Over the years we’ve seen the development of social media from a novelty to a necessity for brands. Today, more people own a mobile device than a toothbrush and there are over 2 billion social media users worldwide. It is more than a tool for simply raising brand awareness or building a community - it really delivers business results.
In turn, this shift has pushed influencer marketing to the fore, allowing us to scale this modern variety of word of mouth. Trusted individuals with dedicated followings are engaging consumers and motivating buying intention. Why is it time to make influencers a core part of your marketing program?
1. Antidote to ad blocking
The use of ad-blocking software by consumers to sidestep digital advertisements is somewhat of an epidemic. According to eMarketer, nearly 90 million internet users are expected to use an ad-blocker in 2017, with Europe at the forefront of the movement. Click-through rates for display ads are at an all-time low and bot fraud is causing mass losses. Brands are no longer just competing for eyeballs, they want to retain them. With influencer marketing, your brand message is authentically integrated into an influencer’s content and shared across their social channels. Meaning you bypass adblockers altogether and connect with consumers in a more effective way.
2. Moves millennials
Millennials are difficult to reach but an incredibly important target group for brands. They want personalisation, choice, convenience, peer recommendation and they want it now. What they don’t want is traditional ‘push’ advertising from brands (84% of them to be exact). Influencer marketing taps into their preference for person to person recommendation. If they trust the source, they are more likely to purchase a product or service. This opens up so many opportunities for brands in collaborating with influencers to engage the right audience, such as digital platforms, events and co-designing.
3. It works
Influencer marketing not only allows you to connect with an audience you otherwise would have difficulties reaching, it has 3X the ROI of traditional marketing with 62% lower cost. It also motivates consumer buying intention. According to a study by McKinsey & Company, “marketing-induced consumer-to-consumer word of mouth generates more than twice the sales of paid advertising”. It’s also a lot easier to measure the effect of influencer marketing than traditional advertisements. From likes, to comments, shares, video views, web traffic and click-throughs, this data can provide you with valuable insights about your target market and advertising performance that allow you to optimise your efforts and keep ahead of the game.
Do like many other brands already have and stop shooting in the dark with your ad budgets. Influencer marketing is the light in the dark within this increasingly ad-savvy culture, with its ability to adapt to new technologies and developments - it isn’t going anywhere fast.
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