In Other News: Instagram Kids Gets Shelved, Influencer Marketing Keeps Growing, and Consumer Confidence Tumbles

Welcome back to our weekly update, deciphering the latest digital marketing news for you! This week, we take you through the pausing of Instagram Kids, how influencer marketing is here to stay and the latest consumer confidence outlook.


Instagram Kids Debacle

A little while ago, the Facebook Group started working on Instagram Kids, a platform specifically designed for tweens (10 to 13 years old). The aim of this new platform was to safeguard against kids misrepresenting their age and using the wider Instagram app, were the content is not age-appropriate.

“We firmly believe that it’s better for parents to have the option to give their children access to a version of Instagram that is designed for them – where parents can supervise and control their experience – than relying on an app’s ability to verify the age of kids who are too young to have an ID.” (Instagram)

However, this decision was met with growing suspicion from child safety collectives and, most recently, sparked a scathing expose from the Wall Street Journal. The main concerns about this project are the following:

  • Instagram Kids would push induce a constant focus on appearance and personal branding from a young age
  • Negative impact on mental health
  • Privacy issues

While the Facebook group denied these claims, it has decided to pause Instagram Kids while it consults parents and governmental bodies alike so as to be able to design a safer and positive platform.


Influencer Marketing: Big and Getting Bigger

Even though it already was an incredibly profitable industry, influencer marketing keeps getting bigger! It has proven as particularly effective for brands, especially when it comes to building and consolidating brand awareness and strength. In spite of the pandemic, influencer marketing has established itself as a relatively safe marketing tactic. As such, brands have overall increased their share of budget allocated to influencer marketing in 2020 and 2021.

But what makes influencer marketing so resilient?

  • Distrust of hard-selling tactics coming directly from marketers
  • Rising importance of social proof
  • Taste for authentic content (recommendations)

“A brand is no longer what we tell the consumer it is – it is what consumers tell each other it is.” (Scott Cook, Inuit CEO)

As influencers represent what customers aspire to, they remain a good way for brands to subtly influence consumer perceptions while still meeting the mark of authentic customer-made content.


Stormy Consumer Confidence Outlook

In September, the general consumer confidence has degraded in anticipation of impaired personal finances and economic hardship. The main sources of worry that led to this drop in confidence are the following:

  • Expectation of rising tax
  • End of furlough
  • Fuel crisis
  • Brexit collateral damage (e.g. shortages)

So what does this mean for digital marketers? When consumers are worried about their disposable income (the amount of money they have left to spend after paying their taxes), they are more likely to be sensitive to price. As such, they may turn to off-brand products, limit spending on higher-end products, prioritise favourite hobbies over passing interests… and be more responsive to sales.

But it’s not all doom and gloom! This suggests that Black Friday and Cyber Monday will be even more important to consumers than in previous years. It is highly likely that they will concentrate the bulk of their “interests and treats” shopping to such big sales to maximise the bang for their hard-earned buck. So there’s no time to waste, it’s now time to prepare your BFCM game plan…


Do you need help making influencer marketing work for your brand or preparing for Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Get in touch with us at [email protected]!

Top Influential Celebs In 2021

Celebrities have captured the imagination and interest of the rest of the public and the media for centuries, with their lives often being researched and discussed by people all across the globe. But which aspects of our lives do celebrities have the biggest influence on? By looking at Google search data for popular celebrities in different aspects of life we have been able to establish which parts of our everyday lives celebs influence us the most. 

Moreover, we have been able to determine which celebrities we are most interested in for different aspects of life, as well as an overall ranking of the most popular. 


Despite having over 80 million fewer searches than those relating to the personal lives of our favourite celebrities, beauty came in second place, with 10.59 million searches. However, it is clear that beauty-related aspects of celebrity lives are some that greatly interest people, factors such as hair and makeup as well as face and body were used to find the celebrities with the most beauty searches. 

1 – Kylie Jenner: 680,400 Annual Global searches 

Despite only being 23 years old Kylie Jenner is one of the most influential women in the world and one of the chief reasons for this is her company Kylie Cosmetics and the company is perhaps one of the reasons why she had 180,000 annual searches for makeup. Kylie is also big into her fitness, and as a result, she also had 432,000 monthly body searches.

