What Exactly Is Influencer Marketing?
Business is not only about creating a good quality product and selling it, but it has become all about forming relationships and connections with customers. Building brand loyalty is not a new concept, but doing it through influencer marketing is.
Influencer marketing is an advertising tactic to endorse your product or brand in a natural way through bloggers, vloggers, and social media personalities. Often, the first thought that comes to mind is that your boutique is too small to have Kim Kardashian highlight your products on her Instagram or app. This is probably true. However, it doesn’t mean that influencer marketing isn’t for you. Small boutiques can use local bloggers, vloggers, and social media personalities to get their name out there in their community. Larger boutiques or fashion brands can use more well-known influencers with a broader following. Basically, influencer marketing is something that can benefit any level and size of a business, so why not test it out on yours?
Ways to Utilize Influencer Marketing
There are multiple ways to incorporate influencer marketing into your advertising plan. The most typical ways are for an influencer to pick out products to keep and then advertise on a given platform or to send an influencer products that they will post and then return. In the first case, the items provided to the influencer is the compensation. However, in the second case, most times monetary compensation is provided to the influencer. Influencers with a larger following will sometimes require both forms of compensation. All options have positives and negatives, so it all depends on what works best for you and your influencers.
Influencer marketing is typically not very expensive for the number of consumers you are reaching, so it is a smart area to invest your budget. The money spent on this type of advertising also typically has a higher payoff due to more creative/one of a kind content and guaranteed coverage. It is important to remember that if you are wanting a high return on investment, you must put into it what you would like to get out of it. With that being said, don’t expect products that influencers advertise to immediately fly off the shelves. The influencer is forming the trust and relationship that consumers need to like your brand, which will first lead to more traffic.
When it comes to reaching your ideal audience, quality over quantity is key. Influencer marketing allows you to reach more people in a shorter amount of time. However, it is important to not put all of your focus on how many followers an influencer has. While you still want a good amount, influencers with a huge following are not always the way to go. An influencer can have the largest reach possible, but they may not meet your needs. It is important to use an influencer that has strong engagement from followers and to identify your target market and see that it aligns with that of the influencer. This way the influencer is more apt to love your brand and convey it better to consumers, who will also relate well to your brand.
Build Customer Loyalty
On a day to day basis, people are more apt to trust their friends and people they know rather than people they don’t. The same goes for marketing. Consumers are more likely to trust what influencers say rather than what comes directly from a brand because consumers connect to influencers and grow to trust their opinions. This is why it is so crucial that you and your influencer have a mutual fit. Find an influencer that matches your style to get your brand out there. It is all about word of mouth.
To get started, you first should create a strategy. Layout your main goals, which could be to drive traffic, build awareness, create new content, etc. You can then find influencers on your own through social media, or you can work with an agency. Influencer marketing agencies connect you with influencers who align with your target market.
Remember to look at engagement, target market, and style when choosing your influencer. Influencer marketing shouldn’t be your only form of targeting consumers, but it is a valuable way to attain loyal customers and get the word out there about your brand.