Understand why influencer marketing is integral to your marketing mix, and how to incorporate it effectively
Influencers are trusted individuals who have the power to engage consumers and motivate their purchase decisions because of their real (or perceived) authority, expertise and elevated social status. In essence, influencer marketing is the modern and scalable version of word of mouth,
Overcome consumer banner blindness & ad blocking
I don’t need statistics to convince you that traditional advertising is on the way out, but I’ve summarised some of the telling ones here:
- A study conducted by IAB/YouGov looking at the state of ad-blocking in the UK found that usage had increased by 22% and that they were most common among consumers aged 18-24 with 47% of respondents in this age group using them.
- The same study found that half of the respondents using ad-blockers would turn them off in exchange for content.
- A Nielsen report showed that mobile ads, text ads on mobiles and ads on social networks were rated by consumers as the least trusted form of advertising.
- And, PWC predicted that online advertising spending will exceed $75 billion next year, surpassing the $74.7 billion projected for TV. Online advertising is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of 9.4% from 2015 through 2020, compared to TV’s 3.2% rate.
As consumers, we are bombarded with brand messages day-in-and-day-out, and, as is human nature, we’ve learnt to block them out. These days, consumers don’t even have to actively disengage, there’s ad-blocking software for that. So, how does your brand overcome consumer banner blindness and ad-blocking? Insert Influencer Marketing here. Effectively, it’s the smarter way to advertise your brand or product, allowing you to reach and connect with your target audiences through the individuals (influencers) they trust, on the platforms they choose to use (Facebook, Instagram etc.) and a format they engage with.
Influence your target market's buying decisions
Influencers, influence. And they seriously influence your target consumers' buying decisions. Nielsen’s Global Survey of Trust In Advertising reported that "consumers’ opinions online" was the most trusted ad format for 58% of respondents. Buyers are naturally suspicious, so leveraging an influencer’s authority and partnering with them to share engaging content about your brand or product can act to lessen a buyer’s suspicion and build authority among consumers to ultimately influence their buying decisions. By not implementing influencer marketing into your marketing mix, you could be missing potential opportunities to reduce friction or blockers for potential buyers. Without an influencer strategy, you may also be blindsided by negative sentiments consumers find about your brand that is not counteracted with positive sentiment
Purchase decisions happen online
Not only do influencers use their authority and expertise to reduce your potential customers’ natural suspicion and influence their buying behaviour, 9/10 times they’re wielding their influence online. Deloitte’s Digital Democracy survey revealed that 61% of respondents trusted personal recommendations within social-media circles and that these recommendations played a major role in their purchase decisions. The lesson? If you want to drive your target customers to an action online, implementing an influencer marketing strategy is a must.
Face it: It’s interwoven itself in your existing marketing mix already
We’ve previously touched on the reasons why brands should be working with influencers, and in this article, you’ve discovered that influencer marketing is having a huge impact on your existing marketing mix, whether you are aware or not. We’ve shown that influencer marketing is most likely impacting your social media strategy, PR strategy, advertising strategy and customer conversion strategy already. But these aren’t the only areas of your marketing mix that influencer marketing can be used to amplify your brand’s message and reach. Here’s a list of influencer marketing uses cases to help you drive marketing results:
- Brand Awareness and Reputation
- Brand Advocacy
- Content Marketing
- PR Outreach
- Social Media Marketing and Selling
- Digital Advertising
- SEO and Website Traffic
- Lead Generation
- Customer Acquisition and Retention
It’s a strategy, not a once-off campaign
On the agency side of our business, we talk to many businesses that are interested in influencer marketing campaigns but don’t necessarily understand the it's full potential and how it is the key to an optimal marketing mix in our digital age. Influencer marketing should have it’s own place at the table because honestly, it’s interwoven into your mix whether you like it or not. It’s important to distinguish the difference between running an ad hoc influencer marketing campaign or series of campaigns versus the results you will be able to drive when you implement it as a strategy. Ready to get the ball rolling? Find out how Scrunch can help you run a successful influencer marketing campaign or implement successful influencer marketing strategy.