2 – Ariana Grande: 405,720 Annual Global searches 

In second place is popstar Ariana Grande, who scored solidly across almost every category as she ranked in the top ten for four out of the five beauty related categories. She has the third-highest number of searches to do with her hair with 120,000 per year and 144,000 searches to do with her face.

3 – Kendall Jenner: 349,560 Annual Global Searches 

Ranking two places lower than her younger sister Kendall Jenner still comes in an impressive third place with just under 350,000 searches for beauty related terms. Kendall has similar search numbers to Kylie for her hair, but far less makeup searches. Along with her siblings Jenner is extremely philanthropic and has recently used profits from her ZazaWorld brand to help coronavirus relief in poorer countries.


Where celebrities live is another aspect of life that influences our searches greatly as there were over 4.6 million searches for home-related terms. We looked at searches for celebrities houses, gardens, interiors and cars to find out which celebrities influenced our interest in homes the most. 

1 – Will Smith: 256,800 Annual Global searches 

Whilst he might have only been the Fresh Prince in a fictional TV show, Will Smith certainly lives like a prince as his main home is a Californian mansion valued at £32.3 million and this has helped propel him to the top of the rankings for home-related searches. In fact, 252,000 of his 256,800 monthly home-related searches are to do with his house. 

2 – Justin Bieber: 201,600 Annual Global searches 

The ‘Beliebers’ as they’re known, certainly have an interest in the home of their icon Justin Bieber. One of his main residences is a £18.7 million mansion in Beverly Hills, and he also has numerous other houses as well as one on ‘billionaires row’ in London. Bieber had 180,000 house searches per month, and also 21,600 to do with his cars.

2 – Michael Jordan: 201,600 Annual Global searches

In joint second place with Justin Bieber is sporting superstar Michael Jordan, the former NBA player also received over 200,000 home related searches over the past year. One of Jordan’s homes has been in the news recently (a 56 square foot mansion in Chicago) because he has been trying and failing to sell the £12 million property for over eight years.


Fashion is an aspect of life that is of major importance to millions of people around the world, with the estimated value of the fashion industry in Great Britain alone standing at £26 billion. Out of the list of 200 celebrities that we looked at fashion was only the fourth most searched aspect with just over two million global annual searches. 

1 – LeBron James: 297,600 Annual Global searches searches 

Perhaps surprisingly it is a sporting star who is the runaway leader at the top of the fashion rankings with around 140,000 more searches than his nearest competitor. A large reason for this are searches to do with James’ shoes as this accounts for 288,000 annual searches. The LA Lakers star also has his own deal with Nike to sell his personalised brand of trainers.

2 – Kanye West: 157,320 Annual Global searches 

In the middle of the basketballer sandwich at the top of the rankings we find superstar rapper Kanye West. The hip hop artist had over 157,000 annual fashion-related searches. Kanye is one of the few celebrities on the list to receive four-figure monthly search numbers in almost all of the categories. 

3 – Michael Jordan: 137,160 Annual Global searches 

Perhaps the most famous North American sportsman of all time is basketball legend Michael Jordan, and that monumentally successful career resulted in him securing a massive clothing deal with Nike. The Air Jordan brand has become incredibly popular and expensive over the years, and consequently, Jordan receives 137,160 fashion-related searches. 


An increasingly popular element of life is keeping fit and healthy, and this is reflected by interest in celebrities fitness routines and workout plans. In fact, celebrities influence this aspect of life by inspiring people to try and follow their example in getting into shape, from sporting professionals to actors celebrities have a huge influence on fitness. 

1 – Joe Wicks: 291,600 Annual Global searches 

Probably the celebrity on this list who specifically influences one aspect of life above all others is fitness instructor Joe Wicks, who as we see here ranks first for fitness despite only being 91st for the combined rankings. Wicks has had a rapid rise in popularity with his short, high-intensity workout videos resulting in 288,000 annual searches. 

