Influencer Marketing 101: Your definitive guide to promoting your brand
Influencer marketing is a highly effective way of marketing a brand and one of the growing trends in the country. According to statistics, 70% of millennial consumers are influenced by the recommendations of their peers in buying products. This means, more and more brands will start relying on this technique to increase brand awareness.
Influencer Marketing has emerged as the most effective form of marketing because of the personal approach it provides, mainly because consumers love authentic content. With the growth of multilingual content and engaging video platforms like YouTube, it is time for you to leverage the reach of influencer marketing and grow your business. Through this approach, you can build a bond of trust with your consumers with accurate targeting that helps you achieve your goals effectively.
Influencer marketing may be a relatively new strategy in the digital space, but it continues to be a valuable and viable solution for brands to reach out to their target audience. This is mainly because consumers trust word-of-mouth marketing over any other type of advertising. Several brands have leveraged the power of Influencer marketing with top campaigns executed in 2017. If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, here’s why you should.
Consumers love authentic content
One of the first things consumers do before buying a product is checking reviews. Reviews from influencers are more trusted as most consumers trust an influencer’s views. For example, Himalaya Wellness, one of the top consumer brands in India has taken this approach to promote their facial wipes. These wipes are available in two variants, moisturising Aloe Vera Facial Wipes & Purifying Neem Facial Wipes.
They are convenient, natural & contain no alcohol. The brand, partnering with influencer.in, is using influencers to experience the product and create user-generated content to weave interesting stories around the product.
Promote your existing content
All brands create extensive content, but if the content is not reaching the right target audience, what is the point? That’s where influencer marketing comes in. Influencers can take this content and amplify it on their social channels, thereby increasing the reach.
In the case of Murugappa Group, they used exactly this tactic to promote their content. For the educational videos they created to spread a message about responsible sharing on the internet and to be a good ‘netizen’, they used Only Kollywood, a large cine portal to share the content. This increased their reach manifold.
Growth of YouTube
According to research, 65% of audiences who view videos have brand opinions, which have been strongly influenced by a YouTube influencer they follow. So having a strong video marketing strategy is vital. Many of the biggest influencers today across all categories are on YouTube, so leverage them to build powerful brand stories for you.
Growth of Multilingual content
India currently has 234 million Indian language users online, compared to 175 million English users. According to research, seven out of ten people relate to influencers more than celebrities, and this is further improved if consumers read content in a language they are comfortable in. It connects with them and motivates them to take action.
1.2 Top reasons why influencer marketing is good for your brand
Influencer marketing is a recent marketing trend that has gained massive popularity amongst brands. About 33.3% of brands have started employing this strategy to improve their brand’s visibility, engagement, reach and drive sales. If you haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, here’s why you should.
Builds a bond of trust with consumers
About 92% of the consumers trust recommendation from individuals rather than a brand. This goes on to prove how instrumental these bloggers and social media influencers can be for your brand’s success. People are more inclined to buy a product when another person tries it first hand and reviews it. Today, a mere showcase of the product through an online or television commercial is not going to make the consumers trust your product. Influencer marketing allows you to break into the circle of trust in a way that feels relevant, reliable and organic.
Helps achieve your goals effectively
Be it increasing your brand’s visibility or driving sales to a particular line of products, influencer marketing can be leveraged for every brand goal. Unlike television commercials, the results of an influencer marketing campaign can be measured relatively easily. Through web tracking and deep engagement analytics, metrics such as comments, likes, shares, clicks and conversions can be gauged. It also generates more than twice the revenue than that of other traditional forms of marketing such as display ads, paid search and television commercials. It has a 37% higher retention rate than other acquisition channels. Hence, if you are not exploring this trend for your brand, you are certainly missing out on the fastest and most cost-effective channel for audience acquisition. Read our client case study on Influencer marketing for fashion e-commerce- Craftsvilla to further understand how brands in the past have used influencer marketing to their advantage.
Accurate targeting of the audience
51% of the marketers have reported that they acquire the right kind of customers through influencer marketing. This is because of the fact that there are influencers working across different domains such as fashion, beauty, technology and food. If you are a fashion brand looking to draw attention to your new product line for women- it’s best to collaborate with a fashion influencer with a large female following. This ensures that your brand is reaching the right segment of the population eventually increasing your sales and improving your position.
Facebook’s updated algorithm is in favour of influencers
Facebook recently upgraded their news feed algorithm, giving priority to organic reach rather than paid promotions. This change could affect your branding strategy. This is where influencer marketing comes in. The same update favours authentic content from family and friends, rather than promotional posts from brands. Since influencer-generated content is not adversely promotional, it will receive a greater engagement, pushing posts higher on people’s’ news feeds and driving more conversions.
1.3 Influencer marketing can help restore customer’s trust in a brand
For a business to flourish, you need to reach your consumers in a way that inspires trust. Only when you gain the trust of your customers, will you be able to maintain a long-term relationship with them. Many companies have failed due to lack of trust from the audience. In order to regain the trust, influencer marketing is one of the fastest and most effective tools to combat this issue. Here are a few ways you can reclaim your position in the market as a trusted brand.
