Most articles claiming that influencer marketing is dead or dying are mostly wrong. I say mostly, because it is true that the diet-beauty-lifestyle crew have mostly been found out. Although it's amazing it took that long.
The problem with these accounts has always been authenticity. You don't have to be a cynical old dog like this writer to question the validity of a 'superstar' travel-blogger blagging free vacations at an endless cycle of luxury resorts.
The answer? Your influencers are closer than you think. They are the people who are passionate about your product and service. Who know more about how it works or what you offer than you do, sometimes.
Examples? Every time we launch a campaign, or run a new language course our students tag us on social media, especially Instagram and Instagram Stories. They don't ask for anything in return. And they love the recognition when we curate their posts into our own stories.
And then, guess what, they connect with the other students quoted in that series of posts. They start chatting with one another. Sharing their learning stories. Tagging each other, their friends, and of course our business. All of which feeds the social media algorithm.
As above, I'm an old cynic these days. But even I'm moved by the enthusiastic feedback from our customers. And their desire to share their stories with others. Learning. Friendship. Storytelling. Master these values and your (micro)-influencer strategy will fly.
Word of mouth has long been one of the most effective marketing strategies, as people look for recommendations on products and services from those they trust. The sentiment of that has not changed, but the impression is you have to pay big to play and net return. That’s where micro-influencers come in. They are a different category of influencer that doesn’t require the A-list bucks. And while they have less than a million followers -- typically in the range of thousands or tens of thousands -- their audiences tend to be hyper-engaged. Some simple ways to find these influencers include starting with those that may have already expressed an interest in your brand. Another option: mine relevant hashtags. The key is finding people who are already passionate about the subject, as authenticity matters when it comes to engaging an audience.