The Rise of Influencer Marketing
This social media era we live in is rapidly changing and has no sign of stopping any time soon. Individuals hoping to increase public recognition and maintain a high-quality brand should start embracing the future—the rise of influencer marketing. So, what is influencer marketing? Identifying key individuals that resonate with your target audience, marketing through those individuals and having them grow your brand messaging across their personal networks. This is because more and more consumers are looking at their fellow consumers to influence their purchasing decision—they’re no longer looking up to companies but at each other and their favorite personalities. Influencer marketing in 2017 has shifted from where celebrities have all the the power to one where the familiar girl-next-door shares power—here are 3 reasons why influencer marketing is taking over in 2017.
Reason One: Authenticity
More than 96% of consumers ask their friend for referrals or recommendations before purchasing a product or service. An influencer campaign serves as an all-in-one ad to promote your product, give information about your product and include a peer recommendation from a trusted source—the influencer. Why do consumers trust influencers more? Because when a company brags about their accomplishments and abilities, the audience realizes it’s their job to speak positively about a product or service. But, when an influencer speaks out about a brand, the audience believes that their recommendations and personal experiences are genuine and are more likely to respond to this authenticity.
Reason Two: Rise of the Power-Middle and Micro-Influencers
Over the years, the only influencers we’ve been exposed to are celebrities—but that has shifted now to micro-influencers (less that 10,000 followers) and power-middle influencers (10,000 - 250,000 followers). These influencers are much more relatable and personable than red-carpet celebs, and as a result, their opinions and recommendations hold weight with their audience. People love trying new brands and free stuff, but they love it even more when it’s recommended by someone they admire. Furthermore, the lifestyles most of these influencers live are far more attainable than those of celebrities, meaning you’re more likely to buy a cute purse from a low-key boutique a micro-influencer posted than a Gucci purse a celebrity posted.
Reason Three: Exponential Impact
When was the last time you bragged about a banner ad? What about a print ad? Never, cause they aren’t engaging. If you work on a social post with a quality-influencer, you can listen in on the social banter integrated in the post. There will be a flurry of likes, comments, clicks, and most importantly, shares. A quality post from one’s favorite influencer will create so much buzz, be shared amongst different friend groups, keep multiplying your reach and customer base without having to repeat your efforts.
A few brands that are killing it on Instagram Influencer Marketing include: Old Navy, Sugar Bear Hair, The Perfect Sculpt, Naked Juice — some of these brands are established brands and others are solely Instagram and internet brands that have only gotten big through influencer marketing.
In conclusion, the growing number of marketers using influencer marketing to grow their brand image and/or products and services has grown immensely in 2017. Instead of blatantly saying “hey, buy my product”, your marketing now includes getting customers interested in your product and brand through association and the element of trust. So if you’re thinking about jumping onto the influencer marketing bandwagon, reach out to local bloggers and start creating a relationship with them.