Re-evaluate your advertising strategy
When your brand is experiencing a severe backlash from its consumers, it’s best to sit back and reconsider your marketing plan. Spending more money in advertising will certainly not alleviate the situation. Instead, you can divert your funds into a strategy like influencer marketing that will actually help the situation.
Develop a level of patience
Influencer marketing is a gradual process and you can’t expect instant results from it. If you are impatient and try to force your message down your audience’s throats, it can only have negative consequences. It takes time to rebuild trust, so don’t try to rush the process.
Try a new approach
When your brand is in the news for the wrong reasons, it’s best to take a step back and analyse where you’ve gone wrong. Is it the marketing technique used? The claims that you’ve made? Or is the product a problem? Try and rectify these mistakes and repair the severed chord with your consumers. You can work on revamping the website, spend more on research and development of the product and opt for a better marketing technique.
Whether you are a leading retail brand catering to the younger generation of the nation or a real estate developer targeting potential home buyers both in India and overseas, you can tailor-make your influencer marketing campaigns as per your preferences. Get a closer look at the steps involved in a successful influencer marketing campaign with our case studies that provide real-time results and statistics. Influencer marketing also works wonders for both start-ups and established organisations, making it the ideal form of marketing across all types of businesses.
2.1 Retail & FMCG
When it comes to retail brands, influencer marketing works like a piece of cake.
How can influencer marketing be beneficial for a retail?
Consumers would talk to peers and acquaintances before making a purchase online. Influencer marketing offers a way for retail brands to be a part of this conversation.
Here are five reasons for why influencer marketing is the need of the hour for retail brands.
Reaches the right set of audience
Unlike TV commercials that address the whole of general audience, influencer marketing is gender, age, location and interest specific. It helps you target and reach a niche audience which will help you improve your brand image and thereby the retail sales. Influencers can be categorised not only by niche but also by demographics, platforms, location, etc. If you choose the right set of influencers, you can be assured of reaching the right set of audience.
Audiences trust the reviews of the influencers
People are more likely to trust the words of commoners who speak from their personal experience rather than an advertisement. Influencers have a massive social media following which stands as a testimony to the fact that a lot of people follow them for their authenticity and genuineness.
This is a good thing for retailers because if your product can satisfy the expectations of influencers, you can be assured that your sales will increase, as and when influencers vouch for your product, their followers would definitely be willing to try the product out.
It serves as an interactive medium
Unlike television commercials and print media, influencer marketing is a two-way medium. In the case of traditional advertisements, you can check if people have seen your ad but you will never know the reaction and response from the audience. Influencer marketing is a step further in this aspect. The response can be measured through the number of likes, comments and shares that your product post has garnered.
Case study: Bewakoof.com
We partnered with 9 millennial TikTok influencers to spread the word about Bewakoof, the young savvy fashion website. These influencers created content to promote Bewakoof’s merchandise, with a call to action to download the app and add to cart the latest fashion apparel. Influencers showed their target millennials what they looked like before and after Bewakoof apparel. The transformation to Bewakoof clothes was cool, stylish and trendy! This instantly became a hit. Bewakoof achieved over 25,000 app installs and over 750 conversions, which generated great revenue for them!
Case study – Craftsvilla
Craftsvilla, an e-commerce specialising in ethnic wear came to Influencer.in to promote some of their new collection. We tied up with
22 top fashion, beauty, and lifestyle influencers to talk about Craftsvilla’s latest collections. Gia Kashyap, Anshita Juneja, Debashree Banerjee, etc. were some of the well-known influencers who took part in this campaign. Their posts were very well received amongst the audience as they got an idea of what to wear to complement the jewellery.
They got to know how it would look on a real person which can in fact, greatly influence the buying decision of a consumer.
Kritika Khurana’s Craftsvilla post on her Instagram account thatbohogirl got almost 12000 likes. She sported a chunky, handmade neckpiece. Her blog post was about the various Anarkali suits and how to style them for different occasions.
Check out our detailed blog “Case Study: Influencer Marketing for Craftsvilla” for a better understanding on how retail brands can benefit by employing influencer marketing.
Case study: Himalaya
When Himalaya launched their new facial wipes, they activated a large pool of influencers for their campaign #WipesOnTheGo. These fashion and lifestyle influencers posted extensively about the facial wipes on their social media channels.
Bloggers also wrote reviews of the product so their followers could learn more about it. By using influencer marketing, Himalaya was able to build awareness of the product among their target audience in a very short period of time.
2.2 Real Estate
Real estate companies too have realised the potential of digital marketing and are actively using the medium for lead generation. While leads directly impact business, creating awareness about your brands is highly essential.Here are few reasons why you should explore it for your brand:
Increase visibility of the brand
With the help of influencers, you can create engaging content through influencers about your brand to increase your visibility. For example, you can get influencers to visit the apartment or use them to talk about your new project launch.
