Influencer Marketing is the New Content Marketing
To many, 2016 will be considered ground zero for the rise of influencer marketing. Virtually everyone these days uses Twitter, Youtube and blogs, so with that in mind, just about anyone has the ability to reach out to the masses.
What exactly is influencer marketing? Why should a small business try to utilize it? Well, look no further…
What’s Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing incorporates celebrity endorsers and word-of-mouth reviews. Often, brands will look to try and find a renowned public figure that’s somewhat affiliated with their niche to speak about their product or engage with the brand’s content.
Depending on the circumstances regarding the company, this can be a very affordable (sometimes free) practice or it can be a very expensive one. A relatively small non-profit organization may ask local news anchors to help in their promotion. Brands of a bigger scale are willing to pay thousands upon thousands of dollars for one Instagram post from a celebrity.
The key is finding a partner that’ll promote your brand appropriately and when that occurs, it’ll allow your brand to blossom. The right tweet or Instagram post can drive an enormous amount of traffic to your website.
What Makes Influencer Marketing Beneficial?
As soon as a client is able to garner a basic understanding of what influencer marketing is, they also ask the questions: Will it work for us? And why should we attempt it? There are plenty of reasons influencer marketing is worth the shot, but here’s our six.
1. Your Brand is Exposed to a Bigger Audience
With the recent surge of ad-blockers being introduced, more and more brands are trying to reach out to their audience on a more personal level as opposed to just mass broadcasting ads. Essentially, there are two ways in which you can do this. One being to produce content on branded marketing channels like blogs and social media and the other being to promote your content on alternative influencer platforms.
Plenty of content marketers have already begun utilizing influencers as promoters for their brand. You may only reach about 1,000 people daily using your blog, but if you used your influencer’s blog you might reach up to 1,000,000. If you only get 2 percent of your influencer’s blog visitors to make their way to your site, you’re still tripling your reach.
2. Influencer’s Improve Your Reputation
A lot of the time, a brand will use influencer marketing to make them seem bigger than they really are. While sticking with the example used before, a bigger blog promoting a smaller blog – the bigger blog doesn’t necessarily care that the smaller blog only has about 1,000 visitors a day. Quality content is quality content, no matter whose seeing it.
Influencer marketing is all about putting your brand on the map and maintaining that spot while standing out. If you’re good enough for the influencer to promote you, you’ll subsequently be good enough for their audience.
3. Word-of-Mouth Offers Your Brand More Integrity
Although many customers will trust word-of-mouth, it’s an extremely difficult marketing strategy to execute. By using influencer marketing, you’ll be cutting out all the dirty work involved with word-of-mouth while being able to enjoy the benefits, like getting each customer to promote your product or brand everytime they share or comment on the influencer's post.
The most important part in finding a successful influencer is choosing someone who already uses your brand and would naturally be a fit to represent your brand. For instance, if an NBA player wears your shoe brand, he could post a picture wearing your shoes for an important game.
4. The Better the Relationship the Better the ROI
Although some relationships between a brand and an influencer will never change, most influencer relationships will gradually result in a greater ROI the longer the relationship continues.
Getting started is the hardest part of the entire outreach process. There may be times where your influencer isn’t necessarily aware of your product or even your brand, but that’s nothing a few wins can’t fix. A partnership can form and your influencer’s audience may just become a part of your audience.
The more you work with your influencer, the cheaper your paid advertising should become. Also, with that being the case, your organic placements should become easier to obtain over a period of time.
Adweek has mentioned that the pric point to acquire an influencer has been steadily rising over the past couple of years. Getting in on it now can save you a ton of money not too far down the road.
67 percent of marketers think influencer marketing campaigns helped them reach a more targeted audience, thus leading to more impactful results.
5. Tracking Success is Simpler Now Than Ever Before
Google Analytics is the leading program in regards to online success metrics, however there are a few other tools you can use like Omniture and Coremetrics. These tools will help you see the path a buyer took before actually making a purchase as opposed to being limited to only seeing your exposure.
One of the most difficult components to marketing is deciding on allocating or reallocating your budget and resources to achieve the highest ROI. Studying analytics will help make that process easier. If your influencer posts are driving traffic and sales, it makes sense to scale up.
6. Your Competition May Already be a Step Ahead
As recently as last October, at least 75 percent of companies revealed that they’ve been using influencer marketing as one of their strategies. 47 of the 75 percent said it’s been a very effective strategy and the remaining 34 percent have reported that it’s been at least somewhat effective.
So How Can I Get Started?
When you’ve finally got a client on board with the idea of influencer marketing, the next question they’ll have is how? Here’s five quick and easy steps to begin testing influencer marketing:
- Determine a budget you can use for paid partnerships.
- Come up with up to 20 influencers that would be appropriate for the brand, product or content you’re trying to promote.
- Be creative. It’s easy to have an influencer show off your product but the message conveyed will stick.
- Work collaboratively with your influencer. Discuss what worked or didn’t work for either of you and look at the feedback from both audiences.
- Keep on testing. In every failure there’s a lesson to be learned.
Your product or service is just as important as your spokesperson. An influencer can promote your product day in and day out, but if it isn’t of quality, your influencer marketing efforts have gone to waste.
Quote by Giordano Contestabile of Adweek: Influencer Marketing in 2018: Becoming an Efficient Marketplace