Marketing – marketing plans, digital marketing plans and marketing calendars
  • Social Media – developing and implementing digital strategies and campaigns, drafting, scheduling and monitoring social media posts across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linked In and Trip Advisor
  • Social Media advertising – Facebook, Instagram and Google advertising campaigns
  • Copywriting –website copy, blog posts, magazine editorial and social media captions

We specialise in the tourism industry and clients include tourism associations and operators, however we also have clients in the fast-moving consumer goods sector.

The role will involve:

  • Creating annual and monthly digital strategies for clients
  • Creating engaging and beautifully written content for various social media channels including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linked In
  • Scheduling posts in-app and using tools such as Schedugram
  • Social media advertising (predominantly Facebook and Instagram)
  • Monitoring and engagement through software such as Hootsuite
  • Approving copy and content planners written by account executive
  • Managing client relationships
  • Managing account executive
  • Monthly client reporting

We are looking for someone who is tech-savvy, has excellent attention to detail, can work autonomously, is passionate and creative. We would LOVE to hire someone based in Perth, however, we are open to remote working. This is a casual role that is based from home.

Ideal candidate

The ideal candidate will be:

  • Experienced in creating social media strategies
  • Experienced in social media advertising
  • Experienced in managing a large online community
  • Experienced in using Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linked In, Google Analytics, WordPress, Schedugram and Hootsuite
  • Excellent at copywriting for a range of platforms and mediums
  • Excellent at time management
  • Able to work well autonomously
  • Able to use online timesheets and project management tools
  • Experienced in managing a small team / account executive
  • Creative and forward thinking
  • Passionate about staying up to date with social media and digital marketing trends, and able to adapt and change strategies when needed

What we offer

  • The chance to work on high profile brands and exciting digital campaigns
  • Flexible working arrangements – from home, in your own time
  • Supportive working environment
  • Personal development opportunities
  • Competitive hourly rate


For more information, or to submit your resume, please email

Hot tips for copywriting for social media

With social media now dominating the marketing mix, business owners and marketers now have a whole new range of channels to write content for. For years, people have been confident when writing news releases or brochure copy but writing for these new platforms can leave some people feeling nervous and a little stumped. We’ve put together a list of sure-fire ways to take the fear out of your social copywriting and spark your creativity.



Users of social media are fickle. They scroll mindlessly through Instagram and Facebook feed until something really jumps out at them. The image or video is primarily what does this, but you can stop their thumb with some stand-out text too. Think carefully about your headline and what you want it to do. Is it meant to evoke a response, be a call to action or to inform your customer? Whilst we’re not condoning clickbait headlines, remember this is your chance to draw the audience in.

Go back through your previous posts and see which ones have performed best. Use your Facebook and Instagram Insights to see which posts have generated the most engagement. If the images you’ve used are similar, it could be the text making all the difference.


When it comes to social; everyone wants to feel involved. By using an “active voice” you can help add some urgency to your copy and make the reader feel a part of something happening right now.


Bad spelling and grammar are enough to make some consumers unfollow you. If you often type your content directly into Facebook or a content scheduler like Schedugram, you may miss your trusty spellcheck. Download Grammarly for your desktop and you’ll never have that sinking feeling of spotting an error on your post from a week ago. The free tool checks your spelling and grammar across multiple sites, as you type.


Your brand is such an important part of your business, but remember it extends further than just your logo and font. It should run through every bit of marketing you do; especially your copywriting. Think about the most successful brands on social media – they have their tone of voice locked down and it’s consistent across their communications. Match your tone of voice to your business brand. If your brand is fun and quirky, let your conversation be led by that. If you’re representing a more serious business, stick to the more formal tone. Woolworths is one brand that has nailed this on social media. Their tone of voice is cheeky, friendly and ever so slightly sarcastic. They respond to all comments in the same way, often causing great reactions from their followers.


