From BMW’s latest Instagram influencer campaign with Brain Sacawa of He Spoke Style. For the latest authoritative marketing news, trends, and stats on social media stars and influencer marketing, subscribe to our industry digest newsletter!
In 2015, the world saw the rise of influencer marketing to mainstream prominence. From car brands to travel to many other industries, social media influencers are quickly changing how brands ideate and execute their marketing campaigns. As TV viewership continues to plummet and ad blocking affects advertisers and publishers worldwide, brands are eagerly searching out the best alternative advertising channels to effectively reach audiences and significant demographics online.
Here are three creative ways top brands are marketing with social media influencers:
Increasingly more brands, organizations, and publishers are partnering with top digital influencers to not only drive awareness and engagement online, but also elicit the same response (drive foot traffic) at live events. Although top Instagrammers, YouTubers, and other digital stars have global followings, this strategy can be powerful to drive response and turnout at local events, especially if the sponsored influencer is based locally, too.
In part with Pivot TV and New Amsterdam spirits, top men’s lifestyle YouTuber Aaron Marino of Alpha M presented an local inside look for his hometown Atlanta Georgia. The campaign, which draws awareness to a local arts district revival project, features Marino taking Pivot TV’s host for a city-wide tour. More and more brands are partnering with both influencers and traditional publishers for joint brand collaborations across several social media platforms. See more joint publisher collabs here in our Best Sponsored Instagram Posts Series.
Similarly, see how Hallmark partnered with top fashion blogger and Instagrammer, Blair Eadie of Atlantic-Pacific on a longer-term sponsored collaboration culminating in an appearance at this year’s New York Fashion Week pop-up shop. In contrast to simple one-off sponsorships, many brands are now opting to engage audiences online more effectively with longer-term partnerships where the influencer becomes a strategic and integral part of the overarching marketing campaign.
In 2015, the events and trends surrounding ad blocking and millennial marketing demonstrate the importance of content creation and marketing versus outright ads. On average, marketers allocate 500% more budget for advertising to Millennials than any other demographic combined (Adweek) however, Millennials are outspoken about what they want when it comes to advertising: stories, not ads (Entrepreneur). Additionally, Millennials are one of the most adamant users of ad blocking — according to eMarketer, 2 out of 3 Millennials are ad block users (see how top YouTuber PewDiePie found similar results when he polled his audience on ad blockers here).
By taking the aforementioned factors into consideration, it’s evident that creating content alongside top digital and social media stars is one of the few viable ways to effectively reach important demographics online. Recently, Dolce & Gabbana launched their sponsored Instagram posts campaign from some of the world’s top fashion bloggers including Tuula Vintage, Atlantic Pacific, and Gal Meets Glam. As opposed to display, banner, or even video pre-roll ads (all blocked by ad blockers), sponsored posts with influencers are the kind of content that resonates best with audiences. As such, content creation alongside top digital stars oftentimes drives the most awareness and engagement when compared to traditional forms of advertising.
To see how many brands are creating content with social media stars, check out our Influencer Marketing Case Studies here.
Brands are discovering the effectiveness of sponsored video content with top digital creators beyond just popular YouTubers. For their latest Instagram influencer marketing campaign, BMW enlisted the help of men’s lifestyle tastemaker, Brian Sacawa of He Spoke Style. The multi-platform campaign (blog, YouTube, Instagram), which chronicled Sacawa’s European road trip journey in their new 7-series, featured a dedicated, elegantly shot video.
As brands and advertisers decide how best to create shareable marketing collateral, sponsored video with social media influencers (especially in light of latest video developments on top social networks, namely Facebook Video) effectively leverages both the social reach and the content creation abilities of top creators.
Want to see how top brands like Hallmark, Pivot TV, and more execute their influencer marketing campaigns? Check out our 10-step whitepaper here.