The manager and co-owner of the White Banana Beach Club in the Philippines has sparked a debate about the issue of fake influencers looking for free stuff in return for promotion.
As reported by The Independent, the island of Siargao has got the attention of many influencers looking to boost their Instagram profiles with stories of their travels there, offering promotion and eyes from their audiences in exchange for certain perks, which has been noticed by many business owners located there.
After receiving many emails from people claiming to be influencers, the club’s co-owner Gianlucca Casaccia felt that enough was enough.
Posting on Facebook on March 26th, Casaccia let his thoughts be known to so-called influencers looking to come to his business.
“We are receiving many messages regarding collaborations with influencers, Instagram influencers,” he said.
“We kindly would like to announce that White Banana is not interested to ‘collaborate’ with self-proclaimed ‘influencers’. And we would like to suggest to try another way to eat, drink, or sleep for free. Or try to actually work.”
Within a week of the posting online, Casaccia’s post was said to have had over 700 comments, 11,000 likes and 3000 shares. Some commenters praised the businessman for addressing the issue while others criticised and defended influencers looking to work with businesses.
In response to a suggestion from influencer and travel blogger Jovelyn Mateo that if content creators have something to offer, it’s not bad to try to get free stuff, Casaccia clarified that his criticism was of freeloaders rather than real influencers.
The story highlights an ongoing debate around negotiating free services in return for promotions for influencers, whether this is good for business, and how to spot the freeloaders from the real deal.