Los Angeles ice-cream truck owner Joe Nicchi got so sick of self-proclaimed 'influencers' badgering him for free ice-cream that he put up a sign proclaiming that influencers will have to pay double. He then went viral. Does that make him an influencer?
The influencer backlash is gaining momentum and there are many restaurants that simply won’t entertain arrogant requests for free food from self-appointed experts and so-called influencers.
While some restaurants have a marketing budget set aside for influencers there is little to no evidence that someone with a few thousand followers posting a picture of your ice-cream on their social media will have any effect on your sales whatsoever.
“At first I was confused,” Nicchi told the LA Times. "It's like, 'Hey, what's up. So, I don't know if you follow me but I have a 100,000 followers. Could you hook me up with an ice cream? I'll post about you in my story.' ”
“It totally threw me. I'm like, this is a $4 item. What are you talking about?”
However the requests kept coming until it was a normal occurrence. Until Nicchi reached his breaking point. He printed a sign which said “Influencers Pay Double” saying that he would “never give you a free ice-cream in exchange for a post”. The sign got a lot of attention, so he posted a picture on his Instagram of himself posing beside the sign. The post went ‘viral’.
“We’re the anti-influencer influencers,” he told the Guardian.