Everyone and his cousin knows an influencer nowadays, and there are millions of influencers around the world. Influencer marketing is a relatively simple tool but can have a huge impact on not only your potential sales, but your online presence as well.
What is influencer marketing?
An influencer is someone who has the power to affect other people’s purchasing decisions. This is usually due to their position, relatability, knowledge and the relationship they have with their audience. Lots of celebrities are often involved in social media marketing campaigns…and it works! The influencer market is currently worth about $13.8 billion. This is expected to rise by almost $3 billion this year!
The most notable social media channels for influencer marketing are Instagram, Facebook, Tiktok and YouTube. It’s always the visuals that sell and with video marketing on the rise, these channels are particularly compatible with this form of media. Customers like to see the product in action and they trust their favourite influencers to give honest reviews. Investing in influencer marketing is a great opportunity for businesses to show off exactly what their product can do and potentially be seen by a huge number of people.
Instagram is currently the preferred choice by businesses for their influencer marketing needs. Almost certainly this is because of the broader target market it attracts. Compared to Tiktok, it has roughly the same number of users but reaches a wider age range. Tiktok is generally marketed towards a younger generation, with 50% being under the age of 34, perfect if that’s the market you’re aiming for.
How do I choose which influencer to use?
Ultimately, the channel and influencer you choose should be reflective of your own target market and the type of followers they have. There is little point, for example, if you sell power tools, to choose a fashion influencer whose followers are mostly young girls.
Do your research. A simple Google of ‘power tool influencers’ churns up a huge number of potential collaborators. Don’t just go ahead and pick the one with the most followers. Check out some of their work and ask yourself these questions:
- What personality do they have and does it fit with your brand?
- Who is their target market and does it coincide with yours?
- What type of ads have they done in the past?
- Is their style of content suited to your voice and branding?
- How much genuine engagement do they get on their posts?
The last one is quite important to remember. They may have thousands of followers but if the only comments they get are from spam accounts, you know the potential for sales may not be as great.
Don’t discount anyone based on age either. My children are forever watching YouTube videos hosted by other children who are playing new videogames, unboxing new toys or building Lego…and aren’t they the most easily influenced?
It’s also important that the influencer you choose is passionate about your product or service. Authenticity is key to their marketing and that’s how they receive the engagement they do.
Amazon recently interviewed content creator Trisha Hershberger who had some great tips for brands to consider – definitely worth a read!
How do I work with an influencer?
Working with an influencer is pretty simple. It’s a case of collaboration. They promote your product to their followers and usually offer a unique discount code alongside the promotion. This helps you keep track of exactly where sales have come from so you can see if the marketing strategy is successful. It’s a good idea to test the strategy with different types of influencers, media channels or even on different days of the week to see what works for you.
Amazon now allows you set up unique social media promo codes, perfect for giving to influencers to use. You have to offer a minimum of 5% off your current price and no more than 80%. There are of course other stipulations with creating codes which you can read here, but it’s pretty simple to do. Check out the below video:
What can I expect from investing in influencer marketing?
Remember, this is a collaboration that you can use to help achieve your marketing objectives. You’re working together to achieve the same goal.
One thing you should never assume is that an influencer will promote your business or product for free. ‘Free’ or the ‘opportunity for exposure’ doesn’t pay the bills. Some may be willing to accept a product in return for one post, for example, but most influencers will arrange some sort of commission deal for each product sold – something to bear in mind when setting up your offers.
Of course, there is no guarantee that influencer marketing will work for your business at all, but it’s definitely something you should consider in your marketing strategy. Lots of businesses are now setting aside some of their marketing budget each year for influencer marketing, knowing how much potential there is behind it. Never underestimate the power of an influencer.
For more top tips on social media marketing, check out our latest blog.