In a screen-driven world where a majority of decisions are made from mobile devices, marketers must employ new digital techniques to stay ahead of consumers. Where organic word-of-mouth marketing once owned the traditional marketing space, consumers now regularly turn to social media influencers to inform their purchase decisions.
Nearly half of consumers depend on influencer recommendations, and 8 out of 10 consumers have purchased something after seeing it recommended by an influencer online. Ultimately, if consumers feel confident about an influencer’s recommendation, they are more likely to make a purchase.
What’s the reason behind this shift?
Put simply, consumers no longer readily trust brands or traditional celebrities. Seemingly more relatable, “everyday” influencers on social media are now filling the void, building loyal social followings with top engagement.
According to recent studies, this has led to more than 9 out of 10 marketers incorporating influencer marketing into their social media marketing strategy to piggyback on the trust influencers have built with their fans. As influencer marketing continues to grow, it’s crucial to consider this marketing method to help elevate your brand recognition.
What Exactly is Influencer Marketing?
It’s important to first understand what influencer marketing is.
This trending marketing technique is the collaboration between a brand and an online influencer to help market a product or service to the end-user. Some collaborations are even less tangible than that— brands simply work with influencers to improve brand awareness.
For decades, companies have used the influence of top celebrities to promote their messaging. Rather than focus on mainstream celebrities, however, savvy marketers are now leveraging social media moguls to make waves in their marketing techniques.
Influencers are not to be mistaken for celebrities. Rather, these are individuals who have the power to affect purchasing decisions based on establishing and building their own distinct following—which often doesn’t correlate to notoriety outside of their social media sphere.
So, where do brands come in?
Brands can piggyback on the trust and rapport influencers have built with their network to generate higher user engagement than content the brand publishes themselves.
Typically, a brand will establish key objectives they would hope to achieve through using influencer marketing. Such goals could include: driving engagement, reaching new audiences, improving brand reputation and generating sales or conversions.
3 Ways to Integrate Influencer Marketing Into Your Social Strategy
Once you have a solid understanding of how influencer marketing can help elevate your brand, it’s equally important to know how to integrate it into your current marketing strategy. Combining a mix of traditional and new media techniques can be very effective in leveraging your marketing efforts.
Here are a few ways to seamlessly integrate influencers into your social media marketing plan.
1. Create Engaging Content, Together
Social media influencers are influential for a reason. They know how to effectively target their audience and provide well-received content. Having an influencer on board allows you to utilize their creativity to build out content that will resonate with your audience.
An influencer can help create shareable, unique content to be broadcasted across your audience and theirs. You simply provide them with your goal and any key details they might need to drive message creation. Not only does your audience receive fresh content, but your brand is shared with other audiences to increase awareness.
2. Engage Social Influencers to Feature Your Product
One of the easiest ways to promote your brand is by engaging with an influencer to feature your products on their social page(s). Simply provide them with freebies or samples, and they can create resonating posts with your brand highlighted in a video or image, and tagged in the post content.
Whether they’re actually using your product or service, or it’s a captured shot of your product in a well-designed setting—an influencer can project your brand in ways you didn’t think possible. When an influencer recommends your product, it can have a lasting impact on how your target audience perceives your brand.
3. Host Giveaways and Contests
If your goal is to increase engagement, hosting social media giveaways or contests through an influencer is a highly-effective tactic.
The key to this technique is establishing clear rules for entering the contest. If you’re looking to increase your reach, have users follow your brand’s social media accounts to be eligible to win. If you’re looking to increase engagement on your posts, encourage users to like and comment on your posts, as well.
Often, a campaign or contest can be overlooked by your audience if it’s not set-up effectively. Choosing an influencer with the necessary reach to endorse your giveaways or contests provides the brightest spotlight to your campaign efforts.
Ready to Take the Next Step?
If you think influencer marketing could be a good fit for your brand strategy, let’s talk!
Our team of experts at Jennasis can help identify top influencers, competitors and trends in the industry to boost your social media strategy. We can also assist with analyzing social media analytics to identify peak traffic across your accounts to integrate influencer marketing effectively.
Once influencers start publishing content, Jennasis can compile a social listening report on your brand and let you know what people are saying.
Connect with Jennasis & Associates to learn more about how to integrate influencer marketing into your current strategy—and how influencer marketing can help elevate your branding and positively impact your event, service or business! To get started, simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out our contact form.
Keely is a recent graduate from Kent State University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in applied communication and public relations. She brings with her experience in copywriting, social media management and media relations in print, digital and social media platforms. When she’s not jetting off on another adventure, she enjoys snapping photos of her travels and finding the best cup of coffee in every city she visits.