2 – Chris Hemsworth: 270,600 Annual Global searches 

Australian actor Chris Hemsworth is known for playing the God of Thunder Thor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but he is also known for keeping in incredible shape for his numerous acting roles. As a result, he narrowly misses out on the top of the fitness rankings by 21,000 annually and less than 2,000 fewer a month.

3 – Dwayne Johnson: 67,320 Annual Global searches 

Professional wrestler turned box office movie star Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson came in third in the rankings despite having almost 200,000 fewer searches than the two men above him. The Rock reportedly wakes up at 4am every day to start his workouts and trains six days a week to maintain his imposing physique.

Personal Life

By a landslide amount, the most popular aspect of life that celebrities influence is our personal lives, and we are massively interested in aspects of their personal lives. In total for the 200 celebrities that we looked at there were 96.44 million annual searches for elements of their personal lives, such as their family and relationships as well as how much they earn. 


1 – Justin Bieber: 2,774,400 Annual Global searches 

The celebrity who’s personal life influences the most is singing superstar Justin Bieber who has come a long way from the baby faced YouTube videos that thrust him into stardom as a teenager. Bieber has more searches to do with his relationships, but much fewer to do with his age and family.

2 – Shakira: 2,727,960 Annual Global searches

Columbian pop star Shakira comes in third place in the rankings just behind Biber with a few thousand less personal life related searches. Shakira’s age is the point of interest that appears to intrigue most people, as she very much doesn’t look all of her 44 years of age, she had a few thousand searches to do with her relationship with football superstar Gerard Pique. 

3 – Kanye West: 2,697,120 Annual Global searches

Another musician completes the top three with rapper Kanye West achieving just under 2.7 million annual searches to do with his personal life. West has fairly recently been through a well publicised divorce from Kim Kardashian, but his relationships don’t seem to be the biggest area people find interesting. Instead it was West’s net worth which interested people the most with over 2.5 million annual searches.

Most Popular Celebrities/Influencers 

When combining the areas of our lives that celebrities have the biggest influence on we find that Justin Beiber is the most searched celebrity for all the categories combined with over 3.2 million annual global searches. 

Seven of the top ten overall ranking celebrities are successful singers such as Taylor Swift, Eminem, and Shakira. The highest-ranking singer is Kanye West who is the fourth highest-ranking celebrity, although he is well down on the two presidents ahead of him. The third highest-ranked celebrity is Kylie Jenner (eight places higher than her sister Kim), and along with Michael Jordan, the top ten is completed. 


We looked at 200 of the biggest celebrities in the world, taking a combination of those who are known as being influential in the five areas which we’ve decided to look at, as well as those who are just generally well known and influential figures.

For each, we took the number of global searches in the last twelve months for each of the related search terms, according to Google Ads’ Keyword Planner.

Donald Trump did rank highly but was removed from final results due to his removal from social media and therefore lack of ability to influence people online. 

Welcome to Paff Evara, our new Head of Agency

Welcome to our new Head of Agency, Paff Evara. A letter from our departing Head of Agency, Daniella Karaoglan.

When I took over the running of Pilot Fish Media in 2020, we were facing a tough year ahead. Mid-pandemic, with a future full of uncertainty, it was, without a doubt, the toughest situation we had ever found ourselves in as an agency. There was a fine line between protecting our business and helping long-standing clients through an incredibly difficult time. 

My one focus for the year ahead was to get us, and our clients, to the other side of the pandemic safely. In the interest of complete transparency, I was scared that the waves of the pandemic were going to sink us, no matter how hard we tried to float – but we wanted to at least give it our best shot.

We’ve come a long way since then. With help from a brilliant team, we faced a difficult future head on and implemented streamlined practices internally with a specific focus on employee wellbeing. This allowed us more space for creativity and fostered our amazing team’s range of skills. In the last year, we have doubled our team, employing the most brilliant young minds in Scotland to help us on this journey (during a pandemic nevertheless!). The team’s never-ending hard work and fully transparent client relations (as well as quirky and groundbreaking ideas) has seen us acquire many new clients. Most importantly, it has allowed us to help many smaller local businesses through and out of lockdown after lockdown.