Helps in SEO
Google loves great content and high-quality backlinks but getting these links can be challenging. Here’s where influencers come in. Getting influencers to link back to your website can add authority to your site.
Case study: Casagrand
Casagrand, a leading real estate company used this technique to create brand awareness. As part of the exercise, casagrand worked with lifestyle influencers on a campaign called, “My dream home.” To give the campaign a creative twist, we reached out to influencers who can also bake. Influencers not just wrote about their idea of a dream home but also baked their dream home and shared it on their blog and other social media handles, giving the brand the much needed visibility.
The banking and financial services sector has come a long way and has slowly started utilising digital marketing. Building a credible brand is one the biggest challenge for the BFSI sector and influencer marketing solutions helps address this challenge. With word of mouth marketing, the financial services sector can gain the trust of potential customers. Whether you are trying to promote a new product, build goodwill, or simply grow brand awareness with younger audiences, influencer marketing is the ideal platform.
For example, Axis Bank launched a dedicated innovation lab called the ‘Thought Factory’. For the launch, we at influencer.in tied up with 18 Bangalore-based technology bloggers, who attended the Thought Factory launch, live-tweeted about it and covered the same on their blogs. The influencers also shared their blogs across various social media platforms to amplify the blogs’ reach, and on an average, the blog posts had 1000+ views. The technology influencers we signed up with on an average have 23000+
unique page views and 3500+ twitter followers.
2.4 For Start-ups
Influencer marketing can be a great source of marketing for start-ups who are new to the market and are trying to establish themselves in this competitive world. Here are a few ways by which influencer marketing can help you attain the visibility your brand deserves:
Increase brand awareness
In an effort to increase your firm’s visibility, you need to create a unique identity for yourself in the market. Weave your stand-out qualities and distinctive characteristics in the brand message so that consumers will remember your brand. Influencer marketing will help your brand in achieving utmost popularity by connecting to your target audiences with ease.
Spend more time on SEO
As we all know Google favours quality backlinks for SEO and if you don’t have them it might be difficult for you to outrank your competitors. One of the best ways to build high-quality backlinks is by partnering with influential bloggers. This will drive more traffic to your site and Google will automatically elevate you in the search rankings.
Collaborate your way into gaining more visibility
Collaborating with influencers is a golden opportunity to increase your firm’s online visibility. You can request the influencers to try out your product and review them. This is will help the consumers make purchase decisions. They will be more likely to purchase your product if the reviews are good. For example, if you have a new or seasonal collection in your store, you can approach a well-known influencer to review your latest line of products and showcase them to their followers.
Case study – Hike
When the messaging platform was launching a social media channel, they turned to influencer.in to promote their platform. As part of the activity, we tied up with 1000 Influencers to sign up on the app and get them to post regularly to grow the reach of the platform.
Case study – Bonorganik
Bonorganik, a start up website that sells matching clothing and gifts, tied up with Influencer.in to increase the reach and sales of the product. Teaming up with lifestyle and parenting influencers to try out their products and create engaging content around it. Influencers selected matching products and wrote a heartwarming story about their relationship with their children tagging the brand, which gave the brand the visibility it needs.
Did you know? As per a recent survey, influencer marketing has the potential to drive more sales for your brand when compared to paid ads. However, a few tips to keep in mind while launching your first influencer marketing campaign is to define your strategy and choose the right influencers who weave a story about their experience with your brand without making it sound too promotional. It is also important to build strong relationships with influencers to work hand-in-hand in growing your business and their social media presence. If you’re new to influencer marketing and are planning to employ an influencer marketing strategy for your brand, then this chapter will answer your every question and guide you through the process.
3.1 Tips for your first Influencer marketing
As influencer marketing has been driving more sales for a brand than paid advertising, a lot of brands have started rethinking their marketing strategy and are incorporating influencer marketing into their business model. So if you have decided to launch an influencer marketing campaign for your brand, this chapter will furnish all the relevant tips and tricks that you need to learn in advance.
Find the right influencers
For any influencer campaign, selecting the right influencer and partnering with them is crucial. You first need to measure the number of followers/fans or the number of visitors to their blog/posts. Remember to choose quality over quantity as some influencers may have a lot of following but may not suit your brand image. Although both of these traits are desirable in an influencer, the end goal is to create share-worthy content for your audience.
A FEW PARAMETERS THAT WILL HELP YOU PICK THE RIGHT INFLUENCER ARE AS FOLLOWS:
Case study – Bonorganik
This is a score calculated by Moz that shows how well a website ranks on SERPs.
Estimated traffic from similar
This tool provides user engagement statistics for websites..
Define your strategy
Before you start an influencer campaign, it is important to plan and define the strategy right from deciding on who the target audience will be, the objective of the campaign and so on. Each campaign must be carefully crafted and executed. Some of the aspects that you will be required to focus on are:
- Target audience
- Objective of the campaign
- No. of influencers required to launch the campaign
- Platforms to be used- Twitter/Instagram/Blog or Facebook
- Goals of the campaign
Reach in Social channels
This can be measured as the number of page likes on Facebook, followers on Twitter, Google+ and YouTube.
