Why Influencer Marketing Helps small Business in Lock down. Covid 19 outbreak has now a days left us home bound. Distant from the external world and several measures have been implemented to curb the spread of the virus including the imposition of a mandatory quarantine, travel restrictions, closure of business setups, and cancellation of events and likewise, the marketing landscape has undergone various transformations owing to social distancing and quarantine replacing
As our usual way of living due to the virus outbreak since marketing expenditure has been reduced. Brands need to capitalize on digital ways of marketing that include social media, emails, and influencer marketing. And the preventive strategies employed have hindered the ways of the influencer marketing industry.
Which is transforming to weather this health crisis and social media content creators are shifting focus to reshape their content. To keep their audience network engaged so for instance, the travel restrictions have coerced the hospitality sector to cut back on their marketing expenditure.
Impact of COVID on Market
Thus having an impact on the social media presence of travel influencers. So similarly mood bloggers have been forced to sit back inside the safety of their homes. Making it difficult for them to upgrade their social media feed and thus the Pandemic has prompted both the influencers and the brands to evaluate and restructure their marketing strategies to sustain the user engagement.
As the popular narrative speaks that the pandemic has led to fewer brand collaborations, digital platforms. The best bet to spearhead meaningful marketing strategies and this is largely contributed to the unprecedented increase in the consumption of social media platforms.
While people practice social distancing and with such increased social media usage, influencers have gained an opportunity to keep their active audience engaged, with their creative and positive content..
And the Celebrities and influencers are leveraging live streams to connect with their audience on Instagram and Facebook particularly reflecting upon the implications of the Pandemic..
Even the World Health Organization (WHO) resorted to Instagram and TikTok to launch its Safe Hands Challenge campaign with a bunch of influencers to encourage.
The basic preventive measure of hand washing among the general public. So the campaign was very impact and garnered immense popularity. This stands as testimony to the fact that influencer marketing can be a reliable source of digital marketing when companies have little to invest during and even after the Pandemic.
The faces of Covid 19 :
In the face of the present crisis, the influencer industry needs to be mindful of the needs of their audience. Generate organic content partnering. With the right brand and it is a tool to churn trust, advocacy, and sales for brands that connect the consumers.
And the brands more effectively and according to the 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer Special Report. In Brands We Trust, it was found 63% of individuals aged 18-34 years relied on the voice of an influencer about a brand rather than the brand itself.
A report by Social Bakers on State of The Impact of COVID-19,
This reveals crucial insights into the changing behavior of brands. Users and how marketers can take advantage of the recent developments and the Pandemic.
Induced economic disruption has led to a decrease in the ad spend. A simultaneous increase in digital content and user hence with plenty of time at their disposa. Users are devoting their time to digital screens to stay updated, connected, and entertained and the lower ad costs.
Across the corona virus afflicted regions present the brands with an opportunity to channelize it in a way to reach a wider pool of audience. Hence the report brings to light that there has been an increase in the number of organic posts.
As compared to paid promotions across the globe indicating that organic strategies driven with the right content may outweigh paid promotions.
Since we know influencers are adaptable, many have tweaked their content to cater to the needs of their audience as they sit in a house arrest.
Now let us take a look at how the coronavirus has brought about a paradigm shift in the content being produced by the influencers. So with a gradual shift in format, tone, and genre; influencers are trying to create content relevant to the present times.
Influencers are trying to rope in newer themes like health and well-being, food and nutrition, comedy, and satire. Being the top 3 emerging genres and several celebrities and influencers are utilizing social media to contribute to charity. Donation drives with the help of revenue generated from a particular live session, challenge, video, or post and engaging in community-driven entertainment while being sensitive is what the consumers expect brands to be when they choose influencer marketing. Therefore utilizing influencer marketing to promote awareness among the general public regarding the disease and preventive measures.
Trends That Are Gaining Traction in The Influencer Marketing Space are as follows:
A recent report by Obviously titled Trends Report. The Impact of Coronavirus on Influencer Marketing surveyed 1000 influencers and analyzed data surrounding Instagram posts and TikTok Influencers has revealed some key trends that are being explored widely amid the coronavirus.
Pandemic and the report sheds light on how influencer marketing is evolving in the present situation. And which type of content is generating the maximum traffic while everyone is scrolling their Instagram and TikTok feed.
The following trends were identified as follows :
1.Work from home hasn’t restricted the professional aspirations of influencers. All the more, influencers have become their production agencies straight from the comfort of their homes. It has also reduced additional creative costs by 50% while increasing opportunities by 33% and ad performance in social ads by 40%
2.There is an overwhelming demand for live streams and video content across different verticals from education to fitness to wellness. A 50% increase in Facebook Live and a 70% increase in messenger Live was reported while around 92% of the influencers were open to the idea of hosting a live streaming session.
3.Niche verticals have taken the mainstream road, with home life and health and wellness verticals experiencing the maximum growth.
4.TikTok has emerged as a gainer with a 27% increase in user engagement and a 24% increase in the number of influencers. TikTok has reportedly seen a 67% increase in consumption.