Length of captions for social media is something interesting to play around with. There is no hard and fast rule here – some brands find short and sweet captions work the best, whilst others prefer to story tell in their captions and really take their readers on a journey. Play around with different options and see what works best for you. Again, keep checking your Insights to see which kinds of captions are generating the best return for you. And remember, what works on Facebook might not necessarily transfer to Instagram. You may need different versions of the same message for each channel.


Read, read and read some more! Inhale as much writing as you can. It will help build your vocabulary, get inspiration for your own copywriting and generate new content ideas. Newspapers, magazines, blogs, books, social media channels and everything in between. If you see something you love, make a note and try emulating for your own business.


Practice really does make perfect. Keep practising with different styles of writing and trying new themes, ideas and stories. Always check your Insights so you know what’s working. You may find that an educational / How To style social caption is what really captures your audience. It may not have been your original strategy to produce this kind of content, but if it is working, you should listen to your audience.


Always get a second pair of eyes on your copy BEFORE going live. If you really don’t have anyone to ask, save the version, go do something else for an hour, then come back and re-read. You’ll often spot mistakes after you’ve had time to think about something else.

2020 planner and pen

Want to get more hot digital marketing tips straight to your inbox? Sign up to our newsletter! We won’t spam you, we’ll just send you little nuggets of social media news when you want them most. 

Success! You're on the list.

7 social media video marketing tips for the camera-shy

Next week we are out on location filming some new content for our client Australia’s Golden Outback. Throughout my career, I’ve written countless briefs, scripts and notes for on-camera interviews, and helped project manage the filming. Some people just come to life on camera; speaking easily and naturally and they just invite the viewer in. Others… not so much.

I myself am actually much more confident behind the camera. But in today’s digital world where video is a must-have for savvy digital marketers; how do you create engaging video content if you hate being on-screen?

We’ve compiled our top tips to create engaging and professional looking video content, even for the shyest people out there.


Capture things other than you.

Videos don’t always have to be of you. If you have a product that looks good on camera, or you’re selling an experience or destination – capture that on film and let it be the focus. If it’s talking on camera that bothers you most, don’t worry! Did you know 85% of Facebook video is watched without sound? If you need to explain something, use subtitles to get your point across

Think Vertically.

It used to be that all video content was created “movie style” in landscape mode. However, on Facebook and Instagram vertical footage is now the preferred style. This allows for more tight shots, focusing in on products or a focal point of interest. You can crop yourself out slightly and let the product do the talking.


You can now create animated videos cheaply and easily online. This style not only removes the need for you to be on camera, but it helps to break up other more traditional imagery and video and will stand out on people’s timelines and newsfeeds. Go Animate and Explee are great affordable options that we love.

Practice makes perfect.

If you really need to be on camera (and sometimes, you will) then practice, practice, practice! Now be warned, some people become more wooden with every take and can you hear that they’re reading a script. So try not to keep re-reading what you’re going to say. Rather keep practising being in front of a camera so you get more comfortable. Do a couple of takes without your notes, being spontaneous and see what feels right and sounds like “you”. The more time you spend in front of the camera, the more natural it will feel and you will come across. Remember the latest stats show short videos (between 15 and 30 seconds) work the best on social media. So even if you’re uncomfortable it really isn’t for long; fake it till you make it, baby!

Research for inspiration.

Sometimes a key to finding your own voice is identifying what YOU like in a video presenter. If you see something on Facebook that stops you scrolling, save it and come back to it later. What was it that you liked? The style, the content, the way the person spoke. Use this as inspiration and find people with a similar disposition and style to your own. This is a great way to build confidence and take away the fear of starting with a blank page.

Turn images into video.

There are now heaps of tools you can use, even straight from your mobile phone, to edit together images and short videos into great videos for social media. This is a great way to repurpose content and make it more engaging for your audience. You can even add stickers and emojis to make it more fun for channels like Instagram Stories. Great tools we love are Magisto, InShot and Ripl.

Dive in.

The biggest piece of advice is to just give it a go. Find a style that suits you and you feel comfortable with and just begin! Consumers these days buy into brands they love and they want to know the person behind that brand. Channels like Instagram and Facebook Stories are growing rapidly in popularity and offer the consumer a chance to see “behind the scenes” into your brand. These snippets into you and your brand are a great way to build confidence and connect with your audience in an informal way. There’s no need for polished performances, just an insight into you and your brand.


