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.
When you are a buyer, there are tons of options available to buy a product from. But when you see someone you follow or someone you research about or are a fan of, endorse a brand, you tend to incline towards that brand or product.
On the other hand, how does a brand decide which influencer fits the criteria to promote their business/product? Earlier they were celebrities, who were considered as influencers and now with the advent of technology and social media, there are social media influencers who make a living by promoting products and brands.
Contrary to the common misconception, social media influencers do not always take money to promote a product or a brand, sometimes brands send across their newly launched products or the products they wish to be promoted. If the influencer wishes or likes the product, he/she can publish a post or an article talking about the pros and cons of the product. But in this method, it is not mandatory for the influencer to promote the product. The spending the brands do in this method is giving out their products for free.
Another way of going about influencer marketing is paying the influencers to promote the products. It can be a one-time deal or a deal where the influencers must talk about the products more than once it can be daily, weekly, monthly or just a fixed number of times in each duration of time.
Earlier television ads were a go-to when brands wanted to reach potential customers. But it didn’t help in effectively targeting the company’s target audience. But now there are many websites that provide with analytics of influencers’ social media accounts. Hence, allowing brands to reach their target audience more effectively. With the help of influencer marketing, companies can now reach their target audience demographically, geographically and when combined with social media even psychographically. According to Linqia’s latest research:
Out of 86% of marketers who used influencer marketing in 2017, 92% of them found it useful.
To make the most out of digital channels, 44% of marketers are planning to use influencer content.
36% of e-commerce marketers are planning to use influencer content in 2018 to increase their product sales.
Every day on Instagram, I see celebrities tag fashion websites to show people what they are wearing and with time I realized it is done to benefit both the influencer and the brand. All the influencers’ followers know what brands the influencer loves, gathering more awareness and consideration for the brand and if the influencer is good at what he/she does, more people follow them and more brands will approach them to promote their products. Influencers are trust builders, they are easier to find and connect with, they generate revenue, they create content and build awareness of the brand. Collaborating with influencers help in building the brand’s credibility and reputation. Influencer marketing is a go-to not just for e-commerce marketing but for other types of marketing as well.
Today, there is nothing more valuable than an audience. Amanda Maksymiw said, “Influencer marketing at its core is about developing a real relationship to ultimately champion your influencers to market with you.”