While influencer marketing has yet to replace commercials, in the next couple of years they likely will! Audiences, as we know it, are continuing to evolve and they are becoming immune to traditional forms of advertising. Influencer marketing has the ability to reach different audiences across multiple platforms which makes it a more appealing form of marketing.

Millennials and Gen Z demand engagement and authenticity from the content they consume, and influencer marketing can meet these expectations. Influencers are able to establish connections and trust with their audiences which means they would be more likely to react to a product endorsement from their favourite influencer than a paid advertising campaign.

Traditional campaigns are perceived by audiences as pure ads with intrusive natures which tend to disrupt the users' online experience such as a banner that pops up on a video they are watching. Influencer campaigns are designed to organically integrate into the consumer's online feed. For example, an integration on an influencer’s YouTube channel will be created in sync with the topic of the video and the influencer will convey the ad in an organic way which they know their audience will respond to.

The bottom line is that today’s users prefer having the option to interact with an influencer and get an appropriate communication channel; these authentic voices trump faceless commercials or digital advertisements.

How do you choose an influencer that fits your brand?

It is important to focus on choosing influencers that are aligned with your brand and that will engage with your targeted audience. For example, I look for influencers and platforms that have high shopping intent, because my company deals with online shopping experiences for our users.

Another important factor to take into consideration is the engagement of the influencer’s audience. You want influencers who have a very engaged, organic following, who interact with their content regularly as this leads to more organic and real engagements. Real engagements refer to users who do not only statically consume the content but interact with it such as by commenting and sharing the content; they are invested in the content and what the influencer has to say. These engagements will more likely convert into active users for your product.

Influencers: should they be local, global, or both?

You can collaborate with influencers all over the world. That is the beauty of influencer marketing and the power of social media– we have the opportunity to reach global audiences! The decision on whether to work with global or local influencers depends heavily on a company’s goals and targets: one size does not fit all, and it depends on your market and what you want to achieve. Global influencers have more reach and can be great assets in promoting brand awareness. Local influencers have the advantage of understanding the local market and how to influence them since they share a cultural background and language. Combining local and global influencer marketing efforts can lead to an increase in lead generation, brand awareness, and thought leadership but local or global, it all comes down to carefully selecting influencers who align with your brand and message!

Tactics of influencer marketing

There are a few strategies when it comes to how to approach influencer marketing. The first important strategy, that is especially relevant for 2022, is building long-term relationships with our creators! Building relationships, that last, with influencers that truly love and understand the value of your product benefits everyone involved; these shared values can really shine through in their content, making it a better form of marketing.

Aim to encourage creativity and personalization when it comes to collaborations. The appeal of influencer marketing is that you work with amazing creative minds that can produce engaging content that appeals to their audience. Giving these influencers creative control over the integration is key! They know their audience best and what type of content they will respond to.

Influencer marketing is constantly evolving, and it should always be a priority to ensure that you remain on top of trends. The potential of micro-influencers continues to grow as their small audience consists of some of the most engaged and dedicated audience members out there. As mentioned earlier, engagement is key and once you find an audience that has complete trust in the influencer and what they recommend, they will convert!

While micro-influencers should be an integral part of your strategy, you cannot ignore the potential of macro and A-list influencers! There are two aspects that you should be focusing on in the coming year: the conversion rate from the micro-influencers, which is the number of users that actually take action from the content, and the huge brand awareness that comes from bigger creators. Macro influencers may not have the conversion rate and engagement that smaller influencers have, but they do have incredible reach to get a brand name out there. People will hear about a brand through a creator who has a big following.

Most importantly, you should always focus on how your company can evolve and improve your influencer marketing! Always listen to feedback from your creators as well as their audience to ensure that you are putting out content that will give your audience a complete personalized experience.

Written by Yael Druckman Senior Influencer Marketing Manager at Karma