What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing relies on people with large social media followings to promote products, services and establishments. Using engagement statistics as a guide, marketers focus on people who have an audience they are interested in targeting, whether large or small. Instead of marketing to a broad variety of people, influencer marketing focuses on specific interests such as a hobby or current fad.
Some of the biggest influencers on social media push products related to fitness, beauty, technology, travel and photography.
Building a Connection: Becoming An Influencer
This method of marketing relies on the connection of an influencer on their audience. Using word-of-mouth marketing has proven effective on more levels than just social with 9/10 consumers stating they trust word-of-mouth recommendations over than any other type of advertising presented. With this need for authentic testimonials to persuade opinion, simply running Ads on socials /may/ not be enough.
Ads are prevalent on every platform with a sponsored post or ads being placed every 4 or so posts. A study done in 2016 stated that 70% of teenage YouTube subscribers related to YouTube creators more than /traditional/ celebrities. This type of marketing has turned “every day people” into online celebrities with 40% of people surveyed saying they felt better understood by an online creator than their own friends.
This is only one of the factors fueling e-commerce via social platforms and with online options growing constantly, the future looks bright for influencers.
Additionally, influencer marketing can benefit a brand that lacks a strong (or any) social media presence. Building a strong social media audience takes time and work. Compensating an influencer to promote for you allows you to side-step the immediate need to build up a social following for your own company and can even build it up for you.
The bigger the audience and engagement the more it will cost — but your chances to reach that ideal consumer grows as well.
What’s Next? Finding An Influencer
Now that you know /what/ influencer marketing is, how do you go about contacting and working with an influencer?
Research is required to ensure you connect with the influencer most relevant to your audience. This may involve engaging with and following a myriad of influencers to find one(s) who have what you are looking for. If you are a small business looking for a local influencer to push traffic, look into events they have done in the past and the kind of engagement they have.
This can be a determining factor in who you team up with and to what extent. If you are looking for a larger influencer to promote a more national product or service, look at their engagement and variety of product posts to see if that appeals to your brand and style.
It’s nearly impossible to fully understand the influence of a Social Media Influencer without following and engaging with them so if you are interested in working with one of them, get to know them first.