Shane Barker
July 18, 2019

7 of the Best Ways Your Brand Can Benefit from Influencer Marketing

Consumers now trust influencers more than the brands themselves and their paid advertisements. Why? Primarily because they consider influencers a more genuine and trustworthy source of information. 

This demand for more authenticity made influencers key players in influencing consumers’ purchase decisions. Influencer marketing is currently the hottest buzzword in the online marketing arena. And a huge percentage of consumers rely on reviews and suggestions from influencers to help them make their buying decisions.

Consumer trust for brands is dwindling, with only 22% of consumers saying they trust what a brand says. Clearly, a majority of consumers no longer believe in what brands claim about themselves, or what they sell. 

Instead, they feel it is better to trust the experience of a peer who is able to tell them whether they should purchase something or not. This is where the role of influencers comes into play.

Authenticity and trust are two of the most important aspects of influencer marketing campaigns. People trust influencers. However, if the content created by an influencer doesn’t feel genuine, they will immediately lose followers. And their engagement rate will also drop. Therefore, influencers are also highly particular about posting only authentic and genuine content.

Influencer marketing can benefit you in a number of ways. In this post, you will find out how you can leverage influencer marketing to achieve a number of marketing goals for your brand.

#1. Save a Lot of Time

Learning, planning, implementing, and tracking online marketing programs can be very time-consuming. But if done in the right way, influencer marketing can save you a lot of time. And you can use that time by concentrating on other aspects of your business. 

A major share of the campaign responsibility is shouldered by the influencers themselves. They create the content and reach out to their followers for your brand.

If you want to save more time, you can take advantage of influencer marketing platforms like BuzzSumo, which will take care of everything including:

  • Finding the influencers, from the smallest ones to the largest
  • Engaging with them
  • Measuring the ROI of the campaign on your behalf.

All you have to do is provide some parameters and let influencers take care of the rest.

Another option is Influence.co, which can help you find reliable and genuine influencers. Influencers can also share their best work there and find brands to partner with. 

Influencer Marketing

Image via Influence.co

 #2. Creates Brand Awareness

Influencer marketing campaigns are a highly effective way to create brand awareness. Through influencers, you will be able to tap into their audiences. Audiences of people who are more than willing to listen, since they already follow and trust the influencers.

While bigger influencers allow you access to their massive audiences, smaller influencers can help generate a better engagement rate. Since they have less followers, they’re able to spend more time interacting with those followers and developing more personal connections with them. And they’re likely to aim for smaller, more engaged niches.

In order to implement the right influencer marketing strategy to create brand awareness, you should be mindful of the following things:

  • Brand Specific – Your influencers should be able to relate to your brand, and have used or are using your products or services.
  • Authentic – The content they create should be authentic and unbiased. They should express their own opinions and provide honest reviews to their followers.
  • Engagement – The content they create should have the ability to engage their audience.
  • Relevance – Make sure their content offers value to their audience and is relevant to their interests, needs, or desires.

If your influencer meets the standards mentioned above, then your influencer marketing campaign will be more effective at raising brand awareness for your company. 

Influencers are highly skilled individuals who know what works for their audiences. And so they are the best people to turn to if you want to reach out to their followers, who are also your target audience.

Influencers spread the word for you by engaging in conversations with their followers, replying to their messages, and promoting your brand in various other creative ways. Those ways may include reviews, tutorials, how-to articles, videos, or photos. 

They also help to build brand mentions. And your brand will become more popular when their followers reshare the influencer’s contents or tag a friend in the posts promoting your brand or products.

In the following Instagram image by Ariel Hope, she promoted a L’Oreal product and tags the brand in the post. She is a beauty influencer with almost 20,000 followers on Instagram. 

Influencer Marketing

Image via Instagram

#3. Help with SEO and Link Building

Influencer marketing can do wonders for your SEO strategy by helping you build high-quality backlinks. Link building is crucial for your website’s SEO. It is the process through which marketers get backlinks from other reputable sites to their own sites. 

If a website links to a page on your site, and if it is a high-ranking website itself, then it implies that they trust your site to be reliable and worthy of consideration. Link building is a difficult task as the dynamics of SEO and link building are ever-changing.

Search engines crawl the web using links, whether they are between pages on one website or between different websites. Based on the quality of links, the search engines decide which websites should rank higher. 

After crawling the pages, the search engines extract their content and start indexing. In the process, it also checks whether the content is of high-quality and if it can be ranked higher for the relevant keywords.

This process not only takes into consideration the quality of content, but also the number of links that point to that page. If the page has links from many reputable and high-ranking websites, then it has better chances of ranking well in the search results. 

A higher ranking page will appear at or near the top of the search results, thereby strengthening the traffic flow to that website.

That said, influencer marketing is a very effective tactic for acquiring high-quality backlinks for a website. Influencers can generate backlinks for your website by sharing your website extensively on social media, allowing you to contribute guest posts with links to your website on their pages, or creating “unsponsored” posts that carry links to your website.

Below is a screenshot of an article by TechCrunch, a leading tech news website. In the screenshot, they have offered a backlink to The New York Times here. The website, founded by Michael Arrington, started off as a blog for eCommerce startup businesses in Silicon Valley.

