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Influencer Marketing – Is It Worth It?

Posted October 27, 2021

Young brand influencer posing with sweater for social media followers.

In a previous article, we shared tips on how user generated content (UGC) can benefit your business. This got us thinking about another effective marketing tactic: influencer marketing.

What Is Influencer Marketing?

Remember when we talked about how UGC helps promote your brand, but the user remains unaffiliated with your business (meaning you don’t pay him/her to advertise)? 

With influencer marketing, this individual receives free merchandise or some type of compensation from your business for “influencing” others to purchase your products.

This advertising strategy has been around for a while—think celebrity endorsements—but it’s quickly transforming into something that feels less scripted and more organic.

Reshaping the Role of Brand Influencer

To put it simply, influencer marketing is transitioning away from celebrity personas and focusing more on real people. The reason? Customers trust the reviews and recommendations of individuals they follow on social media. Why? Because they feel a “real” connection to them. 

In the past, you may have purchased a brand of athletic shoes simply because your favorite basketball player wears them, too. 

Now, you may purchase a different brand because of social media influencers—not only because they wear them, but most importantly, because you trust their opinions and recommendations. 

Don’t believe this works? Check this out!

DID YOU KNOW that 70% of teenagers say they trust influencers more than traditional celebrities? Pair this with the fact that 92% of shoppers trust influencer reviews over classic ads and celebrity endorsements.

This shouldn’t be too surprising to us. After all, recommendations from friends and family have always influenced a shopper’s journey. The only difference now is consumers also place brand influencers within the category of people they trust. In fact, 82% of consumers have either purchased or considered purchasing a product after seeing a friend, family member, or brand influencer post about it.

“[I]n today’s digital world, social content creators with niche audiences can often offer more value to brands. These people have dedicated and engaged groups of followers on social media.”

Hootsuite®

Is Influencer Marketing Worth It?

It’s projected that by 2022, more than 72% of marketers will use some type of influencer marketing. If you’re considering implementing this tactic into your own advertising strategy, here are a few ways it may benefit you.

Top 3 Influencer Marketing Benefits

Maximum Brand Exposure

Remember, brand influencers already have a long list of followers that trust them for their advice. If you find an influencer that shares a similar target audience, working with this individual to promote your products could open up your brand to a wider pool of customers.

And because influencer marketing dominates social media (specifically TikTok and Instagram), followers are more likely to share these recommendations with other users in their online groups and communities.

User Trust & Credibility

These days audiences can tell whether an influencer actually likes a product vs. an influencer who says anything for a paycheck. In fact, most influencers will only promote products they actually use or like in order to maintain their audience’s trust—as this helps disassociate them from less credible influencers. 

Brands can often piggyback off of this trust. Just remember that it’s then in your court to build these new relationships with first-time customers. This, of course, can be accomplished via quality products, excellent customer service and support, fast shipping, etc. 

Quick Tip: Only work with influencer(s) who share the same target audience as you, and ones who have already built a strong reputation for authenticity and honesty:

“Influencers with these engaged, niche followings are ideal candidates for business partnerships. However, companies must team up with influencers that can present their products genuinely to be well-received by their audience.”

Cision®

Affordable Advertising with More Diversity

Brand influencers are often more affordable than other types of digital advertising. In fact, some influencers will accept free merchandise to promote your products vs. cash. 

And because influencers spend the majority of their time on social media, they’re not only adding posts and images about your products. They’re also streaming videos, hosting events, or appearing on other channels wearing your products. This can help diversify your ad campaigns and reach a broader audience for much less. 

Influencer marketing may not be for everyone, but it’s certainly something to keep on your radar. The big takeaway here, as with UGC, is that customers want to do business with brands they can trust. 

So, whether or not you pursue this strategy, always be sure that you are creating a real, authentic connection with your audiences. People don’t need gimmicks. They want honesty, so make sure that’s always part of your marketing strategy. 

Stay Connected

Check out our blog for more tips on marketing your business and building better brand loyalty!

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