With influencer marketing on the rise, and more brands looking to get involved, it’s important to understand not only how to technically run an influencer program, but also what consumers are looking for in the same.
And while getting a celebrity to tweet about your latest product will undoubtedly have an impact on brand awareness, that option is out of reach for the vast majority of brands. So what can you do? What are the best ways to utilize lower-level, less expensive influencer marketing options to maximize your messaging?
To get a better understanding of the key factors you need to take into account, CPC Strategy recently interviewed more than 1, 500 internet users to get their perspectives on what they value most in influencer marketing, and what they’re most likely to respond to in influencer posts.
Here’s what they found.
The first thing to note is that trust is key. CPC’s researchers found that, of the respondents who do engage with influencer campaigns, the influencer’s knowledge of the product and niche, and the perception that they would personally use the product, are the key factors which are likely to drive response.
CPC also found that an established level of recognition and trust within the related industry is important – the majority of respondents indicated that they would be more likely to trust an influencer’s recommendation if they already trusted the influencer involved.
These findings may seem somewhat obvious, but they highlight the importance of selecting the right influencer, which won’t necessarily be the most popular voice. You might be better off selecting a highly respected representative in your niche, as opposed to a big name star who's not connected to that industry. The relevance of influencers has long been a key note, but these stats further highlight the importance of this element.
CPC also found that the transparency of influencer marketing remains problematic, with up to 40% of respondents indicating that they can’t tell when a post is sponsored by a brand.
As you can see here, post tags are the most effective way to provide that transparency, which is why Facebook, in particular, is putting more emphasis on this element through its Branded Content Tags, which are available on both Facebook and Instagram.
You can expect such notifiers to become more prevalent, and for the platforms to implement new penalties for those who fail to use the right tags on their posts.
Also, another interesting note – CPC’s researchers found that Facebook is the best place to reach consumers over the age of 25, while Instagram is the best place to reach Gen Z.
“Nearly 70% of consumers are most likely to hear about new products, services, or events from people they follow on Facebook”
For younger generations that shifts – you can see the growth of Instagram’s influence among younger users in the charts below, with YouTube also a worthy consideration.
That last chart on the far left is particularly important – Facebook, while it performs well in overall terms, is believed to be losing its hold on younger audiences, which, theoretically, could eventually see it superseded. Though that will take some time, and Facebook, of course, owns Instagram too. Still, it’s an important note for those looking to reach specific audiences and demographics.
There’s a heap more data and insights in the full CPC report, and its’ worth a look for anyone considering getting into influencer marketing, or whose looking to improve their influencer performance.