Based on data by Mediakix, Business Insider Intelligence predicts brands will spend up to $15 billion on influencer marketing by 2022.
It’s not a new idea. Brands have always tapped key leaders and recognized experts to drive their messaging and inspire and motivate purchases.
In fact, legend has it that Robert Wedgewood of Wedgewood China began using endorsements from members of the Royal Family to boost his pottery sales as far back as 1760.
The idea behind influencer Marketing is that it will help a brand tap a larger market, expand reach, and build a reputation - the halo effect - and it makes good business sense. A Tomoson study of Marketing professionals found that businesses make $6.50 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing.
According to a 2018 Association of National Advertisers (ANA) survey, 75% of marketers are using influencers as a marketing tool. For influencer marketing to work you need an excellent source and supply of influencers. But how does one become an influencer?
What Kind of Influencer Can You Be?
We are all familiar with the idea of mega-influencers. These are the A-list celebrities with large followings on social media and in real life. There are also macro-, micro-, and nano-influencers who reach audiences common and niche.
Think of these as a hierarchy, with each group representing people who are subject matter experts with domain experience that attract a smaller, focused audience with a high trust factor. Elaine Rau of LadiesBossBlogger predicts that we will see more emphasis on micro- and nano-influencers in the future.
This creates an opportunity for many of us to become influencers. For example, as subject matter experts in Marketing performance management and the use of analytics, we are always honored when we’re tapped as influencers in these areas.
Think about your expertise and experience. How might you leverage these to become an influencer? Consider the community you’ve built and the connections you’ve made. Have you been deliberate and thoughtful in your approach so that others would see value in being able to tap your network?
As we continue to explore how we can grow an audience as an influencer, here are four keys to becoming a success:
- Demonstrate passion for your topic. If it doesn't excite you, why should it interest anyone else?
- Consistently create new, useful, and relevant content. Share what you know.
- Reputation matters. Take the high road at all times.
- Don’t expect to be an overnight success. Work at it every day. Make it a priority.
Since metrics are our thing, put some measures in place to help you determine if you’re moving the needle on your goal to become an influencer.
Three Measurement Categories to Monitor
- Influencers have reach. Do you have a solid base of followers? Is the number growing? Are you adding the right ones?
- Influencers have engagement. Is your content being shared? By how many others? How often? Are the right people sharing your content? Are people commenting? Are you asked to allow reposting of your content on their sites? Have you served as a guest on a podcast or been interviewed for an article? How often? By other influencers?
- Influencers demonstrate impact. Do you share others’ posts and are these posts reshared? How often? By how many? Remember, one of the reasons people seek you out as an influencer is because content you share gains attention and traction.
Explore how you might frame these measures and establish corresponding performance. In the meantime, we’d love to hear from you and of course, explore sharing your content on our social media platforms.
Laura Patterson is president and co-founder of VisionEdge Marketing, Inc., a recognized leader in enabling organizations to leverage data and analytics to facilitate marketing accountability.
Laura’s newest book, Marketing Metrics in Action: Creating a Performance-Driven Marketing Organization (Racom: www.racombooks.com ), is a useful primer for improving marketing measurement and performance. Visit: www.visionedgemarketing.com
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