Learn about the pros and cons of influencer marketing.
- We are fascinated by celebrities, they have been used to advertise products for hundreds of years. Even Mark Twain endorsed fountain pens. Today, there is another type of celebrity in the digital world, the Influencer. In this video, I'll walk you through the pros and cons of Influencer marketing. An Influencer is a person who produces content and has a significant following. From a blogger to a YouTube personality with millions of followers to a photographer whose Instagram account reaches a few thousand.
There are two primary categories of Influencers. First, is the Macro-Influencer. Macro-Influencers have more than one million followers or subscribers. Typically, the publish content across a variety of subject areas. A great example is Good Mythical Morning, a YouTube based talk show that has over 14 million subscribers. Then, there's the Micro-Influencer. He or she has between 10,000 and 100,000 followers or subscribers.
They tend to be more specialized in content, photography, food, travel, homemaking, crafting, and more. Audiences are more loyal as they also have interests in their specific content. Working with an Influencer can happen a number of ways. At one extreme, the Influencer would create all content, such as a video or post. On the other side, the Influencer may just want the company to give them content to publish on their feed without their input.
Either way, the content is promotional and the Influencer is paid for their endorsement. Companies need to research the type of Influencer that best suits their product and message. The ability to influence is a major factor. Because while a Macro-Influencer reaches more people, they may not wield a great deal of influence. But an Instagram micro-celebrity probably has a much closer relationship with their followers, as the content is more specific and personal.
The downside of working with influencers is primarily the cost. Companies are competing for the voice of the Influencer, especially the ones who have large audiences. Many times, the cost is based on the number of followers, which should be certified because Influencers sometimes inflate follower numbers. When working with Influencers, it is extremely important to disclose the endorsement relationship. Most countries have laws and regulations requiring that paid endorsements be disclosed.
And so, the Influencer is obligated to disclose any payment or free products received. Finally, measurement of influence is vital because it's notoriously difficult. Key performance indicators, like views, likes, shares, and engagement are helpful, but they don't provide the full extent of the influence. If the Influencer shares a coupon code or a direct link, then sales or performance is more easily measured.
Working with Influencers can extend the brand to additional audiences. But, as with any content, relevance to the audience and finding the right Influencer relationship is key.
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