Written by: Ashok Jaiswar
About the author: Group Head Marketing & Corporate Communications – Greaves Cotton Limited & Ampere Electric
Building strong tribe with positive vibe
“It costs much less to build strong community with influencer’s vs traditional marketing approach”.
In digital first economy, consumers have multi fold increased their search online before stepping into the physical retail world. Their search spans from discovering the product, reading reviews, watching videos and relevant content on Social media & brand websites. In this exploratory phase, it is known that they depend a lot on unbiased opinions and information about their prospective products & brands. It is vital for all brands to be present with clear, consistent user-driven or influencer driven communication to accelerate their decision-making on the final product. In addition, in a world where consumers do lot of post- purchasing bragging & revalidating their purchase, brands need to create a good pipeline of content with help of influencers that can be consumed, shared & repurposed for building their advocacy & affinity.
Influencers do not just drive revenue; they create authentic, lifestyle content that is far more affordable than what any regular production company can offer. Influencer partnerships are one of the best way to spread online word-of-mouth & advocacy for your brand. Today multiple creators as big, micro & nano influencers create content, which we can be easily repurpose as branded content online.
While many brands just set themselves a campaign with Influencers, it is quite important to keep tab of very critical aspect the human connection. Influencers adopting an engaging storytelling idea should embrace simplicity, honesty and clear experience around the product, brand & ensure that the usage experience is naturally interwoven in customer’s lives. This enhances the authenticity quotient and leads to higher believability for the brand. One can easily find out any force-fitted content and then customers would easily rebuke this.
Nine simple things to note while designing effective influencer campaign
- Identify right Influencer – Create ability to find the correct influencer who have ably demonstrated clear success in your product category. It is better to see that they have created content widely on diverse topics & are popular in their social circles.
- Do right Immersion – It is brand’s responsibility to share the right research information, market pulse & insights to help the influencers create meaningful content. Get context right, it helps connect audiences well.
- Indicate exact deliverables – Lay down clear expectations on what is required from the influencers. What kind of storytelling is required? Should this be around product, brand, retail and channel or around any other milestones?
- Integration is key How do we get our product & its benefits integrated well in the story? It should be stimulating correct feel with relevant story outline.
- Insist on engagement & measure – What you do not measure, does not progress. In such dynamic online platform, there are multiple variables like right message, right duration/ size of content, timing, how conducive is the environment to support the content & much more. We need to examine all these to learn how positively it is affecting our brand. One needs to constantly evaluate & fine-tune the content. Online medium allows you to experiment better & manage sharper for effective results.
- Explore Micro Influencers – low budget, high impact. Optimise your mix with blend of bigger and micro influencers. We can achieve a healthy balance between impact and reach. Sometimes vernacular influencers play big role in driving attention and engagement for various brands. Observe the response and change your mix accordingly. However, many changes are not advised as you end up spending your energy again in on boarding and bringing up to the speed the new influencers. If we build strong relationships with existing influencers, they can help us dole out quicker campaigns and help the brand remain dynamic and leverage power of moment marketing.
- Implant right content – small size videos & infographics, vernacular, variety, fast and frequent, clear and consistent, features and fun facts, announcements and milestones, perceptions and market reactions, attention grossers & thumb stoppers etc.
- Inspire audience with great content – created by multiple creators and leave a strong legacy behind. Power of Passion(in generating content)+ Power of Creation strengthens your Power of Moments across all touch points
- Influence through right medium – Today plenty of influencers exists talking on myriad of subjects like food, travel, lifestyle, cosmetics, automobile, retail, hardware, software, finance, mobile phones, health & much more. We know that Instagram as creators haven is a great place to start launching influencer campaigns, but each social channel has unique strengths that can boost your brand..
Many a times, influencer-generated content works better over high performing branded social posts and ads. Influencer community support key actions amplify videos, new milestones, contest alerts, people announcements, new products, key features and host of storytelling that keeps the brand love alive & drive higher recall & active consideration.
Choose quality over quantity
Would you deploy more low cost peripheral influencers and get numbers or rather stick to few good quality category & amplification influencers who have good record of accomplishment with high engagement score?
Please note while the numbers are very important, it is the quality of people that we work with creates deeper impact. Inspire them to represent the brand, products & related life nuances or stories in the best way possible while following your brand values & sustainable competitive advantage. This leads to right image and value build up which keeps your traffic increasing across your social, websites & at retail touch points.
While macro influencers might expand your reach, never underestimate the power of micro and nano influencers. We can achieve both interest generation & enquiry generation thereupon affecting the upper funnel & active consideration to choice finalisation benefitting the lower funnel at significantly low cost outlay provided we execute proper campaigns.
In nutshell, ROE (return on engagement) & ROI (Return on Investment) both play very pivotal role in implementing Influencer Marketing programs.