Many brands and businesses now tend to invest a large amount of money for KOC to implement marketing campaigns instead of just focusing on spending money on KOLs or celebrities as before.

The number of KOLs redirecting to KOC also increased because of this trend. However, many people still do not know what the KOC profession is and still get confused about KOC with KOL.

Today's article will give you useful information on earning additional income as a KOC. Businesses can also use this form of marketing for effective sales and branding activities.

Key Opinion Consumer

Brands increasingly use KOC to promote products

What Is KOC?

KOC stands for Key Opinion Consumer. In other words, they are influential consumers in the market whose main task is to try the products and services available and then make their comments and evaluations professionally and objectively.

Because not many people know what KOC is and the term is relatively new in the community, the number of people following them on social networks is not much.

However, their authentic experiences will be important in making customers - other ordinary consumers - trust and follow more loyalty. In particular, KOC plays an important role in the purchasing decision process of viewers and brings products closer to shoppers.

what is koc

Key Opinion Consumer - KOC 

The trend of KOC marketing is considered to mark the strong development of the e-commerce industry and has a stronger impact on consumers than KOL.

Some famous faces of KOC in Vietnam:

  • Call Me Duy, a famous blogger in the beauty industry who regularly reviews cosmetics and shares useful makeup knowledge;
  • Chau Muoi - Tiktoker has more than 1 million followers, specializing in reviews of household products, food, and home decoration;
  • Anh Em TV - Youtube channel is famous for its quality and reliable technology review clips.

Differences Between KOC And KOL

Similar to KOC, the KOLs (Key Opinion Leaders) are the people who have a great influence on social networks. To make a clearer distinction between these two concepts, we will evaluate them based on the following four criteria: popularity, audience size, expertise, and initiative.

key opinion leader

Key Opinion Leader - KOL 

1. Popularity

KOL: When searching for keywords about KOLs, we receive a series of services with different quotes. Brands will often actively approach KOLs and invite them to try the product for free, then promote them to consumers.

KOC: On the contrary, KOC will stand in the consumer's position, initiate the process of using the product and review the products of interest. After that, the product review process will take place, and they will receive the cost that the brand pays based on the commission. If KOLs are chosen for large-scale product promotion campaigns, KOCs focus on specific sales activities.

2. Audience Size

KOL: KOLs will be decentralized based on the number of followers (followers) on digital content creation platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, and TikTok.

For example, macro-influencers are Celebrities, and Level-1 KOLs are influencers with 10,000 and 1 million followers.

Between 5,000 and 10,000 followers would be a Level-2 KOL, and a Level-3 KOL would have between 1,000 and 5,000 followers, aka nano-influencers.

The bigger the influencer, the higher the booking price, so depending on each campaign, the brand can choose KOLs with reasonable prices and optimal effectiveness for marketing activities.

Key Opinion Consumer

KOLs have a large number of followers

KOC: The majority of KOCs have a lower following than KOLs. However, they are the ones who receive more trust from consumers than KOLs. They are the people who stand in the position of consumers and give objective reviews about the product. So, even if you have fewer followers, the effect may surprise you.

3. Expertise

KOL: KOL requires in-depth knowledge and expertise in specific industries and fields. For example: In fashion, KOLs are professional fashionistas, models, and designers. In cosmetics, KOLs can be dermatologists and famous beauty bloggers. However, today's customers are very smart. They easily recognize which products are being PR, and then the authenticity and reputation of the KOLs are not as strong as that of real consumers.

KOC: KOC does not require specialized knowledge. They act as consumers, and after trying the product, they will leave their honest feelings. Despite this, KOC still possesses certain reliability in the mind of customers. KOC will actively select products and brands and give the most honest comments, not necessarily following a script available on the brand's side. Therefore, the reviews of KOC are genuine without advertising for any brand.

what is koc

KOC is merely a consumer not an expert

4. Proactivity

KOL: Usually, influencers like KOLs will be actively contacted by brands to offer advertising invitations. Many KOL advertising services today, so businesses can quickly access and connect with KOLs. Brands and brands, when hiring KOL, will pay commission costs in cash or by the product/service they receive advertising.

KOC: Meanwhile, the KOC will have the initiative in choosing the product they want to try and making an assessment and comment on the quality and perception of that product. 

They will have to spend their own money to buy and use that product and then receive a commission from the store owner based on the number of orders that Key Opinion Consumer - the latest form of influencers sell to consumers.

Why Is KOC Gradually Replacing KOL?

Customers have countless choices in the current 4.0 era and are shopping smarter than before. Before making a purchase decision, they always thoroughly search product information. The KOC generation has since been born thanks to the need to learn about products from the feedback of previous customers.

If KOL marketing's main purpose is to increase product coverage in the market, then KOCs significantly impact purchasing decisions and boost consumer sales.

