Meghan & Harry’s Royal Influence Could be a Boon for Brands

They may not be “senior royals’ anymore, but Meghan & Harry’s royal influence is strong. And it could be a boon for brands moving fast enough to partner with them! Let’s see a few possibilities – and one partnership already in the making – supported by next generation AI-powered social analytics!

Separating from the Royal Family

Meghan and Harry’s super controversial move to take a step back from their involvement with the royal family sent reverberations worldwide – and for good reason. They went against the Queen’s wishes by announcing the news, leaving the Royal family disappointed in its wake.

And both supporters and detractors weighing in about it online:

supports and detractors weighing in on royals decision to step away from senior roles with the family

Why the split? Negative press may have added pressure to the young family. Meghan has claimed unfair treatment by the press, a claim which has been roundly discounted, but was recently corroborated by an independent analysis exploring the sentiment of articles published since May of 2018. It found that 43% of the 843 articles about her were negative, whereas a mere 8% of the articles about Meghan’s much loved sister-in-law, Kate, The Duchess of York, were comparatively so.

In their own words though, they seek to “make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution.” And that roles seems to be squarely focused on charity work, as their website shares their “their commitment to: CommunityThe Monarchy, and The Commonwealth

Meghan and Harry's joint statement about the split

A huge part of this involves them becoming financially independent as well, though likely with a degree of patronage and other royal perks:

Royals seek to become financially independent, but will retain some perks, as talk show hosts quip

But if they truly seek financial independence, they have lots of options – and brands should be lining up to partner with them. Two words: Influencer Marketing.

Meghan & Harry as Online Influencers for Brands

Influencer marketing offers exceptional ROI for any brand’s social media marketing efforts, assuming certain criteria are met. Let’s explore what those criteria are and how brands can (and are) tuning in and taking advantage of the royal possibilities. They include:

  • Follower understanding
  • Influencer authenticity
  • Influencer relatability
  • Engagement metrics

Follower Understanding

Their followers’ interests offer a wide variety of options for brands to work with. We’ll focus on a few – fashion, beauty, travel and family.

exploring interests of Meghan and Harry's followers to find potential brand influencer ideas

We see both fashion and beauty on the list, which makes sense. We saw how much maternity brands loved her – and for good reason. Having a fashionable royal that’s fond of your clothing is always a good thing.

As happens with any dress, accessory or piece of jewelry she adorns, someone somewhere writes a piece about it. This is particularly true of iconic pieces, like the Louis Vuitton Speedy, which is one of the luxury brand’s most carried and recognizable bags:

Meghan as potential brand influencer for Louis Vuitton

And she’s attended so many events, including that was hosted by L’Oréal. If she doesn’t already love their sheer foundation (sheer so as not to hide her trademark freckles), it’s pretty certain she could/would if approached about it.

Connecting with a mega-influencer of this standing requires more of a partnership proposal from a brand that straight payment, really. And brands that are able to tap into her authenticity will do very well.  We’ll explore the importance of authenticity next.

The brand takeaway: By tracking conversation before and after Meghan is spotted sporting the goods or chatting up the cosmetics, brands can offer quantifiable results to stakeholders.

And these results can be tracked very specifically back to their source:

esults can be tracked very specifically back to their source

Influencer Authenticity

Some influencers will accept payment to post about anything. And that is one worthless influencer! This is why authenticity is so crucial.

Here’s how to sort it out: Is the influencer that a florist plans to work with really that committed to/passionate about flowers, for example? One way to find out is by searching back in time – up to 52 months back in time, using NetBase – to see if they have a history of conversations on the topic or even in the category.

Meghan & Harry are the real deal when it comes to charity work. And the Duchess’ recent partnership with Disney Plus speaks to that.

Meghan & Harry are the real deal when it comes to charity work as partnership with Disney demonstrates

And with adorable Archie in tow, it’s just a bonus on the “family” scale!

Brand takeaway: Tracking how your brand is mentioned in context to charity work or other social causes/good deeds is solid forward thinking. With the world trending toward a more thoughtful, sustainable approach – brands that can associate themselves with this perception are building brand equity that will pay off in amazing ways years from now.

Influencer Relatability

Authenticity is great, but an influencer can be super relevant and not click with the consumers you seek. Tracking relatability, we’d see that there are a few detractors and predominantly super obsessed fans out there.

Tracking relatability, we’d see that there are a few detractors and predominantly super obsessed fans out there

So, although fans may not relate to their fairy tale lifestyle, trouble with the in-laws is something anyone can connect with.

Maybe in a made for TV Hallmark drama? The Queen would certainly not approve of something focused on the Royal Family, of course – but Meghan playing a misunderstood princess in any context would be wildly successful. She is an actress after all!

Brand takeaway: Tracking share of voice against competitors after relatable influencer starts engaging in any way with audiences on behalf of your brand would offer a neat little boost to any brand’s marketing efforts. And you don’t need a princess to make this happen, just someone authentic and relatable!

Tracking share of voice against competitors

Engagement Metrics

We all know that travel influencers do very well online, particularly via Instagram where we see the Sussex Royals have a substantial following.

Sussex Royals instagram

In support of, and partially funding, their charity work, they could easily partner with any number of high-end resorts, which would pay them for staying there. HomeAway has incredible and exotic offerings.

And then how better to prove how down to earth (and not Royal Family bankrolled) they are than flying commercially – or even just booking accommodations using Hotwire like the rest of us? They’ll still fly in a private jet, of course, but we’re pretty sure Kate Abdo does as well:

Kate Abdo in commercial for Hotwire

Brand takeaway: A celebrity influencer isn’t honestly expected to consistently use a product they’re touting – and this is very different from every other kind of influencer though, who is! What is important though is exclusivity. And not making embarrassing mistakes, a la Gal Gardot:

Gal Gardot brand influencer flub

Regardless of whether you’re working with actual royals or influencers that are royal to you, understanding how they’re valuable to your brand and tracking it is key. Reach out and we’ll show you how!