It might feel taboo or off limits to engage influencers to promote a product or service, but this is becoming a more acceptable and universal practice for brands.
There is an acceptance and understanding that a business will have limitations when it comes to their reach, as well as a degree of cynicism about channeling a business through an individual’s social media feed.
Before dismissing the idea out of hand, it is worthwhile taking stock of how businesses are able to leverage these figures for their online digital marketing ventures.
They Already Have An Audience
One of the top benefits of sourcing a quality influencer is being able to tap into an audience of people who are already following the brand vehicle. From Instagram posts and tweets to Facebook and YouTube content, these individuals will leverage their social media following and channel the organisations’s product or service. Depending on who that figure is and the size of their following, that is already a guaranteed community of people who will consume the message.
They Are Trusted
Individuals, groups and online communities who already follow influencers have a strong degree of trust with that figure. Unlike companies and organisations who are essentially faceless, an influencer has a name, a face and a voice. These are tangible elements that help to build trust, and this is where they can be used as a vehicle to bridge the gap between the faceless and the figure selling the product or service. Amid all of the marketing rhetoric and promotional videos to help establish this trust, these personas have that added degree of relatability that is impossible to replicate artificially.
They Are Varied and Accessible
No two influencers are alike and rather than this fact being a negative, it is a genuine asset. From musicians to television and movie stars, DIY experts, politicians, athletes and other individuals who have achieved a degree of fame and notoriety, they can be selected and serve a specialised service for the employer. Brands are able to hire them for unique projects based on the subject matter and the niche, lending their expertise and gravitas on an item and connect the two as a promotional push to their constituents.
They Know The Art of Communication
Sometimes celebrities, high profile figures and advocates are passionate about a brand and are willing to communicate those feelings to constituents, but they don’t possess the same skills. Influencers by their very nature are individuals who have experience and ability to authentically integrate a product or service and talk about it to their followers in a relatable fashion. The general employee or salesman might be able to put on an act for the cameras for a short period of time, but it won’t have the same traction as a celebrity who knows how to do as the name says – influence people. It is the subtle art of communication that is developed over time.
They Get Results
The greatest motivator for brand local and international is to source results. Whether it is making incremental gains in key constituencies or to make a splash in the marketplace, the use of influencers generates results. This is in large part due to their particular picking and choosing of brands they decide to connect with. Offers can be flying in on a daily basis and rather than accepting anyone and everyone who shows them cash, they will opt for an enterprise they believe will work with their own image. That selectiveness helps to establish trust, and that trust equates to dollars and results.
Given how new the practice is of using influencers for marketing purposes, there will be some pushback and confusion about the process. That is understandable, but it doesn’t remove the fact that these individuals are now commodities and they should be leveraged and utilised like any other marketing vehicle.