Along the way, we’ve onboarded 5 new team members via Zoom. We’ve had work drinks online and have had hard conversations, not face to face, but via a Skype call. It’s not been an easy year for anyone, but ultimately, we’ve helped people. Small business owners, long standing partners, our fellow teammates and Pilot Fish Media as a whole – and for that, I could not be prouder of the team and more grateful to our loyal and happy clients.

But (and we always knew a but was coming), the pandemic was not only hard on us professionally. In fact, I don’t know a single person who hasn’t to some extent reevaluated the way they live their lives due to the pandemic. For me, the pandemic quite literally hit quite close to home. During my 6 years in Scotland, I had always thought, “well, I’m only a plane ride away from Denmark”, where most of my family live. Suddenly, with most planes cancelled, that wasn’t quite the case anymore. Throughout the pandemic, while working with all I had to make us the best agency we could be, I always had a voice in the back of my head saying: “You need to be closer to home.”

When Paff Evara joined our team in early 2021, I felt a sense of relief. Suddenly, I knew that there was someone incredibly passionate and skilled, with outstanding leadership skills and knowledge about both our team and our clients, that would be able to take what I had created at Pilot Fish and run with it. I decided that the ship needed a new captain, and it is with great pleasure that I announce that Paff will be taking over as Pilot Fish Media’s Head of Agency after May 2021.

Paff, who joined us as our Paid Ads Director, has extensive experience in planning, implementing and optimising digital campaigns across the entire purchasing funnel, with a strategic eye like no other I’ve ever seen. As a Digital Marketer of the Year finalist in 2020, I have no doubt in my mind that Paff will (at the expense of my own ego!) take the agency, and our clients, to lengths we could only dream of before.

Paff will run a ship driven by honest and effective strategies, smart data and transparent results, with countless groundbreaking campaigns under their belt already at PFM. They are a lead-by-example leader and incredibly passionate about continuing and improving PFM’s focus on team wellbeing, growth and development – and I for one cannot wait to see where they take the agency from here.

To the brilliant team, thank you to all of you. I couldn’t have done this without your banter, passion and skill. Another big thank you goes to Stephen Gorman, founder of PFM, for trusting in my ability to command the ship. You took a risk, and I couldn’t be more grateful for that.

For me, it is a goodbye to Scotland, and sadly, Pilot Fish Media for now. I will always remain a friend of the agency, all our clients, and most importantly, the incredible team I have had the pleasure of working with for the last two years.


Paid Ads Director Needed!

Come join our awesome, award-winning, digital agency based in the heart of Edinburgh (although, as Covid has shown us, remote working is becoming the “norm” so we’re happy to accept applications if you feel you tick all the boxes- you have to be UK based though and willing to travel to Edinburgh at least twice a month once travel restrictions allow)! We are looking for an experienced Paid Ads Director to join our vibrant team, with particular expertise in Facebook Ads and Google Ads campaigns (Search, Shopping & Display).
About Us
We are a social media and digital marketing agency with a varied client portfolio of quirky and elegant brands, from long-standing family businesses and startups to global companies.
We’re entering the teenage years of Pilot Fish; saying hello to new clients and colleagues more than we ever have before. We’re a small but mighty team, and it’s an exciting time to join the agency.
In Brief
We’re looking for a super ambitious and talented Paid Ads Director (FB and Google Ads, mainly) to join us full-time, to help us plan, execute and optimise our clients’ paid campaigns. Work at Pilot Fish Media is, like most agencies, fast-paced and exciting, and no two weeks will look the same; we work closely together as a team, to come up with exciting, creative and trendsetting new ways of doing digital for our clients; and you’ll be a key player in that.
What would you be doing?
  • Develop and execute well-researched ad campaign strategies to meet client business goals
  • Frequently test audiences, creative assets, ad formats and copy across platforms to optimise campaigns
  • Stay up to date with the latest best practices across platforms
  • Advise the creative team on required ad assets for campaigns
  • Implement full website tracking for each platform as well as within Google Analytics / Google Tag Manager
  • Create monthly reports and recommend next steps for clients through insightful analysis
  • Adhoc training and development of a team of 1 (but likely growing) Paid Ads Executive


Who we’re looking for
  • You’ll require experience in formulating paid media strategies in order to plan and execute high performing ad campaigns for our diverse portfolio of clients
  • Someone with proven ability of implementing and monitoring campaigns that have driven significant ROAS
  • Someone with a strategic head on their shoulders – you know the Paid Ads tools inside and out but also can think big-picture in terms of wider digital strategy
  • Someone with preferably 3+ years of experience in paid media (Facebook Ads Manager & Google Ads a priority) – but if you’ve proven yourself in less time, just let us know!