Blog Alexa Ranking
This tool provides commercial web traffic data and analytics.
Bring out authenticity
For any influencer campaign to work, it’s necessary to give the influencers the freedom to bring out their creativity. Allow them to speak to the audience in their own sense of style because the more authentic the content is, the more successful the campaign will be.
For example, IBuyFresh invited bloggers and influencers to visit their warehouse and blog their experience. The campaign received enormous attention from the local population and as a result, the brand gained more popularity. The content did not sound like an advertisement and rather sounded like an authentic piece and that’s the major reason why it was so successful.
Give a clear brief
While planning for an influencer campaign, you need to voice out your expectations very clearly to the influencer you are working with. Don’t hesitate to communicate the kind of ROI you are expecting out of the campaign. Clearly mention the objectives of the campaign and the payment details in the brief so that there are no misunderstandings in the future. Give influencers a decent amount of time to respond, and then produce the content.
Measure the success with key metrics
The most incredible advantage of influencer marketing is the ability to track your campaign’s performance. To measure a campaign, you need to set parameters to track results. Key examples of social media metrics to track include:
- Site traffic
- Leads generated
- Sign-ups and conversions
- Revenue generated
- Click through rate (CTR)
- Page views
- Cost per Click
There are tools you can use to track you campaigns. Here are a few tools to start off with:
- Google Analytics
- Google Adwords
3.2 What to expect from Influencer
Given the track record of influencer marketing, brands are now relying heavily on influencer marketing to boost their sales, increase their brand’s visibility, gain more customers and engage with existing customers. While planning any marketing activity, it’s important to set a benchmark and have expectations on the ROI. Influencer marketing is no different.
How should you measure the ROI of Influencer marketing? Below are some of the key areas of impact that a brand can expect from influencer marketing.
Extent of reach
In order to measure a campaign’s success it’s important to keep an eye on how many people it has reached and how much coverage the brand is getting. This can be measured in terms of the number of followers or the number of visitors to their blog/posts. The number of times an influencer’s post is viewed is also a good measure of success.
Level of engagement
No matter how big the following is of an influencer, the only aspect that really counts is if their blog/post is engaging enough. Indicators like likes, shares, retweets and comments on the blog help identify the best influencers to collaborate with for your campaign.
Relevant Traffic to the website or mobile App
Although influencer marketing is often regarded as a branding strategy, marketers are quickly realising its power to drive sales and sign ups. Brands must measure the impact of influencers, in terms of their effectiveness in sending relevant traffic to the website or mobile app of the brand. This can be measured by ensuring unique URLs with tracking parameters to each influencer. You can use Google URL builder and Google URL shortener tools to create trackable links where you can go back and see in Google Analytics and measure your success.
The most vital aspect to influencer marketing is content creation. However, brands should also make sure the content is not one sided and let the influencers tell a story too. Content co-creation is about realising that your audience is a part of your brand too, and harnessing that connection to keep consumers as engaged as possible.
3.3 Build a strong relationship with Influencers
Influencers are going to be advocates of your brand and what they say is going to make a lot of difference. So it’s important to look after this relationship. Wondering how to do that? Here is a guide to help you build a sustainable relationship with the influencers.
Shortlist your influencers
The first step is to identify the most suitable influencers for your brand. Their work and profile must align with the characteristics of your brand. There are many platforms that maintain large databases of influencers. One such platform is Influencer.in, which has more than 25,000 influencers listed.
You can express your appreciation by quoting them in your own content and linking it back to them. It is a great way to give credit where it’s due and also build trust with them. Whether it is a quote in an opinion piece or a detailed interview of the influencer, the extra exposure you give them will certainly put you in their good books.
Set up a meeting
In order to maintain a good relationship with the influencers, it’s best to organise meet-ups at least once a month to get inputs from the industry and discuss your expectations. Meeting them out of a corporate setting will certainly bring out the best in them and also help you in connecting with them better.
Go the extra mile
In order to maintain a good relationship with the influencers, it’s best to organise meet-ups at least once a month to get inputs from the industry and discuss your expectations. Meeting them out of a corporate setting will certainly bring out the best in them and also help you in connecting with them better.
3.4 Influencer marketing cannot help a bad product
If a product is going through a rough patch, influencer marketing can turn its fortunes, but there is never a guarantee that the product in question will go from bad to great in a flash. Here are some reasons why influencer marketing cannot help save a bad product.
Influencer marketing is a gradual process
The truth is that influencer marketing is not a quick solution. Influencer marketing can either make or break your brand. This is because the brand is handing over their credibility, image to someone who will be communicating with the brand’s target audience directly. They have the power to either make it look good or bad through their brand narratives, and this will have a direct impact on the brand.
Influencers also think like consumers
If you have a great product and take it to an Influencer or the thought leaders in the industry they can help build the brand by giving it their voice. However, on the contrary, an Influencer cannot help save a bad product. A genuine Influencer who has put effort into building his/her following over a period of time will not flash a joy filled post about the bad product only because they are paid to create content around the brand.
