Influencers: brands want them, and bloggers and others want to be them. But who are they? What do they do? How do they make money? And what makes someone a social media influencer?
An influencer can be anyone, from a blogger to a celebrity, but they must always have credibility and a niche.
Influencers are generally compensated with money or samples. Before you pay just anyone to promote your product, however, be sure the influencers you work with match your brand’s tone, style, and mission, the infographic explains.
Influencer marketing is on the up. Statistics devised from the survey show that the search term “influencer marketing” has increased by 325% in 12 months, and a large proportion of businesses are seeing a return of roughly seven times their investment. In response, businesses are increasing the amount spent on influencer marketing.
Social media influencers have built up a reputation in certain topics and are known as experts in their fields. They have a large group of followers on their preferred platforms, who listen to their views and take on board what they say.
To tap into these audiences, brands are keen to become involved with social media influencers. This has become so in-demand that now, specialised companies that have seen the growth pattern help businesses link up with influencers in their industry. Brands that manage to get in front of influencers see their products promoted to an audience already attuned to what the influencers have to say. These warm markets are more likely to buy, without resorting to pressurised marketing techniques.
Because of the success of social media influencers, they are highly sought after. Before choosing which products to promote, there are several factors they take into consideration before making that decision. Although influencers are rewarded for their efforts in these campaigns, either through a payment or free goods, they can be very particular about what products to promote.
With their reputation at stake, an influencer worthy of their weight will only become involved with brands they like or trust. They can, and do, say no to becoming involved with campaigns, regardless of the remuneration, if promoting it could be detrimental to their reputation.
This selectivity goes a long way to maintaining their credibility, one of the main methods of maintaining large audiences. This ties in with research completed by Juha Munnukka , who showed that credibility was related to expertise and trustworthiness. The more credible a source is, the better the relationship will be.
Relatability is crucial within social media marketing. Most influencers are normal individuals who their following can relate to. It’s the old saying of; “If it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me”. Social media influencers are looking for products that they and their audience can relate to.
Juha Munnuka’s research also showed that the result a consumer has with a product affects their perceived view of the person endorsing it. Recommending poor quality products will eventually affect their status, regardless of the recompense received.
There are two ways to incorporate this marketing technique into an affiliate business:
When you are looking to work with influencers there are a few things to do before sending out emails of introduction. This will go a long way to ensuring success in your recruitment process.
Past issues with influencers sprang up when the public realised that the individuals they had been following and listening to closely had been paid to promote products. In the interest of transparency and objectivity, paid posts now have to be disclosed, as discussed in more depth in this article.
Influencers should state anywhere within posts that they are being paid to write about a product. This ties into credibility and trust that we discussed above. Long term followers still relate to promotional posts of this nature, but they need to maintain the trust through transparency.
The world of the social media influencer offers up a lot of opportunities to marketers. Before committing marketing budget to this, as you would before embarking on any new channel at a cost, it’s best to consider how influencer marketing fits in with your overall strategy and how it will help to achieve your business’s goals. Employing it as part of the marketing strategy can reap great rewards, and open your products up to a whole new audience. After all, if 94% of marketers who have used this technique believe it to be effective, it is worth a try.
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