In 2010, only those with a ‘celebrity’ status were considered to be influencers. Fast forward 10 years, and even though celebrities still have a role to play, an ‘influencer’ can now refer to anyone who has an established social media following and is considered to have ‘influence’ over their followers. A post from a celebrity may reach a large group of people, but these may not necessarily be engaged with your brand. Influencers who share your values and embody your brand can be more beneficial to work with as it is better to reach a smaller group that are likely to buy your product or engage with your brand, as opposed to thousands of people who don’t match your target audience.

To understand why influencer marketing is so important for brands, it is vital to understand what it actually is. In it’s simplest form, influencer marketing is when a social media influencer shares content with their followers about a certain brand – this could be a product, a service or a campaign. The purpose of this is to work with an influencer who aligns with brand and who’s audience are likely to relate and be interested in your product/offering. Influencers recommendations are often highly regarded by their followers and the purpose of partnering with them is to gain traction for your brand. Incorporating influencer marketing into your social media strategy can be really beneficial as it allows you to reach a niche, engaged audience and expand your brand presence. Here’s seven reasons why influencer marketing should become part of your strategy:

1) Influencer marketing can help to amplify your brand awareness

Brand awareness is one of the main reasons why marketers use influencer marketing. Due to influencers high followers, they have great power to increase brand exposure by reaching a large amount of people in one post. If their followers are legitimate and they have a high engagement rate, it is likely that recommendations and products they post about will be noticed and taken into consideration by their followers. When brands collaborate with influencers, it can help them stand out and attract new followers for themselves, giving them increased visibility and the opportunity to gain more traction. Brands do influencer marketing for different reasons and really their should be a different objective for each influencer campaign you do. According to a recent study by Influencer Marketing Hub, 37% of respondents use influencer marketing to increase brand awareness, making it the most common objective.  Increasing your customer database with a new demographic, expanding your audience or just using influencers to talk about your brand, are all perfect reasons to introduce influencer marketing into your strategy.

2) You can reach your target audience by using influencers

Identifying and reaching your target audience is essential in every marketing strategy. Influencer marketing is a great way to reach your potential customers, just make sure you do your research. Check that they are relevant to your brand, have ‘real’ followers who are of your target audience and that they align with your brands image. Choosing an influencer who’s followers are of your target audience allows your campaign/message or product to be seen by people who are likely to be interested in what you can offer and engage with you – which is of course, the ultimate goal of using influencer marketing.

3) Influencer partnerships help to improve your credibility and trust

Consumers tend to trust content and recommendations from influencers, as they are seen as a third party, unbiased source and this can have an impact on people buying your products or services. That is the biggest power of influencers – the trust their followers have in their opinion. Collaborating with trustworthy and relevant influencers will strengthen your brand reputation and support your credibility. So when they share their opinion about your brand, it will be seen as a genuine testimonial and will help you build a following of loyal brand advocates.

4) Influencer marketing helps to revamp your content strategy

It’s of real importance that interesting, varied and different content is featured on any brands social media platforms to ensure that they stay relevant and continue to establish an engaged audience. Creating content for followers, about followers (user-generated content) is a growing trend and should be taken advantage of if you’re working with influencers. According to a study by Influencer Marketing Hub, this type of content is the reason that 31% of marketers engage in influencer marketing. The perceived value of UGC is growing over time and utilising the content produced by an influencer onto your feed can be really beneficial as they provide the perfect testimonial that you can share on your own platforms.

5) Working with influencers will help increase your engagement

Increasing the number of likes, comments and shares you receive on social media posts can sometimes be a struggle, especially if your brand is new to the market. Working with influencers can help you create some really engaging and unique content, which will lead to increased engagement on your channels. When influencers share content about your brand on their profiles, their audience will engage with it and may in turn begin engaging with you if they believe an influencer they like also likes your products. If you wish to host a giveaway, partnering with influencers is a great way to expand your reach and encourage engagement from a wider audience. A 2017 survey of more than 100,000 influencers revealed that engagement rates actually fall the more followers you have, which is why micro-influencers are on the rise and shouldn’t be overlooked by brands. Influencers with fewer than 1,000 followers have an average engagement rate of 7.2% on Instagram and influencers with over 100,000 followers have just a 1.1% engagement rate on Instagram. This is something to consider when choosing influencers to work with and the benefits of partnering with them.

6) You can enhance your search engine rankings by working with influencers

Collaborating with influencers can also be beneficial to your search engine rankings as it helps to boost your reach. If an influencer shares a direct link to your website on their blog, this is likely to drive traffic to your site and in turn, boost your rankings online.

7) Influencer partnerships can help boost your conversions

Sometimes it can be difficult to persuade consumers to try your product or service and to gain repeat customers who trust and value you, especially if you’re a new brand. A 2018 report, The ROBO Economy , showed that 82% of smartphone users consult their phones on purchases they are about to make in-store and 45% read reviews before making a purchase. Influencers have the ability to help drive more people to your products and services, as they have already gained the trust of their followers. If they are seen promoting your product, their audience is likely to try it out too. According to new data from consumer intelligence research platform CivicScience, 22% of respondents said they had purchased something because an influencer recommended it on social media. Influencer marketing keeps growing in popularity and this certainly isn’t going to stop anytime soon. In 2018, Google received 61,000 search queries for the term “influencer marketing” and it was revealed that influencer marketing was considered effective by 92% of people. Collaborating with influencers can bring you brand recognition, enhance your reputation, audience engagement and increase conversions. We’ve worked with many brands on their social media marketing strategies that has helped them expand their audience and reach the goals of their business. If you’d like to find out how we can help you, email us on: hello@prohibitionpr.co.uk or give us a bell on: 0113 430 4160.  

About Marta Rijo