Want to get more hot digital marketing tips straight to your inbox? Sign up to our newsletter! We won’t spam you, we’ll just send you little nuggets of social media news when you want them most. 

Success! You're on the list.

“There’s no better time than now campaign” with Australia’s Coral Coast

Wanderlust Communications has recently been appointed by Australia’s Coral Coast to assist with the social media elements of their Winter 2017 campaign. The campaign brief was to create a 3-month social media campaign, targeted at the inter and intrastate markets to encourage travel to the Coral Coast region this Winter. The campaign needed to highlight the amazing experiences on offer in the region and convey a sense of urgency to turn interested consumers into visitors.

Wanderlust Communications began by narrowing down and identifying individual target markets and aligning them with a  range of key campaign themes. These themes; including aquatic, beaches, off the beaten track and wildlife, were crafted to help tell the story of the region and bring the experience to life. The tagline, “there’s no better time than now” was chosen to underpin the entire strategy and add a sense of urgency to the consumer. Wanderlust Communications worked with branding and design agency, Kate Hayes Design to create a new logo to be used across the campaign.


Tactical elements of the campaign included a structured content plan for Facebook and Instagram to promote the entire region over a 3-month period, with regular posts crafted to support the overarching messaging. This content plan was aligned with the key campaign themes and supported by a Facebook advertising program. Facebook advertising was used to create a highly targeted and structured digital advertising campaign.

Australia’s Coral Coast have been executing the offline elements of the campaign including TV adverts, newspaper advertising, radio promotions, public relations and a billboard campaign. The “there’s no better time than now” theme has been used throughout the integrated campaign and can be seen here on a billboard in Perth.

0186104-Shenton_Park_Subway-WA-0000087793-2325014 (005)

The campaign runs until the end of August and Wanderlust Communications are thrilled to be working with Australia’s Coral Coast again.

Great Temptations appoints Wanderlust Communications

West Australian bakery, Great Temptations, has appointed Wanderlust Communications to manage its digital marketing. The company hand-bakes delicious sweet treats from fresh, real ingredients and supplies hundreds of independent stores across Australia.

Amy Gough, managing director of Wanderlust Communication, said she was delighted to be working with Great Temptations.

“Great Temptations are a fantastic, family-run business making a really delicious range of products. As lovers of WA business and cake… this is the start of a fantastic partnership! We will be working with Great Temptations to define their target consumer and create a digital marketing strategy to deliver real results. Activity will include monitoring and engagement across social media, new content creation and social media activations. We can’t wait to get started.”

“With the majority of our client base being tourism related, we’re really excited about diversifying into the fast moving consumer goods arena. We can’t wait to get started.”

You can find your local Great Temptations stockist here.

Mufnut 6 pk.jpg

Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef appoints Wanderlust Communications

Wanderlust Communications is delighted to announce that they have been appointed by Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef as their social media consultancy.

Sal Salis is a remote, beach-side safari camp nestled in the dunes of WA’s Cape Range National Park, on the shores of the stunning Ningaloo Reef.  A highly-regarded property, Sal Salis has been named one of Harper Bazaar’s top 150 hotels in the world and came in at number four on Lonely Planet’s Best Places to Stay in the World!  

Amy Gough, owner of Wanderlust Communications, said she was thrilled to be working with such a unique and inspiring business.

“Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef is more than a luxury accommodation provider. They give their guests an experience that is truly transformational. They educate and empower their guests to love and understand the natural environment. People staying at Sal Salis experience the pristine Ningaloo Reef in the most magical ways; through sea kayaking, snorkelling, bird spotting, gorge walks and alfresco picnics.

“Sal Salis is a wonderful business with an amazing story. It already has an amazing reputation and we can’t wait to increase this further with a cohesive and engaging digital marketing strategy.”


Image courtesy of Rachael Steadman for Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef.