We spoke about influencer marketing here, and last month we covered everything you need to know about working with influencers (here), but it seems we got carried away, swept up in the whirlwind that is influencer marketing and forgot to fill you in on why you should work with influencers.
We speak to a lot of local, national and international brands here at scrunch HQ and we’ve found that many know that they should be working with influencers, but they don’t exactly know why. Whether it’s because they understand the concept, see the power of influencer marketing or simply because ‘everyone else is doing it,’ they know it's a happening thing but when faced with the big question of why, there are blank stares and the sound of crickets.
Of course, we’re not going to leave you hanging – we’ve got the answers right here, with 24 reasons why you should work with influencers, in no particular order.
- They Generate Sales – It’s a no-brainer; influencers generate sales, and that’s why so many brands are jumping on the influencer marketing bandwagon. From the minute an influencer talks about your product or service, sales generation starts. Depending on the influencer’s channel and the length of the campaign, sales will be generated immediately, in bursts or over a number of weeks.
- They Create Content – Influencers are the kings and queens of content creation, pumping out piece after piece of high-quality, engaging content. Essentially, they’re content machines. This is great news for brands because a), influencers are really, really good at it, and b), it means they can (and do) create user-generated content about your brand that can then be used on your own platforms. Remember that you don't own the content when you work with an influencer and cannot use, share, edit or publish without permission and approval.
- They Build Brand Awareness – Influencers are the link between a brand and its market awareness, it’s that simple! While influencers do generate leads and sales as well, the brand awareness they build is unrivalled in traditional PR strategies (we’re talking about you, bland press release). Exposure and brand awareness is so important in today’s saturated retail and eCommerce space, so the more brand awareness you can achieve, the better. See how we achieved brand awareness with influencer marketing and reached almost 1 million consumers in this case study.
- They Are A Trusted Voice – Did you know that consumers are more likely to trust the opinion of their peers than the brand itself, so partnering with an influencer to communicate your brand message is has success written all over it. Step aside traditional branded advertising; the trusted voice of the influencer is now in vogue.
- They Have Authority and Influence – 84% of consumers make a purchase after reading about a product or service on a blog – that’s almost 9 in 10 people! Influencers aren’t called influencers for nothing.
- They Build Relationships - Influencers build relationships between their followers and your brand. Without that mutual connection, or middle man if you will, it's a lot harder to start building that relationship.
- They’re Expert Communicators – Influencers live and breath in the digital space so, as they’ve built their empire, they’ve developed a knack for digital communication. Therefore, they’re excellent at communicating a brand's vision and message in a way that their followers will engage and connect.
- They Are Engaged – Their whole job relies on how engaged their followers are and how much reach they receive, so there’s no denying that influencers are engaged, and like to encourage engagement on their platforms. Why is this important to brands? The number of engaged followers is much more important then the total number of followers because it shows how many people are actually interacting with the influencer when they talk about the brand and it is a better indicator of reach and impressions.
- They Are Creative – There are millions of influencers across Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, LinkedIn, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest and blogs, so in order to stand out from the crowd influencers need to be creative in all stages of content development. In order to produce large volumes of unique content, you need to be creative, so it's a hat they wear day in and day out.
- They Know Their Audience – When you work with an influencer who has a pretty good idea of who their audience is, you can understand who your collaboration will reach. Whether it be fashion-forward women, stay-at-home-Mums or creative business folk, the influencer will have a great insight into their followers and how to best engage with them.
- They’re Excellent Value For Money – When compared to traditional advertising and PR activity, collaborating with influencers generates excellent value for money when your aim is to connect with a target market. In most cases, influencer collaborations generate a return on your original investment (especially when working with micro-influencers) meaning your making profit on the campaign pretty quickly. Don’t know how to calculate the ROI of an influencer campaign? That’s what scrunch does! Drop me an email anytime (firstname.lastname@example.org) to chat about how scrunch can manage and report on your influencer campaigns.
- They Can Start The Conversation - Before influencers can build a relationship between your brand and their folllowers, they must first start the conversation. Nobody likes it when people talk about themselves, so take the humble and flattering approach and have someone else do it for you (of course, only if they truly believe in your brand). Hello influencers!
- They Drive Traffic – Driving traffic to your website, online store and social media channels is super important because it demonstrates consumers moving through the sales funnel and engaging with the brand. Influencer collaborations can drive more traffic to your website so you can convert more leads.
- They Convert Leads – If you think of ‘leads’ as your potential customers, influencers are crucial to converting leads in the sales funnel. From the moment a consumer sees your product on an influencer’s page, they’re thinking about the product and what it would look like in their life. Now that the product is top of mind, it’s much easier to convert the lead into a paying customer.
- They Give Brands Access To Their Target Market – Influencers have a very targeted following of people in the same demographic, which brands can tap into if they are savvy with their prospecting and outreach. Our advice? Work with influencers in your niche as they will no doubt have a loyal following of consumers interested in the topic, which is essentially your target market.
- They Are Transparent – One of the great things about influencers is that they’re quite transparent and genuine, so they will include a disclaimer if they were gifted a product, or paid to promote a product. They’re also authentic when it comes to working with brands and are known to decline an opportunity that is not the right fit. This is good news because it means you'll only be working with influencers that really support your vision.
- They Distribute Content – While influencers are predominately content creators themselves, they can (and do) also distribute other content on their channels. If you wrote a great onsite blog post or created an instructional video, share it with some relevant influencers and ask whether they’d be interested in sharing it with their followers, ultimately widening the reach of your content.
- They Think Outside The Box - You know how we were saying influencers are really creative? Well, they also have this ability to think outside of the box and shake things up. Give them a general brief of the campaign and your goals, and then give them creative control to put the content together. The result? Probably something that blows your mind.
- They Become Brand Advocates – Working with influencers on one-off campaigns is great for raising brand awareness and generating interest, but it’s when they become long-term brand advocates that you truly start to see the value in their work.
- They Improve Your SEO – Just as influencers drive traffic to your website, online store and social media channels, they also help to improve your SEO and backlink profile. While social shares are not directly linked to Google’s ranking algorithm, blog links pointing to your website are extremely beneficial. For more SEO tips and info, check out this post.
- They Craft Appeal – Have you ever seen a celebrity, blogger or influencer wearing a gorgeous dress and thought ‘I like that, I want that.’ Then have you purchased it, based on their recommendation after seeing it on their platform? Enough said.
- They Are Information Providers – Whether the campaign is about introducing a new brand, retargeting an old product, distributing information about a sale or dispersing purchase incentives (discount codes, deals), influencers are great information providers when you want to get a message out to the masses quickly.
- They Have A Fresh Perspective – The beauty of working with influencers is that they have their own ideas, perspective and experience, so they can put a new flair on your marketing strategy and uncover a fresh angle.
- They Grow Your Social Following - Always include a request to tag your brand in all influencer collaborations so that your social media platforms receive some love as a result of the campaign. It might happen slowly, but it's certainly worth it.
So, why aren't you working with influencers?