What is influencer marketing?
Though I continue to read and hear more about this type of marketing I am still really confused on the actual meaning. It seems like a position that can be done within a company’s Marketing and/or Advertising teams via traditional and/or social/new media.
Forbes contributor AJ Agrawal describes influencer marketing as the grey territory between an official testimonial and a subtle product mention, which is done almost in passing.
Maybe defining the two terms separately could help me understand better?
Influence: The capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself.
Marketing: The action or business of promoting and selling products or services.
According to Global Yodel Media Group, a creative agency specializing in social media, new media, influence marketing and content creation, influencer marketing is popular with good reason, if the tactic is done right, influencer marketing can have unparalleled sales, growth and equity results for brands and generate unmatched return on investment (ROI) for marketing budgets (Global Yodel, 2016).
What has made influencer marketing unique in the present is how social media communication has leveled the playing field and given anyone and everyone the opportunity to share their voice. Anyone with internet access can share their opinion and content, and if they do it well enough- become an influencer.
The most intriguing people will rise above the rest. These individuals that rise way above the rest in following, engagement and/or content creation are a new breed of social media influencer which has rapidly changed the marketing landscape. These are the individuals that brands are scrambling to work with.
From this exert anyone with an opinion, industry expert or not, could become a influencer mainly based off social/new media popularity. I am not a popular, viral internet sensation, with high social media engagement and following, so looks like I am out of the race of becoming an influencer, darn 😦
So is influencer marketing an important and worthwhile strategy for fashion brands to put their resources, financial resources towards? I am not sure. While the strategy is fairly new for the fashion industry, many brands have jumped on the bandwagon of influencer marketing. While some are still trying to determine if it is worth the time and funding, others are catching up on this marketing trend. I feel like influencer marketing may be short lived, but only time (and the fashion industry) can tell.