It’s no surprise that digital influencers are becoming a more prevalent component within the creative marketing strategies of both new and established companies for brand building. As social media advertising and marketing continues to take precedence in our digital age over more traditional offline efforts, it is important to keep in mind the goals you are trying to reach. If brand building, awareness, and trust are goals, then influencer marketing is a solid fit!
According to statistical insights found in recent surveys from Google Trends, influencer marketing has been steadily trending positively in terms of consumer interest in the content. Although print and video advertising has not seen the same growth—and cost can be a huge factor—we should never think that influencer marketing will replace these powerful strategies. The more you can optimize each component to work together, the more success and visibility you can gain for your brand.
One of my favorite innovative campaigns that utilize the power of all three is Apple’s #ShotOniPhone campaign, trending to about 688,000 posts and tags since its conception on Instagram. The cool factor of this campaign started within its organic growth on social media. It catapulted into an explosion of user-generated content, all tagged back to Apple and, specifically, the iPhone camera. What better way of highlighting a product’s feature in an aggressively fierce market of mobile smartphones? Budding creatives and influencers participated in this viral campaign initially and influenced their own audience to take a shot (pun intended). As more and more people became interested in sharing their amazing shots with their friends and the public, digital world domination was an inevitable prize for Apple in marketing!
Instead of keeping it merely on social media, Apple incorporated the best of the best into printed billboard advertising. To take it to another level, submissions were open to anyone and everyone, marketing the opportunity solely as anyone can capture a compelling photo, using only an iPhone.
Eventually, this campaign extended into featuring actual video pieces filmed on the iPhone to showcase another competitive feature.
The Downside of Influencer Marketing
Although brand building and visibility are important metrics to measure the success of your influencer marketing strategy, it is not always a direct response in terms of purchases and conversions. Cost can play a huge factor, as many top tier influencers with big followings tend to have an engagement fee.
To start, smaller brands can reach out to their target list of relevant influencers and approach the engagement first with product only seeding in return for posting. Be sure to include key differentiators of your products and brands to be more compelling. This is very important in industries such as fashion, supplements, and accessories since the options are endless and the price points vary over a very wide spectrum.
Essentially, a genuine and authentic partnership with influencers can bolster a nice uptick in good customer leads (their dedicated audience) and traffic to your brand. The creative output from influencers and their audience was boundless, and Apple was really able to build out an effective and intriguing campaign that was more about community building. Nothing is more valuable and cost effective than having your brand loyalists marketing your own products for you at a mass level to a marketer!