Why influencer marketing is trending and not likely to go away soon...
Influencer marketing is a trend that has had great growth in the past years. Marketers, consultants and competitive intelligence professionals seeking to understand this field can find a number of helpful information resources to help them keep up-to-date. The landscape for the industry includes various companies, including well-funded start-ups, which seek to match companies with the influencers that can grow their brands.
Influencer Marketing Introductory Resources
What may be fostering the popularity of influencer marketing initiatives is captured in a Forrester study that found that 70% percent of adults in the US trusted product recommendations coming from family and friends, while only 10% trusted advertisements from companies. Brands have acknowledged these sentiments and have started trying to have everyday people post content on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, and blogs in order to reach and influence potential customers.
Forbes provided an interesting introduction to influencer marketing, explaining that this marketing tactic is “explosive.” It cites a McKinsey study that reports that word-of-mouth marketing makes more than twice the revenue of paid advertising. The author further reports that the groups most often involved in being influencers are Millennials and “mom” demographics. The types of influencing activities that are undertaken can include such tasks as writing an overview blog posting about a product/brand or posting a review on Facebook. Families and friends read the content and the influencers are then paid by the companies for their efforts.
Companies in the Influencer Marketing Landscape
Various companies have been launched within the last decade or so to help bring together companies and influencers. Some business models are marketplaces whereby a given company wants to promote their product on blogs or via Twitter, and an influencer marketing agency will match the company with a given influencer. The influencers can often review various requests and even bid for the opportunity to write content. Below are some companies that connect companies with influencers.
Boostinsider matches businesses that want to promote their products on social media with influencers. The influencers can be anyone from a celebrity with a popular blog to a college student with a large Twitter following. The company has over 100,000 influencers on its roster and works with 3,000 companies.
Tomoson has an interesting business model in which they may offer free products from companies to various influencers for their review. The influencers then post their reviews on social media platforms and are afterwards compensated.
IZEA’s influencers are called “creators” and there are over 550,000 using social media to write about a multitude of business products and services. Thirty days after a given posting, the creators are compensated.
TapInfluence recently raised $14 million in order to develop their company. They run an online platform which matches companies with influencers. They maintain a network of about 45,000 vetted influencers.
News Sources Covering the Influencer Marketing
Since the topic of influencer marketing is of interest across industries, various publications cover this trend. For example, because influencer marketing involves technology, tech publications often cover the topic. Resources like TechCrunch and VentureBeat especially review the success of start-ups within the industry.
Within the marketing and advertising sphere, publications such as Adweek and eMarketer report on the latest trends and developments within influencer marketing. Even social media publications cover the topic, such as Social Media Today.
Assuming the public continues to trust social media from friends and family more so than company ads, influencer marketing is likely to continue its dynamic growth. Savvy consultants will monitor this field for new start-ups and potential new technologies that will enhance the marketing landscape and create new business opportunities.
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