Influencer Marketing in 2018

Influencer marketing is a top contender in 2018 for marketers, and it is no surprise as 49% of consumers now rely on influencer recommendation – a statistic that is significant enough and quickly growing.

Influencer marketing involves defining brand messaging and motivation of a campaign and aligning these with the right social influencers to target consumers.

When done right, influencer marketing is extremely valuable and powerful strategy.

“A brand is no longer what we tell the consumer it is- it is what consumers tell each other it is” – Scott Cook

So, what is influencer marketing? What does it involve? How do you negotiate the best outcome and how can you strategically add it to your marketing mix in 2018.

Influencer marketing is an exchange of relationship between service and product providers. Influencer marketing focuses on using key leaders to drive a brand’s message to a broader market. The key to influencer marketing is tapping into a target audience and engaging influencers who can speak about a brand with trusted consumers.

An influencer marketing survey conducted by Collective Bias involving 14,000 respondents in the US, reveals that 70% of millennial consumers are influenced by the recommendations of their peers in buying decisions. This is because consumers can relate to these influencers and value their opinions. And with the growth of social media platforms like Instagram, influencer marketing is not only becoming more accessible but is what is prompting such fast growth of this type of marketing.

The graph below shows how fast influencer marketing has spiked over the last decade. The predominant reason for this spike is the number of platforms now available to consumers and how much of a norm it has become to share and give recommendations on social and for consumers to make purchasing decision through content.

Influencer marketing involves recognising the reasons for engaging an influencer. What is the purpose? Is it a launch of a campaign for which you may have an event or get brand ambassadors to share about the brand. Is it a one-off engagement of an influencer for an excellent article on a blog. Is it a combination of involving different levels of influencers for brand awareness.

Via Sprout Social

In 2018, there are various types of influencers, and this is mainly due to the variety of platforms and genres of sharing available. Bloggers, social influencers, brand ambassadors, and celebrity. Aligning the right influencers for a brand involves defining a purpose but also understanding how this marketing technique will contribute to your long-term goals.

Via Hashmeta Blog

An example of excellent influencer engagement between 2017/2018 is the brand Hi Smile with their content with Kylie and Kendall Jenner and Connor McGregor as celebrity endorsers and sending the product to social influencers and celebrity with followers reaching their target market. This saturated their market with their brand and created awareness.

The key is defining brand goals and thinking long-term when adding this technique to your marketing mix. Influencer marketing is a business and outlining the purpose of engaging influencers is your key to get the content you want for your brand and getting your KPI and ROI. This also equips you as a marketer in how your approach an influencer and proceed with negotiation in getting the right content at the right price.

In 2018, where social media is saturated with so many “influencers” – it is all about getting the right people talking about your brand on the right platforms.

Sameera Afzaal
Sameera is a Social Media Strategist and Digital Content Manager. My passions lie strongly in influencer relations + digital strategy. I thrive on creating campaigns for brands and purposefully harnessing the power that influencer’s can bring to a marketing plan.