Influencer marketing has existed as long as social media platforms. However, it was not as ubiquitous as it is now.
Ten years ago, influencer marketing campaigns relied solely on celebrities and superstar bloggers. Fast forward to today, influencers saturate every crevice of social media platforms. Furthermore, brands frequently contact these ‘lesser-known’ influencers to promote their items.
If you are unaware of what influencer marketing is, the following reading will help you know.
What is influencer marketing?
The name gives it all away, right? Influencer marketing happens when influential people endorse products on social media platforms. An influencer has a large social media following. They have earned the trust of their followers over time. Therefore, what they say is taken seriously by many people.
When they endorse a product, they foster ‘social proof.’ Social proof essentially means that since other people trust a brand, others are more likely to trust it without question.
There are numerous types of influencer marketing campaigns. Let’s dive right in.
It is the oldest way of promoting things on social media. It does not get more straightforward than this. Let’s say a brand has products that it wants to promote. The quality of content the brand creates to market the item matters little. That’s because it is likely to be drowned out by the sheer number of posts fighting for attention.
To boost the popularity of their marketing campaign, the brand finds influencers who can promote the content. After the influencer agrees, the brand sets the agenda for the campaign. Usually, the company gives the influencer guidelines to follow for the promotion.
Sometimes a brand gives the influencer some creative freedom to tailor the campaign to resonate well with their base. The brand and influencer agree on compensation before the work officially begins.
Gifts, Unboxings, and Reviews
Reviews are among the most preferred methods of promotion on social media. Brands often give their products freely to influencers to review them and provide their opinions.
One of the most prevalent content on YouTube and other social media websites is unboxing videos. An unboxing video takes viewers on a journey with the influencer. It makes viewers feel like they are right there with the reviewer, opening the product for the first time. This impression of exclusivity rouses viewers’ curiosity about the product.
If the reviewer likes the product, they give it a positive review which reverberates across their followers. This type of influencer marketing campaign works best with micro-influencers. They enjoy receiving the gifts and are likely to portray them in a positive light.
Using gifts, reviews, and unboxings is a strategy that companies often use to form long-term relationships with influencers.
As a side note, some people use their own money to buy items and post videos of the products. They do not collaborate with the manufacturers on these videos. These independent reviewers often mention it in their content. Upon watching such videos, you can be sure that the opinions expressed in the video are objective and unbiased.
Competitions and giveaways
Giveaways are among the most popular influencer marketing campaigns on social media. They are popular because of the mutual benefit they provide.
Companies have discovered the importance of giveaway campaigns. As a result, they frequently host giveaways to generate growth on social media platforms. The giveaway increases shares, retweets, followers, and likes.
Giveaways often increase brand awareness because it is their primary objective. When a company involves a creative influencer in a giveaway campaign, it can grow its social media following rapidly.
A giveaway campaign is a straightforward process. A company gives products to influencers and asks them to give them to their audiences if they do simple things. The activities might include providing their email address, liking posts, commenting, sharing, answering questions, and other social actions. At the end of the giveaway period, the influencer gives one or more winners free items.
Product and content collaborations
The strategies we have covered so far involve one-time arrangements. However, companies sometimes collaborate with influencers to create products or content.
These collaborations are more common in the fashion and cosmetics industries.
What happens is that companies approach a famous person and ask them if they can collaborate to co-create a clothing line, accessories, beauty products, etc.
This strategy takes a lot of involvement from both parties. Furthermore, big companies that have already made names for themselves are the ones that usually do it.
Because co-creating products is a lot of effort, smaller companies use content collaboration instead. A content collaboration strategy example is a cooking recipe. A company dealing with a type of food can collaborate with an influential food blogger to co-create a new recipe.
It is an excellent strategy if your budget is limited. When you use affiliate marketing, you can engage multiple influencers concurrently.
When you choose to go this route, you ask influencers to promote your products. You give the influencers unique links to share with their followers. When people buy items using those links, the influencers get a commission from the sale.
Affiliate marketing is affordable because you only pay when people buy items using affiliate links. Therefore, it doesn’t matter how many influencers you engage. You won’t spend any money up-front.
True to the name, a long-term ambassador partners with your brand for extended periods. The ambassador, an influencer in their field, is your public face during this period. A long-term influencer marketing campaign might take more than one year. However, despite its length, it has the potential for handsome rewards, including,
The influencer’s audience will always have your brand in mind because the influencer constantly reminds them.
You get the chance to showcase all your company’s products because you have the luxury of frequent promotion.
A long-term relationship with an influencer builds trust and credibility between you. Therefore, the audience of your influencer takes your brand more seriously and might buy more
Your marketing strategy will have a lower churn rate. It will benefit from reduced uncertainty which results from better customer retention.
‘Takeovers’ on your platforms
Benefits of influencer marketing involve you going to their platforms. However, in a takeover, you give the influencer access to your social media channels for a certain period. The duration can be a day to a week.
During this time, you give a social media influencer privileges to post as you. They can come up with fun videos and posts to promote your brand.
Takeover strategies require a lot of trust between you and an influencer because you give them sensitive information. In most cases, even if you trust an influencer, you will need to sign a contract with them.
If you have a Snapchat account, you can allow an influencer to take it over without giving them your password. However, you probably have other social media platforms. Therefore, to run a successful takeover campaign, you have to bite the bullet and give influencers your passwords.
If you own a company, you could find popular websites that talk about things related to your products. Once you find them, contact their owners and ask them to make posts on their platforms.
Upon acceptance, create posts that will pique the interest of readers. Include links to your website in the blog posts to drive traffic to your site.
This strategy involves partnering with influencers who can boost your brand’s awareness. It entails promoting gatherings, campaigns, and meetups where people learn about your brand.
Pre-release and discount codes
Companies develop millions of products every year. This large number of new products makes it challenging to increase the visibility of your products.
You can create excitement about your products before releasing them to get ahead of the curve. Pre-release marketing works very well when you involve an influencer. Customers will already be eagerly awaiting the release of your products if you do the campaign properly.
You could also provide discount codes to your influencer to share with their fans.
What Is The True Value Of Influencer Marketing?
You cannot underestimate the impact that social media influencers have on their audience.
According to research, 86% of women seek product recommendations from social media platforms. The study also showed that 72% of women buy items based on advice they get from social media platforms.
The Influencer Orchestration Network noted that 40% of people who participated in a survey bought items based on content shared by influencers.
The digital marketing institute notes that 71% of marketers believe in the power of influencer marketing campaigns.
Mediakix conducted a study on influencer marketing and collected some interesting figures. According to the investigation
- 80% of marketers stand by the effectiveness of influencer marketing with 35% finding it extremely effective
- 89% of respondents agree that the return on investment for influencer marketing campaigns is higher than other marketing tools.
- 71% of the respondents said that influencer marketing campaigns bring in better quality customers than other sources
These are some of the most popular influencer marketing campaigns in use. They all have their pros and cons. Before implementing any of them, you have to weigh these pros and cons. You do not have to implement all of them. However, you will achieve greater success if you combine several strategies.