How to Determine If Influencer Marketing Is the Right Route for a Freshly Released Brand
Do you believe that a great product will sell on its own? Nowadays, this notion may be a little shortsighted because of the incredibly high competition between all economic sectors. Owners of new, small, independent brands may struggle to effectively promote them and make them grow. That’s where social media platforms and influencer marketing come into play.
We can probably all agree that social media has significantly affected our lives, culture, and even the economy. It also created influencer marketing, which has become a relevant marketing strategy that could realistically bring outstanding results. However, it can doom even the most prospective brand if used carelessly. In this article, we will discuss what makes it a good choice. If you want to learn more about influencer marketing, keep on reading!
What Is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing is a strategy that uses the reach of an existing influencer or a person on social media platforms who has a strong brand reputation and gathered large numbers of followers, to endorse your products or services, co-create content, and support your brand to bring you profit and drive sales.
Experts from Edge Online, an Australian digital marketing agency, list the two most common types of influencer campaigns:
- Discount codes and affiliate marketing. This way, influencers provide their followers with custom codes or links that lead to the product or brand they endorse. These codes or links are easy to implement and track.
- Competitions and giveaways. These methods attract attention to specific products you have to offer and can effectively lead to brand exposure and a spike in engagement.
Pros of Influencer Marketing
Even though it’s a relatively new strategy, some brands swear by it. What makes it so worthwhile?
- You reach your target audience. Team up with an influencer from your niche, and you’re more than likely to get to the relevant customers that may be interested in your services.
- A reduced cycle of sales. Reputable influencers have an audience who trust them. As such, they’re more likely to buy a product based on their opinions and trusting their judgment. After listening to someone they’ve known for a while and whose opinion matters to them, people will make their decision faster, thus you will be generating leads on social media much quicker.
- You save time. That’s right; you don’t have to worry about creating unique content. Influencers run the campaign for you, and it’s up to them how they engage their followers.
- Building trust, credibility, and brand image. It takes time to make someone like and trust you. As such, when influencers talk about something, their long-term followers are likely to believe them. This, in turn, translates into increased credibility and brand image on your side.
Cons of Influencer Marketing
So far, so good? Unfortunately, influencer marketing has some downsides, too. These include:
- High risk. You’ll never have a 100% guarantee that getting an influencer to promote your brand will work. You can end up paying a lot of money to a person who fails to reach your target audience due to their less than impressive content. What’s more, if you partner up with the wrong influencer, it may cost you your brand and reputation. You need to make sure you choose a genuine person with real followers who’s also oriented in endorsement guidelines and related legal aspects.
- Measuring the results. To see whether your campaign was successful, you need to monitor its performance from start to finish. However, measuring if an influencer managed to bring you the results you wanted is a tricky task.
- The cost. Influencers won’t endorse your brand for free. New brand owners rarely have unlimited resources, and if they want to hire a famous influencer, they simply may not have the money to pay them. Fortunately, you can easily find a replacement if someone is out of your budget.
More Than Followers
You may not be able to grow your business without the right influencer. But how can you find the best person to promote your brand? The answer is not that simple, but one thing’s for sure: you can’t look only at the number of followers.
Engagement is essential in influencer marketing. Ideally, you should look for an influencer with a high follower-to-engagement ratio. It’s easy to amass large numbers of fake followers but it’s real-life interaction that counts the most. Without real audiences, your brand won’t get the results you expect.
Additionally, behind every influencer account, there is a real person. This person needs to bring up their A-game every time they log in on their social media If followers are bored with the content, they’ll become disengaged and may simply unfollow them. What’s more, nobody likes to be bombarded with ads, so you need to pick an influencer who’s more about original content creation with some promotional material rather than a person who posts promotional content and nothing else.
Is It the Right Strategy for Your Brand?
Let’s look at another important variable that can make or break a newly released brand: the target audience. Consumers’ habits differ depending on their age. For example, only 1% of millennials trust advertisements. What’s more, people trust influencers more and more, with around 40% reporting that they purchased a product online after seeing an influencer use it.
While older generations still may rely on traditional forms of advertising, the tendencies shift to a greater extent due to the popularity of smartphones and extremely easy access to any sort of information they provide. As such, you should first determine what’s your target audience, how familiar they are with social media celebrities, and how proficient they are in using technology and social media platforms.
The Bottom Line
Influencer marketing is a relatively new strategy. Depending on the type of your brand, your target clients, and your goals, it may or may not be beneficial to you. If you don’t care about getting as many new customers as possible regardless of the cost, you probably won’t need it. The same goes for the situation when you plan to reach older generations who trust advertisements more than reviews posted on social media.
On the other hand, if your budget allows it and you’re willing to do your research to cooperate with good influencers only, you may want to give it a go. Younger generations look up to influencers and value their opinions. If you want to reach a wider audience fast and gain popularity among millennials, young adults, and teenagers, influencer marketing might be the right strategy for your brand.