What is B2B Influencer Marketing and How Does it Work?


What is B2B Influencer Marketing and How Does it Work? 

Influencers are a familiar phenomenon these days – and, as social media continues to grow, it’s safe to say that they’re not going anywhere in a hurry. 

But influencers tend to be associated with a few key B2C industries like makeup and wellness. Where does that leave B2B brands looking to maximise their social media publishing with a healthy dose of social proof in order to win over more leads? 

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know. 

Influencer marketing in a nutshell

Influencers have been around for about 15 years now. The first few influencers started to pop up in the very early days of YouTube and it didn’t take long for them to hit the ground running in their droves. 

Influencers are somewhere between regular people and celebrities. They relate to their audiences because, like them, they’re just looking for the best products and services for their money. Where they differ from their audiences is in their close relationship with particular brands – generally and ideally brands that they respect and personally recommend to peers.

That’s influencing in a broad sense. Most of us can list off a few more niche-specific traits, particularly from B2C. Makeup and fashion are two big-hitters for influencing, if that rings any bells with you. 

Influencer marketing is so effective because it leverages the power of social proof – or, in other words, the power of a genuine, earnest, authentic recommendation that you may get from a friend, a co-worker, or even a waiter recommending the chef’s specials. It’s incredibly effective, and influencers are essentially offering social proof at scale, rather than on a friend-by-friend or diner-by-diner basis. 

How that translates to B2B marketing

B2B influencer marketing is a much smaller business than B2C influencer marketing, but don’t be fooled into thinking it’s not as valuable. The main reason why B2B influencer marketing is relatively low-key is simply that a lot of B2B businesses don’t realise how big the returns can be. 

LinkedIn is a great source of B2B influencers. These individuals cultivated audiences that trust their expertise, insight, and industry wisdom and enjoy viewing content created from their unique perspective. It’s a lot like B2C influencing in that regard.

Some B2B influencers have much larger audiences than others. LinkedIn’s Top Voices generally have the largest audiences and are fewer in number, while the lower portion of the pyramid is filled with micro influencers with smaller followings. 

What makes B2B influencer marketing so valuable for brands? 

It’s all about their audiences, and the amount of trust audiences have in B2B influencers’ opinions. 

Most brands can’t justify the cost of working with a top influencer, but B2B marketers can use that to their advantage. Micro B2B influencers have incredibly concentrated, niche audiences – so, what they lack in numbers, they more than make up for in audience quality. 

If you can find a micro B2B influencer that is super active in topics that relate perfectly to your brand, then you’ve found a rich and valuable audience to target. 

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