“Influencer marketing” is the name we give to the relationship development process with influential people, who can help creating visibility for a product or service. This type of marketing depends on several constrictions, such as having something great to offer to potential customers and to the influencer's public, and the capacity to build a great relationship with the influencer.
This type of marketing can happen in several ways:
- The influencer can write a post or article about the product/service/company;
- The influencer can share info about the product/service/company on social media;
- The influencer can allow for the product/service/company to be “hosted” on his/her website;
- The influencer can follow, like or +1 the product/service/company, which does not have the same impact of the possibilities above, but can still be interesting;
- A mix of (and even all) the items above.
The merits of influencer marketing are almost obvious: on one side, the product/service/company gets a great deal of exposure, depending on the influencer's popularity, exposure, and social following. The influencer, on his turn, gets paid for doing so.
Truthfully, these influencers get paid well, with the most popular ones getting paid very well. Cristiano Ronaldo, according to the Spanish sports newspaper AS, is paid upwards of $250,000 for each promotional tweet. But what is the current state of this marketing strategy, and how much are companies actually using it?
Recently, a survey conducted by Buzzoole, a self-service influencer marketing platform, showed that most brands (65 percent) have plans to increase their influencer marketing budget this year and, when compared to other strategies, such as display advertising and affiliates, influencer marketing gets the biggest slice of investment.
Another interesting result of this survey, conducted among the over 200 brands on Buzzoole's platform, has to do with the selection of the specific influencer marketing channel that companies prefer. 34 percent of brands aim to center their infleucner marketing strategy on blogs – with 29 percent going for Instagram, 23 percent for Facebook, 8 percent for Twitter, 5 percent for Youtube, and 1 percent for Snapchat.
Fabrizio Perrone, CEO and founder of Buzzoole, commented on what can be concluded from these results:
“The results of these surveys fall in line with an overarching trend, indicating that companies are shifting from old-fashioned advertisements to more modern techniques, such as influencer marketing. From small to huge brands, companies see the value of influencer marketing as a more effective method of reaching their target audience at a far more affordable price.”