Influencer marketing has become something of a mockable meme trend lately. Inauthentic sell-outs invite mockery and derision. Yet we’re still seeing substantial indicators that SMART influencer marketing can have a huge, positive trend on your business. Today the Zebra 360 Online Digital Marketing Agency team take a closer look at influencer marketing, and how you can (correctly) leverage it for your brand.

What is influencer marketing?

Influencer marketing, at its bare bones, is ‘word of mouth’ amplified. Leaders, celebrities or respected community figures talking about your product help boost your brand signal to an interested audience. In the public mind, it’s mostly intertwined with Instagram and YouTube personalities with large followings.

The idea behind influencer marketing is authenticity. People don’t merely trust brand’s statements about themselves, and there’s positive data that well over half of people will admit they have made purchases based on an influencer recommendation. Chains like Iceland (a UK supermarket chain) which have chosen to swing from ‘tell them’ ad campaigns to those featuring real-life vlogging moms have shown positive results. People trust authentic opinion over traditional advertising. And the influencer marketing trend could account for $10 billion in ad spend by next year.

That’s not to say that dumb Influencer marketing hasn’t found its niche in derision. We’re all familiar by now with ethic less channel hosts trying desperately for star status ‘shilling’ anything they can get for free. That’s why finding a genuine, authentic Influencer partner is so key to the process.

The rise of Influencer AI

Influencer marketing hasn’t escaped the rise of AI, either. Each year sees the process of finding the right influencers for your product get easier with the power of smart computer thinking. It helps identify genuine brand partners with good engagement, no fake follows, and a good chance of actually generating the return on investment (ROI) you were hoping for.

Without digging too deeply into the tech side, Natural Language Processing is helping us judge influencer performance, while Artificial Neural Networks help boost image recognition and predicting their incentives. Meanwhile, it’s becoming easier to flag posts not following disclosure guidelines, eliminate fake posts and spambots, and even judge the real influence your Influencer has. Each and every one of these tools helps ensure an experience that benefits everyone- including your consumer.

So, I still need to consider Influencer marketing?

Yes, you do! In fact, done the right way, an influencer can be an incredibly valuable brand partner who will help cement your brand in the minds of interested consumers. The key lies in constructing an authentic, valuable partnership rather than simply ‘shilling’ through a host of barely-celebs.

Finding the right Influencer partner can be an intimidating process, however. Here at Zebra 360 Online Digital Marketing Agency, we’re perfectly placed to help you find the brand-partner you need to boost your ROI into the stratosphere, so why not get in touch today?

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Image by Dawn Bradnick Jorgensen

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Image by Dawn Bradnick Jorgensen

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Image by Dawn Bradnick Jorgensen