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As audiences migrate away from television and toward social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Vine, and Snapchat, brands are diverting more resources into social media marketing and influencer marketing strategies. By one estimation, 84% of marketers plan on implementing an influencer marketing strategy in the next 12 months, making it one of the fastest growing forms of advertising today. To help brands better understand the concepts and processes behind this effective approach to reaching new, engaged audiences, we’ve developed a comprehensive glossary of terms for companies to reference when making decisions regarding their influencer marketing strategies and campaigns.
Social media influencers are digital content creators (YouTubers, Instagrammers, Viners, Snapchatters, bloggers) who have amassed a large number of followers and/or subscribers and maintain an intimate relationship with their audiences. By partnering with social media stars through integrated influencer marketing campaigns, brands can increase their exposure to new consumers and leverage the rapport influencers have built with their fans. To learn more about social media influencers, see our posts:
Influencer marketing is an effective type of marketing that partners brands with social media influencers like Instagrammers, YouTubers, Viners, Snapchatters, and bloggers for both branding and direct-response campaigns. Influencer marketing capitalizes on the reach of social media stars and leverages the powerful/relevant relationship between digital influencers and their followers. In 2015, influencer marketing campaigns achieved an ROI of $6.85 for every $1 spent, making it one of the most efficient marketing methods today. For a thorough definition of influencer marketing, see more here:
YouTube now reaches over 1 billion active users worldwide, and YouTube content creators (YouTubers) command the attention of millions of engaged followers with billions of video views. To help brands gain access and market effectively to YouTube’s expansive audiences, YouTube influencer agencies work with companies (including MCNs, traditional talent management agencies) to develop, execute, and manage social media influencer campaigns facilitating far-reaching, impactful, and high ROI collaborations between brands of all advertiser categories and today’s top YouTube stars. For more information on YouTube influencer agencies and how they work with brands, see our posts:
Influencer marketing is the fastest growing customer acquisition method today (22% of customers are earned through influencer marketing campaigns, according to a 2015 survey), but finding the right social media influencer, developing an effective campaign, and integrating a social media influencer strategy into larger marketing efforts can still be a challenge for brands. To help companies achieve success with influencer marketing, we recommend taking advantage of discovery and measurement resources like Socialblade.com, influencer marketing platforms like Famebit (self-service marketplaces), and influencer marketing agencies (who oftentimes use the best tools/platforms in addition to maintaining deep relationship with thousands of proven influencers). To learn more about the tools available to brands, see the following:
As the term implies, YouTubers and Vloggers (video-bloggers) are digital content creators who produce and star in YouTube videos. Because YouTube generates high levels of substantial views and engagement (mobile users spend an average of 40 minutes per session, according to a YouTube’s press release statistics) and popular YouTube personalities attract millions of subscribers to their channels, global brands like Audible, Squarespace, BarkBox, and Coca-Cola have all invested in influencer marketing partnerships with today’s top YouTubers. See the most popular YouTubers here:
Instagrammers are social media influencers, content creators, and creatives that have acquired thousands or millions of followers on the popular photo- and video-sharing app, Instagram. By creating influencer marketing campaigns with top Instagrammers, companies can increase brand exposure to and engagement with the platform’s 400 million users. Discover how brands work with Instagrammers here:
Though sponsored content can take different forms depending on the medium and channel it’s on, creating sponsored content campaigns with a social media influencer involves deftly integrating the brand’s name, event, messaging, product, and/or services into the influencer’s videos, photos, or blogs while maintaining the form and qualities of the original content. Properly done, sponsored content with influencers is an effective marketing strategy because it optimizes the positioning, audience reach, and social engagement/endorsement of top social media influencers towards the brand’s marketing objectives. Learn more about sponsored content via the following posts:
Brands have always marketed through high-profile sponsorships. Previously, the world’s top brands inked ambassador deals with A-list actors and/or sports stars. This practice may have worked across TV audiences of old, however with increasingly greater percentages of “cord-cutters” or “cord-nevers” and the immense growth of social media platforms, brands now need to find ways to effectively message segmented audiences, niche interests, and hard-to-reach demographics.
Enter the social media star (YouTubers, Instagrammers, Snapchatters, et. al.). As Adweek’s Lauren Johnson aptly reports, “brands’ next big celebrity deals may be with social media stars.” Social media influencers have taken the world by storm across the channels and platforms audiences spend significant hours on each day (easily supplanting TV time spend). Today, an extraordinary amount of consumer buying power rests in the audiences frequenting Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat channels from their favorite social media star and seeking each influencer’s latest social endorsements, recommendations, and purchases. In a second-year Variety study, Susanne Ault finds that digital influencers continue to best top celebrities and music artists in marked stride amongst U.S. teens.
As a direct result, brands today are recognizing the critical importance of sponsorship deals and strategic, longterm collaborations with social media stars and digital influencers. Unlike most of today’s celebrities who hold little relevance and lack social engagement/reach and conversion-generating ability, social media influencers wield an enormous amount of power (stemming from the rapport and audience affinity each influencer has established) across multiple digital channels/platforms and can positively affect purchasing behavior on a large scale. For more information on brand sponsorship with social influencers, visit these resources:
KPI metrics (key performance indicators) are quantifiable values that assess whether or not a particular influencer marketing campaign achieved the business’s objectives and fulfilled expectations. Click-through rates, conversions, impressions, website traffic, email signups, and new followers are some of the most common KPIs brands used to judge the efficacy of their influencer marketing campaigns. However, the maturation, ongoing development, and idiosyncrasies of newer social channels (e.g. Snapchat, Instagram’s recent video view display) require marketers to know exactly how to best measure campaign success across each platform. See how brands can determine campaign success here: