Influencer making has been having a moment recently with 92% of consumers say they trust word of mouth recommendations more than any type of advertising, with these consumers more likely to trust an individual influencer over a brand.
Despite being around in some form or other for a number of years, by marketing standards it is still relatively new, and many brands and sectors are yet to experiment with it. Scepticism over follower authenticity and measuring success are some of the issues surrounding the marketing strategy. Saying this, approximately 59% of marketers increased their influencer marketing budgets last year, with 39% planning to increase their allocation in 2018.
Team Vivid attended the CIM Influencer Marketing Conference at Manchester Business School. The Panel discussion was led by influencers Oliver Long, Sarah Thain, Asma Younus and Michael Palmer who informed us that true brand activation is only achieved through a passion for innovative content, finding and understanding your niche and the ability to mobilise the public. There are different types of influencers, choosing the right type has the ability to change behaviours and purchase decision as well as the potential to strengthen your content, these are as follows:
Mega Influencers: They offer huge exposure to brands but consumers often don’t trust ‘celebrities of this stature and due to algorithms the engagement might be limited. Usually, they have over 100,000+ with an engagement rate of circa 1.5% — 5% although this varies across niche and these sorts of influencers are best for generating high impressions and awareness.
Macro Influencers: Considered experts in their field, with quality content and a committed audience, these users are heavily pursued by brands. That may be a problem, as saturation lessens their effectiveness. Macro Influencers have between 10,000 and 100,000 followers with a large bracket of engagement rate from 2.5% to 25% and are best used for Awareness and Engagement.
Micro-influencers: These topic enthusiasts are highly interactive in their niches. Followers wise, Micro Influencers have between 2,000 and 25,000 and an engagement rate of 3.6-6% depending on niche and content. They are best used in marketing for Engagement and converting your potential audience.
Nano-influencers: Regular users may seem like small potatoes, but the fact that they are not famous is what grants them big influence. Our Nano-Influencers tend to have between 500-1,000 followers and an engagement rate of 10.7% and are best utilised for engagement, building trust and value for your brand/service.
The general consensus is that long term collaborations or partnerships with influencers and brands are more effective in comparison to one off projects or individual pieces of content, with Sarah stating that teaming up with the right influencer will also see your brand become cool or earning more respect via association.
With 30% of brands, services and marketers are satisfied with the results from their work with influencers, and a further 28% say they are yet to see any tangible return on investment it puts a question mark on the ROI of using influencers. With this, the best question any brand/service or marketeer needs to ask themselves before joining forces with an influencer is what a successful result from the partnership will look like?
We believe that the best way to optimise success when working with an influencer is to do your research to ensure that the influencer is correct for the brand or service. However it is also partly the influencers responsibility to know their niche and stay true to their content and audience, rather than dilute their offering by partnering with the wrong brands or services.
With this, we’ve got a few action points for you to consider before working with an influencer:
Engagement Rates: Ask your selection of influencers for engagement rates or a media pack showing their analytics, a high engagement rate implies that followers are interested in their content.
Authenticity: Select an influencer that reflects your brands/ services passions, interests etc and that they have a genuine passion for their niche as they are more likely to be invested in your brand.
Leadership: ensure that your chosen influencer will be able to inspire and motivate their audience.
Expertise: Ideally your influencer shouldn’t be a jack of all trades, they need to master or or a maximum of two relatable niches.
Activity: Being active on social media is likely to be a better partner for your brand than one that is inconsistent in posting.
One trend that we’ve identified is the use of celebrities to front a campaign to be the disruptor which is in turn supported by a collection of micro-influencers. With the growing pressure of brands and influencers showing authenticity we feel that it will drive brands to make better use of genuine advocates such as employees and customers.
As we look ahead, the future of influencer marketing, like any marketing strategy, will be subject to changing trends, audiences, and technologies. So what’s next in terms of influencer marketing content? At the core of influncer marketing is word of mouth marketing or super sharers. What we need to look at next is how inlufencer marketing and WOMM is replicated across technology such as interactive audio experiences, AR videos, live videos, original content such as 360* imagery and personalisation campaigns on email and social….
Do you need help establishing a clear direction on content or influencer marketing? Give us a call and we’ll offer you an ear, a cuppa and a little advice!
Team Vivid x