Influencer marketing is a phenomenon we don’t see slowing down any time soon – and for good reasons! As we’ve stated here and here, we’re HUGE fans of this trend as we have seen the abundance of success these individuals have won on behalf of the brands we work with. Also previously mentioned, it takes the right authority to really hone in on who you want to reach. An authentic, transparent relationship between a brand and an influencer is the ultimate goal. From our experience, working with smaller even micro-influencers are the sweet spot when looking to cultivate a mutually beneficial influencer marketing relationship that can flourish into a brand ambassadorship. Here are a couple of things to consider when looking to partner with smaller influencers.
While blogging may have started as a hobby, these influencers have molded their gifts and talents into a well-conditioned business. These rising influencers have a specific focus, voice and most importantly, audience. Their audience is tuned into what they have to say – maybe it’s a mommy blogger who shares how to get kiddos to eat their vegetables or maybe it’s the millennial who is new to living on their own and needs help around the kitchen. Nonetheless, the influencer’s audience looks forward to the new blog post where they can learn more to become inspired and therefore are highly engaged with the blogger. Here’s what one of our influencers had to say about working with brands that resonate with her audience.
Dianna from The Kitchen Prep -
“Influencers offer brands access to a target, often niche audience in a way that was not available in the past. We have a unique platform in that we create our own environment and invite people into our world, developing a sense of trust and even friendship with our audience. That audience looks to influencers for advice and referrals because they are often able to see a glimpse of themselves (or in some cases, who they would like to become) in the writers creating the content, which is vastly different than how information and products were marketed to the public. This "trust" is something that is invaluable to brands and it is something that influencers should strive to uphold by maintaining authenticity.”
Another reason the micro-influencer marketing phenomenon is sky rocketing is due to the shift in how we use the Internet. Sure we still surf the web for find funny memes, current events, and take Buzzfeed quizzes to find out what cheese we are – really it’s a thing. However, now a days people are using the Internet to research consumer reports and reviews for products they are interested in purchasing. The great thing about influencer marketing is that the third-party validation goes a long way.
For example, a consumer sees their favorite blogger using a product, broadcasting raving reviews – even offering tips and inspiration on how to use the product – then, the consumer sees it in the store and is more likely to purchase said item because they have heard nothing but great things about the brand.
By partnering with smaller influencers, they are more likely to respond to their followers who are asking more about the brands and products they choose to work with. While you have to be strategic in partnering with influencers to create this authentic relationship, they truly believe in this type of working relationship – here’s another quote from one of our partners!
Shannon from KISS in the Kitchen -
“My biggest a-ha moment was several years ago when It really clicked how valuable a relationship with a brand truly is. It’s not just an exchange of funds for a service, it’s an exchange of trust and a partnership that if nurtured on both ends, can be incredibly meaningful and beneficial. My favorite part about working with brands is when it feels like there is mutual investment, interest and respect. It’s incredibly important for both brands and influencers to be authentic and communicate well about shared vision and goals. When this is done well, it’s a beautiful thing and I believe readers value this clearly authentic relationship. You can’t fake passion for a brand and I believe passion comes from a love for the company, what it or its employee stand for and ultimately the product. I also believe brands should be passionate about who they partner with so they’re more likely to invest in those influencers with time and letting them know they’re valued, beyond just the agreed compensation. This combination results in meaningful and impactful results for both the influencer and the brand.”
By choosing the path of working with micro-influencers rather than celebrity endorsements, you get more out of your spend. Since these bloggers are sincerely interested in helping the brands they choose to work with, it’s easier to compromise on a working budget that is comparable for both parties involved. At DMA, we have a strategic vetting process to ensure we are selecting influencers who use and stand behind the products and brands we are asking them to promote. Because these influencers genuinely appreciate the brand, they usually post and tag your brand on their platforms without any type of compensation.
Needless to say, the seamless storytelling that occurs when you empower an influencer with your brand’s messaging, values and wholesome product is something that cannot be replicated with any other marketing means. To have an authority, such as an influencer, validate your brand is icing on top of the marketing cake your team has worked tirelessly to create. Some might say it’s the coup de grâce to a well-rounded, 360-marketing plan.
Have we peaked your interest in influencer marketing? If so, please feel free to reach out us and we’d love to chat with you more on how to create an influencer program for your brand!