Influencer marketing is big business and it’s growing. This type of marketing relies on the influence of well-known social media personalities. These influencers are paid to try to persuade their followers to try or buy recommended products and services. This modern marketing approach takes referrals and trusted recommendations to a new level.
With the growing popularity of social media, the number of influencers has exploded. Their audience is huge and their reach is vast. Social media users interact online with their favorite personalities on a near-daily basis. They trust their recommendations and avidly follow their tips, tricks, hacks and suggestions. This consumer behavior makes influencers a powerful marketing option. But does it work for every industry? Is influencer marketing right for your company?
Explore the ways that social influencers can become an integral part of your overall marketing strategy. But first, be sure to weigh the pros and cons to determine if influencer marketing makes good sense for your business.
Does Your Industry Benefit From Influencer Marketing?
While partnering with influencers is an effective marketing strategy in many ways, it’s not suited to every industry. The following sectors are big beneficiaries of influencer marketing:
- Fashion & Accessories
- Fitness and Healthy Diets
- Travel, Tourism & Leisure
- Lifestyle Brands
- Celebrity & Entertainment
- Parenting & Family
- Home Design
- Toy Manufacturing
Selling with Visual Content
Does your industry or market niche rely heavily on visual images and video to sell your products and services? If so, you may be a great candidate for influencer marketing, because those are the chosen mediums for social media. So, these personalities can reach their followers with the tools they’re already using.
Visual content is an important part of most marketing strategies. But its impact varies, depending upon the type of business you’re in. Consider law firms and attorneys, for example. An influencer with a huge following can recommend your legal services. Some of their followers may even turn to your firm the next time they need legal representation. But it’s not the type of business that benefits from a barrage of trendy social media posts, clever slogans, and engaging videos and photos.
The Importance of Branding
Marketing should always be “on brand” for maximum effect and authenticity. So, ask yourself whether a potential social media influencer choice fits with your branding message. Take the above example of a law firm. An Instagram influencer is probably not a great fit. But this marketing area expands well to many areas – such as YouTube.
Knowledgeable personalities have built impressive followings for their YouTube channels. With this medium, they can tackle serious subjects and delve into topics with more depth. That includes things like law, finance, and higher education. If your company isn’t part of a traditional “influencer industry” you may just need to find an “atypical” influencer.
Influencers may use more than social media to make an impact. They write books, create podcasts, write blogs, create video tutorials, and give lectures. In this way, these learned personalities set themselves up as authorities in their chosen field. If your business is part of that field, they can be very helpful to your brand.
If you decide to add influencer marketing to your overall strategy, be wary of the ways it can damage your brand and your reputation. Because, used improperly or recklessly, that powerful reach and influence can backfire stupendously. That was the case with Pepsi a couple years ago.
The demand for social justice and more equality was reaching a fever pitch by 2017. Pepsi tried to jump on the bandwagon with a “Pepsi will unite us all” message using Influencer Kendall Jenner. The ad was panned, disparaged and hotly criticized for it’s faux-wokeness from all sides. Pepsi pulled the ad. But their sales and reputation suffered.
This example offers a valuable lesson about authenticity and branding. Apply it to your marketing efforts if you choose influencer marketing as one of your tools. If you need guidance, advice or other help with influencers or any other marketing strategies, contact Haven Media and Marketing.