Monday, 28 September 2015

Why ‘Influencer Marketing’ is the Future and What it means for You

There are so many options on how to best reach customers nowadays, from traditional media to the ever-growing influence of social media platforms. However, through social media’s success, a new marketing category has emerged, called ‘Influencer Marketing’. 

Influencer Marketing takes advantage of what Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest have all proved: customers care a lot more about what eachother say, than what a company brags about. The aspects of sharing, retweeting and contributing to social media feeds indicate the massive influence that social media users have on eachother. But some definitely have more influence than others; introducing the ‘Influencers’.

Who are Influencers?
In the past influencers have mainly been celebrities, promoting certain products with fans following suit. However, the growing cynicism towards advertising and obvious, straight-forward marketing means businesses have turned to the more every-day influencer. These influencers are normal people who have become well-known and popular on social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Blogger, Vine and Youtube.  Their huge followings are usually down to specific talents, wit or expertise. Examples such as Michelle Phan, make-up artist and enthusiast and Zoe Sugg (Zoella), beauty and fashion vlogger have become internet sensations. These ‘normal’ but popular social media users are being utilized by businesses to recommend and represent their products in an authentic, unbiased manner.

Word of Mouth
Not only social media stars with millions of followers are influencers. Everyone is an influencer. You can influence your friends, colleagues face-to-face or on social media, when discussing products, brands and people. You, as an every-day influencer, are seen as more authentic and trustworthy than traditional advertising. The importance of peer recommendations and their amplification through social media has made influencer marketing a widely discussed topic among marketers.

It Works
Social media stars now have more clout over younger consumers than mainstream celebrities. Younger audiences can relate to these online personalities and are constantly plugged in, consuming more social media than television. Popular bloggers have become effective influencers for certain brands, as they are perceived as honest in rating and recommending products. Browsing blogs for product reviews is now parallel to ringing up a friend. Make-up tutorials on YouTube now have more reliability than TV cosmetic commercials.


Act
A balanced marketing approach should include multiple facets. Working with social media users who draw large followings should definitely be one of them. Identify the most relevant influencers to your business. Digital tools like SocMetrics and Appinions make it easy for companies to analyze the social media landscape for the most influential profiles based on geography, category, or other demographic data. Bringing relevant, influential media users into your marketing strategy can create a major bang without spending huge bucks, and if managed well, it’s an almost effortless way to draw attention to your product.
If you have any questions, feel free to drop me an email (info@digity.co.uk) or call: 01189 100 012.

Chris Lunn
Director
Digity, Online Marketing



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