Growth of Influencer Marketing as an Industry
Influencer marketing came into being as a notion of small-scale marketing where celebrities promoted brands that have already been established to a global phenomenon used by thousands of companies and reaching billions of consumers. This industry of influencer marketing has gone through an astounding development over the past few years, and whoever these concerns need to take a look at what this industry is, how it has grown.
Let’s start from scratch so that you have a better idea of influencer marketing, industry, and its growth.
What is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing primarily focuses on driving your brand’s message to the larger market using key leaders. You inspire / hire/pay influencers to get out the word for you rather than marketing directly to a large group of audience. An influencer can be labeled as the process of researching, identifying, engaging, and supporting people that have a decent amount of the following base and create some high-impact conversations with them. These influencers can in turn benefit your organization in a lot of ways!
Often, influencer marketing walks parallel to two other forms of marketing: social-media marketing and content marketing. Influencers are expected to spread the word through their personal social channels in most influencer campaigns. Another content element that many influencers campaigns carry is such where either you create content for the influencers, or they create the content themselves. Social media and content marketing often fit inside influencer campaigns; however, they are not synonymous with influencer marketing.
A lot of social media-based marketing has been overtaken by influencer marketing and is now spread across multiple mediums.
Influencer marketing agencies have made their way through to connect any brand/company with influencers who can market them through influencer marketing campaigns.
As of 2020, influencer marketing as an industry is valued at more than $10 billion and it is expected to keep rising.
Now since you know what influencer marketing actually is, let’s see where is it today?
The influencer marketing industry whether by right or not is a multi-billion-dollar industry that is capable of continuing to grow rapidly over the next couple of years, but the question is where is it today?
Influencer marketing in 2020 reached new heights, and it has become a worldwide phenomenon and a crucial part of most marketers’ strategies, instead of being a marketing channel used by a few selected brands.
Social media marketing has also become more attainable for brands with smaller marketing budgets with the rise of micro-influencers which has resulted in a massive boost of industry. Micro-Influencers are quite cheap to hire and are more effective towards catering to our target audience. And we will soon see social media marketing outperforming all other marketing channels, as micro-influencers become better at what they do.
Benefits of Influencer Marketing
Builds Trust quickly-
Influencers have established a connection with their audience which is very personal. They have built a relationship that is full of trust and credibility with their audience. The audience respects their content and their recommendations.
As soon as you start investing in Influencers by sharing their content, they’ll start sharing your content too in front of an audience which is very actively engaged in no time.
You can use the influencers following to your benefit as they can help you to expand your reach online. Influencers help you sell your story too! By the means of such influencers the audience gets their answers to questions about your brand, your story, what you sell, and the solutions that your brand offers. You must provide the influencers with valuable content that ensures value on both the sides and add up to their social media presence as well.
Enriching your content sharing strategy-
Sharing your influencer’s content with your audience can help you fill in the gaps of your own content schedule as well. This strategy is a lifesaver when it comes to situations wherein, you’re out of content ideas or when you’re looking for some quality content to post on your social media handles.
Reaching your Target Audience Effectively-
This one’s huge! You can place your content in front of the audience that is already interested in your niche by the means of these influencers. The influencers have already fostered the audience on their social media so you don’t have to spend additional time testing and finding out your audience.
Your Audience is valued-
Delivering content that solves problems, inspires, and educates your target audience is at the heart of Inbound Marketing. Such concepts are embraced by the Influencers as they are already in tune with the audience they are supposed to interact with. You can leverage their content to give value to your following/audience.
Build Partnerships that’ll help you win-
You can establish a strong connection with an influencer by engaging with their posts. Since we’re in for the long run, we never know how useful these connections can turn out to be! Live-events, possible joint ventures, and other opportunities can help build these relationships and collaborations that can prove out to be effective for you as well as the influencer working with you.
Influencer Marketing’s Growth Over the Last Years
Needless to say, Influencer marketing was initially fabricated as a way for celebrities to make money from their millions of followers. Brands began to notice the latent of using celebrities to promote their products on social media, but no one could have imagined at that time how massive the industry would become.
