Influencer marketing is more than a hot trend – it’s a powerful force for building brands on social media
Influencer marketing unquestionably is on the rise. As social media grows in importance to the marketing plans of every business, more and more brands are turning to the captivating personalities on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and TikTok to promote their products and services to the loyal, enthusiastic audiences who hang on these influencers’ every word, photo and video.
In fact, the market size of influencer marketing has rocketed from $1.7 billion in 2016 to $9.7 billion in 2020 – and a projected $13.8 billion in 2021, according to Influencer Marketing Hub.
A successful approach to influencer marketing requires planning far beyond simply providing free stuff to people with a lot of sway on social media. At Fryed Egg, we can help you wade through the sometimes-mystifying world of influencer marketing and develop a strategy that works for your brand. Here are some keys to succeeding in this rapidly evolving facet of marketing – one that offers both opportunities and risks.
Choose your platform
Developing an effective influencer marketing strategy depends in part on determining the social media channel or channels that are most effective for your brand. Most influencers specialize in a particular channel where they do most of their engagement with their followers, though some have large presences on multiple channels. Consider the social media channels that are most important for the customer demographic you hope to reach before deciding which influencers will be right for you.
Finding a fitting personality
Identifying an influencer or influencers who are a good fit for your brand and your marketing goals will depend on a host of factors. Are you searching for the largest possible audience or a more targeted group? Who is the ideal face for your brand? What sort of tone do you hope to convey? Sometimes, a great way to find someone who is a good fit for your business is to study who is already posting about products or services like yours. You will also want to closely study how they engage with their followers. Is their follower count overstuffed with bots or do they have an enthusiastic audience of real people? Do their posts draw the quantity and quality of comments from their followers that you’d want to see associated with your brand? Do they appear to be someone who can influence the buying decisions of their followers?
Always aim for authentic
For your campaign to be effective, you will want to work with influencers who can demonstrate an authentic affection for your brand. That means you will want to find influencers who align with your values and whose interests are a natural fit for your products or services. Too often, brands spy a popular influencer and try to attach themselves to them without considering fit. Those awkward matches do nothing to benefit your brand because consumers can see right through the charade – in fact, an inauthentic pairing will cause your brand to dim in their eyes. You will want to work with influencers who can support you while being themselves. That’s how you both remain credible.
Consider the micro-influencers
Popularity does not equal most influential. The most effective influencers for your brand are not necessarily the ones with the widest reach and largest follower base. You may instead want to direct your investment and attention to micro-influencers. These social media users have smaller followings, but they may offer other characteristics that make them a more natural fit for their brand. For instance, they may already be avowed fans of your brand, or they may have demonstrated expertise in your area of the marketplace so that their word carries weight with their followers. Or your campaign might be a better fit for “ordinary people” rather than prominent influencers who post from a grander stage.
Is this a fling or a long-term thing?
The length of your relationship with an influencer can vary. Some organizations prefer to use influencers for targeted, short-term events or campaigns. Others opt to develop ongoing, long-term relationships with influencers, making them brand ambassadors. When you have a new product to launch, a brand ambassador is a natural choice to help introduce the product to your customers. A long-term relationship with an influencer can create a stronger, more enduring connection between your brand and their audience.
The push and pull of collaboration
Working with an influencer on the tone and scope of their message can be tricky. You want them to adopt your key messages, but you also want them to maintain their own voice. If they are not posting about your brand with the same personal narrative and conversational style that they usually use, then their followers will recognize it and turn away from the message. This could undermine both your brand and your influencer. The goal should be to work with the influencer’s unique appeal to tailor an approach that will connect with their audiences, showcase your message and allow your influencer the room to be creative and natural.
Influencer marketing should be implemented as part of a holistic marketing strategy, complementing your other brand management efforts. Fryed Egg can show you how to build influencer marketing into the support and promotion of your brand and how to find the influencers who are right for you. If you want to learn more about how Fryed Egg can help, contact us at (813) 478-0494 or firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.fryedegg.com.