In recent years, influencer marketing has become a popular marketing tool, especially in the fashion and beauty industry. It involves collaborating with individuals who are popular on social media. While influencer marketing has many advantages, such as increased reach and engagement, there are also disadvantages in terms of lack of authenticity and control over the campaign. In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of influencer marketing and explore the factors to consider when planning such a campaign.
What is Influencer Marketing?
Influencer marketing is a type of marketing where companies collaborate with popular online individuals, known as influencers. They have a large number of followers whom they are able to reach. Influencers can promote a company’s products or services through their social media channels, such as Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and more. The goal of engaging in such a campaign is to reach new customers and increase sales by leveraging the influencer’s popularity.
The global influencer marketing market was estimated at USD 13.6 billion in 2021. Despite the lack of specific data on spending in this area of communication in Poland, the vast majority of marketers predict an increase in spending on influencer marketing. According to research, as many as 96% of respondents aged 12-55 follow at least one influencer, and 87% declare that they have contact with influencer-created content at least several times a week. The growing popularity of social media, especially TikTok, means that more and more Poles have access to content created by influencers.
An example of a project carried out in collaboration with influencers are EKIPA ice creams by Koral. This project was a business success and encouraged other brands and influencers to undertake similar activities. The growing popularity of influencer marketing has led to more and more brands creating their own departments within their organization. Advertising agencies have also started hiring specialists from the influencer marketing market.
Advantages of Influencer Marketing
- Targeting a Specific Audience – influencers have a strong relationship with a loyal group of followers, which means that advertising reaches directly to the target audience.
- Credibility – influencers build trust with their followers, so their product or service recommendations are seen as sincere and authentic.
- Increased Reach – working with an influencer can significantly increase the reach of advertising on social media, allowing for a wider audience to be reached.
- Image Building – collaborating with an influencer who has a specific style and approach to life can help create the desired brand image.
- Measurement of Results – influencer marketing offers various tools for measuring campaign effectiveness, allowing for an assessment of whether the investment is yielding the desired results.
Disadvantages of influencer marketing
- Lack of control over content – collaboration with influencers can lead to a lack of control over the content they publish. They may inadvertently or intentionally damage the brand’s image.
- Lack of authenticity – some critics believe that influencer marketing is artificial and lacks authenticity. Therefore, it is important to choose the right influencer who truly identifies with the brand and has genuine experience with its products.
- Costs – collaboration with influencers can be expensive, especially if you want to work with influencers with a large reach or popularity.
- Ethical issues – there are also ethical issues associated with influencer marketing, such as misleading consumers by hiding the fact that posts are sponsored.
- Market volatility – influencers are very dependent on market volatility, their popularity can skyrocket or plummet in a short period of time. Therefore, campaigns with influencers can be less stable than traditional advertising campaigns.
When planning an influencer marketing campaign, it is worth considering several key factors:
- Campaign goal – defining the campaign goal is crucial because it affects the choice of influencers, content, and distribution channels. Do you want to increase brand awareness, increase sales, or introduce a new product?
- Influencer selection – you should choose influencers who fit your brand and campaign goals. It is important that their audience matches the target group for your product or service.
- Budget – influencer marketing can be expensive, so it is worth setting a budget for the campaign in advance and adjusting the choice of influencers and campaign scope to it.
- Content – the campaign should have a consistent message, and the content created by influencers should be authentic and valuable to their audience.
- Distribution channels – the choice of distribution channels should be tailored to the campaign goal and influencer preferences, such as Instagram, YouTube, blogs, etc.
- Tracking results – you should monitor the campaign results and, if possible, measure its effectiveness using metrics such as reach, engagement, lead generation, or sales.
Which platform to choose
When it comes to influencer marketing, there are three popular social media platforms: TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube. Each of these platforms has its unique features, content, and user profiles. YouTube offers the broadest reach to a diverse audience thanks to its various content, such as educational videos, vlogs, or travelogues. TikTok, on the other hand, is characterized by easy-to-digest content and a growing potential for collaboration with influencers. Despite initial skepticism about the addition of Reels, Instagram has become an important communication tool for many brands and influencers.
According to some industry experts, YouTube has long since fallen out of the competition, and the biggest battle currently takes place between Instagram and TikTok. Instagram is still in the lead, but TikTok is gaining ground, and brands are beginning to see greater possibilities in it. It is expected that in 2023, TikTok will further develop, and companies that have doubted its potential will begin to take action on this platform. It is worth noting that TikTok is the platform where we consume the most video content.
Influencer marketing can be very profitable, but it depends on several factors such as industry, brand size, and campaign goals. The benefits of influencer marketing include increased brand reach, audience engagement, increased sales, and building a positive brand image. However, the costs of influencer marketing can be quite high, especially when it comes to working with influencers with a large number of followers who command high prices. Additionally, to make a campaign effective, the influencer must be chosen appropriately, and the content must be tailored to the target audience.