A colleague of mine, Amber King, wrote this article. I asked her permission to repost because I believe this can be truly helpful for businesses.
Whether you like it or not, marketing has essentially migrated from the offline world into the fast-paced world of the internet. A lot (if not all) of marketers nowadays are focusing more than 50% of their efforts to get the attention of their target sales and business leads through digital means. These can be through social media marketing, email marketing, or even SMS marketing. And they are right to do just that. The more effort they make to be more visible to their target customers, the more chances they have to actually make a sale. But selling isn’t all about getting the attention of your target clients, though it does play a big, important part.
A factor of equally important concern is to get the trust of your sales and business leads. This, of course, is considered the hardest part of selling. But get this, there are individuals on the digital plane who can easily persuade a multitude of netizens to purchase a product or service simply by saying that they liked it. In fact, they don’t even have to say “Buy this product, it’s great”. They can say something as simple as “I really like the features of this product by ___” and their followers would place it at the top of their list the next time they need a similar product.
No, these people are not marketers, but they might as well be. They are just regular Tom, Dick and Harry’s (and Jane’s) who provide unbiased, truthful and comprehensive reviews about certain products, services, and brands that they personally use. These people are simple bloggers, but because of their honesty and objectivity, they garner a significant following and become (often unintended) thought leaders in a variety of niche markets that most marketers can only dream of becoming.
These people are called influencers.
There are two kinds of influencers. The “commercial” type and the “authentic” type.
The commercial type is actually just a marketer in disguise who often feigns objectivity and truthfulness in their blogs to gain the trust of companies and businesses. Yes, these people are writing reviews in the hopes of becoming labeled as official brand evangelists and get all the perks that come with it. And a lot of companies are actually fooled by these people. While they boast to companies that they are influencers who hold sway over the purchasing decisions of their followers, the truth is these “followers” can see right through them.
The authentic influencers are the ones that brands should persuade if they wish to be seen in a better light by their target customers. These bloggers often lurk in obscure (for the brands, anyway) blogs and forums where they often lead lengthy and insightful conversations with their readers and other forum members. To be spoken of positively by a true influencer means better visibility and long term profitability for that lucky brand.
If you want to secure a reliable online presence for your niche, then it is the attention of these bloggers that you should attract first. But doing so is not a simple task. While the support of a true influencer can significantly increase your sales conversion, you must understand that they place their integrity first. If they ever write about you, you can be sure that it’s the cold, hard truth. While they may start conversations about your brand, these discussions are free to go in any direction that the other members please. They will not actively promote your brand at the risk of being labeled a sellout.
To effectively get the attention of an influencer in your niche, you have to make sure that you deliver everything your promise about your brand and your product. Otherwise, that influencer might just bring your bad points to light.
We know that social media is a powerful tool. Capturing the attention of even a single social influencer can help you get big. It is important for us to understand the value of a good content because it will get us that influencer and our target market.
I hope this article will be much help to you as it has been to us.