It has become very common that more companies every day want to invest in social media creators content’ for advertising purposes. And that’s because today, influencers are considered to have more “power” than celebrities themselves.
But a recently found piece of information says that you and I are paying these influencers too (If you live in Texas, of course). That is because Texas is using taxpayer money to fund influencer marketing campaigns to attract more visits to the state.
This is the case with a blogger named Jane Ko. Ko has one of the most popular Instagram accounts in Texas. A taste of Koko. She started about 11 years ago talking about Austin TX. His account has grown considerably to 100,000 followers in no time.
“There are people who might have started following me yesterday, today, or ten years ago. But they come to me because they like what I’m sharing. But also because they trust my judgment” She said. Running an Instagram account this big is full-time and Ko has had to work a lot and visit hundreds of restaurants and brands. Ko is considered one of the Top 18 social media influencers Texas has been paying since 2019.
“I’m so excited to travel all over Texas. And keep working with them” she mentioned. “I’ve been here my entire life. And I love Texas. It is very likely that I will never leave”.
The state of Texas has been using taxpayer money to fund marketing campaigns since 2019. At a total cost of approximately $118,267.40. Being a content creator has become a real job and one of the best paid.
In Ko’s case, Texas has paid her 3 times since 2020. But previously the state has hired 5 more influencers multiple times to promote 2 to 3 campaigns each. Using the popularity of influencers is definitely one of the most effective forms of marketing.
“I think it’s the most profitable way. Just because of the amount of reach it can generate,” she said. “And based on similar platforms like TikTok. It brings it to life, to a destination”.
KUVE requested an interview from the Governor’s office, and in response, a spokesperson for the Tourism Division said:
“Travel Texas partners with social media content creators, often referred to as influencers, to highlight the state as a destination of choice for travelers. Content partnerships with Travel Texas are thoroughly vetted by the experts at our social media agency to ensure they will deliver a return on investment in line with industry standards for successful content views and engagement. Influencer content is an effective way to highlight many different aspects of travel around the state of Texas to highly tailored audiences based on their personal interests, location, age, and more. Currently, Travel Texas works with influencers as part of its larger social media strategy. Influencer partnerships account for a small portion of the overall Travel Texas marketing budget and are utilized in a highly strategic manner.”
Ko made it clear that working with Texas is something she is quite excited about because promoting the state comes naturally to her platform.
“Whether it’s things to do in Austin or where to eat. But even going outside of the state, any brand that works with me knows that they’re going to get access to a certain demographic that they might not be able to get access to,” Ko said.
Travel Texas spokesperson says that in 2019, $83 billion spendings had a $169.8 billion impact on the Texas economy.
The investment is recovered and double is earned.