Influencer Marketing - What Is It?
Updated: Jul 1
Influencer marketing is one of the world’s fastest growing marketing methods with businesses of all sizes capitalising on this phenomenon.
Yeah? Cool … But what is it?
Put simply, it is a form of marketing in which focus is placed on individuals who have influence over potential customers. These influencers can vary greatly; from social backgrounds, the size of their following, and most importantly, what niche they are in. What makes these people an ‘influencer’ is the credibility they possess among their audience, generally on social media, who, ideally, are your target audience and future customers. They may post about lifestyle, fitness, fashion, food, technology … it could be anything, really.
The key is to find an influencer who posts content and has an audience that closely matches the interests of your intended customer profile. For example, a supplements company could negotiate a deal with a fitness blogger. Or a local restaurant could network with the biggest food review Instagram pages in their area.
Despite the wild success brands are having by using influencers, it is far from a foolproof marketing approach.
In 2020, many of the big social media influencers are too generalised (which naturally loses influence among their audience), charge too much, have been accused of buying fake followers and simply won’t deliver you the best bang for buck.
But becoming increasingly popular with brands worldwide is the micro-influencer. Micro-influencers are typically classified as influencers with followings of between 3000 and 20,000 people. These types of influencers are generally more relatable and trustworthy and are a particular useful marketing option for local businesses and those with smaller marketing budgets.
Using micro-influencers to market your products (which should be closely related to their niche) is a more natural and less-intrusive form of advertising.
What Gary Vee Says ...
Speaking at a keynote even in Melbourne in late 2018, digital marketing guru Gary Vaynerchuk highlighted influencer marketing as one of the greatest opportunities.
“The most inefficient and misunderstood marketplace is influencer marketing,” said Vaynerchuk. “Humans don’t know how to price themselves. There are pretty people who have 400k followers on Instagram that want $30k per post and there are other people with 5000 followers who want $40, some people followed by 400k want $100, others with just 500 followers ask for $5000. The inefficiency in influencer marketing is staggering."
Vaynerchuk stressed that those in the business of selling products had to educate themselves on the opportunities available by using online influencers. “Every single person that is in the business of selling products should have a significant influencer marketing strategy,” he said. “Literally DM (direct message) people on Instagram and ask them how much they would charge you to take a picture holding your physical product and tag your page.
“If I were selling a product, I would spend 30-to-50% of my overall marketing budget on influencer marketing. If you sell directly on your Shopify or Amazon, you don’t even have to guess. You can run codes or isolated timeslots for certain influencers to see what the ROI (return on investment) is.”
Vaynerchuk is especially bullish about the immature influencer marketing landscape in Australia. “It is wildly under-priced in this market down here,” he said. “It’s under-priced everywhere, but we’ve even debated opening a VaynerMedia office in Australia just on the back of influencer marketing because it’s so underserved in the marketplace.”
How can your brand incorporate influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing really is the wild, wild west. Brands should experiment by literally Direct Messaging popular Instagrammers or other influencers with large social media followings and ask them what they charge to post your content. You might be surprised; their quoted prices may vary from unreasonably expensive to surprisingly cheap.
Do your research; are their previous posts engaging well with likes, comments and shares? Ensure that you pick the right influencer that best fits your brand.
Feel free to contact us to discuss more about how an influencer marketing strategy could help meet your business goals.