Few families have the concept of monetizing their celebrity like the Kardashians do. Sure, they didn’t invent the idea of turning minor fame into reality TV megastars. But they have pulled off the impressive feat of developing their notoriety over time.
Unlike many of their predecessors in the reality TV industry, the Kardashians persevered when social media emerged. Actually more than that – they Are defined what it means to be a celebrity in online worlds. However, some fans of the famous family find their all-in attitude off-putting, especially when it comes to their paid influencer posts on social media.
The Kardashians are deeply involved in the Instagram advertising business
Advertising for makeup and diet products makes up a large portion of Kardashian/Jenner’s social media business. The posts are usually succinct, accompanied by text explaining how they definitely use these products. From the ubiquitous flat-tummy tee-boosting to Kim Kardashian’s constant waist trainer posts, the products these women are peddling appear all over their social media accounts.
Every single paid ad brings in six-figure payments. That is per Post, as reported by Refinery29. Apparently there are even higher rates for products with any liability. Any product that a follower will take, like certain medicines or diet products? An additional fee helps mitigate risk and keep fly-by-night businesses away from the Kardashians’ busy schedules.
Even the Kardashians fans think they look stupid selling some of these products
Product placement has long been written off as part of the celebrity business. The “influencer” paradigm on social media has normalized the premise more than ever. People, not least the Kardashians, don’t seem too ashamed of monetizing their online presence.
But some fans on the Keeping up with the Kardashians Reddit page, think some of these products reflect poorly on family. “The off-brand Airpods are killing me,” one commenter wrote of Kylie Jenner promoting pink Airpods that are clearly not made by Apple. “As if she’d ever used them.” Another Redditor commented, “How does a millionaire advertise fake Airpods? She literally posted about having real ones before.”
Fans (and critics) are right. When it’s obvious that the person selling a product would never actually use it, the advertisement becomes even harder to believe.
Another commenter was even less charitable with his take: “You guys look like bloody clowns,” they wrote on Kourtney Kardashian’s posts about tummy-smoothing teas and edible hair health products. Maybe even for people who hail from the reality TV world, there’s a line where their image transitions from lucrative businesswomen to simple stickiness.
Some of the Kardashians’ boosted products are just plain awful
The quality of the products peddled by the Kardashians is often questioned — not just by cranky Redditors, but by mainstream journalists and health professionals as well. Dodgy AirPods clones are one thing; Diet products are another.
The Washington Post reports that Kim’s influencer posts about waist trainers border on grifting. There is little evidence that they work as advertised, but there is enough evidence that they can cause harm.
Most notoriously, the tummy smoothing teas have been criticized for their digestive issues. Yahoo reports that many doctors consider these supposedly detoxifying products to be outright scams. They’re packed with pain-relieving ingredients like peppermint that can be easily obtained from a regular diet. But they also contain laxatives that give them their much-vaunted “bloating” effects.
The problem: Laxatives are recommended only when needed and not as part of a regular diet regimen. Repeated use can cause digestive problems in some people. It also leads to dehydration, which ironically limits the body’s natural detoxification processes. Perhaps the Kardashians should focus on promoting products that involve less controversy. Until then, her Reddit community will continue to roast her online.
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