Influencer Marketing: The Future of Social Media Marketing
Since the world of social media exploded, the idea of using it for advertising came hand-in-hand. However, not only have social media platforms started to allow paid advertising, their users are now cashing in by selling off their own follower base to be used to market products and services.
What Is It?
Influencer marketing is basically a form of marketing in which focus is placed on specific key individuals, rather than the target market as a whole. In layman’s terms, an influencer is an online user who has garnered a mass amount of followers for their social media platforms, and in turn, companies will pay these users, known as influencers, to showcase their products in a more casual and conversational method.
The idea of influencer marketing has proven to be a powerful tool in the ever-changing online world, since 70% of social media users learn about a product from content, rather than traditional advertising. As far as ROIs go, the average business makes $6.50 USD in return for every dollar invested in influencer marketing. Also, this type of customer-to-customer word of mouth advertising is twice as effective as paid advertising using search engines depending on the product.
It’s no secret that the vast majority of us have our smartphones glued to our hands throughout our day, so it only makes sense to optimize our social networking with some helpful, and social, conversation about products and services. Not only does influencer marketing allow for a massive reach, this new age form of advertising is not an alternative, but more of an improvement on approaches taken before. As many social media users are found to make a more personal-based connection with the influencers they follow, it gives the influencers the upper hand on showcasing products without sales pressure. The trick is, when marketing using a social media influencer, the potential customers are being talked to, not being talked at. This conversational, laid-back approach allows for more trust in products and a better chance of hooking in customers.
The interesting part about influencer marketing is that it allows your brand to have multiple audiences and markets at the same time. When promoting a product or service using a social media influencer, you are instantly exposed to a wider demographic of users, ranging in age, gender, income, etc. On top of hitting a broader range of markets, influencer marketing can also allow you to showcase one product in multiple ways. For example, if your business is selling shoes, you can advertise the shoes to different groups such as celebrity style watchers, sensible shoppers, trendy youth, etc. This allows you to hit all markets and demographics with one easy platform.
It’s An Arbitrage
When social media advertising first came to be with things such as Facebook advertising, the demand for them was low, so the cost for them was as well. However, as popularity grew, the online space became a hot commodity and the price to advertise skyrocketed. With influencer marketing, the supply is still high, but the cost is still relatively low. This could be due to the fact that there is such a massive amount of influencers active online, which means even as the use of influencer marketing rises, there are still more than enough influencers to cover the overflow. This allows companies to use influencers, without monopolizing the market, which also helps to keep their advertising costs low.
Their Success Is Your Success
The fascinating thing about using influencer marketing is that your business can grow simply as a second-hand result of the influencer’s success. As an influencer gains more social media popularity and a larger following, your product will continuously be shown to a larger and larger audience. In opposition, traditional advertising would give your ad a set paid timeframe. In addition to lifespan, with algorithms (the way content is organized online in terms of what content is shown to whom) stepping away from real-time displays, and leaning more towards showing popular content to those who might be interested in it, your content once posted may appear over and over, not just right after it is posted.
It’s Trackable & Targetable
While typical paid searches can have specific targets and trackable results, influencer marketing can as well. Like anything posted on social media platforms, the engagement and effectiveness of a post can be easily tracked, both behind the scenes and right up front. Much like every website visited, social posts and pictures can be stored and analyzed, and yield valuable data about insights regarding your advertising performance.
The world of digital marketing has so many avenues to explore, each with their own specific benefits. While some find success in a few approaches, others may drive more results from another as each industry can be quite different. If you have any questions about how to improve your business’s marketing strategies, don’t hesitate to give us a call at 705-252-4180. We are always happy to help you better understand the latest marketing trends both on and offline to devise a plan to achieve your business goals.