Podcasts have become a part of daily commutes to work, Instagram is a helpful tool for online shopping, and TikTok is now a go-to for daily laughs and entertainment. It is no secret individuals prefer to consume news, product and service reviews, and other information through digital mediums. However, as more content is created and posted online, the digital marketplace has become more crowded than ever before which will continue well into the future.
For brands, this means it is critical to find new, innovative ways to break through all the noise online and showcase how their products and/or services can fulfill the wants and needs of consumers. Enter influencer marketing, one unique way to accomplish this goal.
Take a deeper dive into influencer marketing to learn more, including the different types of social media influencers and how this marketing method benefits brands.
What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing is a marketing tactic that taps into individuals with a large following or presence online (i.e., bloggers, TikTok or YouTube stars, etc.). These influencers use their large following to help promote a brand’s product and/or service. Consumers trust influencers they follow and view them as experts in specific areas (i.e., fashion, food, parenting). Therefore, recommendations from influencers can play a large role in consumer’s buying decisions.
The Different Types of Influencers
Not all social media influencers are the same. From Kim Kardashian to the mommy blogger next door, the number of followers and area of expertise differ from one influencer to the next. At GRIT, influencers are grouped into four different categories based on their number of followers and purpose. (However, it is important to note that the exact definition of each type of influencer differs depending on the source.)
- Mega Influencers – Mega influencers are celebrities, such as actors, singers, and reality stars who are famous both in real life and online. These individuals have over one million followers on social media.
- Macro Influencers – Macro influencers are individuals who grew their following via the internet (i.e., YouTube channel). They are professional creators with a passion for a specific subject and create content on a regular basis to share. In general, these individuals have more than 10,000 followers.
- Micro Influencers – Micro influencers are everyday individuals who have built a strong relationship with their followers based on a specific subject (i.e., mommy bloggers). They have a specific specialty and a particular focus, niche, or interest they promote primarily on their social media channels. Micro influencers usually have less than 10,000 followers.
- Nano Influencers – Nano influencers have less than 1,000 followers and are individuals within a community who are more authentic than mega influencers, for example. Often nano influencers produce content they are passionate about (i.e., food) and share it with others in their local region.
Each influencer category comes with unique advantages and challenges. Therefore, it is important to evaluate the marketing goals, target audience, and budget before deciding which influencer category and influencer is right for a brand.
What are the Benefits of Influencer Marketing?
According to Digital Marketing Institute, 49 percent of consumers depend on influencer recommendations. Not only does implementing influencer marketing tailor to the wants and needs of many consumers, but it also offers other benefits including:
- Increases brand awareness
- Reaches the intended target audience
- Creates trust between the influencer and consumers
- Generates leads and drives conversions
- Benefits the brand’s content strategy
- Develops strong relationships between the brand and influencer
Is Influencer Marketing Right for My Brand?
Influencers are those individuals who share trendy content via online platforms (i.e., social media, blogs, etc.). While many consumers prefer to engage with digital content, there are still others who prefer traditional marketing mediums. For example, while Traditionalists and Baby Boomers may prefer to consume product information through daily newspapers or radio stations, the Gen Z demographic spends three hours a day on social media, so they like to find product information on platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat.
If your target audience falls within a younger demographic and consumes information through digital mediums, then it may be beneficial to give influencer marketing a try if it is within your marketing budget. On the other hand, if your target audience falls within an older demographic who prefers traditional advertising methods, than it may be best to focus marketing efforts and dollars elsewhere.
In the end, it comes down to your intended target audience and their wants and needs. If they are digital natives and spend hours a day online, then influencer marketing may be the right choice. But, if your target audience does not spend a lot of time online, specifically on social media, then other tactics may be more effective.
How to Find an Influencer
If you have never used influencer marketing before, understanding how to find a TikTok influencer or Instagram influencer that is right for your brand can be a challenging process. The following are some quick tips to find the right influencer for your brand.
- Determine a budget. Influencers often require payment or compensation of some form, so knowing what the budget is first will allow you to focus efforts on a specific influencer category (i.e., micro influencers).
- Scroll through social media to see who is trending in your industry.
- Listen to your current consumer’s online conversations. Who are they mentioning on Instagram or Twitter?
- Use a tool, such as Hootsuite, Followerwonk, or Buzzsomo, to uncover social media influencers based on different filter options (i.e., industries, number of followers, etc.).
Once you have a list of potential influencers narrowed down, it is important to start building a relationship with these individuals so they will want to work with your brand. For example, be sure to like and comment on their content so you are on their radar. From there, a message or email can be sent to the influencer expressing your interest in a collaboration. In your correspondence, be sure to showcase you have done research on the influencer and the type of content they post. Additionally, influencers will need a motivator to work with your brand (i.e., monetary gain, free products, etc.) so be ready to discuss the perks. While not every influencer will say “yes,” by following the tips above, you will increase your chances of finding an influencer who is right for your brand.
Need Help with Your Influencer Marketing Efforts?
As a full-service marketing communications agency in York, PA, GRIT has the expertise to develop a sound influencer marketing strategy by digging deeper into the demographics and psychographics of the audience, identifying their wants and needs, and finding the best influencer for a brand. To learn more about our capabilities and how we can help bring your next project to life, reach out to us today.