You may have heard a lot about influencer marketing lately. Many marketers often call it the future of marketing.
But is that really true? Is influencer marketing really that powerful? How do you assess the real value of influencer marketing?
In this article, we’ll answer all these questions to help you understand why influencer marketing is so popular these days. This will help you to determine if you should invest your time and money into it.
The Value of Influencer Marketing
To understand the value of influencer marketing, it’s important to analyze a few key statistics. These will help us determine how powerful influencer marketing truly is.
1. Increase In Influencer Marketing Budgets
According to a Tomoson survey, 59% of marketers plan to spend more on influencer marketing during the next year.
This is an indication of where influencer marketing is headed in the future. If marketers are increasing their influencer marketing budgets, it’s likely that they’re getting good returns from it.
2. Influencer Marketing Generates Better Quality of Customers
In the same study, 51% of marketers reported acquiring a better quality of customers from influencer marketing.
This statistic is important to note. It takes a lot of time and resources to convert a lead into a customer. Influencer marketing helps generate a quality customers who are likely to be more loyal to brands.
3. Influences Consumer Purchase Decisions
71% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on a social media reference.
Whether you’re a SaaS brand, startup, or retail business, consumers will be more likely to buy if they’ve seen you being mentioned on social media. And such mentions carry more weight if coming from an influencer in a relevant niche.
This statistic indicates that influencer marketing plays a vital role in purchase decisions. Another reason why it’s so popular.
4. Generates Incredible ROI
Businesses get a far better ROI from influencer marketing as compared to any other marketing tactic. For every dollar spent on influencer marketing, businesses make $6.50, which is a very high profit margin. This is an excellent indicator of the value of influencer marketing.
5. The Popularity of Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is very popular. But what does “very popular” really mean? The data from Google Trends makes it easier to understand just how popular influencer marketing is.
As you can see in the graph above, Google searches for the term “influencer marketing” have increased significantly and shown no signs of stopping.
Why Should You Focus on Influencer Marketing?
These were just a few statistics that demonstrate the power of influencer marketing. However, you can't spend all of your money on influencer marketing simply based on stats, right?
So here are some compelling reasons why you should focus on influencer marketing:
1. Influencer Content Is Evergreen
As compared to marketing aids like banners or Facebook ads, influencer marketing is the most effective of all.
Content generated by influencers is often called evergreen. Such content can be edited, repurposed, shared on other channels, or incentivized. Hence, even after your campaign is over, the content lives on and continues to engage more and more audiences.
Other forms of marketing activities don’t offer such benefits, and require more investment to continue reaping returns.
2. Influencer Marketing Trumps Traditional Marketing
Influencer marketing has several advantages over traditional marketing. Some of these are:
Reach Audiences Who Despise Advertisements
84% of millennials say they do not like advertisements. This is a noteworthy statistic for traditional marketers who mainly rely on advertising.
The only means of reaching this age group is through influencer marketing. Because influencer marketing is authentic and more engaging, it is better at influencing millennial purchases.
This is a major reason why marketers should consider focusing on influencer marketing.
Influencer Marketing Is Affordable
Influencer marketing is quite affordable. A survey about micro-influencers revealed that most of them charge $250 or less for branded social media posts.
Traditional marketers usually spend a lot on advertising, and other aids only to convert a small percentage of the audience. But that’s not the case with influencer marketing.
Not only is it way more affordable, but it also generates better returns than other forms of marketing. You can easily get a very good conversion rate by investing the same amount of money or less.
Grin’s influencer marketing platform can help you connect with the right influencers in your niche. You can find influencers according to your budget while ensuring a decent engagement rate and reach.
Creates a Positive Brand Image
Consumers perceive your brand positively when an influencer endorses you. It helps you build a positive brand image that marketers work so hard on creating.
When an influencer loves and posts about your product, it builds trust and a positive image for your brand. This boosts customer loyalty and also helps you get more customers.
Improves Your Search Rankings
Social mentions are crucial to off-page SEO. Influencer marketing helps you enhance your presence on social media, resulting in better rankings on search engines.
Social media presence isn’t directly linked to Google rankings. However, it helps a lot when influential bloggers or high-authority influencers link to your website.
SEO isn’t a primary reason why you should pursue influencer marketing. However, it is one of the indirect benefits of influencer marketing.
Influencer Marketing Success Stories
Still not convinced about the value of influencer marketing? Here are some success stories that will make you truly believe in the power of influencer marketing.
1. Triangl Swimwear
Triangl is a neoprene swimwear brand launched in 2012 by Craig Ellis and Erin Deering in Australia.
Image via Twitter
The startup had a limited budget, and their only option was influencer marketing. They began their campaign by gifting swimsuits to prominent influencers. One of them was Kendall Jenner, who tweeted a snap of herself wearing one of Triangl’s signature styles. This helped them gain a lot of followers interested in the product.
Today, Triangl has over 3.4 million followers on Instagram and Facebook combined.
Chanel wanted to promote their L’Eau perfume, and turned to influencer marketing to get exposure for their latest product.
They gave some bloggers a tour of their production facilities in the Riviera town of Grasse.
Image via Chanel
The idea was to have these bloggers explore the flower fields to understand how fragrances are made. These bloggers documented their tour, and posted on Instagram with hashtags #newchanel5 and #chanelgrasse.
The hashtags generated over 1600 posts, and were liked by over 900,000 people on Instagram.
This helped Chanel get the reach they wanted and give their new product some decent exposure.
Benique is an online fashion jewelry boutique in New York City. Instead of creating brand awareness, growing their reach and followers, Benique wanted instant sales and customers.
They offered free samples in return for honest reviews or cash compensation. This campaign helped them achieve a 300% ROI.
This was possible because they worked with relevant influencers who had engaged followers. Instead of looking at numbers, Benique relied on engagement metrics that made their campaign successful.
The above statistics and success stories show that influencer marketing is truly valuable. And it can help you reach relevant audiences in a cost-effective manner.
However, for a successful campaign, you need to have a proper strategy. This includes identifying the right influencers, building long-lasting relationships with them, and partnering with them to communicate your message in an authentic way.
Can you think of any other insights that demonstrate the value of influencer marketing? Let us know in the comments below.
Brian Mechem is COO and Co-Founder of Grin, a software solution for companies who run influencer marketing programs. Grin's software powers some of the best influencer programs in the world, providing insights on ROI and adding efficiency to the influencer marketing process.