Influencer marketing is the latest way marketing firms are working with brands to shake up the way they reach and engage target markets. It's no longer enough to "reach" potential customers, brands want to leave behind lasting impressions -- and influencer marketing is the best way businesses can do just that.
Sixty-six percent of marketers have already introduced an influencer marketing strategy, according to a report by Chute. According to the report, on average marketers see a $6.50 return for every $1 spent on influencer marketing.
Get ahead of your competition with the ultimate cheat sheet on influencer marketing.
Influencer marketing focuses on using thought leaders, social media stars and other influential leaders to drive your brand's message to a wider market. Rather than directly marketing to a target group of people, you can hire, sponsor or inspire industry influencers to get the word out about your brand or business.
A distinct point of view is key, according to Max Polisar Chief Revenue Officer at AwesomenessTV. In order to persuade consumers into making purchase decisions, influencers need to be engaging like social media influencer Meghan Rienks. Old Navy tapped Rienks for a series of promotional posts on Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. In the videos, Rienk shows fans how to put together outfits with pieces from Old Navy. With over 1.3 million Instagram followers, and 2 million YouTube subscribers, Old Navy chose well. Swedish Watchmaker Daniel Wellington grew his $150k startup to a brand that's now worth an estimated $220 million in less than five years, and increased profits by 214% thanks to a social media campaign that leveraged thousands of Instagram influencers. The key to the campaign's success was an appeal to fan's for inspiring images, and the inclusion of a discount code for 15% off.
Seventy-five percent of businesses felt that identifying the right influencers was the biggest challenge they faced, according to a study by Augure. There are plenty of tools available to help brands find influencers including BuzzSumo and Followerwonk. If you don't have the budget for marketing tools, you can use social search engines to identify influencers in a specific industry. Follow influencers to see the type of content they promote, how often they post and how much engagement each post receives. Keep in mind that you need to look at more than just how many followers (check out this blog on the follower delusion) each influencer has. If they have 10k followers, but don’t know how to leverage social media best practices, you’re probably wasting your money working with them!
To make sure that your brand is FCC-compliant, look to the organization's Endorsement Guides, which reflect the truth-in-advertising principle that requires endorsements to be honest and not misleading. Some of the most important rules require you to always include the word "sponsored," "ad" or "paid" on all blog or social media posts; verbal disclosure within the first 30 seconds of a real-time or YouTube video; and disclosure at the beginning of blog posts before mention of the product.
Many businesses are challenged by budget restraints. Influencer marketing can be a cost-effective marketing strategy. With influencer marketing, smaller brands and large brands alike can reach and influence consumers through social media influencers. If you're having difficulty getting your audience to engage with your content, influencer marketing may be right for your business. By leveraging influencers to promote your content and leveraging the content they create, you can expand your audience and increase engagement rates.
Some influencers require payment for their promotions, while others seek clout or brand amplification. It's important both parties are clear on what types of posts are free, and which require compensation. Often, a media kit can help you with media planning, and outline costs per post. Not every influencer has a media kit, but it's helpful when they do. Influencers may request free products/services, a portion of sales, or a fee per engagement. Treat influencer agreements as you would any other media buy. Get everything in writing (what they will be providing for you and what they will get in return) and don't just accept rates at face value, always negotiate.
Not sure how to take your Influencer Marketing program to the next level? Need some help with determining which influencers might be right for your business? We can help! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 480-305-2017 for more information.