Influencer marketing is exploding in popularity, and for good reason: it delivers great results when you know how to put together a proper campaign and execute it correctly. With all the buzz comes a lot of failure though, as businesses hear about it and jump headfirst in without a plan or an understanding of how and why it works.
It’s not like it was in the beginning, that’s for sure. Now, follower count is almost irrelevant, as spray tactics won’t work because the consumers have seen it before. They know their favorite celebrities are promoting paid campaigns. Now, you need to identify niche influencers that have a following that mirrors your target customers. Even with the evolution of influencer marketing, it’s still effective for three reasons, explained below.
- It delivers your message in an authentic manner.
When you match a product or service with the correct influencer and they showcase it with well-designed content, it makes it appear very authentic. It has to make sense. For example, a food blogger isn’t going to look natural promoting headphones, but a popular DJ posting an image of headphones and suggesting that their followers check out the brand is completely authentic.
A lot of businesses will try to get too involved and tell the influencer how to promote the product or service. This can often result in content that just sticks out like a sore thumb because it differs dramatically from what the influencer typically posts.
When you allow the influencer to have full control over the content it will result in a post that maintains their style and feel, and when your product or service is showcased in a way that the audience is used to it will be received much better, providing you with better results.
- You can gain consumer trust immediately.
When you have the right influencers promoting your product it can create trust right away. When these brands hire a Kardashian to promote their product on social media it can cost $500,000 to $1 million per post. That is a ridiculous amount of money, but not only does that post generate instant sales, but it give the company validation.
Now, when people see their ads or see it elsewhere, they connect it with a brand the Kardashians promoted, instantly validating it.
Most businesses don’t have an extra million-dollars laying around to pay a Kardashian to promote their product, so look for influencers that are actually passionate about what it is that you are selling. If you are promoting a line of beauty products, look for influencers that do in-depth tutorials and constantly post about new products.
When you align yourself with those that are actually into the products, and not just the paycheck, then you get much better representation. Remember, any influencer you hire is essentially an arm of your brand now, as they will be connected to you, so chose your influencers wisely.
- Influencer marketing can produce a large ROI.
Now, the reason brands are all over influencer marketing is the return it provides. You can drive instant sales if you have the right product that is ideal for social media ($20 – $60 range) that’s more of an impulse purchase rather than something that requires consumer research. If you have an impulse product and match it to the right audiences through influencers with large reaches you can see the highest ROI across all digital marketing options.
You just have to know your market, but this is the case with anything. If you are running PPC ads you need to know your market in order to target correctly and use the right terms they would be searching in Google.
You also need to think of ways to help you track the performance of specific influencer campaigns. Little things like using unique bit.ly URLs to track clicks per influencer and giving them unique coupon codes to use can help you attribute sales to each influencer you use, helping you determine who is worth working with in the future and who may not have the ideal audience for your business. Attempt to collect as many data points as possible, as it will help you scale your effort and increase the overall ROI.