There are hundreds of influencer networks out there. They all promise the same thing: money for creators. Social Fabric is a US based influencer network. They are “a community where influencers collaborate and are paid to produce quality content for some of the largest brands in the world.” The site is clean with a nice short video, a few images and a simple 4-step example of how it works. There’s also a community feedback section with some three bloggers thoughts on SoFab. Other than that, there’s a distinct lack of information on the site. That always triggers warning bells in my opinion. But, let’s look deeper at Social Fabric!
**Note: All our reviews are based on public facing information and immediate sign-up access. If sites decline us using them, then we must make a ‘best guess’ based on what information we do have access to. Keep this in mind when reading our opinion!**
Content on Social Fabric
As mentioned, when there’s a lack of information on a website I get concerned. To get a sense for what I mean, the entire homepage only contains 251 words. That’s not even enough to be considered a blog post, and yet we’re talking about making money from content? The video itself has been up for two months, yet only has 72 views. There’s also NO other pages on the sites landing page. There are four different links to signing up – or you can log in, presuming you’ve already signed up. To get more information, we have to scroll to the bottom of the page to learn that Social Fabric is owned by a company called “Collective Bias”. For something that claims to be all about community, there’s a distinct lack of information about what this community is. Perhaps if we look at Collective Bias, we’ll learn more about Social Fabric.
Who is Collective Bias
Collective Bias according to their Company Overview on Bloomberg: “Collective Bias, Inc. provides social media and shopper marketing services. It offers Social Fabric, a private influencer community that creates compelling media about users’ products in specific retail channels.” They have locations in 6 cities: San Francisco, Chicago, Cincinnati, New York, Minneapolis, and Bentonville. Their Bentonville, New York, and Chicago locations check out. But San Fran and Minneapolis offices are coworking spaces, while Cincinnati is home to Mars Agency. (Collective Bias board member Ted Rubin once worked for them.) The Collective Bias website has more information on what their goal is – and that’s largely as a pitch to potential advertisers to work with them. So, with that in mind, Social Fabric is NOT some overnight social networking site that just popped up. In fact, based on when they registered the website, it’s been in business since 2010.
Signing up for Social Fabric
The signup page is straight forward. Pick your platform (Blog, Instagram, YouTube). Enter your name, email, contact info, sex, ethnicity, and content type. Then submit your information and wait for them to get in touch. Now, what’s interesting about Social Fabric is that their signup page has ONE link on it: Terms of Service. Finally, a little bit more information… except the TOS are nothing special other than introducing you to Inmar Company. They are the parent of Collective Bias. (Boy this is deep.) You can learn more about Inmar here.
So, now we’ve clicked on the application, then clicked on the TOS… and NOW we get some more links about what Social Fabric does. Yeah, you gotta go way too deep into this to find any information about the company itself – that’s a little worrisome. At the bottom of the page we get links that work to TWO pages… Campaign Reference Material and Tutorials. These two documents lay out how campaigns with Social Fabric should work.
“Collective Bias has contracted you as a professional blogger to do a job for our client, the advertiser. Professionalism is of the utmost importance. Trust us!” – Opening paragraph of page 4, Campaign Reference Material
The Campaign Reference Material is a 55-page document that covers everything from:
- 10 pages on Blog Posts Expectations – No reviews, no negative opinions, and no advertorials.
- 6 pages on Disclosure – Necessary (obviously).
- 2 pages on SEO – How to title photos.
- 6 pages on Social Sharing – Nofollow links and where to share.
- 3 pages about Parties
- 1 on Consumer Insight
- 2 on Other Requirements
- 4 on Payment Terms – Within 30 days of the campaign due date.
- 3 on Other Information
Social Fabric Review
The information isn’t surprising – a little overreaching in the number of requirements. But, this is the nature of this kind of influencer marketing platforms. The second document is far more insight into how Social Fabric works for creators. (Images from this publicly available document). Social Fabric appears to work as a bit of a ‘store’ with various offers. You look through the opportunities, and whichever makes the most sense to you – you apply for. You’ll then need to detail why you want the opportunity, a link to similar content, and some other questions. Once you’ve been accepted into an opportunity, you’ll need to complete all aspects of it to be paid.
This is standard for this kind of ‘spray and pray’ influencer marketing opportunity. As a content creator, you’re never going to get rich on this kind of service. The opportunities are for volume, and not specific to each creator. As such, your payouts are likely going to be low, while the effort that goes in is high. If you’re a small creator without any kind of experience, using Social Fabric may be a good place to start practicing working with brands. If you’ve been doing this for a while, or have done content direct with brands before – you’re likely going to be disappointed. Services like Social Fabric exist by offering smaller payouts to creators.
We also have some concerns over the fact that so much information isn’t openly presented. We’re talking about the business of creating content for money aka advertising/marketing. That’s serious stuff that needs details and information about what the brands need, what the creator needs to do and your roll in this. Social Fabric is a legit company, but shouldn’t hide information from potential business partners.