Exceptional ROI is among the many reasons why 86 percent of brands are now including influence in their marketing strategy. A recent poll shows that brands are gaining between 6.50 and 20.00 in return for each dollar they spend. Moreover, the customers being obtained are considered higher in quality than those acquired through other means. Yet some brands are still reluctant to tap into this effective strategy because of old myths about what influencer marketing can do. Take a closer look at these three myths that have already been effectively debunked by smart marketers that are already seeing great success from their influencer marketing programs.
Myth: Influencer marketing is just paid placement on popular social channels.
When some voices expressed frustration with the speed that influencer marketing prices had gone up earlier this year, it was clear they were missing the point. If your brand is simply paying to get your product mentioned on the most popular YouTube channels, that’s just paid placement, not influencer marketing. While paid placement can provide exposure, it’s about accomplishing a different set of goals from what influencer marketing can do. If you want to build relationships with your customers, influencer marketing can help and it’s more cost-effective because the best results come from working with mid-tier influencers, not the highest-paid creators. Creators with mid-sized audiences have deeper engagement than you will ever see from the top-tier. They are still working hard to entertain, interact with and grow their audience. They’re only going to work with brands that are an ideal match for them, or they will risk the authenticity that is vital to influencer marketing success.
Myth: Influencer marketing is so new, it’s really only useful for high-tech and newer companies.
Social media and even the web in general had to suffer through this myth as well. Many older brands sat out the digital revolution for years. They didn’t think customers would care about liking their page or visiting a web site because they had been marketing with traditional methods for years. Then, suddenly these elements were table stakes for a marketing campaign and they were behind. Influencer marketing is the opportunity for ‘boring’ or ‘legacy’ brands to step forward and embrace new thinking earlier in the cycle.
By connecting with modern voices, traditional brands can tap into the best way to connect with young audiences. These consumers can’t be reached with television and analog ad campaigns, but they are on social media and have built relationships with their favorite creators. Forty percent of US internet users ages 13 to 20 said they would be more interested in a brand if it partnered with an internet celebrity.
Working with influencers is also an opportunity to breath new life into a brand. Partnering with creators who love your brand can provide ideas for reinvigorating brand messages. Use these new concepts to remind consumers about the value of your classic products, ensure a fresh take on your existing line or even introduce new products with a trusted voice speaking to your target audience.
Myth: Influencer marketing is only for B2C brands, not B2B ones.
Influencer marketing has a long history in B2C success stories, from Microsoft to Marriott to video game companies like TinyCo. B2B marketers can gain the same benefits by working with influencers. Finding the right advocates for your product is an effective way to reach specific customers and prospects. This is especially true with enterprise buyers who usually need layers of education delivered to them in order to close the deal. Bringing a variety of third-party voices into the sales process can help create connections with targeted audiences and make the case for investing in your products and services.
Keep in mind that B2B influencers earn their right to be an authority in their industry. They are not a Kardashian and Hilton family member, or even someone who just cleverly harnessed the power of a new media network on launch. These are experts in their field whose credibility builds trust with prospects. When business goals and significant costs are involved, prospects need to feel reassurance. An influencer who echoes your value proposition can help enterprise buyers feel confident about the commitment to your product.
Learn more about how working with ideal social media creators at scale is the roadmap to success in influencer marketing by downloading the 5 Key Influencer Marketing Insights White Paper from ION.co.