Ecommerce and social commerce can open your potential customer base to the entire planet. Unfortunately, they also expand your competitive landscape by the same margin. Influence Marketing (IM) can help you tackle such challenges and generate positive ROI. We’re diving into how and why.
Earning Consumers’ Love, Respect, and Adoration
IM has the power to help brands generate awareness and earn consumer loyalty. Consumers use social media to discover products and services and make purchasing decisions, often with the help of influencers as reliable sources of information. When it comes to brands, products, and services to buy, consumers seem to trust shopping recommendations more from influencers than from family and friends according to a study from gen.video. All studies into the topic also conclude that almost all consumers trust influencers significantly more than advertising.
Social Media, The New Storefronts
90% of online shoppers are also using social networks today. Shoppable features on social media are growing, helping drive an ongoing rapid rise in social commerce, particularly with younger generations. A brand’s social media profiles have become some of their most essential storefronts.
Among millennials and Gen Z, social media is becoming a prime purchasing channel. In the fashion sector, for example, in Germany, social media already generated sales of EUR 3.4 billion in the fashion sector in 2018. On average, each user in Switzerland spends 1 hour 18 minutes per day spent using social media.
To capture sales opportunities, it’s vital to stand out on social channels. Brands that target these consumer segments stand to gain by optimizing their social media presence to cash in on this trend and avoid losing out to competitors. You can optimize by including clever shoppable features and working with influencers to boost reach.
Influence Marketing is Authentic and Impactful
Throughout the customer journey, IM can be used to effectively nurture your leads and customers. By providing depth, creating meaningful connections, and inspiring trust, IM drives measurable results instantly as well as overtime. IM can provide ongoing, credible nurturing, as opposed to most marketing touchpoints along the consumer journey like regular advertising or agency visits. From creating awareness and enhancing your brand image to boosting consideration and pushing conversion, IM nurtures your audiences in a uniquely effective way.
Influencers are deeply connected to communities and are more trusted. In fact, 92% of consumers trust an influencer more than any form of advertising. The credibility of influencers makes their contributions impactful in these communities. IM also showcases real-life examples as opposed to staged ads that consumers understand are fabricated.
Additionally, influencers can activate and maintain engagement in communities through various formats such as videos, contests, challenges, games, and even leading live events that encompass memorable, consumer-engaging brand experiences, and even sampling actions for new products.
Tip: Use social influencers to increase and improve your online community engagement. From growing the number of followers on your social media accounts to boosting reach and ensuring your audience remains engaged with your brand, influencers can provide a tremendous boost to your success on social media. Why not do an influencer Instagram take-over for a week or stimulate online conversations with influencers as moderators or post authentic and creative fan- or employee-based product tutorials?
Influence Marketing is Effective at Targeting Your Audience
Influence marketing can make people feel closer to your brand and develop a strong preference for it. 87% of consumers made purchases based on influencer recommendations. Social media platforms can effectively target a variety of demographics, such as moms on Facebook, millennials in Instagram, Gen Z on TikTok, and professionals on LinkedIn. When combined with the ability to select specific influencers, IM provides exceptional targeting capabilities.
IM is particularly effective at targeting Generation Z.
- 85% of Gen Z learns about new products on social media.
- 45% of teens use Instagram to find cool new products
- 75% of Gen Z prefer to buy online, including directly on social media
- 73% of Gen-Z shoppers want brands and retailers to connect with them about new products and promotions through Instagram
It’s also becoming increasingly easy to measure attribution of social media investments in order to accurately calculate ROI. With influencer marketing showcasing best-in-class ROI figures, it is becoming increasingly attractive for companies.
Influencer Marketing Captivates
As consumers strive for purpose, they seek out brands that demonstrate shared values such as fair labor practices, social responsibility, and environmental sustainability. Brands must work to earn consumers’ trust and build favorable public opinion. These values must be communicated clearly, while consistently remaining authentic.
With social media, you can tell stories to create more emotional connections that drive a stronger, more appealing social media presence. IM has the power to unite people and drive engagement, in particular, through contests and challenges.
