Who are these financial influencers, Youtubers, Tiktokers and other Instagrammers who are driving young adults to open stock accounts and speculate on currencies or securities? This week, two complaints will be sent to the Paris prosecutor’s office, which will shed new light on these several dozen individuals who agreed to advertise for activities they did not understand… One targets the Animoon platform, a project inspired by the Pokémon game. Cards that convinced more than 5,000 investors to put up $6.3 million for a site that never saw the light of day and whose founders could not be found. The second complaint targets two reality TV stars, Marc Singainy Tevanin and Nadira Brik Chaouche (aka Marc and Nadé Blata).), encouraged his followers on social networks to bet on Forex. At the end of the day, promises of significant profits that never materialize. “I saw him on Cyril Hanouna’s show. That gives some credibility.” Mel, the victim at FranceInfo, explained.
Easy money. But for whom?
“You have a 100% chance to make money with me every month,” Marc Blata said on his website, “sign up, it’s unlikely to make money” and encouraged his followers to join him on the trading platform. same investments as him. A deposit of €250 on the platform allows you to join the Telegram channel where he gives “advice”. In fact, he did not trade, he received a few hundred euros each time one of his “godchildren” opened an account (he would make almost a million this way). Actions condemned by other influencer Nabil. As for Mel, who lost several thousand euros in the case, he tells FranceInfo: “What I expect from justice is that they can no longer deceive other people. Because they continue today and apparently not only them.”
Actually, it’s not just them. The internet is full of influencers who decide to monetize their fame. “We want to warn the young and not-so-young public about the dangers of the propaganda of some unscrupulous “stars”, point out the passivity of platforms, highlight the incapacity of institutions and encourage other similar procedures.” these complaints.
On December 9, the Ministry of Economy and Finance presented an opinion on the bad practices of influencers, which should lead to regulations that force social networks to better monitor these practices. This awareness followed the conviction in July 2021 of social media star Nabilla Benattia-Vergara, known as “Nabilla,” who was more concerned with taking Instagram photos than learning financial secrets. However, he was fined 20,000 euros in 2018 for promoting a bitcoin site on Snapchat without disclosing that he was paid for it.
AIF was completely disarmed
Because you can’t promote a bank, a trading site or buy bitcoin like you can advertise a hand cream… In the past year, several Dubai-based reality TV stars have already been targeted by the AIF (police). financial markets) for disguised advertising. They used videos showing sports cars and luxury watches to promote cryptocurrencies or stock trading on unauthorized sites. According to them, it was easy to make money, while recent studies show that 90% of transactions carried out by non-professionals lose.
Not to mention cryptocurrency or NFT scams. In early January, the French Aurelien Michel, a 24-year-old developer living in the United Arab Emirates, was arrested at the New York airport. American justice accuses him of defrauding buyers of the NFT Mutant Ape Planet collection of $2.9 million in cryptocurrency. “In 2021, the total amount of crypto-asset fraud in the United States was 14 billion dollars,” explains Grégoire de Warren, author of the report on crypto-assets for the Treasury Department DGT, for example. Normally, since 2016, the Sapin 2 law strictly limits advertising on complex financial products, but nothing prohibits broadcasting from abroad. For example, from Dubai…
This Monday Tweet from Bruno Le Maire about influencers and saving
The two complaints to be filed have the merit of highlighting a sector that has been relatively unknown to date. But it attracts millions of fans. Influencers, we think we know them and imagine them giving makeup tips from their living room or holding controllers explaining how not to get shot in Halo or Counter-Strike, those video games are all the rage. With 45 million followers, Squeezie is arguably the biggest French influencer (after Mbappe and his 90 million followers…), followed by Cyprien (35 million) and Léa Elui (30 million)…
But behind these stars who earn very well from YouTube and other platforms, there are many others who want to expand their audience and provide other sources of income. These influencers can also be huge businessmen and women who discuss their ideas or product placements with big brands. A word from them, they know it well and their product launch can end in success or…disaster.
Inevitably, one day or another, they had to be interested in the financial sector. Why? Because more and more Internet users are interested in money. The American financial group Bloomberg notes that during the pandemic, hours spent on financial applications have almost doubled, and smartphone transactions have increased by 135%. Live context for all these finfluencers, as financial influencers are called. For example, do you know the American Austin Hankwitz? Probably not: he still has more than 660,000 subscribers on TikTok, the favorite social network of teenagers, with topics such as “How to retire on $340,000” (1.9 million views) or “The main mistake to avoid” (highly relevant in France) there is on the stock market” (1.1 million views). At the age of 26, a young man earns $500,000 a year, more than a young Wall Street banker!
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France should not be left behind and also has finnfluencers. Like PFor example, Charlessterlings (with an S) saw his Tiktok followers grow from 600 to almost a million in a matter of months with topics like “How to buy 5 rental apartments” (2.2 million views). And we regularly see him extolling the merits of one brand or another. “Given the number of scams that exist in this area, I have long refused the advances of brands that have approached me, especially in the field of cryptocurrencies and NFTs. My line of account is to give advice to my subscribers to save money. lose,” he explains. Meanwhile, with his videos admits to receiving 10,000 euros a month, sometimes less…
Sébastien Koubar is one of these finnfluencers. His YouTube video entitled “How to invest 100 euros” has received nearly 600,000 views. He does not hesitate to brag about his earnings: “How do I earn €18,300 per month on the Internet in 30? the essence of the stock exchange platform, French Mercantile Republic. The platform is quite respectable. And he doesn’t hide his use of influencers. He uses about fifty that he sponsors. “Yes, we use finfluencers, but it’s supposed to be completely transparent, not brand content, it’s displayed and there’s no ambiguity,” said the company’s CEO Matthias Baccino, among the few who had the courage to talk to us about it. states that he is one of the people. taboo subject.
“Influencer marketing is one of the most effective because the level of audience engagement is so strong. Last year we published over 90 videos that reached 10 million people.” Another advantage of it is that it is not very expensive. As another user of this viral communication noted: “We reach a lot of people with little spending. Several of the Finfluencers have advanced business models and we get them signed up for almost nothing. We do one-time checks, we work with others. affiliate links. But let’s say it’s between 5,000 and 20-30,000 euros per transaction, depending on the business.” A strongly growing niche to watch carefully… just like any investment.