Today, social media is arguably one of the most important marketing tools for any brand. The massive amount of awareness, engagement and sales it can generate can bring brands out from the depths of obscurity and into the forefront of the digital sphere. The exponential growth of social media has also given rise to a group of pseudo-celebrities across platforms ranging from YouTube and Twitch to Instagram and Snapchat. Known for their influence towards specific audiences, these influencers have become increasingly important as a marketing channel.
A content creator doesn’t need to have millions of followers to be labelled as an influencer; anyone with more than 3000 can fall under that category. Their appeal often comes from the perception that they are truly authentic and therefore more trustworthy than brands and A-list celebrities. Their followers relate with them on a more personal level, as the lives of these influencers are more attainable for the average follower. So when a company leverages an influencer to promote their product, brand, or service, they’re tapping into an endorsement source that can only be matched by recommendations from friends and family, which is found to be the most credible form of advertising.
As such, Heard Agency encourages the use of influencers to boost awareness and engagement as part of our digital marketing strategies. Their influence is best utilised when promoting consumer goods and services, but even property and public service campaigns can benefit from the addition of relevant influencers.
The importance of targeting
When looking to begin an influencer marketing campaign, targeting is everything. Just because an influencer is a 27 year-old Sydneysider doesn’t mean all her followers are, too. Take the case of a bikini model that was found to have only one female follower for every 10,000 followers. So using her to promote accessories and clothes for women might not be the wisest move.
“This is why when selecting an influencer for any campaign, the best source of information is to see who follows them,” explains Liam, our Digital Campaign Manager. “The two key areas that Heard scrutinises when selecting an influencer for a campaign are the demographic of their followers and where they are in the world. An influencer engaged for a campaign targeting an Australian audience is useless if the majority of their followers are in London.”
Size isn’t everything
Anyone with an audience smaller than 20,000 is considered to be a micro-influencer. Since Instagram changed their algorithm from showing posts in order of newest to oldest to the posts they believe users most want to see, micro-influencers have become a viable marketing channel as larger influencers on the platform have seen significant drops in reach and engagement rates.
Previously, an influencer with over 100,000 followers would enjoy a reach as high as 90% per post. That rate has since plummeted to between 4 and 5%. While that figure has also dropped for micro-influencers, their posts are actually seen by a staggering 65-70% of their audience. This means that an influencer with 10,000 followers can reach up to 7000 people, while an influencer with 100,000 followers can now only expect to reach around 5000 on a single post.
This makes for a no-brainer to any marketer when planning a campaign with influencers. Instead of sourcing an individual with 100,000 followers, select five with followers around the 20,000 mark and reap the rewards of the more meaningful connection they have with their audience.
Often, getting influencers to work with you can take some convincing, as most choose brands and products that they genuinely relate to. And even with the right information at hand, it can be difficult to ensure that they produce the type of work that is up to your company’s standards. Heard Agency has a database of influencers with an extensive reach across different audiences, so if you think your company needs a social boost, let’s have a chat.