Social media has changed the world of marketing as we know it. It’s now easier for businesses to create, share and promote original content that will attract and delight their target audiences.
But what if you could get someone to do all that for you? Introducing - influencers!
We’ve all seen them on our various social media channels or heard of them on the news. Some of us might have even bought something they recommended.
The reason we hear so much about it is because influencer marketing works. A study showed that 82% of people were more likely to buy something that they were recommended by a micro-influencer, and its popularity is only growing.
So, you might be thinking that it’s time for you to invest in this trend. But choosing the right influencer isn’t as easy as picking someone popular and hoping that your product does well. Let’s look into what you’ll need to consider to get the best value for your business.
Why does it work?
At Game Marketing Genie, we believe that influencer marketing is the future. To understand how to use it in your marketing strategy, you’ll first need to know why it works for others.
At a broad scale, it is a strategy that uses personalities with a dedicated following to endorse products or services and encourage conversions. It works because of the trusting relationship that these personalities build with their followers. This loyalty and willingness to invest in recommended products and services exists as a form of social proof.
Social proof is a term that refers to the psychological phenomenon in which people copy the actions of others to replicate the correct behavior in certain situations. Let’s look at this in terms of influencers. The effect of social proof is evident here where audiences see well-respected figures using a product in a situation, and then purchase that product to use in their own versions of the situation. It is this correlation between an influencer’s life and the audience’s life that is key to the success of your campaign.
But it has other benefits! In a world of ad-blockers and marketing methods that have stood the test of time, you can break these familiar boundaries to appeal to your audience in a fresh and unique way. Influencers are only growing in popularity each day, and it’s because people love the content they post and brands they work with.
But you’ll need to look into who you want to work with before you get started.
What types of influencers are there?
There are a few tiers you can choose from. We’ve sorted them into five key categories. Each one has its own benefits, and you’ll need to consider them all to choose someone who will fit your brand best.
As it says in the title, these are the big names of endorsement. Typically having 1 million or more followers, celebrity influencers’ posts have a high chance of being seen by a wide range of people. However, due to the vast number of views these posts get compared to the number of conversions from viewers, we see that the reach to engagement ratio is quite low.
They will likely also have a high cost per post. Investing in celebrities like Kylie Jenner or Selena Gomez can set you back hundreds of thousands of dollars. Even more niche celebrities like viral beauty guru James Charles will still put you back around almost 10,000USD for a post to his 16.4 million followers on Instagram.
The next tier down, mega-influencers have anywhere from 500,000 to 1 million followers. Their reach level is also quite high, but their audiences are more often suited to a specific niche.
This is where you want to start if you want your brand to be picked up globally. The cost of investing in this tier is still quite high, and might not be suitable for an emerging brand, startup or small business.
Micro- and macro-influencers
Much of the market falls into these categories. Micro-influencers will typically have around 5,000 to 30,000 followers, and macro-influencers hold the 30,000 to 500,000 mark.
It is within this number of followers that we find the sweet spot - an area that has an engagement of up to 6.7%, which typically produces the best ROI. Why? It’s because they take the time to interact with their followers and build a trusting relationship by being authentic.
The relationship that they create with your brand is just as important to them as the one they create with their audience. This is because they rely on the collaborations that you and other companies provide - they don’t have brands lined up like celebrity influencers do.
As we’re seeing so far, high follower count doesn’t mean high engagement. Nano-influencers typically have anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 followers. While their content usually isn’t as structured or as well-polished as higher tier influencers, their audiences tend to have a higher and more substantial engagement with their posts.
So, which one will work best for you? You’ll need to consider a few things before you choose the right personality for your brand.
Things to consider when choosing an influencer
You want your market to be related to the person that you work with. Does their content connect with the message you’re trying to portray? This connects to the target audience you’re trying to reach. For example, a food blogger’s audience likely won’t respond to content if it’s about a new mobile gaming app.
You also need to decide if they suit your brand as a whole. An influencer who produces provocative content might not be suited to a family-friendly kids’ entertainment company.
Ask yourself a few key questions:
- Does their audience align with my content?
- Does their style connect with my brand image?
- Will this collaboration shine a positive light on my brand?
Reach to engagement ratio
Reach is not important on its own. Resist the urge to target as many people as possible and instead focus on an audience that will engage with your brand meaningfully. It is the connection between reach and engagement that is essential to a good influencer marketing strategy.
After your campaign is complete, you’ll want your investment to have been worth it. To get a good ROI, you’ll need to make sure that the influencer you collaborate with has a reach that also translates into engagements with your product or service.
We mentioned earlier that personalities with high follower counts frequently have a considerably lower engagement rate than that of smaller tier influencers. If you want the best outreach but also the best ROI for your efforts, you’ll likely want to invest in a nano-, micro- or macro-influencer.
If someone you want to work with has a lot of followers, then it’ll likely cost you more to work with them. You need to manage this as well as the costs of running the campaign, the creation of content you want them to post, ad spend and more.
Create a budget and apply it to your influencer campaign. Look for someone affordable within your niche that will bring you a positive return, and map out the costs along the way.
If one option seems too expensive, but another’s audience is smaller than you expected, try budgeting to work with multiple influencers to access new audiences.
If you’re having difficulty balancing your influencer costs, turn to a marketing agency that can handle finding, managing, overseeing and analyzing your campaign for you.
But most of all, you want your user experience to be real. Personalized messages connect better with audiences and get more positive reviews than outright promotions or reviews. You want your content to appear natural to build an emotional connection with your audience.
For example, it might seem beneficial as a skincare brand to get a beauty blogger to do a review on your latest product. However, this could be make or break for you. You don’t want your content to be reviewed negatively, but you also don’t want the interaction to seem forced. Instead, try working with them to create a list of daily skincare essentials that is sponsored by your company. This kind of content is highly engaging, true to the blogger’s style and opinions and connects your company’s brand image to something their audience cares about.
At the end of the day, the success of an influencer is attributed to their personal, emotional and authentic style. You want your business to connect with your audience in a way that is real, and you need to have the right people to help you do that.
Influencers are playing a large part in the marketing world, and will continue to do so in the future. It’s not as simple as choosing someone from social media - you need to plan your marketing strategy and analyze your options to make the right choices. This can be difficult, and we understand that.
Our team of creatives, analysts and marketing professionals are specialized in influencer marketing strategy and can find the best fit personalities for you. Take the stress off your shoulders and let the experts at Game Marketing Genie create, manage, analyze and optimize your marketing strategy so you can focus on making your business outstanding.
Want to know more? Let us help you with all of your influencer marketing needs.