Tom Fishburne, CEO of Marketoonist and a popular cartoon blogger recently commented that “The best marketing doesn’t feel like marketing.” With over 15 years of experience, using cartoons to tell stories, he also mentioned that customer interaction is important for marketing. The notion that consumers are being told stories that they might not relate to and from people they are not connected to is what lays the foundation for Influencer Marketing. The simple Wikipedia definition of influencer marketing calls it “a form of marketing in which focus is placed on influential people rather than the target market as a whole.” And in this social media fuelled, data consuming world, brands are likely get their best ROI through influencer marketing.
The biggest success factor behind influencer marketing is the aspirational part of the viewers it taps into. Most influencers in the technology industry, fashion industry, food and beverages industry, travel industry are ordinary people who have managed to achieve a lifestyle that most people desire for. Further, the ease of communication, wherein they’re simple videos without major effects, in a language people use and in a manner that they’re just talking to a friend or a colleague, makes influencer marketing extremely useful. Every person’s decision making is affected by opinion leaders or people they consider either smarter, or people who they feel have adequate experience in a certain industry. And the concept resonates because very person at some level considers himself an expert too in a domain and gives advice. That is why you see major brands investing in influencers. From Marcus Brown Lee, whose gadget reviews often decide the pre-booking sales and unbox therapy videos in tech industry, to Instagram stars like Brian Kelley who gives travel advice to famous chefs like Hebbar’s kitchen on Facebook. Their constant creation of new content on a regular basis, and also their generally unbiased views make their opinions much more believable to users compared to infomercials and other forms of advertising.
As people gain access to more information, they’ll look out for people who can guide them on how to deal with this information. This is where influencers can really make their impact, driving revenues and creating the image brands desire of them.