The digital influencer has completely revolutionized the marketing and communications landscape. With individuals now charging between 5 and 6 figures fees for campaigns, the traditional advertising and PR space has been turned on its head.

Beauty and fashion brands are paving the way for relationships with this new brand of digital natives, working with influencers who can help them reach target audiences and move vast units of product.

Bloggers, vloggers and social media stars are at the forefront of many digital campaigns. Big names like Kendall Jenner are working with established beauty brands like L’Oreal, with the company utilizing the star’s youth (and 62 million Instagram followers) to promote products such as the Modern Muse fragrance and eyeshadow palettes. Campaigns such as these have undoubtedly contributed to her success and career as a model, working with some of the largest couture brands in the industry.

The digital influencer doesn’t have to be a household name. Beauty brands are hiring bloggers such as Rachel Parcell of Pink Peonies to experience new products be a part of new line launches. Complementary press trips and product placements in a video or Instagram post can lead to paid gigs further down the line. Companies like L’Oreal are placing digital influencers front and center in their upcoming campaigns, with the brand launching ‘L’Oreal League,’ a year long content creation program made up of 15 digital stars.

Brands know that this is where money and influence can be made. We are seeing traditional ad spend being ditched in favor of social media, with companies such as Estee Lauder making the switch. Cosmetics brand Smashbox has ditched print advertising all together, focusing entirely digital marketing. Digital influencers bring a feeling of trust that beauty brands find it difficult to source elsewhere. Weekly how to videos and reader Q&As have built a rapport between blogger and follower, with fans more likely to purchase a new lipstick or nail polish from an influencer they trust. With more and more 16-24 year olds spending their time online and on smartphones, the digital influencer is a key route for brands to create a multi platform approach to boost their audience and reach.

Online partnerships with digital influencers should be a core part of a brand’s strategy. To not work with an influencer is a costly decision to ignore a lucrative future. Brands that have not embraced the power of a digital influencer should do so immediately, or risk saying a permanent goodbye to their audience.

Digital budgets are set to overtake television spending in 2017, ensuring that online influencers are set to become a tried and tested marketing tactic.