Last year, Zorka.Agency — an Influencer and Performance Marketing Agency — launched a new project Zorka.Comments. The video series captures emerging insights into the question “What is Influencer Marking and how does it work?”. Here, we answer the most common questions about influencer marketing.
Influencer marketing is an instrument of online marketing that involves brands collaborating with influencers to sell one’s product or services. Over time influencers build up a high level of trust among their followers so that the messages and recommendations they publish become some sort of social proof.
“I believe it started to be trendy from the beginning of 2018 when most businesses understood that influencer marketing can gain an impressive return of investment. It’s up to 18% for each dollar spent.” — Kristina Nikeenko, Head of Influencer Marketing
By choosing the right influencer, you get to your target audience. So you don’t need to look for it by yourself. Most of the creators cover specific topics, thus the potential clients and customers are focused and don’t feel overwhelmed by the product or service their trusted influencer shares. It also facilitates brand-customer communication.
“It’s easier to bring brand philosophy to people through the right influencers that people already trust” — Pauline Koltunova, IM Manager
Before starting an influencer marketing campaign you should ask yourself whether your product will get attention from enough people.
“For example, if you have a niche product, influencer marketing might not be suitable. Products that are more generic or games tend to get more success with influencer marketing” — Valerya Panasovskaya, Partnership Development Director
Influencer marketing is an effective way to increase brand awareness and sales. Moreover, it can expand your customer base with younger demographics or a new user group.
There is a common misperception that only celebrities and public figures are influencers. But the truth is that it can be anyone. A certain number of engaging followers in social media and on the web — that’s what makes a person an influencer. There are several types of influencers by followers:
Celebrities or Mega-influencers have a massive audience →1M followers. Usually, such influencers can offer brand awareness and reach, but probably cooperation with celebrities won’t lead to the purchase.
Macro-influencers have 100K up to 1M followers. Mostly, these are self-made celebrities, who gain their popularity based on their online activity. Usually, they have a more targeted audience than celebrities.
Micro-influencers have from 10K to 100K followers. In most cases, they are experts in their particular sphere. So that they have a very focused audience.
Nano-influencers are opinion leaders who have fewer than 10K followers. To hire a nano-influencer is rather inexpensive. But what really makes them relevant is a close connection to their audience that tends to show higher engagement rates and ROI.
Nielsen’s Consumer Trust Index reports that 92% of consumers trust influencer marketing over traditional advertising. Influencer marketing is based on a trustful relationship that has built between customers and influencers. People tend to find information shared by an opinion leader, aka “person like me” more credible.
“And the most clients who tried influencer marketing are generally positive about it and agree that it helps to attract new customers and brings great value” — Kristina Nikeenko, Head of Influencer Marketing
“You can easily track and forecast the results that you’ll get at the end of the promotion campaign. And the best part of it is that you can easily catch the right audience at the right moment” — Pauline Koltunova, IM Manager
But like any marketing strategy, influencer marketing requires research, deliberate targeting, planning, and tests. Most probably you’ll need to run a few campaigns with different approaches, platforms, creatives, and even influencers to find your audience and sale effectively.
There are several reasons for that. Let’s start with ad blockers that people use to decrease the enormous amount of online ads. That leads us to the next point, over the years the inherent mistrust that costumers feel for more traditional ad formats. So, for the great majority of people content produced by influencers is more diverse, genuine, and trustworthy. Also, influencers usually pitch a product with more details so that followers actually want their suggestions.
As we already mentioned, brands looking for influencers with the aim of boosting their brand image and sales.
It took time for influencers to build trust with their relevant target audience. So finding and collaborating with the right influencer means reaching your target audience that trusts the influencer they follow.
On the other hand, if you choose the wrong influencer to promote your brand, it might damage your reputation.
“Influencers’ content is highly personalized even when they’re promoting brands. In fact, influencer-created content tends to be more engaging than the content created by brands.” — Valerya Panasovskaya, Partnership Development Director
If you plan an influencer marketing campaign for offline products, you should have a very clear strategy of how you are going to measure the money, because in this case, it’s challenging to measure the results. For example, customers can mention a “password” or blogger’s name to get a discount or simply leave their contact information on your website.
Nowadays, there are plenty of services and agencies that work with influencers. Zorka.Mobi uses its internal platform to search for influencers. It provides our managers with bloggers for both Instagram and YouTube. But if we need some specific data, we usually go to Social Data Service. Also, some of the bloggers work with the managers who you can contact directly.
Obviously, it depends on the market itself and the type of influencer you collaborate with.
“If we’re talking about the Russian market, the average CPM is around $7 or $10. Tier 1 countries which means the US, UK, and Australia — here the CPM can go up to $20. So, $20 per 1,000 views. Europe is a bit more expensive. France and Germany channels — their CPM is around $25. And the most expensive market is Asia, especially Japan. Here, we can find channels with up to $50 CPM which is extremely high.” — Anna Marchuk, IM Team Lead