If you have to choose between a brand endorsed by a celebrity and an influencer, which one will you choose? Well, I would go with an influencer. According to a popular influencer marketing platform, 92% of users trust influencers more than a celebrity. Why? We will see in this blog post.
Marketing is changing, and it is time for the brands to path a way for modern marketing methods. Influencer marketing is one such method. Brands already spend ample amounts of money on advertising, now with the rise of influencers on social media, they have another cost-effective option available on the table.
But before we venture deep into this topic let us understand the basics first.
Today, consumers look for the reviews and recommendations rather than blindly following an advertisement, and that’s where an influencer comes in. Influencer marketing is a collaboration between social influencers and brands in which the latter uses the former’s followers to generate awareness about their product and services. They are often considered as subject matter experts on the products and services they endorse. Such is the power of influencers that they can affect the purchasing decisions based on their knowledge and the relationship they have with their followers.
According to a benchmark report by the influencer marketing hub, the industry is set to rise to $9.7B in 2020. And in 2019 alone we got introduced to 380 new influencer marketing-focused agencies that will help brands to establish relationships with popular influencers for their campaigns.
With people spending more time on social platforms, this is the golden opportunity for brands to leverage it by increasing the number of their digital campaigns. With influencers as a medium, brands can communicate with their target audience on the platforms they spend their most time
Below are the reasons why brands should include Influencer marketing in their marketing strategy. Let’s see them one by one.
Increase in brand presence
Today’s influencers, whether they are on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, or TikTok, have millions of followers. And brands want to target those followers via influencers. By collaborating with them they will not only get access to those followers but they will also get a big push to their brand awareness and presence campaign.
Direct line of communication
Working with social influencers is different from your normal Advertising campaign. By collaborating with social influencers you get an opportunity to interact with their followers directly. Influencers can act as a medium that can get valuable feedback about your product and services. This direct line of communication is the reason why brands are looking forward to collaborating with more macro and micro-influencers. Most of them started their influencer journey with friends, family, and colleagues as their followers. Over the years they have established a personal relationship with their audience that leads to direct communication with them.
Authenticity and trust
Followers on Influencers page is not a one-night thing, they have acquired those followers through consistency, hard work, and by interacting regularly. Because of these factors, there is an unspoken relationship of trust between influencers and followers.
For eg.: Let’s say that a food blogger who has around 100K followers on Instagram is endorsing a restaurant or a café. Now his/her followers will check out that restaurant based on the influencer’s word. Why would they do that? Because they consider him/her as a connoisseur of food. They trust the reviews given out by the influencer.
Appeal to Millennials and Gen z
Brands can also use influencers as a medium to appeal to millennials and Gen Z to try out their products. With 3.5 billion active users on social media, these influencers play a big role in the purchasing decisions of their followers. Reports suggest that millennials and Gen Z are likely to follow in the footsteps of the influencer they are following when it comes to buying anything from social platforms.
When we do ads on social, there are chances that our engagement rate might be affected by fake followers and bots. While on the other hand, collaborating with influencers will give us genuine prospects and customers.
Can be leveraged by every business
Irrespective of the size of your business, influencer marketing is useful to all of them. And if you compare it with the advertisement then it is quite cost-efficient as well. Influencer marketing for small businesses can seriously scale-up a campaign and can boost your brand presence to new heights. And for big businesses and organizations, the kind of engagement they will receive will be better than any advertisement campaign.
Above mentioned are the reasons why brands should consider influencer marketing as a part of their marketing strategy. To know more about how some brands are already leveraging it let’s see the below success stories.
Himalaya, a leading wellness company in India, wanted to promote two of their products i.e. Facial Wipes and Fresh Start face wash. To increase the awareness of the product they decided to collaborate with some of the top influencers from the fashion, lifestyle, and beauty domain.
They shortlisted 152 influencers from these industries and together they started a campaign called #WipesOnTheGo and created 300 posts for Instagram, and 50 posts for Facebook and Twitter each. These posts were in the form of stories, videos, blogs, and static/grid posts.
At the end of the campaign, they received around 10 lakh impressions and around 1.7 lakh engagements and clicks.
When Paytm rolled out ticket booking features on their app they decided to partner up with some influencers to make it stand out from competitors’ platforms.
They tied up with some 150 travel and lifestyle influencers and together they created 150 posts. The influencers promoted them on their Facebook, Instagram, and personal blog. The result they received from this campaign was massive.
On Facebook, their reach went to 413K and Engagement to 42K. On Instagram, their reach went to 378K and Engagement to 41K. And their blog reach went to 51K. Their aggregate reach and engagement was 913 K and 83K. In addition to that, they also created 45 ‘dofollow’ backlink boosting their reach and engagement.
Bewakoof a lifestyle and fashion company based out of Mumbai collaborated with 9 TikTok influencers to promote their apparel products. In the campaign, each influencer was given a set of 4 products — a hoodie, jogger, slider, and a backpack. The idea was that each influencer will do a ramp walk highlighting each of these products. The campaign was a big success with a reach of more than 10,000,00 and an engagement of more than 1,000,00.
Craftsvilla, an Indian marketplace well known for its ethnic and handmade products collaborated with 22 influencers from the Fashion and Lifestyle industry to promote their latest collections. The influencers wrote about it in their blogs, each generating an average of 1000+ views. One influencer even got 12,000 likes on her Instagram account. Later they also collaborated with Twitter influencers for another campaign that garnered over 130000+ impressions
Though advertising still dominates organizations’ marketing budget, let’s accept the fact that not every consumer likes ads. We all know how irritating it is to see those non-skippable ads when we are watching something or listening to our favourite music. Brands need to ditch the old traditional ways of marketing and need to take a cue from the above-mentioned success stories and start segregating their marketing budget for influencer marketing campaigns. They need to accept the new happenings in the marketing industry.