2 minute read
With most marketers adding an influencer marketing platform to the top of their wish lists this year, you would think this marketing strategy is a well-known one. But many marketers are still wondering, "what is influencer marketing?" Let’s start from the beginning to find out if this relationship marketing strategy is for your brand.
What is influencer marketing?
In many ways influencer marketing is a modern take on traditional affiliate marketing. Instead of a network of smaller affiliates driving traffic, influencer marketing targets specific people - influencers - who have large, captive audiences. Brands leverage the existing relationships that influencers have with their engaged followings in exchange for a fee for their endorsement, which is shared to their network along with their non-sponsored content.
Who is influencer marketing right for?
With the rise of social media celebrities, like Instagram bloggers and YouTube stars, it may seem that influencer marketing is more prevalent in millennial-focused consumer brands. But today, that isn’t the case. Many B2B organizations are developing influencer programs with subject matter experts that can help shorten their sales cycles and lead to higher close rates. As long as your company has a quality product or service that customers love, a captive and engaged audience, as well as, a process to track, manage, and pay influencers, this marketing strategy will work for you.
What makes influencer marketing unique?
Today, someone with hundreds of thousands of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn followers wields an incredible amount of power to drive interest in a product, and many brands are seeing big results by incentivizing those influencers to talk about their products or services.
How is influencer marketing typically managed?
In most cases, marketers manage influencer marketing manually — handpicking target influencers, reaching out to them individually, and tracking the entire program through spreadsheets and email. There are some tools designed to manage the procurement of the influencers themselves, which is usually via an agency with or a matching algorithm. But these apps or programs do little to help manage the process of managing influencers, attribution, payouts, reporting, and further empowering influencers to perform better.
As influencer marketing becomes ubiquitous, however, another realization has crystallized: it’s not enough to identify and pay influencers for single-post campaigns - commonly referred to “pay-to-play” - on just one platform. Not all influencers are created equal, and the best way to ensure successful campaigns is to develop relationships with both paid and organic partners who can employ a multi-touchpoint approach, all while using influencer strategies to augment your own internal multi-channel campaigns.
Discover how to build a smarter, more organic influencer marketing strategy in our latest eBook.
Posted February 27, 2018 in Influencer Marketing