What we can offer you
  • A competitive salary based on your experience.
  • Central Edinburgh office.
  • A fantastic team to work with. We work hard but a fun, positive atmosphere is very important to us as well.
  • The opportunity to work on big global brands as well as smaller local companies and start-ups.
  • The opportunity to develop your career and move up the ranks as we continue to grow and expand.
  • Regular team lunches/get togethers (on zoom right now, of course!).


We’re a creative digital agency – so we’re not old school. Be as creative as you want with your application – just make sure you include an overview of your experience somehow, and some paid media results you have previously generated. Please send your application to our Paid Ads Director – [email protected].

We’re Hiring: Junior Account Manager

Having acquired some fantastic new clients for 2021, we are looking for a super-talented, enthusiastic, and positive account manager to join our growing team.

We are a small but growing team with a full client portfolio, so we need someone who is super organised and efficient, passionate about social and digital marketing and keen to keep up to speed with the ever-changing possibilities for marketing in the online space. Attention to detail is essential. We work to tight deadlines, often with very quick turn-around times which means the pressure is on to deliver excellent work under pressure. We need someone with an entrepreneurial can-do attitude, who enjoys a challenge and is keen to grow with us as new clients come on board. There is huge scope for the right candidate to turn this into a very exciting opportunity.

Our ideal candidate:

Has great attention to detail
Has a ‘let’s get it done’ attitude and is eager to impress clients by going the extra mile
Is confident presenting to and liaising with clients when necessary
Is a team-player who can also work independently and use initiative when appropriate
Is super-organised with an ability to multi-task and manage time effectively during our very busy periods
Is very process and structure focused and knows what it takes to ensure that everything runs smoothly from the brief stage right through to the delivery of the work
You will be data and analytics driven primarily but with a good understanding of what makes for great creative
You must have excellent communication and presentation skills and feel comfortable presenting over the phone, Skype/Zoom and in person.

Your role will involve:

Managing the day to day relationships with all our clients – some of these are international and some are Edinburgh based. This involves weekly catch up and planning sessions as well as some quarterly meetings face to face. This may require international travel.
Writing excellent briefs for our creative team which will ensure we delivery best work possible.
Ensuring all our campaigns are delivered on time and to budget.
Bringing new opportunities for growth and expansion to the table – for example if you think we could be doing more with an existing client or there is scope to develop the relationship further, we would love to hear about it.
Preparing monthly reports for all our clients and making recommendations based on results from the previous month.
Working on pitches and presentations to new clients to help us grow the business.

What we can offer you

  •   A competitive salary based on your experience.
  •   Central Edinburgh office.
  •   A fantastic team to work with. We work hard but a fun, positive atmosphere is very important to us as well.
  •   The opportunity to work on big global brands as well as smaller local companies and start-ups.
  •   Training, development and mentoring and the opportunity to develop your career and move up the ranks as we continue to grow and expand.
  •   Regular team lunches/get togethers (on zoom right now, of course!).


We’re a creative digital agency – so we’re not old school. Be as creative as you want with your application – just make sure you include an overview of your experience somehow, and tell us what excites you about Digital Marketing. Applications will be open till the 9th of April 2021.

Please send your application to our Head of Agency – [email protected].

Reality Returns

Which reality tv shows earn you the biggest bucks, and which reality stars earn the most?

Whether it be about finding love, living together or a good old fashioned talent contest, reality tv shows are a popular staple of British Television and as a result, thousands of people across the country are inspired to follow in the footsteps of their celebrity heroes and take part in a reality show.