Influencers can’t fool the consumers
Next, even if an Influencer risks their credibility and posts a good review on a bad product, their audience will be quick to see through it. Also, someone who is ready to offer a fake review may not have an engaged or genuine following.
Like any other marketing effort Influencer marketing also involves strategy, planning, direction & flawless execution. There are no shortcuts to build engagement for the brand.
The competition is massive
A lot of brands are roping in influencers in their marketing campaigns. This strong digital marketing tool is growing and here to stay! As Social media channels continue to grow, Influencers will remain relevant in the face of programmatic advertising as people need human involvement to trust a brand. A person who you look up recommending a brand to you is always going to influence you more than an Ad that follows you online, no matter how insistent your retargeting is. Human connection is the key to a great Influencer marketing campaign.
When it comes to selecting the right influencers, the world is your oyster. As per your business requirements, you can choose from macro influencers who have a large following but may have a weaker level of trust with their audience or micro influencers who appear more genuine and authentic but provide limited reach. You can also choose influencers based on the geographic location you are planning to target and opt for a veteran or novice for brand exclusivity. However, make sure your influencer’s followers are a subset of your audience at all times.
4.1 The selection process
It’s important to keep in mind that not every influencer is going to fit well for your brand campaign. You can either manually search for influencers, scour internet databases, or find them with influencer platforms. Influencer.in has a coverage of more than 25,000 social media influencers and bloggers. Following are some of the key factors you can use to determine the suitability of the influencer for your brand.
Micro influencers vs. Macro influencers
When it comes to selecting influencers, marketers are faced with two possible choices: micro-influencers or macro-influencers. Given the huge difference between micro and macro-influencers, most marketers are naturally faced with the dilemma over which one is best for their brand. On the face of it, macro-influencers might seem more effective because of their huge reach. But things are not always that straightforward. To understand which type of influencer would work best for your brand, you need to first understand the difference between them.
The biggest difference between micro and macro-influencers is the size of their following. Macro-influencers have hundreds of thousands of followers, often exceeding a million. Their followers are often spread out all over the country (sometimes the globe) and have very diverse interests. Kylie Jenner with 99.9 million followers would be considered one of the biggest macro-influencers in the world. Debashree Banerjee with 144,000 followers is one of the biggest macro-influencers in India.
- ROI of a macro influencer driven campaign can be determined easily
- Increased level of reach and engagement
- Macro influencers have the tools and expertise to drive the campaign with high-quality content with or without your help
- They have a more developed sense of professionalism as it’s their livelihood and they take their work very seriously
- The level of trust with the audience is lesser as it might seem constructed or unauthentic.
- Macro Influencer campaigns are more expensive.
- The campaigns may be harder to execute.
Micro-influencers usually have a niche audience and they are perceived as ‘peers’ by their followers. These followers are generally concentrated in one specific region and have a single common interest binding them together. A thrifty fashion blogger with 1500 followers would be considered a micro-influencer. They might have a smaller number of followers,but they can still be very useful for brands.
- Micro influencers appear more authentic and genuine.
- This type of campaign is easier to launch.
- Working with micro influencers will help you focus on niche markets and target the right audience.
- Brands with a limited budget can work with micro-influencers.
- Micro influencers have fewer followers compared to macro and hence, the reach and engagement is capped.
- It can take a longer period of time to comb through the extensive list of micro influencers as there are so many.
While there’s no denying the efficacy of macro-influencers, micro-influencers can be more helpful for small businesses and start-ups. Your final decision on whether to use macro or micro-influencers depends largely upon your marketing goals, your time constraints and your resources.
While choosing an influencer to launch a brand campaign, be sure of whether the campaign is a global or country/region/city specific campaign. The geographical location is a key factor which can help you make the best decision regarding the selection of influencers for your campaign. If you are launching a campaign worldwide but it’s not available globally then it’s doesn’t make sense. It’s best to target your location and pick influencers from that region for a better reach.
Veteran or novice?
While seniority in grade holds more importance in an influencer marketing campaign, you must also consider if the seniority actually has an effect on your campaign objectives. Though a veteran influencer may have more recognition and a larger audience, new and emerging influencers come with their own distinctive benefits. They are more cost-effective and have a level of exclusivity with brands. The influencers who have been in the market for a long time would have endorsed countless brands throughout their journey establishing them as a paid brand promoter. Using a new influencer will give you the opportunity to achieve brand exclusivity.While seniority in grade holds more importance in an influencer marketing campaign, you must also consider if the seniority actually has an effect on your campaign objectives. Though a veteran influencer may have more recognition and a larger audience, new and emerging influencers come with their own distinctive benefits. They are more cost-effective and have a level of exclusivity with brands. The influencers who have been in the market for a long time would have endorsed countless brands throughout their journey establishing them as a paid brand promoter. Using a new influencer will give you the opportunity to achieve brand exclusivity.
