The Ultimate Guide to Growing Your Business with Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is the strategy used by Businesses’ to promote their products and services by partnering with popular social media users or bloggers. These social media personalities are known as Influencers and they usually have a large, engaged audience. It is this audience that brands hope to tap into to drive credible sales.
When a consumer sees Beats by Dre headphones with every single celebrity, from Chris Brown to the Kardashians, they are drawn by the fact that they can own the same equipment with celebrities. The aspiration to own something a Celebrity influences the consumer to then make a purchase.
This is known as influencer marketing.
Human beings are aspirational by nature, and when someone of importance is seen to live a certain lifestyle, this lifestyle is coveted by the masses. The influencer’s opinion becomes the gold standard, and many will abide by it. Remember how BBC Top Gears Jeremy Clarkson had men shunning Audis’ because he claimed Audi drivers were morons and susceptible to bad drivers? He then went on to suggest BMW & Mercedes drivers were better behaved, due to his large following, many were influenced by his comments.
Growth in lifestyle influencers
The rise of influencers has infiltrated almost every single industry, from gaming, fashion, technology to even cookery. These people have worked hard to gain followers and it just doesn’t happen overnight. When we see celebrities or other famous people they look up to wearing things or using certain brands, they are much more likely to do the same as well. The influencers whom we see on social media have thousands or over a million followers on Instagram, SnapChat, Twitter, TickTock, or YouTube. These people have built up their earned audiences, which is why they’re called influencers.
Like I mentioned before, building up a following is very difficult so YouTube and Facebook are paying these people big money because they have these large organic audiences. By Organic, I mean audiences that are engaging.
Business Growth using social media influencers
Partnering with influencers is an important marketing strategy for many brands. The simple answer to why influencer marketing works includes these benefits:
- The potential to have access to a larger audience
- Ability to build trust for the brand
- Growing an organic social following
- Increase site traffic
- Converting followers into sales
The easiest way to attain the services of influencer marketing is to directly pay influencers for posts. Instagram, for example, has a lot of models wearing specific brands, consuming specific brands, or driving certain brands. These models are paid per post. More so the brand managers are able to see how successful a particular post is. For a post to gain enough traction, it must have a certain number of likes or shares. The higher the better. High numbers are good but that is depended on the criteria of people liking the post. For example, a brand like Beats by Dre would be more interested in young music-minded people to see the post due to the fact they are most likely to align with the brand and hence make a purchase, unlike elder people whose possibility of buying the headphones are low. This is why it is important to have the right influencer representing the brand
One doesn’t have to be a huge company for this type of marketing to be valuable. An e-commerce company selling urban apparel products doesn’t necessarily need influencers on the level of LeBron James or the Kardashians to gain traction. An influencer with 10,000 followers is likely to be sufficient and a lot cheaper than famous celebrities.
Which Influencers are the right fit for your brand?
It doesn’t make sense recruiting influencers because of high follower counts as those numbers can be artificially inflated through buying followers. The really important metric is follower loyalty.
When we examine people with millions of followers closely on Instagram, you notice they’re only getting a thousand likes per photo. This means their following isn’t loyal, at the end of the day when you recruit such an influencer, chances are the majority of their followers won’t care about their posts meaning your brand won’t gain any traction.
Nano and Micro-Influencers
Nano-influencers are defined as having between 1,000-10,000 followers on social media, particularly Instagram whilst micro-influencers, who generally have between 10,000- 50,000 followers.
In the early days of influencer partnerships, brands sought out influencers with large follower counts in order to push content to the reach the highest possible audience but, as the industry evolved, brands have become wary and aware of fake followers
As an entry-level business in the world of social media marketing, it is wise to start with getting the services of these kinds of Influencers instead of the heavy hitters. A big advantage of using these kinds of influencers is that their followers are organic and very engaging. They come across as your normal day to day people so they have credibility and Authenticity. As an e-commerce company, if you paying $400 per post and your average order value is $50, you can see how the numbers add up in your favor. If a post gets $5,000 worth of orders. That is a good return on a single post, In fact, you’re likely to be looking for even more influencers to post your brand. That’s when you buy as many posts as possible trying to negotiate to buy them in bulk packages. The key is not to stop buying but to do it consistently over time. This guarantees brand visibility and market presence.
The relevance of an influencer on a particular topic is incredibly important. You want them to have the right reach so their voice is heard, and you also need to make sure they’re relevant to the target audience. Paying Kim Kardashian once to wear a brand, will not do as well as paying a number of Nano influencers over the course of six months to a year. Smaller influencers have a sustained impact on gaining sales hence will make sense from a marketing point of view.