Influencer marketing and why all the hype?

Influencer marketing is concerned with social media audiences and what information they consider to be valuable.

And while influencers come in all shapes and sizes, from niche or micro to social media celebrities, there is one common trait: their ability to connect, resonate and affect someone’s purchase decisions.

They have become a useful tool to engaging with online communities who have become jaded by more traditional approaches to advertising. Any one heard of ad-blockers?

But the true power of influencer marketing is the ability to create native-feeling content designed to provide something meaningful to audiences. The communications approach is flipped. Rather than focus on the brand’s needs, influencers focus on their followers needs. By doing so influencers offer information or entertainment in a manner that will likely be considered more valuable than what traditional ads or sales messages can achieve.

But what else?

Well, influencer marketing combines to offer advertisers two key modes of communication opportunity: content creation and distribution. These two reason alone are why marketers find influencers as an effective means to achieving advertising objectives.

Collaborating with influencers allows brands to create content which rises above the noise, and resonate with the interests and values of niche pockets of consumers. The native feel of influencer branded content builds consumer trust and establish brand ideals in an authentic manner.

This content is then organically amplified out across select audiences, and is delivered in an environment which encourages two-way conversations. It’s not a push message anymore; but one that is “push-pull”, allowing consumers to engage with advertising in a way unlike other mediums.

However, for all its gloss, the channel does not come without its challenges.

Many marketers struggle to identify, verify and connect with relevant influencers. Reporting and measurement also consistently ranks as the highest concern for marketers determining their next influencer investment. It is why some marketers will admit they paid influencers too much, too quickly.

Then there is the aspect of effectively managing influencer relationships, while also balancing the creative content process to ensure the right mix between meeting communication objectives and delivering a message that it true to the form of the channel.

For these reasons though, marketers should not shy away from the channel. For every challenge out there in the influencer marketing space, there are tools which address these issues. Which ensures the benefits of influencer marketing far outweigh the challenges. It’s just about finding partner offerings and marketing solutions which compliment your advertising objectives and business operations.