This is a key factor to take into consideration while choosing the right influencer for your campaign. Determine the age category of the audience and check if the brand aligns with the interests and preferences of the influencer’s fan base.
Use of regional content
Your influencer marketing strategy will be even more effective if you adopt a multilingual content strategy. This is highly relevant for a country like India where majority of the people especially in the tier-2 and tier-3 cities consume content in their regional language. If you want your brand content to touch the emotional chord of your target audience, it will be a good idea to invest in influencers who are well-versed in regional languages. For instance, in order to empower the youth of Tamilnadu, we have launched a Tamil YouTube channel called Arrear Irundalum Career which offers career tips and advice. Check out this interesting video on how to create a good resume.
4.2 Types of influencers from each category
Here are the lists of the top influencers in fashion, beauty and food categories.
- Anshita Juneja
- Kritika Khurana
- Aashna Shroff
- Aakriti Rana
- Aayushi Bangur
- Kavya D’souza
- Pratibha Bhadauria
- Pallavi Ruhail
- Radhika Subramanian
- Chandrima Sarkar
- Anubhav Sapra
- Neeru Singh
- Shifa Merchant
- Shivya Nath
- Revati & Charles
- Rachel Jones
- Meenakshi Pamnani
For more influencers, here is list of all influencers in various categories from automobile to parenting and technology to name a few.
4.3 Collaborating with an influencer marketing agency
One of the easiest ways to get your influencer campaign up and running is by collaborating with an influencer marketing agency like Influencer.in. By logging on to Influencer.in, brands can easily reach out to the influencers of their choice from an extensive database of 25,000 influencers based on category, location, channel and reach. Additionally, once the influencer gets shortlisted, they are automatically notified with a short brief of the campaign, making the entire process quick, easy and hassle-free. From keeping a track on the posts being uploaded by the influencers to examining the reach of the campaign, the entire process of influencer marketing can be performed
on one single platform.
Influencer.in also has an app, making the process as convenient as the click of a button. It gives an automated approach to large-scale influencer marketing campaigns. Furthermore, with an exceptional content sharing feature, influencers can share all types of content in one central system, adding a lot of transparency and ease to the process.
Influencer marketing offers a subtle approach of promoting your business through various platforms that fit your brand’s identity. From the visually-appealing medium of Instagram to the engaging video platform of YouTube, choose an approach that will attract your audience like a moth to a flame. However, it is not all about socially shareable posts! You can also opt for blogging and other forms of content marketing for brand awareness with valuable backlinks.
Instagram has grown to become the biggest and most successful social media platform with around 50,000,000 Indian users. Marketers have begun recognising the potential within this platform and have been leveraging its power to their benefit. So what exactly is it about Instagram that makes influencer marketing so effective?
Human beings are visual creatures and their attention is more easily captured by a beautiful, catchy image than by a long expanse of text. Instagram lets the users tell a story through pictures and that’s essentially why it’s so successful to this very day. Influencers have mastered the art of storytelling through images and that has created a significant marketing avenue for brands. Most consumers will be captivated by the images and will want to know more about the product and the brand. Additionally, the top Instagram updates ensure that each post has a fresh new approach to it, making it all the more intriguing to followers.
Subtle and organic way of marketing
Today, consumers have begun to reject outright the ‘annoying salesman’ approach most advertisers resorted to in the past. But Instagram allows you to be yourself and develop an actual connection with the audience. When you advertise through an influencer on Instagram, the brand becomes a part of the influencer’s personality, which, in turn, extends to thousands of their followers.The consumers are more compelled to check out the product when marketed in a more natural way.
Tagging the brand
One of the most popular techniques that influencers use is tagging the brands that they swear by. While posting a picture, they will add a link to your account in the description and ask their followers to visit your page. This technique is helpful in driving more traffic to your brand and this indirect approach works a lot better than directly telling their followers to use the product, which might make them suspicious.
Capture, post, chat, tag, follow- Instagram offers so many ways for influencers to reach out to their audience. The Instagram stories feature is also a great way to create engaging content that converts. This personal touch is exactly what makes Instagram the powerhouse for influencer marketing.
Growing trend of YouTube
It is true that a brand that does not use a video content for marketing their product will have trouble reaching its maximum potential. According to YouTube brandcast, around 225 million Indians actively use YouTube every month just through their mobile phone. This number is set to increase to 500 million by the year 2020. With such a rapidly expanding audience base, YouTube is becoming increasingly more important for brands to effectively leverage. Interestingly, YouTube’s reach is over 80% amongst the 55+ segment.
According to research, 65% of audiences who view videos have brand opinions, which have been strongly influenced by a YouTube influencer they follow. Read further to understand why YouTube has been one of the most desired platforms for influencer marketing.
The YouTube Brandcast 2018 event revealed very important figures about how powerful influencers on YouTube really are.
