Marketing is undergoing an evolution. Today, it isn’t just about the 4P’s. Social media is a force to be reckoned with and brands need to incorporate social media into their marketing mix to stay relevant in the eyes of prospective customers.
When it comes to social media, brands can’t stop at static engagement through advertisements and posts. They’ll need to go a step ahead and enlist people to actively market their products and services.
Gone are the days when brand ambassadors and sponsors ruled the roost. Today, it’s all about creating a personable experience and generating positive brand perceptions organically. One way brands achieve this is by investing in influencer marketing.
An influencer is an individual who is highly experienced and very knowledgeable in a particular niche and has a very large, devoted and supercharged following. When brands use the services of an influencer to market their products and services, we call it influencer marketing.
Reasons to increase investment in influencer marketing
2017 estimates showed that investment in influencer marketing would see a rise, with 51% of existing players intending to increase their influencer marketing budget. Of this, 82% claimed they would increase spending on video influencer marketing in particular. There has to be a reason for such huge numbers.
Influencer marketing offers brands some distinct advantages that other marketing channels don’t, such as:
- It provides increased potential for ROI generation
A 2016 study showed that brands make on an average $6.50 for every $1 they invest in influencer marketing.
Such is the power of influencer marketing to ROI generation, that today we have companies like ifluenz offering influencer marketing services, where they connect brands with the relevant influencers. They help you find the right influencer for your campaign and assist you in planning your campaign start-to-finish.
- It drives social media
From Instagram to YouTube, influencers have taken over every single social media platform present. Take influencers like Guy Kawasaki. He has over 2 million followers on LinkedIn, 45% of whom are senior management, who look to him for advice on business and investment. Kawasaki uses a plethora of visual tools like presentations, videos and slide share to tell stories and to sell ideas.
Kawasaki doesn’t just stick to LinkedIn though. He posts more upbeat content for the younger millennial demographic on Twitter and Instagram. Influencers like these tie various social media platforms together and market the same product, service or idea to different demographics. Imagine the social media presence you can acquire by tapping into the power of influencers.
- It adds to the consumer experience
Studies have shown that a whopping 47% of millennials globally use ad blocking technology to prevent advertisements from ruining their social media experience. This means, 47% of the world’s youth aren’t receiving the advertisements intended for them; making an investment in this form of promotion redundant and wasteful.
Add to this the 74% of the global population who seek recommendations from non-celebrities while making purchase decisions; and you have yourself a reason for investing in influencer marketing.
- It is the essence of content marketing campaigns
More customers today prefer to read or view content about a product or service, than see a traditional advertisement. This is why blogs, videos and podcasts are gaining momentum. Influencers use a mixture of all these tools and more to communicate with their followers. They provide interesting and actionable inputs which add true value to their follower’s lives.
This leads to the creation of highly-shareable content. When followers share a content made by an influencer (and containing your brand’s name), you have a greater online presence. Add SEO, backlinks and meta to the mix and you have yourself the perfect content.
Given how personable, relatable and realistic they are, influencers have an edge over robotic mass advertisements. This makes them a great choice for any brand that wants to carve a space for itself in today’s world.
So, go ahead and set aside a bigger budget for your influencers. If you haven’t included influencer marketing in your campaign yet, don’t worry. It’s never too late to start.