KOC makes objective assessments of the benefits and drawbacks of the product. As a result, more and more companies are using KOC in their product advertising campaigns. Here are the three most important reasons why KOC is gradually replacing KOL.

smart consumer

Consumers are now smarter and more careful when shopping

1. Authenticity

Compared to KOL marketing, the information KOC brings is more authentic and useful, creating more trust for consumers and motivating them to decide to buy a product quickly. Products that are well-reviewed by KOC will help the public have a good view of the brand. As a result, businesses can grasp consumer needs and take better care of customers with customers' trust in products. As can be seen, both KOLs and businesses can measure the success of developing the best marketing strategy with the help of KOC trends.

2. Cost Savings

When working with KOLs, businesses have to pay a significant booking fee based on the popularity of the KOL. The more famous the KOLs, the higher the fee the business has to pay. Other costs are also incurred in developing the content or associated media products.

Meanwhile, the booking price of KOC is usually lower because the brand only has to pay a commission based on the number of successful orders or the level of interaction that KOC brings. As a result, brands can significantly reduce initial costs compared to using KOL.

Key Opinion Consumer

Cooperating with KOC helps businesses save a lot of costs

3. Effectively Increase Revenue

Since businesses can actively send products to KOC and have them experience and comment, the actual revenue generated by each KOC can be seen after each campaign.

Subjective assessments through shared articles and photo media on social networking platforms will give consumers authentic experiences, support purchase decisions, and effectively increase income for businesses. Karma.

How Does KOC Make Money?

There is not much difference in the monetization of a KOC or a KOL. Their income can come from running ads through review clips on YouTube, modeling and participating in events, and brand promotion campaigns. Besides, KOC marketing still has other special ways to make money below.

1. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate Marketing (affiliate marketing) is a popular model of making money online, often applied to sellers' products or services through links. KOC will evaluate products they have used and attach a purchase link to the post's description.

If someone registers or purchases through the link that KOC introduces, KOC will receive a commission. In addition, KOC can also generate income with Affiliate Marketing through direct links to e-commerce platforms such as Tiki, Shopee, Lazada, or other intermediary shopping channels.

koc with affiliate marketing

Make money online with affiliate marketing

2. Get PR Booking, Join Event

KOCs with a certain level of popularity can also earn money through invitations to experience services or to attend events to launch new products of brands and brands. This form of receiving PR booking and participating in this event also brings them a lot of income.

3. Livestream

Livestreaming sales on social networking platforms (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok) seems to be no stranger to most modern consumers and has become a booming wave in the current era of technology development. This form is so popular that the TikTok platform had to launch Tik Tok Shop to serve the demand for KOC booking from stores and brands.

The Key Opinion Consumers can both chat with customers and sell quickly. At the same time, the Livestream on TikTok Shop also brings high efficiency and convenience when viewers can click on the link right below to purchase while watching the live stream without having to switch to another page.

koc livestream on social media

KOCs often livestream on social networking platforms

KOC Quality Evaluation Criteria

Brands must thoroughly evaluate the quality of KOCs to make the most rational and accurate decisions for a successful marketing campaign.

Relevance, Performance, and Growth are the three factors used to assess the quality of the current KOC.

1. Relevance

Relevance is an indicator of the popularity of the content that KOLs share on social networking sites. It will also be a criterion to determine the relevance of the KOL to the brand and industry.

With a high relevancy score (over 60%), the field that a KOC has the experience and often works and shares will be evaluated and included in the influencer's ranking.

2. Performance

This metric measures how effectively KOL's product-related marketing and communication have increased revenue for the brand.

Influential KOLs will be the ones who can create engaging materials that hit the target audience's psyche.

3. Growth

For an influencer marketing campaign to be successful, companies must constantly develop and produce new content based on information about their products.

Brands will select KOCs with fans as the target audience of corporate customers to have the most effective advertising campaigns based on updating consumer trends. In addition, the KOC must win customers' trust and exert some influence on the company's target market, thus assisting in product promotion, customer database growth, and brand sales growth.

Key Opinion Consumer

Regular updating trends helps develop Influence Marketing

How to Use KOC Review Most Effectively

It is evident that KOC is an extremely developing field and will likely replace KOL Marketing in the future if it builds trust from consumers. On the contrary, if the KOC is not skillful in reviewing the product, or the PR for the product is too excessive, the customer will put the KOC and the brand on the "blocklist" and cannot immediately regain its reputation.

KOC là gì


Especially in the F&B industry, KOCs should consider the most honest assessment of what the product brings. Do not comment that it is far from what you have experienced and is not true to the reality of the product.

One important thing to remember so you can make the most of your KOC is to apply the 80/20 principle. In any KOC review, there should be 80% praise and 20% criticism, which will create a higher sense of trust for consumers. Besides, retail businesses should also update the latest industry trends and take advantage of them to promote their products and improve the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns.