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Balancing fly fishing with ethical marketing can be a tricky task. As companies choose to use influencers in their marketing, the issue becomes increasingly polarized. You can see this conversation pop up in comment sections and tackle shops all around the world, but it can be a challenge to hear all sides of the conversation from these limited viewpoints. 

This is why we invited Kirk Deeter, Tom Larimer, and Bridget Fabel on to this episode of Into the Backing. With their varied opinions on all sides of the issue, you’ll hear a balanced conversation in one place. Join us to hear the discussion on the stigma surrounding the use of influencer marketing in the outdoor industry. 

Outline of This Episode

  • [3:15] Kirk Dieter on Pro pricing
  • [9:08] How did Bridget get started in the outdoor industry?
  • [12:34] What is the difference between an influencer and a pro?
  • [17:06] Why is influencer a bad word?
  • [32:32] Why is it that non-industry advertising is the breaking point?
  • [37:22] Is one of the issues that people see fishing as a job?
  • [41:58] Great influencers can help fisheries
  • [47:49] How influencing changed Bridget’s guiding career
  • [53:02] Why are influencers almost always women?
  • [59:50] Are people offended when others make fishing into a business?

Many voices, varying opinions

With social media, we often hear one side screaming against another. We rarely get to sit down to hear varying opinions on a given issue. That’s why we invite voices from multiple sides of a given topic to sit down and chat on Into the Backing. 

Today, Kirk Deeter joins the conversation as a fly fishing writer, author, and editor. Tom Larimer runs the marketing for Loomis and adds to the corporate side of the conversation. Bridget Fabel joins in as a social media influencer. 

We might hear different perspectives by reading comments or Instagram stories, however, there is nothing like sitting down for an old fashioned conversation. Join us for this one to hear the varying opinions on balancing ethical marketing in the outdoor industry.

What is the difference between an influencer and a pro?

In the past, pro staff were the ones who received brand discounts from companies. Then, rather than pro staff, brand ambassadors were highlighted. Now influencers have taken over these discounts. What are the differences between these titles? 

Pros are professionals which means they make money at what they do. A pro makes money as a fishing guide or in whatever field they are in. 

There can be different types of influencers. Some influencers have never held a rod, a gun, or a bow in their lives. On the other hand, other influencers really know what they are talking about. Regardless of their experience, influencers make money off of advertising by marketing different products. 

Why do companies use influencers to market their products?

Tom explains that Loomis has ambassadors that they use to market their products. They define these ambassadors as people who hold a conversation either on a regional or national level. 

He mentions that the fishing industry has adopted these ways of marketing from other markets. They are looking to heighten the angler experience by using ambassadors with like-minded ideas to build their brand. When people see influencers out there using their products, it builds a level of trust in the company. 

Why is influencer a bad word?

Some influencers are quite authentic. They’ve paid their dues and people respect them. However, others are influencers simply because they have a lot of followers. These are the ones that people see as being less authentic. 

Jealousy is one reason that people have negative feelings about influencers. On social media, it seems like these influencers don’t do any work, yet they reap all the benefits. 

This conversation is multi-faceted and we cover a variety of topics. Listen in to learn why many of the influencers you see on social media are women, how great influencers can save fisheries, and why people get offended about how others make a living. 

Resources mentioned on this episode

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