So, you are an influencer? Urgh!
With every brand out there swearing by the power of influencer marketing, why do customers and brands alike hate influencers?
For the last couple of years, everywhere you see, people have been capitalizing on the new trend — influencer marketing. I know of Instagram influencers who you would find on calls all the time trying to score that next promoted post on the feeds of their followers. I know of influencers who feel entitled to free food and drinks in exchange for putting up a picture showing ‘chilling in the cool joint they just discovered’. I know of startups, entrepreneurs and brands who are looking to get a slice of the influencer marketing pie. And then, I also know of brands who have burnt their hands, and would rather get bit by a snake than get into influencer marketing again.
And that is what brings us to this point.
It is obvious that influencer marketing has a lot of potential, but at the same time, it has a lot of glaring flaws in the way it has been going on currently. And that is precisely what I want to talk about today.
WHY DOES INFLUENCER MARKETING WORK
It is as simple as that. It is the same reason why you find customer testimonials on the websites of b2b businesses. It is the same reason why you find businesses paying so much attention to what ratings, and reviews they get on their product pages, google local search results, facebook pages, app store etc. Social proof matters. If I come across a few consumers who have had a bad experience with a product, chances are, I will stay away. After all, who is willing to risk ruining their day with a bad experience. Similarly, if I come across customers who are singing praises for a product/business, I may not transact immediately, but my inhibition barrier definitely goes down. It all comes down to social proof.
Influencer marketing is social proof on steroids.
If someone has sway over tens and hundreds of thousands of potential customers out there, a brand would be crazy not to tap into that huge reach. And that is what has been fuelling the growth of influencer marketing as…