The concept of influencer marketing is simple to define. Its basically the process where influential people market relevant products to the people they influence. This has become an ever increasing form of marketing with the rise of social media. Everywhere you look, on Instagram, snapchat, Facebook and blogs, “Influencers” are there endorsing products. Usually these products need to be relevant to that person, e.g. A fitness model might promote protein powder, where a fashion model may promote a specific brand of clothing.
What Makes An Influencer?
1. Influencers Are Well Connected
A large following on social media and high follower engagement is very important for influencer marketing. A person could have 20,000 followers, but only be receiving 20 likes per post. In this case, they probably wouldn’t make a successful influencer.
Fitness Trainer and Entrepreneur Kayla Itsines is a great example of using social media to influence a target market. Kayla inspires women all over the globe to be active, regularly promoting her training program ‘BBG’ and her new app ‘Sweat’, in her social media posts. With over 10 million followers, and excellent engagement in her posts, Kayla’s brand continues to grow.
2. Influencers Are Charismatic and Entertaining
It is highly unlikely that influencer marketing would work if a degree of relatability or entertainment wasn’t present. Local Instagram Star Celeste Barber is a master of entertaining content, all the while breaking down societal expectations, and promoting self love.
Celeste takes popular images of famous models or actors, and recreates them with her own comedic and ‘real’ interpretation, side by side. Her hilarious image renditions have seen her gain a following of 4.5 Million people, start an American comedy tour, and prepare to release a book.
An entrepreneur in her own right, Celeste is an influencer of her own brand, promoting self love and realism in a comedic nature.
3. Influencers Are Activists
Influencers are often heavily involved with their communities, big supporters of charities and often endorsors of political movements.
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is a big supporter of Charity ‘Make a Wish Foundation’, often granting the wishes of kids battling life threatening illness.
By posting about the Make a Wish Foundation, The Rocks platform of 114 Million followers are being exposed to the charity, and the wonderful work they do, potentially recruiting more volunteers, donators and business partnerships.
4. Influencers are Trend Setters (and can be kids!)
Influencers identify and create trends. Their social media platforms are used to personally endorse products in the hope that others are influenced and buy them too. Check out Mila and Emma Stauffer. Their parent run Instagram features the hilarious antics of these sisters, who have become viral sensations.
The girls' regularly post content endorsing products, brands and services they love. Recently their posts have included a kids Muesli bar company, a stroller brand, and world renowned retailer, 'target'.
The key to influencer marketing is keeping posts natural, and not letting them seem like the endorsement is forced.
Influencer marketing is very effective today because of social media. Without even realising it, you are exposed to influencers every single day, endorsing all kinds of products from sportswear to beauty products to brands. Next time you scroll through your Facebook or Instagram feeds, pay attention to the details. Does the image feature a product centrally? Does the caption rave about a certain brand? Are companies tagged in the photo? Influencer marketing is booming, and it's working.