We’ve all seen it: people with hundreds of thousands of followers promoting different products on social media, but what does being an influencer really mean? An influencer is a public figure who uses social media to engage and build relationships with their followers. These people typically cater to a niche market and often have thousands of followers. Influencer marketing is when a brand and influencer partner together to promote said brands products, which results in new customers for the brand and a stronger sense of trust between the influencer and their followers. Influencer Marketing Hub says, “Influencers, unlike celebrities, can be anywhere. They can be anyone.”
So, does influencer marketing really work? Yes, as a matter of fact, it does. In today’s day and age, potential customers want to know that what they are buying is going to be worth it for them, and what better way to show them it is than by using a trusted influencer? TheShelf.com says that 92% of consumers trust recommendations from other people – even someone they don’t know – over brand content. Brands will partner with influencers whose audience falls into their target markets. For example, a well-known beauty influencer will get brand deals with makeup and skin care companies, whereas a fitness influencer will get brand deals with active apparel and workout equipment brands. There have been many successful influencer marketing campaigns, but one of the most notorious is Diageo: My Tales of Whisky with Nick Offerman, says Karla Cook of HubSpot.com. Diageo won a Shorty Award for creating a 44-minute video of Nick Offerman staring into the camera and sipping his glass of whiskey. Due to Offerman’s hilarious demeanor, this campaign was a huge success and Diageo’s sales skyrocketed.
One of the most imperative things about influencer marketing is for the influencers to maintain the trust of their audience. If an influencer is constantly promoting sponsored products, the credibility of the person can diminish because the sponsorships no longer seem authentic, more so that they are just money hungry. Not only is it important for the influencer to maintain the trust of their audience, but the brands also need to maintain trust with its customers. If a brand is constantly sponsoring and partnering with influencers, the customers may get the impression that the products aren’t good enough to generate organic buzz.
In a social media filled world, it’s no wonder that influencers are becoming one of the key ways to market your products. Not only is it personable and relatable, but it’s also effective. According to MediaKix, 65% of marketers plan to up their influencer marketing budgets in 2019. Statistics have shown just how effective it can be and it isn’t going to stop anytime soon.