Unilever invests in influencer marketing platform CreatorIQ, aims to drive transparency forward
Unilever’s future-focused venture capital arm, Unilever Ventures, has just invested in an influencer marketing software platform that’s helping to drive the evolution of marketing. It ensures that influencer marketing can be trusted by consumers and safely used by brands.
Along with TVC Capital and Affinity Group, the company has participated in a $12 million investment round in CreatorIQ. That company makes software to manage and optimise campaigns and the brands that have used it so far include Ralph Lauren, Disney and Mattel.
For Unilever, which has very publicly declared its commitment to ethical business practices, the platform can help it improve the integrity of influencer marketing for its brands, boosting transparency and allowing it to measure influencer marketing’s impact, as well as helping it in its mission to act as an ethical trailblazer and inspire the wider industry to be more transparent.
That’s particularly important in a beauty sector that is now relying heavily on social media influencers to get its marketing messages across as trust in these influencers can be undermined by issues such as follower fraud and audience duplication.
The cash will be used to speed up the growth and development of AI-enabled software.
Unilever has been expanding its prestige beauty operations in recent periods and only this week it emerged that it’s acquiring the high-end Tatcha skincare brand, so influencer marketing is becoming ever more important to its operations.
Vasiliki Petrou, executive VP and group CEO at Unilever Prestige, said: “The entire digital advertising ecosystem understands the important role creators are playing in advertising and brand-building; the industry needs forward-thinking companies to address issues like data transparency and fraud.
“CreatorIQ is proactively developing solutions that empower Unilever to continue to set global measurement standards for the influencer marketing industry. Their platform enhances the quality and integrity of our brands’ campaigns by safeguarding against follower fraud and brand safety issues.”
And Igor Vaks, founder and CEO at CreatorIQ added: “The most impactful brand stories no longer come directly from brands. They are told in collaboration with passionate advocates who are helping build culturally relevant companies by delivering these stories to the world. Brands are turning to influencer marketing because it drives results, but only enterprise-grade technologies can help them succeed at scale alongside older and more mature marketing channels.”
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