Why Should I Care About Influencer Marketing?
Why Influencer Marketing?
People are more likely to trust recommendations from people than brands. This has always been the case; we are more likely to trust a friend, or someone we perceive as a trusted source, over a company that is attempting to sell us on their own product or service. Harnessing the power of word of mouth and referral marketing is what "influencer marketing" is all about.
According to Wikipedia, "Influencer marketing is a form of marketing in which focus is placed on influential people rather than the target market as a whole. It identifies the individuals that have influence over potential buyers and orients marketing activities around these influencers.
This concept has now developed into an industry worth billions of dollars. As more brands embrace the new reality that an effective marketing mix includes influencer marketing, more tools and resources are being developed to support the developing ecosystem.
What Does that Mean for Brands?
Smart brands are taking notice of social media influencers and shifting some of their marketing budgets away from more traditional spends. It often makes more sense to work with an influencer that has already established trust with the brand's ideal clients than to spend money on ads that could end up costing more in the long run.
Since influencer marketing relies nearly exclusively on trust and authenticity between the influencer and their audience, smaller scale influencers are gaining in popularity. The relationship they have developed with their following is more intimate and more likely to take action on their recommendations. That makes the ROI higher than celebrity influencers who have a wider audience that is normally more passive.
You don't have to have a massive number of followers to have influence. Engagement levels usually peak at around 1,000 followers. It's actually better to be small and mighty!
Influencer Spotlight: Jennifer Alexander
Jennifer Alexander, also known as the Beerded Lady, has created her own brand and following around the topic of craft beer. She first developed an interest in craft beer when she traveled the world in search of festival experiences and good beer with her father.
Her interest first grew into a hobby and then into a business when ,at the urging of one of someone who enjoyed listening to her talk about her experiences, she started blogging and sharing her beer adventures on social media. She is active on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. She even has her own brand apparel for sale on her website.
She's a perfect example of someone who shares her passion and has gathered a following of people who are fascinated by the same topic, beer!
Find out more about Jennifer https://intellifluence.com/blog/jennifer-alexander-influencer-spotlight
Influencer Marketing Trends to Come
As the cost of social media advertising rises and as the competition for audience attention intensifies, it's the authenticity of small-scale influencers that will continue to increase in power. Opportunities for brands and social media influencers to collaborate are limited only by their imaginations. There is much more room for creativity and engagement when a great connection is made. When brands partner with the right person and allow them to highlight their product or service using the influencer's personality and voice, then everyone wins!
When brands first took notice of influencer marketing, it was a lot like the wild west... it was anyone's guess what would happen. There is still a lot of uncertainty around how to effectively implement an effective marketing program which includes influencer marketing. However, future trends include more standardization and transparency in cost and regulation so that both brands and influencers can more accurately set expectations that lead to more successful campaigns.
One of the best things coming from increased awareness and attention on influencer marketing is that marketers and brands are being more intentional in their efforts. Paying closer attention to metrics, audience match, and having more standard practices around deliverables are all coming down the pipe sooner rather than later. As smaller influencers become more recognized by agencies representing brands, there will be more opportunities for co-creation and collaboration for everyone.