Right now, the average consumer is bombarded with more paid advertising materials that any other point in history. Which is why it’s hardly surprising that the vast majority of consumers are now also routinely ignoring pretty much every paid advertisement that comes their way. Not all of them, perhaps, but most.
Right at the other end of the scale, earned marketing and word-of- mouth are becoming the most powerful advertising tools on the face of the earth. Consumers have a level of trust and respect for earned marketing that goes above and beyond every other kind of paid advertising. They trust those that have nothing to gain from fabricating the truth – despite the fact that those they listen to are strangers on the streets.
And while it’s technically possible to pay for influencer marketing, it is significantly more powerful and effective when it is natural.
Here’s a quick rundown of five reasons why you can no longer afford to ignore the power and value of influencer marketing:
1 – It Increases Trust
Over the past decade or so, consumer confidence in traditional marketing and advertising has fallen by about 20%. Over the same period, the number of consumers regularly relying on social media to assist their buying decisions has increased to 72%, while a staggering 92% of people believe what they read by way of customer ratings and recommendations. Which in turn means that if you have a message to share, doing so by way of influencer marketing is the way to do it.
2 – Outstanding ROI
A recent study carried out by Tomoson found that the average business makes somewhere in the region of $6 for every $1 invested in influencer marketing. Not only this, but businesses right of the top end of the scale are earning more than $20 for each $1 invested. This outshines search engine optimisation, affiliate marketing, paid search and the vast majority of other marketing tools and strategies in terms of average ROI,
3 – A New Standard
Over and above search engines and e-mail marketing, businesses in growing numbers are turning to influencer marketing as the most important channel for nurturing loyalty and improving conversion rates. In 2016, around 60% of professional marketers are intensifying their focus and spending on influencer marketing.
4 – Improve Loyalty
Evidence shows that when a consumer is won over by way of influencer marketing, they are much more likely to remain loyal to the business in question long-term. When a consumer is persuaded to use any given business by way of word-of- mouth, the likelihood of them coming back for more increases by almost 40%.
5 – Driving Brand Image
Last but not least, extensive surveys have shown that when a consumer engages or interacts with a brand they came across due to influencer marketing, they are exponentially more likely to be impressed with both the information and the business in general as they would be if they have found their way over by way of paid marketing. Once again, it all comes down to trust and the way in which brands recommended by real life consumers are instantly regarded as more trustworthy and reliable.