JOICO European Design Team Member Ijan Davies looks at the difference between these two roles in our industry as they can be confused.
Influencers and educators are two very important groups within the hairdressing industry and in many other sectors too. The importance of social media has completely revolutionised the world of education and we are finding that this has a big part to play when it comes to showcasing professional skills and when influencing younger generations.
But what is the difference between influencers and educators? Following a recent IG TV that I held with one of my good hairdressing friends, it felt right to discuss this and show exactly what each group does for our industry,
The Influencer Role
What is it?
An influencer is in front of any information and tows this information along behind them which in turn, influences those who follow to take an interest in them and their content. An influencer is about ‘the influential person’, their personality and their content – the information is secondary,
How does an influencer differ from an educator when it comes to delivering information?
When delivering information, we find that an influencer chats about the product, gives a 360 degree view of the product and will give instructions on how to use. Generally the product review will be more of an overview of the topic or product, keeping this short and sweet at all times as to engage the followers and avoid bombarding them with too much information.
Is an influencer more important than the information that is being delivered?
I would say yes. It’s important to remember that in some cases, the influencer is being paid to deliver this information, yet they see this as more of a brand building exercise. The influencer and the brand use each other to deliver information to a market they may not have yet targeted or reach.
Is an influencer an important role?
Yes. The influencer is a new role but one which is extremely important to every single industry. The influencer is a modern-day marketing tool, allowing brands to relay information to a wider market of people, some of which they may not have encountered previously. Influencers are available around the world, meaning that this is a cost-effective way to marketing your brand or information.
The Educator Role
An educator is someone who puts the information first, putting themselves behind this, in a secondary position. Their goal is to share the information, educating those who are interested and allowing them to build on their own skill. An educator takes no personal gain.
How does an educator differ from an influencer when it comes to delivering information?
An educator delivers information in a different way compared to an influencer. In general, an educator is there to deliver in depth and detailed information ensuring that they cover all bases possible. An educator looks at the reasoning behind the information that is being delivered, the pros and the cons, the methods in which the information can be used and also the ways in which the information can be used in future.
Is an educator only an educator when delivering education in person or online?
No, an educator is an all-rounder who shares information continuously throughout everything that they do. Whether it be at a seminar or workshop, on social media or on the salon floor, an educator is someone who continuously ‘plays it forward’ and continually passing on their knowledge to others, with a view to helping others progress in their own career.
Where do you start when it comes to becoming an educator?
Becoming an educator requires hard work, dedication and passion for the industry that you are part of. Anyone can become an educator if they are a specialist in a specific area and have a desire to share knowledge and help others learn new skills and progress in their own career. I would advise working with your partnered product company and looking to see what education requirements are in need and where you can begin your education career. Whether online or in person, there is always a starting position, you just need to take your time and find your niche.
Is there still a demand for educators?
100% yes. Education is the foundation of our industry, and we rely on continuous education for our industry to evolve and progress. Hairdressing is an industry that will always need education, it is vitally important to the success of our industry and that of those who are employed in this industry. The next generations are continually coming through the ranks and will forever require education to allow them to reach the levels required and their own goals.