Reviewer VS. Influencer…. What’s The Difference?

I’ve been doing this blog for years now. And I do a lot of product reviews. But a recent conversation with a colleague was a genesis for this article. In short, we were having a conversation about the differences between a reviewer and an influencer. I consider myself the former, but the real question was, what’s the difference between the two?

Let’s start with the influencer. An influencer works with brands to tell a story about a product or service from the brand’s perspective. It’s typically all positive with little to no negatives mentioned. If you’ve seen a celebrity talk about a product or service on TV and claim that because they like the product or service in question that you’ll love it, and they avoid talking about any negatives, then you’ve seen an influencer in action. The thing about influencers is that you won’t get an objective opinion from an influencer. So if you are looking to buy a product and you want an objective opinion, you won’t find it with an influencer.

A reviewer on the other hand speaks to the positives and negatives of a product or service. Which makes what they say a lot more objective and useful to someone who wants details about a product or service. A reviewer may work with a brand in terms of getting products, but the brand doesn’t have editorial control over what a reviewer says.

So as I mentioned earlier, I consider myself to be a reviewer. Here’s why. If you see anything on my blog that starts with the word “Review” in the title, then what you are reading are my thoughts about the product. Brands do not get a say in what I write. And they have to be fine with that if they want to work with me. Now I do get stuff from some brands either on loan or for free. But I also purchase products products as well. The bottom line is that I like to think that I am as objective as possible. And I won’t trash a product needlessly. Now that doesn’t mean that influencers are bad people. Because they are not. But if you’re looking for the best possible information on a product or service, you should be seeking out reviews whenever possible.

So do you agree or disagree with what I have written? I welcome your feedback and I encourage you to leave a comment and share your thoughts.

2 Responses to “Reviewer VS. Influencer…. What’s The Difference?”

  1. I have to disagree. If any part of your income derives from a source with a vested influence in the content of the review and if an ongoing relationship with the manufacturer or the manufacturer’s recommendation to potential clients is of any value–and you’re not the Dalai Lama–then the relationship and the ‘review’ are suspect.

    • I think you just said what I said in the first couple of paragraphs of this article and described an influencer.

      In my case, brands have zero say about what I write when I review their products. They don’t get to approve my content. And I have long lasting relationships with many of them. If they don’t like what I have to say, then they are free not to deal with me and I am fine with that. That’s why I consider myself a reviewer.

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