In the words of the marketing expert, Seth Godin, “People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories, and magic.”
There was a time when everything about marketing - from concept creation to strategy-making to implementation - was fascinating. Brands and marketers alike were trying different things to woo their audience.
But as time passed, the beauty of marketing and the out of the box ideation disappeared, only to be replaced by run-of-the-mill, number-driven marketing strategies. Thanks to false guarantees, larger than life claims, and broken promises, customers started having doubts about who they could trust. In fact, many of these modern day marketing techniques are driving customers to extreme measures like blocking ads, turning off all forms of media, and even blacklisting companies. Great going, Mr Let’s-Spam-The-Customer’s-Email!
Now, brands are faced with a dual challenge - one trying to sell their products, and two, trying to win the audience’s trust. Not a small feat by any measure, but not entirely impossible either.
Enter Influencer Marketing
An influencer is someone who has the power to — you guessed it — influence the decisions of a massive audience of consumers. Since they’re relatively unbiased in their review of a product, influencers are perceived to have more credibility and integrity. And for this reason, consumers trust, respect, and listen to them, even changing their buying decision based on the influencer’s recommendation.
When you collaborate with influencers, you can leverage their popularity, reputation, and good will to amplify your brand’s presence. They can bridge the gap between your brand and your target audience by supporting your brand, endorsing a product, increasing brand awareness, and in the end, driving sales.
Not convincing enough? We’ll let the numbers do the talking.
- 41% of millennials use an ad blocker
- Only 1% of consumers trust advertisements. However, 33% of them trust blog reviews for their purchases
- Celebrity endorsements only work for 3% of consumers
- Around 40% of people admitted to buying a product online when they see an influencer using it
- Influencer marketing generates 11 times more ROI than other digital marketing strategies
And to top it all, 94% of marketers believe influencer marketing is an effective campaign strategy.
Still not convinced? We’ve got a few more arguments in favor of influencer marketing
Influencers make marketing more credible
Kim K might be breaking the Internet, but she won't be able to break that sales record anytime soon. Research shows that customers are more likely to purchase a product endorsed by a non-celebrity blogger than a mainstream celebrity.
This sense of distrust could have something to do with the fact that celebrities do not use the products they endorse. Who really believes that Aishwarya Rai uses Loreal shampoo or that Deepika Padukone uses Gilette to shave her arms? But they, and hundreds of celebrities like them, continue to be brand ambassadors of one product or another.
Influencers, on the other hand, are considered more relevant and trustworthy due to their expertise in their respective niches. They also carry a lot of credibility, especially on social media. The reviews they offer are genuine and from personal experiences. This explains why millennials favor non-celebrity endorsements and have a strong preference for such peer recommendations.
Consumers are wary of old-school marketing tactics
Time to face the ‘hard truths’ of marketing! Whether it’s traditional old-school media or the digital platform, people will always look at paid, ‘too good to be true’ advertising with skepticism. To be honest, consumers don’t want shady advertisements slowing their webpage (not to mention tracking them across the Internet). They want reliable conversations. And this is where influencer marketing waltzes in.
Unlike the usual endorsements and advertisements, influencers can connect with the target audience, and earn their credibility and trust. And since they have a reputation to maintain, they only promote the product they’ve used and are satisfied with.
Influencer marketing can increase your ROI by 11X
For most marketing pros, keeping their marketing budget from blowing out of proportion is a battle of wits. Fortunately, influencer marketing offers a cost-effective solution to connect with the target audience. Even the numbers bear this observation out.
In a recent study, 22% of the surveyed marketers said influencer marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing tools. The study also revealed that influencer marketing boasts of a considerably high ROI. Influencer marketing is said to yield a 650% return on every rupee spent.
Let’s be honest, folks! Marketing can drive even the most seasoned expert up the wall. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In a world where brands are struggling to be heard, social influencers offer a way to amplify your brand's message across a broader spectrum. From earning credibility to generating a loyal customer base, influencer marketing can do it all.
On a parting quote, “The great thing about influencer marketing is that you can kill three birds with one stone – create great content, earn credibility, and gain exposure through the influencer’s network.” - Anand Kansal - Marketing Lead at Outgrow.co