If you’re a cash strapped small business owner, start-up, aspiring fashion designer, or you’ve formed the next BIG Rock Band chances you’re always looking for new and creative ways to implement digital advertising strategies to grow and promote your business online. This is where influencer marketing fits nicely into the creative business owner’s marketing toolbox. Before, jumping right into that discussion. First, let’s look at the old and traditional ways of marketing a business online.
You’ve created a great product, you have a stunning spring apparel collection, or you just cut and dropped one of the best albums of your life. Now you need to get exposure for this grand event. So, you’d create some banner ads, and you’d then run those banner ads online across various websites. That was how things were done in the old days of Internet advertising. Well, they still do online advertising that way. But there are many other ways to reach your selected markets. Now it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that the Internet has been evolving since its conception, and with it so has digital marketing for small business owners.
In recent years there has been a trending shift from those tried and true traditional online marketing efforts to a more robust, more trusted, and enhanced hybrid model – we now call, Influencer Marketing. Influencer marketing is much the newly improved model of the old celebrity endorsements we all used to know. Where marketing companies would employ the efforts of some celebrity, or well-known athlete to grace the TV screen bragging about how they love a certain kind of Golf Club or refreshing Soft Drink. The same sort of process still plays out today.
But now, as small business owners, we don’t have to invest tons of our working capital into celebrity endorsements. We, fortunately, have the help of Influencer Marketing Companies that can assist us with doing much of the heavy lifting and marketing planning that can go into doing any sort of “Influence or Social Marketing.”
“Influencer marketing (a.k.a. influence marketing) is a form of social media marketing involving endorsements and product placement from influencers, people and organizations who have a purported expert level of knowledge or social influence in their field. Influencer content may be framed as testimonial advertising; influencers play the role of a potential buyer or maybe involved as third parties. These third parties can be seen in the supply chain (such as retailers or manufacturers) or as value-added influencers, such as journalists, academics, industry analysts, and professional advisers.” – As defined by source: Wikipedia
What is a Social Media or Digital Influencer?
Social media or “digital influencers” are people with social accounts that have the ability to drive traffic and sales to a business’s product or service based on their social recommendations. Their ability to influence viewers and readers largely stems from their apparent personal relationship they’ve built up with their social media fans and followers. As well as the inherited sense of authority and trust they’ve amassed in their respective niches.
Now, because of the explosion of social media and the expansive reach in popularity of such platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube its now possible for anyone with an internet connection the possibility at stardom. And this offers the small business owner the opportunity to work directly with social media celebrities, and social media authority figures within their selected niches.
Because of their large reach and innate ability to effectively relate their passions, concerns or approval of products and services to their loyal audiences is the magic that influencer marketers bring to the table for small business owners.
As you can see, any small business owner in the creative space that actively employs influencer marketing can truly bring some real value to their businesses marketing efforts. As you’re able to reach new audiences via people whom your possible customers are going to listen to and respect the opinions of.
Influencer marketing can provide a drastic change to the way small businesses perform advertising online, and deliver their marketing messages, product announcements to their customers; it can also drive phenomenal results for B2B clients, also.
To put it simply: influencer marketing is like you taking and seamlessly integrating your brand message, or product offer into someone else’s private conversation. As opposed to interrupting someone’s online experience with an ad. By making use of influencer marketing your brand is seamlessly embedded into the content and message of a trusted influencer; and becomes part of their conversation with their fans or followers.
The entire process of influencer marketing should ideally grow and encompass a relationship where both of you – the brand and the influencer work to help each other grow. The influencer drives traffic and trust to the brand. As the brand does the same in return. Making the entire relationship process a win-win for everyone.
One of the biggest questions you’re probably asking yourself by now – Is how do I find these experts (Marketing influencers) in my niche? Glad, you asked that. It’s a very valid question.
It’s might just be easier than you might think. With all the methods we have now available to us to research and find pretty much everything there is to know via the Internet – you could simply just search for possible influencers within your niche. Then once you’ve discovered them – reach out to them directly – asking them if they offer marketing services for products and services in which you provide.
However, the bigger question we need to ask ourselves is this: Is it truly feasible for you as a small business owner to do all the legwork, market research, and everything else that is needed to find these influencers? I mean, you have a business to run. Why not leave that type of heavy lifting to the other business owners who have made that job duty their specialty like – Influencer Marketing Companies? It’s their job to connect you with the right talent that will align properly with your brand’s message – after all, you do still have a business to run, right?