The Instagram Influencer Vocab You Need to Know

September 25, 2019

Instagram Influencers have effectively created their own league of marketing. Chances are you’ve logged into your account, only to be ambushed by beaming grins advertising the latest tooth whitening product. From twirling girls in dresses, to organic body scrubs, it seems as though every photo is a thinly-veiled – albeit effective – pitch. 

Instagram influencing has become a lucrative career. In fact, some of the most established influencers are earning up to 6 figure salaries. These paid promotions are impactful and businesses should be aware of the tactics that insta-stars use to promote branded products.

If you’re wondering how an influencer promotes a product, you’re in the right place! This glossary covers the ways in which an influencer may choose to showcase a brand or service. This article will also teach you several indicators of a likely sponsored post. 

  1. Unboxing: This term refers to the opening of a package on camera. This is typically done in video form and posted to the influencer’s Instagram story. The influencer may be opening a PR package, or a package from a specific brand. The influencer then showcases the product(s) to their audience on camera. This may not always be a paid post.

  2. #Sponsored, #Sp, #Partner, or #Ad: Typically, when an influencer posts an image from a paid collaboration, they include a tag to show that it’s a promotion. This indicates that the post is being paid for. It could also indicate that the influencer created the post in exchange for free product(s). You may also see a “Paid partnership” note above the location on the post. 

  3. GRWM: GRWM stands for “Get ready with me”. This video or Instagram story involves an influencer showcasing themselves getting ready for an event or the day ahead. Often, an influencer will partner with Brand A for their GRWM and use products only from that Brand A throughout their video. This is a great way to demonstrate how a product is used.

  4. 4. Flatlay: A Flatlay is a photograph of a product on a surface. Flatlays are typically decorated with props that compliment the product and the aesthetic of an influencer’s feed. Flatlays are effective for showcasing items such as jewelry, food or drink, and beauty products.


Although we’ve listed a few popular ways that influencers promote products and brands, there are countless methods. With our ever-evolving market, online advertisements are becoming increasingly creative. Before enlisting an influencer’s help to promote your brand, consider an approach that will compliment your product or service.