How and Why to Influence the Influencers
Why have the faces of anonymous models on the covers of magazines and in TV commercials been replaced with those of celebrities, musicians and supermodels? The answer is influence.
Style makers from the big (meaning movie) and small (now including computer and smartphone as well as TV) screens can, of course, be actresses and singers, as well as the kid down the block or a popular blogger. Indeed, the internet has democratized the world of communications and influence. But the fact remains that there are still some people who are able to draw a (physical and/or virtual) crowd and impact the decision making of those around them.
These individuals have come to be known as influencers. And these influencers are shaking up the worlds of advertising and marketing.
Influencer marketing is the fastest-growing online customer acquisition channel of those marketers polled by Tomoson, which estimates that businesses make $6.50 for every dollar they spend on influencer marketing. About 40 percent of those polled by analytics company Annalect and Twitter said they've purchased an item online after seeing it used by an influencer on Instagram, Twitter, Vine or YouTube. And Digital Visitor says influencer marketing has become an essential part of the strategies in the fashion, hospitality, retail and travel sectors.
Anthony Rawlins, managing director for Digital Visitor, in a recent report noted that a Google study from 2014 indicates the internet is the clear leader in inspiring leisure travel decisions, while TV follows as a distant second. Yet, he added, it can be difficult to track the impact of influencer marketing due to a lack of industry standards of measurement related to it.
However, Rawlins said that organizations with an interest in engaging with influencers in an effort to promote their products might consider inviting these individuals to participate in themed experiences. For example, he suggested, a business could invite an influencer and his or her mother to be part of a Mother’s Day event or promotion. Twitter Chats are another means of connecting with influencers and their followers, he said.
“Co-hosting a branded Twitter chat can deliver seriously good results – it’s not unheard of for one chat to generate as many as 7-10 million impressions,” he said.
Hosting a dedicated blogger event is another great way to connect with influencers, he suggested.
“What better way to get large groups of influencers engaging with your business?” he said.
Edited by Alicia Young