Influencer Marketing works: 5 reasons why
Would you hire Kim Kardashian, David Beckham or Chiara Ferragni to promote your product for free?
Yes, you would. We are doing this for decades for a variety of purposes. Even Uncle Sam is an influencer and an imaginary one for that matter. Still, he commanded influence over prospect recruits for decade after decade. And oh my, big brands love to do it. Year after year, Nike, L’Oreal and every other big consumer brand are searching for their poster boy or girl to be the face of their brand.
So now that we established that consumer companies use influencer marketing in a big way, there is one more question to answer. Is it working? For us to answer this question, we must investigate the social mechanics that hide behind Influencer Marketing and its power.
1. Human Mimicry 🧑🧑
The roots of this behavior are hard-coded in our DNA. Humans by nature are trying to copy the prominent figures of our species, our personal idols if you will. Today, this starts with our parents and later on, when we are exposed to the rest of the world, with celebrities and other socially or professionally successful persons.
We want to be like them. We want to look like them but we are settling for using the same lipstick or the same snickers as they wear. Social media has allowed anyone to get exposure and build a personal brand. They have democratized Influencer Marketing allowing micro-Influencers to emerge. This has enabled small businesses to leverage influencer marketing alongside big brands.
2. Excitement of Discovery 🎉🎉
We love finding something new and interesting. We get the urge to share it with our friends, our followers or just cherish it for ourselves. This is described in psychology as the excitement of discovery and is associated with the above urge. That’s one of the reasons we keep sweeping down our feed to refresh it, we are looking for this discovery.
That’s why we follow people that share content that excites us. And if that person stops exciting us for a while we unfollow them (we all do this don’t worry 😉). So following an influencer is because her content excites us. When a brand uses that same influencer for a marketing campaign to promote their product, they associate this feeling with their own brand image. This is the most prominent reason for making Influencer Marketing is effective.
3. Content Creation🏅🎯
If you have ever tried to share something for your brand or even your personal account, you would know what I am talking about. “Is that a nice selfie?”, “Should we use this filter?”, “Does this photo speaks to our audience?”, “Where should we distribute this?”. All these questions are the problems associated with Content Creation.
Brands that use influencers leave Content Creation & distribution to the influencer to decide and create the content strategy for a successful Marketing campaign. Additionally, being a time-consuming task, the influencer herself is the most suitable creator in this context. She has the best insight for her audience and the content that resonates better with her followers.
4. Trust 🤜🤛
Trust is one of the most deciding factors when it comes to making a purchase. You have to trust the retailer won’t sell you a broken phone or that he will replace it if it actually does. You have to trust the face cream will actually rejuvenate your skin and makes you look younger. It’s a hard-earned feeling and you certainly don’t get it by cookie-ing users and bombard them around the internet with ads about the shoes they had the unfortunate luck to stumble upon.
Do users trust blindly influencers to buy anything they suggest? Absolutely no. But they have broken through their first layer, users willingly allow them to expose them to content whenever and as often they wish. That’s the reason most successful Influencers are picky about their partnerships, they don’t want to lose the trust of their audience. In addition, research suggests that 85% of consumers seek out trusted experts when considering a purchase.
5. Timing + Medium ⏱📲
The points above is an attempt to explain the reasons and sentiments that make Influencer Marketing work. But, as those feelings aren’t something new or first-seen, why the Influencer marketing term has gained traction and attention recently?
We can attribute this to the rise of social platforms such a Snapchat and Instagram that allowed everyday people to gain traction and followers without spending a single dollar in marketing except their own time and creativity. In a way, these platforms democratized the ability to build a brand name or profile for everyone.
Those reasons above can offer a simple explanation of how and why Influencer Marketing works. There are many more factors that coexist and can explain the effectiveness of influencer marketing but this blog post covers a few of the most basics.
The easiest way for someone to understand if Influencers are effective, is to just have a quick look at one’s personal social feed and wonder has anyone that I follow influence any decision I made? This decision may vary from shopping preferences to traveling destinations to personal lifestyle. All of the above is the very essence of Influencer marketing.
Let me know your thoughts on the comment sections below. Do you have an example of someone you follow that influence a decision you made?