Influencer marketing has grown tremendously over recent years, having created tremendous growth opportunities for brands around the globe. For many organizations, influencer marketing has become a top marketing initiative as it affords the opportunity to not only attract customers with high quality content but earn their trust through people they admire and loyally follow, resulting in increased visibility and more sales. Here we discuss some of the influencer marketing trends for 2018.
Due to the need for professional, but authentic content with a strong dedication to transparency, influencer marketing helps brands more fully reach their audience. Return on investment for influencer marketing efforts has never been better. Consumers truly care about having a connection to the brands they invest in. So, businesses that partner with trusted influencers can more easily build a relationship with important audiences. Influencers have become the catalyst that helps strengthen brand’s credibility and build a connection that fosters strong business-to-consumer relationships. So, to help you capitalize on the effectiveness of influencer marketing, here are 5 trends to monitor through the rest of 2018.
1. Facebook Algorithm for Influencer Marketing
Facebook’s new algorithm is prioritizing meaningful conversations, which has certainly made it more complex for brands moving forward. However, it has also pushed brands to produce better content. Additionally, Facebook’s algorithm is putting more emphasis on meaningful data points. This means that metrics like comments and shares are more important than likes when it comes to data relevancy.
Ultimately, Facebook is hoping to cultivate an environment that promotes quality interaction and that people are only receiving content that is relevant to them. This forces brands to shift their focus on not only creating content that attracts the attention of their audience but ensuring that content promotes more engagement in the form of comments and shares to improve their visibility and grow their brand. Essentially, brands should focus on high-quality content, audience needs, and post interaction if they hope to thrive with Facebook’s new algorithm.
2. Brands Need to Emphasize Genuine Performance Metrics
Because of the increased opportunity for influencers, one issue that brands face is finding influencers with real, engaged audiences. To attract paying brands, some faux influencers pay for followers and likes or quickly build audiences that don’t necessarily provide valuable engagement. Though an influencer may have an impressive follower count, a disengaged audience is useless for brands trying to cultivate meaningful connections.
Brands need to invest sufficient time towards ensuring that an influencer they consider partnering with actually provides value to the brand. Carefully review the influencer account to make sure that they not only provide a good personality and tone fit for your organization but also consistently engage with followers. One good way to ensure influencer value is to leverage social listening and analytics software.
3. Social Platforms are Getting more involved in Influencer Marketing Campaigns
Influencer marketing has benefitted all parties involved. The rise of influencer marketing has not only been beneficial to influencers and brands but social platforms as well. More social platforms such as Instagram and Twitter are making efforts to facilitate brand and influencer collaboration. More social platforms are developing tools that help brands get in front of their audience more effectively through influencer partnerships. Facebook and Instagram, in particular, are offering brands the tools they need to identify, measure and scale sponsored posts. This trend should lead to improved technology for workflow management and more streamlined content distribution.
4. Micro-Influencers are on the Rise
With the risk of brands losing money from working with larger influencers who falsify organic followers, brands are seeing more value in micro-influencers who have a smaller but more engaged audience. In the past, brands have been hesitant about working with micro-influencers as they assume a smaller follower count translates to less reach and engagement, however, the opposite is true.
Larger influencers doesn’t always mean that brands can expect to see a high return on investment. Brands should focus on working with influencers who have cultivated an organic audience that is engaged. With a smaller, but more loyal audience, the likelihood of followers seeing and engaging with a post is much higher. In fact, micro-influencers have proven better engagement rate on a consistent basis.
5. Content Marketing is Continually Favoring Video
Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to build follower investment in your brand over time. Focusing on video has proven to be one of the best ways to more quickly build engagement as well as retain the attention of your audience. This indicates that influencers should be able to create high-quality, engaging video content that demands the attention of their followers.
Social platforms are continually looking for ways to harness video to drive more engagement and increased connection. With the growing popularity of YouTube, Instagram Stories, and IGTV, video looks to be a dominant part of the social media marketing landscape in the near future. Influencers need to be able to capitalize on this trend.
Influencer marketing is projected to grow in 2018 and beyond as it has afforded brands globally the opportunity to tap into new markets and grow their business organically. It’s important that brands continually stay on top of new influencer marketing trends to maintain a competitive social advantage.
If you have questions about influencer marketing trends or want to know more about how we can help your brand grow with carefully selected influencers, contact us.