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” True influence drives action, not just awareness. “

Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and so on act as one big megaphone for the customers to voice their opinions regarding a particular brand. These platforms have altered the equation of power between the customers and brands. The reason is people are swayed by the peer recommendations and these play a bigger role in making purchasing decisions. As per a study conducted by McKinsey, marketing inspired through word-of-mouth creates double the sales of paid advertising. It further revealed that the retention rate of these customers are close to 37 percent.

What Is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing or influence marketing is nothing but marketing goods and services to an audience of influencers. These influencers are usually found on the social media. Influencer marketing is similar to word-of-mouth marketing. Bloggers are considered to be influencers as they have a big stream of loyal followers. When a blogger writes about a product, his audience consider his recommendation trustworthy. The reason is the influencer writes about how useful the product was to him rather than telling the folks how it will be useful to them. This is what appeals to the customers as there is no suggestions or advices. This is a unique way of indirectly marketing a brand.

Does Your Brand Need Influencers

Yes, every brand needs an influencer. The reason is an influencer is a mutual friend who connects your brand with your target customers. Let’s put it this way. Do you trust a person who comes up to you and brags about himself? Or do you believe a friend, who happens to be a friend of the other, who vouches for that person? Naturally, you believe what your friend says. Similarly, influencers are people who have the ability to influence the targeted consumers for a particular brand.

What Do Influencers Do

When your brand has an influencer, he will not only bring in his audience but also the network(s) of his audience as well. This in turn will increase the traffic to your site, improve your exposure in the social media platforms and this in turn will drive the audience to make a decision to make a purchase. Influencer marketing is fast becoming one of the cost-effective ways to attract potential customers as well as the past clients.

How Do Companies Choose An Influencer For Their Brand

There are many tools that make it easy for the businesses to analyze the social media platform for the best influential profiles on the basis of category, geography or other demographic data. Here are a few ways to choose your influencer.

  • Context- This is one of most important pointer when choosing a right influencer for your brand promotion. Remember, an influencer should fit with your context. For example, you cannot employ a popular pop singer to be an influencer for your software product. Do you think his tweets about your software bring in traffic and sales? Remember, the teenagers and young adults would be his audience, will they be interested in your software. Therefore, defining context is the key to choose your influencer.

If you are a startup company, you need to focus on what the leaders of your industry type are publishing. Engage in conversation with them whenever you can, share your expertise and acknowledge theirs too. The more your brand interacts with these people, you community will become stronger and this in turn will generate an interest in the content of your business.

  • Reach Out- Once you have found an influencer, now would want him to share his experiences with your brand with his audience. Most probably, you would a positive recommendation what will create a much needed positive ripple among his followers.
  • Action- The recommendations of the influencers should help the audience make a decision regarding the purchase. That is one of the reasons why you need to choose an individual who is contextually aligned with your brand.

Finding and nurturing the right online relationships is actually worth the investment in terms of effort as well as time. When your brand has a strong lead base it will be easy to convert the same into sales.

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