Influencer Marketing for Retailers

Management consultant, blog writer, dreamer

Influencer marketing (IM), the process of identifying, engaging and supporting individuals who create conversations with a brand’s customers, is now used by many retailers to get people to buy their products. Indeed, influencer marketing is growing faster than organic search and is responsible for 28% of customer acquisition, according to Aj Agrawal in Entrepreneur.com.

So, is influencer marketing the new “silver bullet” for online retailers that struggle to sell their products in a highly congested and competitive virtual market place?

What is influencer marketing?

Although IM is now  the new “buzzword” in the digital marketing world, it’s not a new thing. It’s a term that refers to leveraging the influence of key people and businesses to support your brand and spread the word about your products and services through their own social channels 1. Subsequently, IM is similar to the well-known word-of-mouth marketing.

Beyonce doing her thing for Pepsi – image oppmax.com

To use influencers to help promote your brand makes a lot of sense. Indeed, “Influencer marketing presents a glaring opportunity for brands to leverage the power of word-of-mouth at scale through personalities that consumers already follow and admire” according to a guest writer in ADWEEK.

Why is influencer marketing now in the news?

Retailers are now confronted with maturing digital marketing channels in which similar content for mostly commodity-like products are having a losing battle to get customer to click on their brand.

Indeed, Nicole Dieker, The Content Strategist (2016), said this on the amount of content we are consuming each minute: “In the first 60 seconds of your day, Facebook receives over 4 million likes. More than 2 million Instagram hearts turn red. Nearly 350,000 tweets join the birds singing outside your window.” Yes, quite ridiculous – now where are your brands out there?

Then along comes influencer marketing. Influencer marketing circumvents these frustrations by delivering a highly-visible and relevant message from a trusted and welcome source.

Carter Hallett, Digital Marketing Strategist from R2iNSIGHTS proposed five reasons why influencer marketing is right for your brand.

5 Reasons why influencer marketing is right for your brand

  1. Builds consumer trust – 92 percent of people trust recommendations from individuals (even if they don’t know them) over brands. IM allows brands to break into that circle of trust in a way that feels organic and welcomed because it is relevant, reliable, and relatable.
  2. Circumvents ad blockers – The average American is exposed to 5,000 ads per day and can’t possibly process them all, leading to lower recall of marketing messages. In 2015, 47% of online customers used ad block technology, in response to dissatisfaction with digital advertising. Influencer marketing circumvents these frustrations by delivering a highly-visible and relevant message from a trusted and welcome source.
  3. Meets marketing goals effectively and affordably – Influencer marketing can easily be analysed using web tracking and focusing on deeper engagements, such as engagement rates, comments, and sentiment, as well as clicks and conversions. It also generates more than twice the sales than that of display advertising. As a result, those customers have a 37% higher retention rate than other acquisition channels.
  4. Targets audiences accurately – A well-crafted influencer identification strategy will yield the strongest return. Different product categories have different influencers, usually with an overlap of less than 15%. So it’s important to select influencers accurately and appropriately.
  5. Boosts SEO – Beyond meeting immediate marketing goals, an influencer marketing strategy can significantly boost your brand’s search rankings. Customers who seek information on social media will also use search engines during their decision making process.

Now let’s have a look at some recent results from empirical studies regarding IM.

What value does influencer marketing offers to the retailer?

“Word-of-mouth recommendations from influencers effectively turn prospects into customers, who trust the people they interact with on a daily basis” said Eileen Brown recently in ZDNET.com.

Here are some results from a survey done with retailers last year by Linqua regarding the state of influencer marketing:

Respondents indicated the following benefits they enjoyed using influencer marketing:

Doing your own Shipping
and Fulfillment

ProsCons
1. It's cheap1. It’s tedious
2. Anyone can do it2. You need space
3. You're in control3. Take you away from more important stuff

As shown in the table above, retailers experienced greater brand authenticity when using influencer marketing. This may explain more customer engagement (77%) and traffic (56%) to their websites. Hence, only 34% of the retailers indicated more product sales when using IM.

However not everyone is convinced IM makes a difference in their marketing efforts. Results from a more recent study done by the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), showed that only 36% of 158 marketers surveyed felt that their influencer marketing efforts are effective (Minda Smiley, THEDRUM).  While 44% said they were neutral about the effectiveness of their influencer marketing, 19% deemed it ineffective, reported Minda.

Concluding

Influencer marketing may give retailers focused alternatives with product promotion in the digital channel. However, influencers – especially celebrities, may charge retailers high fees to link their faces to their brands. Sadly, this has caused the advent of  “fake influencers”.

So, retailers need to do a lot of homework before contracting and using influencers.

Read also: Word of Mouth Marketing for Better or for Worse

A Marketing Plan helps you to communicate the right content to the right audience.

Note

1 Pophal, L. 2016. Best Practices in Influencer Marketing, Insights from Digital Marketing Experts, Copyright 2016 Linda Pophal.

Images

  1. wikipedia.org
  2. oppmax.com
Please follow and like us:

Published by

Douw G Steyn

Management consultant, blog writer, dreamer

116 thoughts on “Influencer Marketing for Retailers”

  1. I do love the manner in which you have framed this particular
    matter plus it does offer me some fodder for thought. Nevertheless, coming from everything that I have seen, I simply just
    hope when the commentary pack on that people today keep on issue and in no
    way get started upon a soap box of some other news du jour.
    Yet, thank you for this excellent piece and whilst I do not necessarily go along
    with this in totality, I value your perspective.

  2. I discovered your weblog website on google and examine just a few of your early posts. Continue to maintain up the very good operate. I simply further up your RSS feed to my MSN News Reader. Seeking forward to studying extra from you in a while!?

  3. Hello there my loved ones participant! I would like to point out that this post is astounding, nice composed obtainable with the majority of important infos. I’d like to seem additional threads like that .

  4. Thanks so much for giving everyone such a memorable possiblity to read articles and blog posts from this website. It is often so cool and as well , jam-packed with a lot of fun for me and my office fellow workers to search your blog not less than three times in a week to read through the newest tips you have got. And indeed, I’m so always fulfilled with all the brilliant guidelines served by you. Selected 4 ideas in this post are completely the best I have had.

  5. I have to point out my love for your kind-heartedness for those who really need guidance on this particular question. Your personal dedication to getting the solution along had become wonderfully functional and have regularly helped somebody like me to arrive at their endeavors. Your entire useful guideline entails so much a person like me and substantially more to my office colleagues. Thank you; from each one of us.

  6. Thank you a lot for providing individuals with remarkably marvellous opportunity to read from this website. It’s always so lovely and also packed with fun for me personally and my office co-workers to visit your blog on the least 3 times in one week to learn the new guidance you will have. And definitely, I am just usually happy for the surprising things you serve. Certain two points on this page are without a doubt the most impressive we have ever had.

  7. I as well as my pals happened to be examining the great tactics from your web site and so before long came up with an awful feeling I never thanked the site owner for those strategies. Most of the women ended up consequently thrilled to study them and now have very much been taking advantage of those things. Appreciate your really being very considerate and also for picking out this kind of outstanding issues most people are really wanting to understand about. Our own honest regret for not expressing gratitude to sooner.

  8. Thank you for another great post. Where else could anyone get that type of info in such
    a perfect method of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I’m at the search for such information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.