While influencers are an effective vehicle for connecting to your audience, they can also contribute their subject matter expertise and collaborate with you to develop creative campaign ideas. Creative ideation can be done either independently by an influencer or together with brands.
IM also allows brands the possibility to work with many diverse groups, providing access to a wide variety of audiences, including niche audiences. This can boost a brand’s image and increase appeal to the diverse range of people many brands serve today. The powerful effect of ‘giving your brand a face people can relate to‘ helps to explain the success of IM.
Influence Marketing is Effective at Driving Sales and Brand Loyalty
IM is uniquely advantageous in having measurable performance stats that are at least as good as traditional advertising, but with many additional benefits. CPM and cost per lead can be very effective and competitive with other online marketing. As an example the Kingfluencers team ran a campaign in autumn 2020 in Switzerland for a leading consumer electronics brand, obtaining a CPM of CHF 19.06 with a reach of over 2.5 million and almost 291.000 consumer engagements.
Contrary to traditional online ads, IM also helps you develop credibility and trust. Regular advertising is often not trusted and disliked. It’s outright hated by Gen Z. However, IM remains effective. According to the State of Influence 2020 Report, “Despite the decrease in the overall quantity of sponsored content, audiences remain engaged with these posts, especially on Instagram and TikTok.”
Generation Z account for 40% of global consumers, and about 32% of the global population, edging ahead of Millennials already
Influence Marketing is Fast and Agile
Some big consumer spending moments are still yet to come in 2020, including Black Friday, Christmas, and New Year’s. Brands have numerous opportunities to boost revenue but must prepare now to capitalize on these times.
Fortunately, a creative strategy for an IM campaign can be developed, set up, and implemented in a matter of no time. Here at Kingfluencers, we collaborate with all social media platforms and create smart, omni-channel and multi-format campaigns in less than a few weeks.
One excellent example of an agile approach to IM is Chipotle. The American restaurant chain was already active on TikTok prior to the COVID pandemic and worked with influencers to promote their delivery service. Their keys to success included a steady drumbeat of challenges on TikTok, partnering with young influencers with large platforms, and aligning content with relevant culture references.
Rich Choice of Formats
Social media platforms offer an ever wider variety of options both in terms of types of posts that are possible as well as content formats that are supported. From images to stories, video, live streaming, Instagram TV, and so much more. This gives influencers a rich arsenal to captivate their audiences with. But it doesn’t stop there, the options allowing people to interact with content as well as convert reach to sales have seen a real boom recently. With features like swipe up, linked shoppable product catalogues, interactive contests, temporary flash promotions, etc. it has become ever more easy to make the link between influencer content and revenue generation.
And with Kingfluencers, IM is Predictable!
With most marketing efforts, it is very difficult to accurately estimate results. But machine learning technology is changing that. Leading providers like Kingfluencers understand that combining the power of IM with innovative campaign management technology can substantially increase campaign efficiency and drive improved outcomes. Kingfluencers took this a step further with the predictor module, part of our in-house, state of the art IM platform. This module can accurately predict the outcomes of campaigns on parameters such as estimated impressions, reach, engagement, interactions, and conversion, based on unique campaign parameters.
Influence Marketing Fits Perfectly in Your Marketing Mix
Influencer marketing can fit in with your other marketing disciplines, especially social media and even performance marketing*, and elevate your key messages. This high level of compatibility is valuable, as it can reinforce all your marketing efforts in driving traffic to the content assets and web presence you’ve already built. Content creation can flow both directions, as you can reuse and repurpose content created by influencers as part of your IM campaigns. Increasingly, brands are seeing that content generated from IM campaigns can enrich or even replace traditional content across various channels. The IM-generated content has higher engagement levels and more positive consumer reactions than other content types. It can also very well help gather new leads, just like in the case of a campaign done by Kingfluencers for one of the oldest insurance companies in Switzerland, where the efforts generated over 80’000, convertible, campaign landing page visits.
Author: Yoeri Callebaut, Chief Growth and Marketing Officer at Kingfluencers