Have you ever noticed somebody specifically using, recommending, or talking about branded products in between or at the end of a video that you happen to be watching on any social media platform, like YouTube or Instagram? If you did, then you have seen an example of Influencer Marketing. We are all surrounded by influencer marketing; the very foundation of influencer marketing is that it is easier to reach people who are already influenced by something or someone. It recognizes the individuals that have influence over potential buyers and orients marketing activities around these influencers. Influencer marketing focuses on using key leaders or influencers to drive a brand’s message to the targeted market while there is some overlap between celebrity endorsement and influencer marketing campaigns. Influencer campaigns are designed to lay into an existing community of engaged followers.
For influencer marketing, the brands do not directly advertise to the specific audience. They appoint key leaders of different niche to drive the message through them. Influencers are specialists in their particular niche and have earned a high level of trust and established two-way communication with their follower base. Their followers trust that their endorsement of a product comes from a well-researched more genuine source rather than something as simple as a signed contract and because there is mostly a formal agreement between brands and influencers, influencers get more selective about their amalgamations choosing to collaborate with brands that reflect their own unique brand and won’t estrange their followers.
Influencer marketing may be trending nowadays but it isn’t new at all, it has been happening for a long time, it’s the change in the communication platform that made it more prominent. An example from the recent past is KFC India trying their hand at influencer marketing for the launch of their new burger called the Double Down Burger. To draw attention, the brand collaborated with the leading Indian food bloggers like the @delhifoodguide, @thehungrydungree, and @mumbaifoodie. The campaign was a teaser campaign where the bloggers uploaded ‘the secret burger’ post asking their followers to take a guess on the name of the burger. After the launch, bloggers were invited to taste and review the Double Down Burger. This is powerful influencing, a recommendation from someone national indeed international renown, and of course, this is an extreme example of influencer marketing. (Source: www.influencer.in Top Influencer Marketing Campaigns of 2018)
Influencer marketing stands by Stanley Milgram’s law, which says that “the marketplace will blindly believe the words of an expert”. Influencers typically have a solid following and a notable impact within their online communities and networks. They usually play the roles of journalists, bloggers, CEOs, entertainers, advertisers, or advisers. They are connected to other people around them and are looked forward to advise and opinions and are adjudged as influential. When an influencer shares information or posts an update, it will be acknowledged and considered by a large number of people. That’s where the business benefit lies. If these influential personalities speak for a brand, then the business will reach out to their fans and followers, covering a large audience for promoting. Different from other traditional marketing methods, this brand marketing method is powerful enough to influence the purchasing decisions of customers.
Influencer marketing is just not constricted to celebrity endorsements, most of the brands and product owners understand that who influences the decision-makers more and hence they target on the influencer for their purchase. The influencers need not be only celebrities; they can even be regular & potential customers.
There are digital platform and agencies like https://www.buddinginfluencers.com/ to bridge the gap between influencers and brands. These platforms help brands to connect with social influencers to share their motives and plans in the form of campaigns that attract the attention of their already engaged followers on social media. This digital platform works wonders especially for the influencers in growing their fan base, getting recognition, and generating revenue. No matter how many assertions a brand makes, the decision of the buyer is hugely influenced by whom they get to know about the product or who recommends it. This is why influencer marketing is the tool most of the brands are adapting, be it fashion, home decor, beauty products, electronics, food, lifestyle, travel, and almost everything that lies in between.
Influencer marketing is becoming bigger and bigger, thanks to social media platforms and influencers with large followings. The key factor in how well an influencer marketing campaign will do is not the size of the audience but how relevant the audience actually is and how much they care about the creator’s content.