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When consumer audiences can put a face to a name, it becomes much easier for you to sell your product. Such is the appeal of influencer marketing. This form of marketing has sprung to life in the past several years. Now, it offers companies the opportunity to partner with the masters of social media to spread the good word about their product or service.
The Financial Benefit of Influencer Marketing
Working with a bright, young face on social media is more than just an opportunity for your product to make waves. It also enables you to boost your return on investment (ROI). Because the influencer industry is set to grow to a $10 billion business by 2020, there’s more than enough capital to go around. In fact, 89 percent of businesses who utilize influencer marketing see significant ROI as a result of their collaborations.
What can those collaborations look like, and how can you use that variety to your advantage?
Types of Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing’s various types are based on the same marketing tactics that have been used in traditional campaigns. The innovative power of social media has only made these tactics all the more effective.
Reviews and Word of Mouth
Word of mouth is said to be the most powerful form of advertising. While this may be up for debate, the authenticity that word of mouth advertising implies is not.
Most brands that use influencers to review or even just brag about a product see positive feedback from audiences. They appreciate the face-to-face communication of a brand’s value.
Influencer reviews, in particular, have risen in popularity. Brands now offer influencers the chance to test out a product or service, and, in return, that influencer is expected to share a review of the gift on various social media platforms.
Take unboxing videos, for example. The YouTube makeup ambassador communities, along with its fashion vloggers, have seen a sharp uptick in the number of unboxing videos released in the past two years. Vlogger Roxette Arisa released one such video, where she reviewed PR makeup and skincare products in a “PR haul.” As of May 2019, this video has netted 168,352 views on YouTube.
These “hauls” are more than just popular online videos. They boost the status of the influencer in question, while also reaching consumer audience at a rapid pace. The visual medium of YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat also allows these unboxing videos – or snippets, if you’re on a short-form platform like Snapchat – to include an extra layer of authenticity. That aura of truthfulness adds to the success of these review-oriented influencer marketing campaign.
Product placement is a tried and true advertising campaign method. You see it in big-name movies, everyday commercials, and on social media. A product appears in the background of a camera shot and isn’t named explicitly by any of the actors or posters in question. Its mere presence is meant to drive later sales.
With that said, how do influencers (people who make a living creating a persona for themselves on social media ) work natural product placement into their online presence?
Take Scarlett London’s work with Listerine. While her take on product placement wasn’t as natural as it could have been, it’s still an example of how influencers can impact a brand simply by incorporating a product into one of their posts.
London created a set for herself – a bedroom full of balloons and bright colors – and placed a bottle of Listerine in the background of the shot. While the arrangement itself was somewhat less than natural, the positioning of the Listerine bottle still got a lot of social media attention. While it may not have been the attention the brand was initially looking for, the fact that London’s post got picked up by several newspapers definitely did some of the legwork for the company.
Influencers, thanks to their popular status in the communities they foster, also have the opportunity to build up an audience around a particular product. This advertising through community building is a rarer marketing tactic, but it’s proven as an effective one. If you want to truly reach out to a niche audience with the help of an influencer, you’ll have to craft your marketing plan with care.
One of our electronics customers works with DIY PC creators. They wanted to reach out to a community of gamers and PC makers, but it was only familiar with the creator community. To appeal to the “edgier” gamer crowd, the company coined the tagline, “we’ve been like the nuclear arms dealer to the PC Master Race for the past 20 years” and brought on influencer BajeeraWoW, a World of Warcraft streamer, to speak for their brand.
With the help of BajeeraWow, the company was able to reach out to a community of gamers and bring them into their consumer audience fold. This special interest in a niche community revealed their willingness to meet their desired audience on its own level, as well as proved the quality they’d put into addressing their audience’s needs. Bringing in BaheeraWow showed gamers that the firm was aware of the mood in their new field, and that attention to detail sold the company’s intentions.
Affiliate Influencer Campaigns
Companies that have more variable budgets can also use an affiliate marketing campaign to bring influencers into their marketing teams. These campaigns allow influencers to earn revenue off their influential work on a commission basis.
With the incentive of money driving influencer posts, companies utilizing affiliate campaigns can see all of the aforementioned forms of influencer advertising in action, while also driving audience-to-ambassador engagement.
Amazon has managed a successful affiliate campaign through the social media channel, “This Is Why I’m Broke,” for a number of years now. “This Is Why I’m Broke” posts wacky Amazon finds on Twitter and Facebook to get the attention of a younger audience. Because the platform posts direct links to these items with every image or video, their engagement is at an all-time high.
Since the moderators behind “This Is Why I’m Broke” get to make a portion of the sales they generate, they have all the more reason to craft hyper-effective posts that continue to draw that level of engagement. Amazon, too, has the chance to rely on a small marketing team’s ingenuity without compromising their (admittedly extensive) marketing budget.
Referrals can also fit in here. By having influencers tell their networks about your brand, you can drive more activations from excited customers. And brands can reward the influencer with products or services. Check out our infographic on the benefits of referrals here.
As you can see, there’s no limit on the type of marketing you can have an influencer do for your company. With a bit of creativity, an extensive audience, and intense focus, you can reach international audiences and start building an association between an Internet-famous face and your brand.
Are you interested in integrating influencers into your next marketing campaign? Take advantage of Sideqik’s all-in-one software to help you partner with the influencer who’ll perfectly help you grow your business.