- 7 out of 10 people relate to YouTube influencers more than celebrities
- 76% of businessmen who regularly consume video content say that YouTubers shape their perception of culture
- 65% of audiences who view videos have brand opinions which have been strongly influenced by a YouTube influencer they follow
- More than 75% of moms’ brand opinions have been shaped by YouTube influencers
These numbers prove that YouTube is an indispensable platform for brands trying to widen their consumer base through video content that converts.
While Instagram and YouTube are a great visual way of reaching your target market, leveraging influencers with a strong blog is one of the sure-shot ways of convincing your target audience about your brand.
Collaborating with influencers to do a sponsored post with engaging content is a great way to get the word out there. This is essentially the bloggers view of the brand’s product or service is their own voice and tone.
Two of the biggest advantage of a sponsored blog post is:
If you thought Instagram reigned over Social media, think again. TikTok, the new video-sharing platform has taken the internet by storm. As of today, there are 119 million active TikTok users in India alone. TikTok was downloaded 277.6 million times in the year 2019 alone! With 800 million active users around the world, TikTok was the most downloaded app in 2018. So what makes TikTok so appealing to so many people? And why is it undoubtedly the next big platform for Influencer Marketing?
- Short-form entertainment:
TikTok videos barely last for 15-20 seconds. These lightning speed videos are enough to leave youngsters captivated and wanting for more. Since most TikTok users are people in their early twenties, it’s a great way for influencers to reach out to the younger generation.
- Platform to showcase creativity:
We all love displaying our talents, but imagine being able to show millions of people you can dance in just under 20 seconds? That’s more than enough reason to push people towards TikTok. Influencers use TikTok to show off all kinds of talents from singing to acting to even sports! Using TikTok influencers to showcase your brand in a unique way is a sure-shot way of spreading the word.
What makes TikTok so great is that it’s a democratic platform in so many ways. Influencers who go viral on TikTok are ordinary people who’ve earned their reputation through pure original content. In a world where celebrities mask their true selves with filters, TikTok influencers are a breadth of fresh air. Their affability and relatability is what strikes a chord with the audience.
TikTok has some really cool and crazy challenges. Jimmy Fallon, the famous late night show host created the #tumbleweedchallenge which went viral instantly. It’s a platform full of interesting challenges. Brand influencers can use these challenges to make brands stand out and gain a unique edge.
- Brand awareness
Be it a product launch or a review, an influencer writing about your product can create a buzz in the market. Their entire network and followers get to see it, giving that much needed boost for your brand. You can also leverage the power of regional content through influencer marketing to widen your reach.
- Valuable backlinks
Let’s face it, in this competitive world, appearing in the top of Google search is everything. While there are plenty of methods and steps to be followed to achieve this, one of the ways is having backlinks to your website. Ensure these backlinks are of high-quality and from an authoritative domain for best results.
BlaBla Cars, a company that connects car owners and co-travellers to share city-to-city journeys, used this method when they launched in India. As part of their marketing campaign, they tied up with Influencer.in to reach out to a travel influencer. For this campaign, the brand chose a popular travel influencer, Siddhartha Joshi who took a ride from Pune to Mumbai using BlaBla cars and wrote a piece on it on his blog. The blog not only got around 500 shares but also included links to the brand’s website.
Want to tie up with travel influencers? Check out our top 20 travel influencers.
Every marketing approach comes with a set of do’s and don’ts and influencer marketing is no exception to this. To begin with, few influencers may have a predefined way of showcasing their content. Give them the freedom to speak about your brand in their own unique way to make the campaign seem more authentic and relatable. It is also important to ensure that the brief given to influencers is crystal clear and to the point with no payment delays.
While planning to launch an influencer marketing campaign, there are a few areas where you could go wrong. There are a few issues faced by influencers, you can understand their issues and help create a smooth and successful campaign by understanding these issues and overcoming them together.
6.1 Issues faced by influencers
These issues were compiled based on our interactions with influencers, the survey we ran amongst influencers and learnings from various events such as Social Media week Bengaluru.
Don’t value effort
Although most influencers are working for a fee, it is important to understand that they are putting in a lot of effort to make your brand and product look good. So it is important to acknowledge the effort that they put in. When the influencers see that you are valuing their effort, they are bound to do a good job with the products and it also helps build a good relationship with them.
Brief is not clear
Whether it is a twitter campaign or a product review that you are looking at or influencer marketing for your event, the first thing you need to communicate is a brief. This will help them understand the expectation of the brand. The brief needs to be extremely clear and you will need to introduce your brands and what you would like the influencers to do in it. Specify time, social media channel and deadline for all their actions.
Not giving enough freedom to influencers
For any influencer campaign to work, brands need to give the influencers some space and freedom to bring out their creativity. Allow them to speak in their own voice only giving them guidelines on your message. They are representatives of the brand and the more authentic the content is, the more successful the campaign will be.
As a brand, it is important to make timely payments as delayed payments can lead to influencers not wanting to work with you on future campaign. Also, as you delay payments there are chances of them taking to the internet to talk about your brand. It is always a good idea to give influencers timelines about the payments and stick to it and if there is a delay it is advisable to keep them informed.
