The need for brands to have a strong digital presence — especially on social media — has increased dramatically. As brands settle in on their digital strategy, the role of influencers and content creators has elevated in the marketing mix, creating surprising new opportunities for brands.
Here are insights to consider as we move forward in the new normal of digital engagement what is the importance and difference between: ‘Content Creators’, ‘Bloggers’ and ‘Influencers’
A content creator is an employee that is responsible for creating or contributing to the production of any media, but most prominently digital media. Typically, a content creator will create content for a very specific audience. A content creator also creates visually compelling marketing content for a brand. This is usually photography, videography, or a combination of the two.
When you need to hire a content creator:
If you don’t know what to post on your Instagram or social media channels and need help expressing your brand’s image or message in an effective way. If your goal is outsourcing someone to create photography of your product, service, or destination.
An influencer is defined by someone with the ability to influence potential buyers of a product or service by promoting or recommending the items on their social media channels. The quality of an influencer is driven by a combination of their reach, engagement, and community. They are a distribution channel for brands to reach a large audience through a different voice. In short, influencers bring more eyeballs to your account, which translates into more sales for your company, if it’s the right kind of audience.
When you need to hire an influencer:
If your goal is brand awareness, and you are most interested in top of funnel marketing, casting a wide net to generate potential leads, and getting your message out to a large audience.
A blogger is someone who has built an entire online community surrounding their niche of interest inspires, educates, or entertains a particular audience. A successful blogger’s audience is usually very tailored and engaged. They don’t publish content for the sake of filling a publishing queue. They tie every piece of content to their goals and larger marketing plan.
When you need to hire a blogger:
If your goal is to drive conversions, not just awareness, and tell more of a story around your product or service. When you are most interested in reaching and converting warm leads or edging out your competition during the decision-making phase of the marketing funnel.
Marketing Channels for Influencers, bloggers, and content creators
Influencer marketing campaigns are giving brands the chance to reach hundreds of thousands, or millions, of potential customers every day, at an extremely reasonable price, where and when they’re most likely to convert. This has led to a huge surge of ecommerce, and a complete pivot in the marketing industry.
In the past, brands used to try to get you to buy their product by promoting them on billboards, commercials, print ads, ads everywhere and anywhere, in your face. These days, the most successful brands are encouraging us in native and exciting ways that add value to our everyday lives.
An Instagram ad that’s a pretty picture we would have already loved to see on our Instagram feed, or a photo of an outfit we never would have been able to find searching on our own, a google ad that helps us get what we were searching for, a restaurant recommendation in the city we live in and many more.
Every decision you make is informed by your goal. The platform you choose, the influencer you partner with, the type of content they create; all these factors come into play.
How to Find Effective Influencers for Your Brand
Choosing the right influencer is vital to the success of a killer influencer marketing campaign, but it is far from easy. There are four main ways to find influencers: searching manually, using databases, tapping networks, or exploring marketplaces
This method requires conducting individual searches, scanning web pages for information, and then adding the information to a spreadsheet. It’s extremely time-consuming and not very effective
These are tools that will do the site-scraping for you by pulling publicly available data. These can be good places to start but vetting each influencer can prove time-consuming. Basically, instead of manually doing the searches, databases do the heavy lifting. They’re less time-intensive than manually searching and are cheaper than other options.
Lean on Your Networks:
This method of connecting with influencers sits in between databases and marketplaces. A network has built relationships with influencers, but you must go through their profiles to reach out. Networks tend to focus on specific genres like lifestyle influencers, fashion influencer or food enthusiasts.
A marketplace offers the best features of a database by pulling in real-time information, but it allows you to avoid middlemen. Marketplaces tend to offer less tracking, but they are also more affordable. Examples of marketplaces include Tribe, HYPR, and Brand Snob.
When you do decide to hire an influencer, know that the best ones don’t come cheap. But they are worth their weight in gold. Explain your goals but then sit back and let them do what they do best. The best brands won’t tell an influencer what to do, they’ll trust them to connect with their audience in a way that resonates best.
The Future of Influencer, Content Marketing:
Influencer marketing has garnered a lot of interest over the last few years and has steadily grown as a marketing channel for several years now but 2021 is definitely going to pick up the paste with 63% of marketers intending to increase their budgets for influencers this year. A lot of the general trends that we see across social platforms such as more use of video, a levelling up of in-app shopping, which, will likely see more influencers launching their own products or long-term brand collaboration. With the Instagram and TikTok fueling in the moment type content creation.