Even though influencer marketing is hardly a new concept, it seems as if it was always used by marketers as a crutch or for the purpose of one-off campaigns. However, things have changed in the past few years, and influencer marketing has become an essential tactic, and one which boasts an impressive ROI at that. To be specific, for $1 you invest in influencer marketing, you can get between $4.50 and $12.50 back. Even some of the biggest brands in the world have started to build influencer marketing campaigns because they recognize the fact that people are going to be more inclined to trust other people and not some faceless corporate entity.
And we are not talking about celebrity influencers since 30 percent of customers are more likely to purchase a product if it has been recommended by a regular, non-celebrity blogger. Now, because influencer marketing in its current form is relatively young, there are no hard and fast rules. But there are certain trends which are shaping it, and in order to stay on top of the influencer marketing game, let’s take a look at some of those which are essential at the moment.
One of the biggest things in influencer marketing is micro-influencers. In essence, micro-influencers are social media users which have over 10,000 followers and are generally considered experts in a very specific niche or field, such as marketing, design, DIY, management, travel, and so on. Their authority on social media makes them interesting for most businesses since investing in them can improve campaign engagement by as much as 60 percent. Not only are they more accessible for businesses, but they also communicate more with their audience, since they have less on their plate than celebrities or mid-level influencers.
In order to convince their followers about the quality of a particular product or service, influencers need to rely on telling a great story, whether we are talking about an Edu Birdie review or a campaign for a large cosmetics brand. Unique content which involves engaging storytelling is one of the best ways to connect with an audience, and not only will they be more likely to make a purchase, but they will also be more willing to overlook a higher price tag. One of the best ways to make a story come to life is video, which is why so many influencers out there are vloggers.
Since influencer marketing is no longer a one-off thing, but a continuous marketing tactic, you can expect businesses and brands to invest more into building strong relationships with influencers in their industries. If an influencer is endorsing a particular brand or a product over a longer period of time, instead of just doing it once or twice, it is going to feel more genuine and authentic. As a result of this, companies will also provide influencers with more power when it comes to content creation and handling the more creative aspects of their collaboration.
Content Will Become More Sophisticated
While product images and influencer selfies are still going strong, especially in the fashion and lifestyle industry, brands in other industries will be expected to create content that is more sophisticated and complex to produce. For instance, nowadays it is very common for car companies to invite influencers for a test drive of their new model which has yet to reach the dealerships. Luxury cruise companies and resorts are doing more of the same. This ties back into the whole storytelling aspect and the power of video, which is superior to text and images, but also more expensive. Even a simple book review service can benefit from an influencer endorsing them via their YouTube channel, instead of just blogging about it.
Facebook Algorithm Updates
Although Facebook algorithm changes are not always met with user approval, in case of influencer marketing, companies might benefit from one of the latest updates. Facebook’s algorithm is now prioritizing the content which is created by users’ friends and family over that of the publishers. This means that user-generated content will have a much higher chance of getting in front of the right audience, which opens to doors for all influencers to start building a great relationship with their followers.
Podcasts are a valuable marketing tool, and now they have started to emerge as more of the same when it comes to influencer marketing. Podcasts allow influencers to go into more details when it comes to particular topics, brand, and products, and as a result, to provide more information to their followers. They can also have guests which provide an additional point of view and add further value. Also, podcasts are great because they can be consumed by users while they are doing something else, such as driving to and from work.
Since influencer marketing blurs the line between an endorsement and a paid advertisement, influencers will be asked to disclose the nature of their partnership with the companies they are promoting. In other words, they will be required to be transparent about which piece of content has been paid, even if it is obviously an ad.
Influencer marketing has become more relevant than ever and it’s definitely here to stay. This means that you need to start investing in it and building relationships with influencers in your industry. We hope that this article will help you stay on top of the biggest influencer marketing trends for the following year.
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Author’s bio: Peter Hill is working for the professional writing service Essay Writing Lab. He is a socially active person, likes traveling and photo/video editing. In his free time, he also finds himself in writing for Assignment Masters and Assignment Holic. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.