Influencer Marketing

Image via TechCrunch

#4. Drive Traffic

You can also use influencer marketing to drive traffic to your website. When an influencer links to your website or web store, you can successfully increase your traffic. 

The posts containing your website links are shared across social media. And as more and more people check out the post, they will click on the link and be redirected to your website.

The following screenshot shows a post by Julie Sariñana on Instagram. In it, she has tagged Who What Wear and promoted their apparel. She also mentioned that there’s a link in her bio which will redirect people to the website.  

Influencer Marketing

Image via Instagram

You can also benefit from supporting your influencers. Share their posts on your company’s official website or social networking pages, so that they get more views and shares. 

However, make sure you do not interfere too much in the content creation process because if you do, it will decrease its authenticity. If the influencer fails to connect with their audience, or if the audience feels that the content created by the influencer is not genuine, the content will not be effective. The views and shares will also likely decrease, affecting your traffic.

#5. It Will Save You Money

You may be surprised to find out how much you can save on influencer marketing. Traditional advertising is expensive, as a lot of money goes into creating the ad, buying ad space, etc. 

But influencer marketing can be a lot cheaper. Considering that rates vary massively between macro and micro-influencers, collaborating with micro-influencers will be the most cost-effective option.

Also, you can choose between paid influencer marketing and earned influencer marketing. If you choose the latter, you will not have to spend anything at all.

So what is the difference between the two types of influencer marketing?

In paid influencer marketing, the brand pays the influencer to collaborate and promote the brand to their followers. Paid influencer marketing is more effective because these influencers have a massive number of followers. And by paying the influencers, brands can gain access to this audience. 

However, paid influencer marketing can be costly if you have one or more celebrities or macro-influencers endorsing your brand.

Earned influencer marketing, on the other hand, refers to building relationships with regular individuals who like your brand. Then getting them to share their experiences with their connections. Since this is solely out of brand loyalty and is completely based on their preference for the brand, there is no cost involved.

Although larger, more expensive influencers have a far greater reach, micro-influencers, or the earned influencers, have a better engagement rate and can be more persuasive when it comes to affecting purchase decisions. 

Therefore, if your goal is to raise brand awareness and drive traffic, you can do so effectively, even on a budget, with a community or network of micro-influencers and earned influencers.

#6. Build Brand Communities

Building a brand community is an important forte of influencer marketing. Communities are important to brands because they are highly effective in driving sales, building awareness, and extending reach and engagement.

Communities also allow brands to understand the needs of their customers. This influences product roadmaps and the creation of customer service guidelines, and enables marketers to understand their prospects better. 

Hence, brands can benefit in many ways by creating a community around a topic. And influencers are the ones who lead conversations within these communities and also encourage other people to join in.

So, how will you build a brand community? Here are the four major steps for building a powerful community around your brand with the industry experts.

Motivation: The first step is to find out what will connect your community and motivate it? What is it that they want to learn about? Once you have found that out, have your influencers post content that addresses and highlights those motivations. This will foster a strong community for your brand.

Live Chat and Community Events: Having your influencer host a live chat or a community event can help you in many ways. Not only will it help you engage your community around the live event but also encourage new members to be a part of it.

It will be advantageous for the influencers as well, because they will be able to extend their own community through such live chats and events. There is no better way to engage than face-to-face interaction.

Influencers Within a Community: Look for influential members within your community and reach out to them. Personal interactions with such people will foster stronger relationships with them, and these members can turn into influencers for you in the long run. A proper outreach program will help you to reach out to these people successfully.

The following Instagram post by was sponsored by iDeal Of Sweden. They collaborated with this influencer, even though she has just 1,158 followers. In spite of that, the post managed to get more than 250 likes. 

Influencer Marketing

Image via Instagram

#7. Access to High-Quality Content

Another way that influencer marketing helps brands is by giving them access to high-quality, authentic content. You can repost content created by your influencers on your own website or social networking pages to fill in gaps if you fall short of your own content. 

Even your own followers will love the fresh, new flow of content. By sharing their content on your pages, you will also be showing appreciation to your influencers. This will go a long way in strengthening your relationships with them.

Conclusion

An influencer marketing campaign will only succeed if there are benefits for both brand and influencers. When the influencers are doing so much for your brand, it is also your responsibility to support them. Supporting them means helping them extend their reach and acquire more followers, paying them what they deserve, not underestimating their efforts, and showing appreciation from time to time by commenting on their posts, sharing their posts, and also offering them gifts and discounts. 

It’s also important to give your influencers creative freedom so that the content they create is unbiased and genuine. This will help them stay authentic and create valuable content for their audience.

What are the other ways through which brands can benefit from influencer marketing? Let us know in the comments.

 

Featured image: Copyright: ‘https://www.123rf.com/profile__aurielaki‘ / 123RF Stock Photo

The following two tabs change content below.

Shane Barker

Digital Marketing Consultant at Shane Barker Consulting
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, content marketing, and SEO. He is the co-founder of Attrock, a digital marketing agency. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.