After the first celebrities posted ads on their social media accounts, it didn’t take long before the trend started unrolling and in no time social media marketing was far and wide.
Influencer Marketing was only associated with celebrities that had millions of followers. And it would take another couple of years for the industry to evolve into the gigantic entity it is today.
Influencer marketing wasn’t really interesting until the notion of using smaller influencers was first tested a couple of years ago. More often than not you see, celebrities tend to charge a king’s ransom for social media posts, and oftentimes it is more than an average company could afford. So in order to get a piece of the pie, brands started looking for smaller influencers that had a decent connection with their followers and also a much lower price tag, and this is how micro-influencers were born in the industry.
We believe that it’s micro-influencers that are driving the development even though celebrities are still earning quite a fortune from promoting brand products on their social media platforms.
Reasons for The Growth
Micro-Influencers as a group have brought in new perspectives into the conversation and it has proved out time after time to be more effective than any other marketing strategy as compared to earlier times. Earlier, brands used to collaborate with high-end clients with the following base in millions and desired to achieve unexpected potential clients amongst the millions to show up. But as it turns out, these collaborations included hefty amounts and did not prove to be as effective as the brands expected it to be.
We believe that the following are the reasons why Influencer marketing turned out to be as huge of an industry as it is now:
Peers are more Trustworthy (Micro-Influencers)
Trust has been one of the major factors as to why micro-influencers have outperformed every other marketing strategy as compared to bigger influencers and have proved out to be more efficient in every aspect. Banner ads and commercials are produced on such a large scale that it almost feels as if all of these advertisements are ingenuine. Nowadays these ads are under-appreciated at times and are not as effective as they used to be. Whenever we are watching TV and an advertisement pops up, we involuntarily switch to our mobile phones as if it has become muscle memory. It is said that `Be where your audience’s eyes are’!
A micro-influencer has a closer and intimate relationship with their audience which is entirely built over trust! It’s no brainer that people trust these influencers with whom they have a personal connection rather than trusting celebrities that don’t even know they exist! Customers like to be valued and Micro-Influencers value its audiences’ existence. Therefore, people are more likely to dig a recommendation from a Micro-Influencer rather than a celebrity!
More Channels Helps to Build Reach
Reach is what we believe is the second most valuable reason after trust that has gotten Influencer marketing to such epic proportions. Micro-Influencers opens up a variety of new channels to promote products through them.
Different channels provide different mediums to promote your product depending on the genre of your product. For instance, if you are selling something related to fashion and lifestyle, Instagram would be your go-to place. Similarly, if you’re offering reviews and detailed guides on products, then YouTube would be your perfect platform for you to promote your brand with the help of videos.
The list goes on and on and as long as new platforms are added, new channels to promote yourself will also come hand in hand. Thus, you can get the desired reach!
Easier to Reach Target Audience (More-Targeted)
Influencer Marketing enables you to run targeted and personalized ads with the right amount of research that is carried out by your influencers. Thus, the brands can run their promotional campaign to target the group on the social media channels that they prefer. It is very crucial for the marketing campaign to cater to its target audience and micro-influencers have made all of this easier and more efficient. Therefore, Influencer Marketing has proved out to be more effective to be ignored.
The influencer marketing industry reaches new heights every year and this year has not been an exception. Furthermore, all predictions indicate that the coming years will be even bigger for the industry.
We are not surprised at the fact that Influencer marketing has proved to be the most effective strategy that the marketing industry has come across in a while. As long as your brands can cater to their target audience without breaking the bank, the industry will definitely flourish and achieve epic proportions in the coming time as well.
Author Bio: Shweta Singh
I am an aspiring Lawyer and a Content Writer.
I believe that every business has a story and I thrive to tell that story to the world through my writing.
I have been writing for influencer marketing for a long time and have grown exponentially with the industry.
With Confluencr, I have learned that quality content + targeted marketing can do wonders to not only businesses but to any individual.
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