Influencer marketing is currently all the rage, and for good reason.
Much like affiliate marketers, influencer marketers help companies with their heavy lifting by spreading the word about a company’s products to an eager, captive audience.
What’s more, the influencer personality usually has a built-in fan base that trusts in the recommendations, so company don’t have to worry about building new consumer relationships from scratch.
But in order for your marketing team to realize success, you (or your team) must ask yourself some of the following questions:
Much in the same way that marketers have learned the hard way that taking the build it and they will come approach to eCommerce sites fails to generate sales, there’s a lot of marketers out there who believe that they’ll finally generate the traffic they’re hoping for, simply because a popular influencer/blogger has agreed to represent the marketer’s (or the corporate brand’s) campaign.
This just isn’t how things work, and it never will!
One of the biggest mistakes that companies make is to dive in head-first into influencer marketing, without any clue as to who their audience is. Think of all the marketing money that’s wasted because the audience isn’t ascertained!
Who are the people who are fans of the brand? What’s their mentality, their buyer personas? What moves and motivates them? What are their pain points? What’s their demographic, their spending habits?
These are are questions that require mandatory answers before one red cent is spent on hiring an influencer.
Here’s a question that requires answering:
Is it better to use the hottest marketing channel for your upcoming campaign, or is it better to use a marketing platform that’s proven to be most efficient, and effective?
If you’ve selected the second answer, then you’re absolutely correct!
And that’s where the problem rests: Too many companies chase after the hottest marketing channels in vain, hoping for those break the internet numbers that will have them rolling in revenue (Not!)
But the smart companies understand the dangers of chasing after numbers, especially as it pertains to their unique companies. They understand that based upon the products or service they sell, they’re not going to appeal to the masses. Therefore, chasing after the hottest marketing channels isn’t going to work.
What does work is examining which type of marketing channel works in capturing the attention of the brand’s target base. This is why it’s crucial for a company’s marketing team to understand who their audience is. Anything less will result in lost time, and money.
Personalities who becoming marketing influencers realize this status because they have skill sets that the average bloggers (or vloggers) don’t. They know how to package themselves. They understand how to create a personality that people will latch on to. They certainly understand how to create viral-status content that consumers will not only engage in, but share with their friends.
Bottom line: Influencers of all stripes are talented, clever people who have found ways to gain attention on a large scale. But here’s where the problem often rests:
Companies fail at briefing their new influencer on what the marketing goals are.
The assumption is, since the influencer already knows how to get attention, and since they already have a fan based, then they’ll organically understand how to create a campaign that falls in line with a company’s branding and revenue-generating goals.
For starters, an influencer should never have to guess at a company’s marketing goals. That’s not their job. A company’s marketing department needs to completely equip their chosen influencer with the end goal, and a playbook for accomplishing that goal. This way, the chosen personality can become set up for success, making sure to guide their followers in the right direction, while staying on script, and on brand.
Speaking of staying on brand…
PR nightmares are rarely created in a vacuum. There’s a plethora of reasons why they take place, and when it comes to influencer marketing, they often take place because a company has chosen the wrong marketing personality to represent the brand.
This point goes along with selecting the hottest marketing channel versus the appropriate marketing channel for the brand. Marketers need to remember that their prospective marketing personality are brands in of themselves. Their first priority will be to maintaining their brand, and their fan base.
The last thing that, say, a conservative, family-values company wants is to hire a marketing influencer who is known for crazy stunts, offensive comments, or any other type of behavior that’s sure to run off the company’s consumer base!
It’s not the influencer’s job to change their persona – it’s the company’s marketing team’s responsibility to ensure that they’ve aligned themselves with the right personality fit!
Influencer marketing campaigns are often successful, but they don’t become successful by accident. The winners are spearheaded by smart marketers who ask questions and perform research in order to avoid embarrassing and costly mistakes.
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