We all have trust issues. Some of them have crossed over into the face of influencer marketing, as the general public have become sceptical of anything claiming to be ‘authentic’. This is a natural progression of how much advertising has infiltrated our digital lives, and explains why we don’t feel as connected to celebrities anymore.
Although influencer marketing is still your best chance of piercing a wide social media audience, you must think about authenticity. If your influencer campaign doesn’t have it, your ROI will be significantly lower than anticipated…
Numbers aren’t the only deciding factor
A safe investment may point towards contacting influencers with the biggest following. Someone with an audience of 2.5 million can seem more attractive than a competitor with 500,000. However, you have to qualify your female and male influencers, as well as quantifying them.
A vlogger who expounds the virtues of one product, and then never mentions it again, won’t give the impression that they genuinely love what you do. It’s better to court a smaller audience through persistent, heartfelt recommendations than throwing money at a quick shout-out by a megastar. An authentic sell relies on people believing utterly that the influencer they turn to for advice has chosen your product for its merits, not the price tag you’ve offered.
Look for persistent communication
While it’s par for the course that an influencer has built their reputation on providing reviews, narratives and timely updates, they may not be persistent communicators on a one-to-one level. If they don’t reply to comments on their feed, they might seem too distant for anyone to engage on a deeper level with your product.
As platforms like Pinterest and Instagram are seeing significant growth in their active user statistics, the solid influencer should be making the most of these channels, replying to questions and asking for feedback when they can. This allows a brand to engage in conversation with the people who elevated an influencer in the first place.
Know your audience
‘Trust’ is a flexible concept – some may see your endorsement as a waste of their time, and therefore a fruitless stain on the belief they put in a favourite blogger or Snapchat star. On the other hand, the ideal audience can’t help but respond to an influencer marketing campaign that speaks to them personally, with solutions they find useful.
A new piece of audio tech will probably entice anyone who followers a self-made music reviewer, whereas it won’t have as much of a draw on a lifestyle vlog in which the influencer occasionally discusses a new band they’ve heard. Unless you identify influences with a relevant audience, your campaign will fall on deaf ears.
Authenticity should be a central facet of any influencer marketing campaign, something that Billion Dollar Boy places high on the agenda when working with brands and male influencers. Give an audience what they want, and you’ll reap the rewards with measurable results.