Why is influencer marketing important?
Why is influencer marketing important?
The trend of brands enlisting influencers to endorse their products has been steadily increasing over the past few years, with influencer marketing experiencing a significant surge in popularity. In fact, it has doubled in the last four years alone. One of the main reasons brands turn to influencers is their ability to establish trust among consumers, which is a key selling point for these collaborations. Recent reports indicate a weakening of consumer trust in brands, prompting companies to actively seek ways to rebuild that trust. Hence, partnering with influencers has become an evident strategy for brands in their efforts to foster trust and credibility with their target audience.
Influencers and trust
Influencers hold significant sway over their audience's purchasing decisions, thanks to their perceived reliability and trustworthiness. For instance, beauty influencers are highly regarded for their opinions on makeup, while food influencers are trusted for their insights on restaurants. The power and impact of their opinions and recommendations is precisely why brands are increasingly turning to influencers as allies to endorse and promote their products.
Influencers cultivate loyalty by carefully curating the products they promote, giving priority to those that align with their audience's interests as well as their own. Many influencers choose to endorse products that they genuinely enjoy and believe in. In fact, insincere recommendations can have detrimental effects on an influencer's reputation and image. It erodes the trust their audience places in them, diminishing their value to brands seeking collaborations.
Influencers for Brand Visibility
Influencers not only contribute to building trust in brands but also play a vital role in elevating top-of-funnel results by increasing brand awareness and visibility. The following outlines the different ways in which brands can work with influencers.
Affiliate links are cheaper than other sponsored posts because they work on a performance-based model. Influencers are rewarded based on actual sales or conversions generated through their unique links. Brands pay a commission only when a desired action occurs, reducing upfront costs. This makes affiliate marketing cost-effective, particularly for startups or brands with limited budgets, as expenses are incurred only when tangible results are achieved.
Product gifting, whereby influencers receive products in exchange for shoutouts, is a cost-effective strategy to enhance brand visibility. However, it may be less effective for influencers with large followings due to their higher collaborative standards and requirements.
Sponsored content, one of the oldest forms of influencer collaboration, involves direct payment of a flat fee to influencers in exchange for promotional posts.
Guest blogging is widely used by service companies and thought leaders with the aim of establishing a unique and prominent commercial presence. It involves offering valuable content, typically in the form of articles, in exchange for access to a blogger's audience.
Brand ambassador partnerships are long-term collaborative campaigns between brands and influencers. In these partnerships, influencers serve as public representatives of the brand and consistently promote its products over an extended period of time. This involvement often includes generating content for the brand's social media platforms, representing the brand at events, and offering exclusive deals and discounts to their followers.
In influencer marketing, targeting the right audience becomes more achievable when working with influencers who have specific niches and identifiable audiences. While the number of followers is often considered, it is not the sole determining factor for selecting an influencer. Instead, factors such as relevance to the target audience and engagement play a more significant role. By partnering with an influencer who has an engaged following that aligns with your brand, you can effectively deliver your message to the right individuals, increasing the overall impact of your marketing efforts.
Embrace Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing spans the entire conversion funnel, encompassing brand awareness at the top-funnel stage all the way down to driving purchases and sales at the bottom-funnel stage. Its value lies in its flexibility and customisation, enabling the creation of tailored content in diverse formats such as sponsored posts, product reviews, and guest posting. This versatility makes influencer marketing a powerful tool for reaching specific demographics and forging meaningful connections with potential customers. As a result, brands would be wise to embrace influencer marketing as a valuable addition to their overall strategy.