But which one should they take part in? We have looked into the finances and social popularity of a plethora of the most renowned reality stars from the past decade to reveal who the most successful are and which shows enabled them to gain that success.

The Reality Shows with the Greatest Returns

The most successful reality shows

Using a formula combining estimated net worth (ENW) and social media earnings to create a scoring system out of ten we discovered that ITV’s The X Factor is the number one show for becoming successful with a huge score of eight. The former contestants analysed average over £28,000 per post on Instagram, and have an ENW of over five million.

When it comes to overall wealth the X Factor comes in a distant second to The Real Housewives of Cheshire, who average a massive ENW of just under £13 million pounds. Although as you will see later this number is significantly boosted by one extremely wealthy individual, The Real Housewives also struggle to be as popular on social media making the second-lowest amount per post of all the shows we studied. This drops their overall score down to 4.3, making them the third-best show.

Love Island ranks highly for social media popularity with an average of £11,220 per Instagram post, and an average of over 2.3 million followers. Combined with an ENW of over £2 million, it ranks as the 4th best show overall with a score of 3.7. Two spots higher in the list we travel up north to the Geordie Shore, cast members of this reality show average £3 million in ENW, as well as boasting just under five million followers and around £7700 per post. Combining this they score five, but it is still trailing the X Factor by some distance.

Is winning the show important?

Of course, the aim of competing is to win, but is winning a social media programme the most probable route to success? In a word, no. There are plenty of examples of contestants who failed to win the reality show going on to greater financial and social success than those who beat them. Molly-Mae Hague is the most successful person from Love Island with an average score of 5.52, this is over two points higher than the highest-ranking winner of the show, Dani Dyer.

The most successful former candidate on The Apprentice is Luisa Zissman who also finished second on the show, she ranks 14 places above the woman she lost to (Leah Totton). Furthermore, she is worth almost three and a half million pounds more and earns over seven times as much per Instagram post.

On the other hand, we have the members of pop band Little Mix who won the X Factor almost a decade ago. The three current (and one former) members make up four of the top 5 in our rankings chart. However, they are an exception to the rule as historically contestants who didn’t win the show went on to greater success. Although it was before the last 10 years of our study, the likes of One Direction, JLS and Olly Murs all found huge success without winning.


The Reality Stars with the Greatest Returns

Whichever show they were a part of, each of these reality tv stars has fared differently in terms of their individual financial success. Using the same calculation that definitively told us the best average show we can reveal that former Little Mix member and X Factor contestant Jesy Nixon is the most successful with an average score of 6.38/10, beating former bandmate Jade Thirwall into second place. The Little Mix quartet would have a stranglehold on the top of the rankings if it wasn’t for Love Island’s Molly-Mae who comes in fourth place.

She is also the reality star who earns the most per Instagram post as she earns an estimated £65,520 every time she hits the ‘share’ button, this places her just ahead of Jesy Nixon with £64,740. Molly-Mae’s partner Tommy Fury is the highest-earning male by this metric as he rakes in £7590, this ranks him 14th on the list behind a top 10 which is exclusively female.

However, in terms of net worth, there is a much more even split at the top of the rankings, with six males and four females. Coming at number one is Real Housewives of Cheshire star Dawn Ward who is estimated to be worth an astronomical £42 million, this is double what second-placed Spencer Matthews from Made in Chelsea has in the bank. Unlike the other categories, celebrities from these two shows rank highly for net worth which may be more to do with the fact that they are shows about people who are already rich rather than what they have earned as a result of the programme.

Outside of these shows, the highest ENW belongs to Mark Wright of TOWIE with £11 million, before he appeared on the programme he was a struggling footballer which indicates that the show had a much bigger impact on increasing his earnings.



For each person, we calculated an overall score based on the following three factors, giving a normalised score out of ten for each, before taking an overall average score across all three.

Estimated net worth

Sourced from the following:

Instagram followers

The number of followers on Instagram, as of February 24th 2021.

Estimated Instagram earnings per post

Calculated using HypeAuditor’s Instagram Money Calculator, which estimates the amount that an account can charge per post, based on factors such as follower count and engagement.

Figures were converted from US dollars to pound sterling using XE, as of February 24th 2021.