6.2 Demystifying the frequently asked questions
Given that influencer marketing is now the hottest new trend in the marketing space currently, all top brands are using this method to reach their potential audience. However, just like any new trend, brands have plenty of questions about how it works and how to go about creating an influencer campaign. Keeping this mind, we have put together a list of frequently asked questions about influencer marketing.
What is Influencer Marketing- How does it work?
It is a strong word of mouth marketing strategy. For a brand, a digital influencer is someone who could help increase the business of the brand and help spread an organic word of mouth in the influencers circle in exchange for monetary benefits or providing free products/services.
A brand collaborates with an influencer on social media or via their blog to promote a product or service on a specific online channel. The strategy involves content creation & amplification across various social media channels including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube or Linkedin.
In what scenarios can I use influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing can be used by varied brands in multiple ways.
- A startup or a new product/service launch can be enabled via influencer marketing.
- An existing brand can leverage it to promote a new product line or category.
Influencers are a great way to amplify an existing social media or integrated campaign.
- Event marketing can also be an interesting use case for influencer marketing.
Why is Influencer Marketing Popular?
Influencer marketing is turning a lot of heads because the advertising landscape has undergone a substantial transformation. With increased number of users using Ad Blockers and reduced traction from display advertising, influencer marketing and peer to peer word of mouth is becoming critical. Also, many a times before purchasing a particular product, a consumer turns to his/her peer for an opinion on the product. The brand collaborates with influencers because the influencers have the power to influence the decision-making of their following.
How do I identify the right influencer for my brand?
Influencers are broadly divided into 3 categories
Key influencers include celebrities, industry thought leaders and leading bloggers.
Social influencers are individuals with significant online influence like social media celebrities.
Peer influencers are closest to the consumer circle like – family, friends, colleagues.
This is a very relevant circle and closest to the conversion funnel. The influencers typically focus on a particular area like food, parenting, fitness, fashion, e- commerce or technology. Relevant influencers are usually shortlisted based on the brand, its business and the marketing objective. Depending on the target audience, geography and demographics the right set of influencers are chosen.
Why should I choose Influencer Marketing over Paid Ads or other forms of advertising?
Influencer marketing is a third party validation. When a customer or an external party reviews the product or service on his/her blog, the content lasts forever vs paid ads which have a shelf life. It helps drive sales through genuine word of mouth. Quality backlinks also help in the SEO strategy and enhance the reach on social media. A brand talking about itself is not convincing to consumers anymore!
What is the ROI I can expect through Influencer Marketing?
This is the most often asked question by brands. Influencer marketing helps in brand building, loyalty, social media engagement and in the mid to long term even helps in growing sales and revenue. In the short term, brands should not expect a large spike in the transactions due to Influencer marketing but can expect authentic word of mouth with their target audience. Apart from creating amazing content, influencer marketing helps in driving traffic to the website/app, social media engagement- shares, likes, links to the article, total impressions, higher ranking through quality backlinks(SEO), growth in organic traffic and eventually sales/leads.
Are the Influencers Paid to cover brands?
There are no free lunches. Influencers are compensated for the campaigns in either monetary terms or free samples/service/products depending on the business and campaign. The costing varies and is discussed with the influencer one –to-one. Some established Influencers have their media kits and their prices are non-negotiable while some are happy to negotiate and establish a long term relationship with the brand. Gift vouchers, free samples, access to the service/product include non-monetary benefits extended by the brands to the bloggers. The premium categories of bloggers usually expect monetary compensation in addition to the free samples.
In today’s ever-changing digital landscape, Influencer Marketing is the need of the hour. It is time you leverage this digital marketing trend and take your brand to towering heights.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is a personalised form of marketing that uses social media to showcase and endorse products, services, brands and more to followers of well-known personalities who have a large social influence and presence. Several brands and companies partner with popular influencers to help them get their message or image across to large masses of followers and relevant audiences.
- Why does influencer marketing matter?
Influencer marketing matters because it taps the trust and confidence people have in a person when they speak up about anything. Since the content is authentic, it helps to build a bond of trust. Influencer marketing can also help amplify your content, accurately target audiences, and achieve your goals effectively.
- How do you create an influencer strategy?
There are a few key steps to creating your influencer marketing strategy:
- Define and plan your strategy
- Shortlist influencers
- Set up a meeting with them to finalize the list of influencers
- Give them a clear brief
- Measure the success of the strategy with a clear set of key metrics
- What are the benefits of influencer marketing?
The benefits of influencer marketing are many. It can help you:
- Build brand awareness
- Reach your target audiences effectively
- Build and nurture trust
- Improve brand recall
- Drive purchasing decisions and boost sales
- Amplify your content
- How do I become an influencer?
If you’re looking to become a social media influencer, here’s what you should do:
- Select a niche that you are passionate about
- Create profiles online on relevant platforms and channels
- Create relevant content and post regularly
- Engage with your audiences frequently
- Collaborate with brands
- Join influencer.in to connect and collaborate with the top brands