5.Influencers are using social media space to pledge charity and donations for noble causes. 80% of influencers were of the view that they would participate in a charity hosting campaign without any compensation
Reasons for which why influencer marketing helps us :
Influencer marketing is one of the form of marketing that focuses on creating strategic messages. Delivering those messages to individuals that have influence over your target audience and the influencer can be a blogger, YouTuber, Instagrammer, journalist, a popular forum personality or even a retail sales associate so rather than the more traditional marketing approach of communicating directly to your target market, influencer marketing identifies and communicates with individuals that influence your target market’s purchasing decisions.It is one of the hybrid form of marketing and it combines traditional components of branding, public relations and celebrity endorsement and brings them all together in today’s digital and social world.
So according to Chief Marketer more than 60 percent of marketers are utilizing influencer marketing in some form. In a world where customers demand authenticity. Seek meaningful brand experiences, influencer marketing can be a great tool to help you build your brand and business.
Here are 7 Reasons why you should be using Influencer Marketing are:
1.Influencer marketing builds brand credibility and trust.
2.Integrated marketing works.
3.Influencer marketing is niche marketing.
4.Influencer marketing is cost-effective.
5.Social media continues to grow.
6.It is a great source for user-generated content.
7.It is a great tool for content distribution.
1. INFLUENCER MARKETING BUILDS BRAND CREDIBILITY AND TRUST :
Now Bringing in strategic third parties, or influencers, can be very effective in building trust in your brand. Credibility among your target audience and a customer may initially be wary of your product or service if it is new to them and if they see and hear about your brand from someone they already know and trust, an influencer, that customer is much more likely to be receptive to your brand hence.
People follow influencers because they like and trust them. They share the same interests and values so in many cases, similar to a celebrity endorsement, people aspire to be like the influencers they follow and when they see an influencer using a brand, it’s natural for them to want to use that brand as well, or at the least, to be motivated to learn more about it so an influencer endorsement gives your brand boosted credibility and trust with your target audience.
2. INTEGRATED MARKETING WORKS :
Integrated marketing is the strategic approach of unifying all the components of a marketing program. So they work together, build upon one another and make each component stronger. The key messaging aligns across the various initiatives and marketing activities to form one cohesive and seamless marketing program that is very effective and gets results.It is strategic and well-executed influencer marketing programs reinforce the key messaging you are communicating in your advertising, public relations, content marketing and other programs and this makes each part stronger and more effective so when someone try to search an ad for your brand and then hears the same or a similar message from an influencer they trust, it can be very powerful in converting that person into a customer.
3. INFLUENCER MARKETING IS NICHE MARKETING :
Influencer marketing can be a very effective method to reach niche markets. There more broad approaches can be inefficient or fall short and influencers often become influencers because they are subject matter experts in a certain field, activity or category so they usually have something that they know a lot about or that they are really good at and they try to specialise and therefore develop a following of like-minded people with similar interests.
Identifying influencers whose specialization is directly related to your brand, products and services. It will uncover a following or segment of well-qualified potential customers. That are interested in a subject that directly relates to your brand. This strategic influencer marketing program allows you to reach those specific segments of your target audience, with content that is very relevant to them.
4. INFLUENCER MARKETING IS COST-EFFECTIVE :
It is very cost effective and is similar to public relations. There is some legwork required to do it right, but when it is done right. It can deliver returns that exponentially exceed the investment. This is a relatively new marketing trend so the terms and agreements between companies and influencers are continually developing so in some cases. The only work that may be required is time (in research, strategy, communications and management of the influencer marketing program), and some freebies (product, service, travel, etc). In other cases, typically with influencers with larger followings, some type of monetary payment or other terms may be required.
CLASSIFICATIONS OF INFLUENCERS COMMONLY USED ARE AS FOLLOWS:
1.Mega-influencers – celebrity status with 1,000,000+ followers
2.Macro-influencers – 100,000 – 1,000,000 followers.
3.Micro-influencers – 1,000 to 100,000 followers.
4.Nano-influencers – less than 1,000 followers.
While reach is an important consideration in an influencer marketing program. It doesn’t necessarily mean that an influencer-marketing program comprised of micro- and nano-influencers couldn’t be very strategic and cost-effective and your brand, offerings, audiences and other considerations can help determine what influencers are appropriate so in some cases, a relatively small following can be a good thing, providing a more targeted audience.
5. SOCIAL MEDIA CONTINUES TO GROW :
According to Brandwatch, there are 3.397 billion active social media users. They have an average of 7.6 social media accounts and spend an average of 116 minutes a day on social media channels.2 The emergence of influencer marketing is a result of the growth and advancement of social media and as social media continues to grow and develop, so the role played by influencer marketing will play a major part in strategic marketing programs.
6. IT IS A GREAT SOURCE FOR USER-GENERATED CONTENT:
They become influencers because they develop and share great content that their followers find valuable. They can relate to the leveraging influencer marketing relationships to take advantage of user-generated content can be a great way to efficiently develop content to supplement your social media programs so followers typically like and engage with user-generated content because it’s real and authentic.
7. IT IS A GREAT TOOL FOR CONTENT DISTRIBUTION :
An important component of a successful content marketing program is content distribution. You are allocating resources to develop great content. (If you’re not, you should be. Here’s an article about why you need to be creating great content.) Influencers can be great outlets for distributing the content you invest in to maximize your ROI.
At last we can conclude up by saying that the importance of influencer marketing for brands will continue to grow as customers demand authenticity and seek out engaging brand experiences and it can be a strategic and cost-effective component in your marketing program to help you build your brand and your business.The current pandemic has propelled content creators to push beyond their limits and paint a vision that suits a wider purpose and emphasize on the collective good rather than just being opportunistic.