Let me begin by sharing a fun-fact with you –
Did you know, the first influencers in the history of influencer marketing can be traced back to the early 20th century. In the 1920s, there were only a few brands in the market shaping the product-centered marketing. Brands of this market created personas to trigger the purchase decisions of consumers emotionally!
Back then, influencer marketing was indeed way easier than it is today because now the customer is not just a run-of-the-mill consumer but a human being with his own values! Marketing strategy has changed from being consumer-centered to more value-centered. Today, it is more about ‘pulling’ the customer towards the brand in question rather than ‘pushing’ him to buy it without reason. Having gone through tides of changes, now, with the advent of social media, influencer marketing is growing rapidly, with a predicted $370 million spend by 2027! In fact, one of the most popular new trends in digital marketing is influencer marketing.
Social media influencers, are people who have a large audience reach across social platforms and have built a lot of trust in a specific industry. They facilitate the sale of products or brands via their endorsement. Social media platforms have huge followship, and under the given situation, it is only wise to consider working with social media influencers as they have an established reputation and trust with their audience. In the tangled mass of information, consumers listen to the recommendation of someone they trust – someone they think of as being a competent and reliable expert. It is because of this trust, they’re often able to persuade (or “influence”) their followers to purchase products and services from brands they promote. Owing to the enormous popularity of social media platforms, Instagram Influencer marketing and YouTube Influencer marketing are the most prominent kinds that exist today!
If there’s an industry, there’s an influencer and just about any industry can benefit from influencer marketing. However, some industries such as, beauty and fitness, gaming, health, fashion, and travel lend themselves more naturally to influencer marketing than others. Brands are making huge profits even after what they spend on working with influencers – when they find the right ones to work with, that is. It is a challenge to identify the best type of social media influencers to work with; once that is done, half your battle is won. Social media influencers can be broadly divided into 5 categories based on their visibility and influencing capacity on social media platforms. They being:
- Mega-influencers with more than a million followers (think celebrities).
- Macro-influencers with 500K to 1 million followers
- Mid-tier influencers with 50K to 500K followers.
- Micro-influencers with 10K to 50K followers.
- Nano-influencers with 1K to 10K followers.
Although mega-influencers have the largest audience, they can be incredibly expensive. Again, macro- influencer content is mostly more professional-‘looking’ than what brands find with micro or nano influencers. Further, micro-influencers have an intimate connection with their followers and tend to be more niche-focused. However, interestingly, nano-influencers are quite popular as brands rely on the fact that though content may not always be polished, they successfully lend an authenticity and familiarity to each post, making them relatable. Nano-influencers are much more cost-effective than their higher-ups, so brands with limited resources may want to start at this level of influencer marketing.
So, I would say, ‘should we work with social media influencers’ is indeed a rhetorical question – the answer is obvious – YES! Whilst this query has been dealt with, the actual challenge or rather dilemma remains – how to locate the social media influencer, best suited for your brand? Well….good luck with that one! And while you are at it, remember what Seth Godin said, “ People do not buy goods & services. They buy relations, stories, and magic!” So, go create magic! Adios!