You will not see the term influencer marketing for the first time. Companies spend a lot of money to work with. Many marketers swear by it, but is the hype surrounding influencers justified? This blog discusses 5 reasons why you should not use influencer marketing.
What is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is a form of marketing in which you collaborate with influential people or influencers. As a brand, you benefit from the reach and success of the influencers. Influencer marketing is nothing new: Stars like Marilyn Monroe have also touted brands, but nowadays this usually happens online via social media.
1. Finding the right ‘fit’ is difficult
Each brand has its own identity with values that it considers important. When looking for a suitable influencer, you must ensure that the influencer radiates the same values. When a product is touted by an influencer who totally doesn’t fit the type of product or industry, it loses its credibility. As a brand, it is therefore important to be selective. When collaboration is entered into with the wrong match, a brand can be publicly blackened via social media without any effort.
2. Influencers are almost never authentic
Imagine seeing an Instagram post of an actress with a day cream in her hands, telling about what a miracle cure the cream is and how smooth her skin feels. Do you believe that she really wanted to tell her story about the day cream?
Most people immediately realize that the post is advertising and that the actress is certainly paid to promote the product. Today, influencers are also required to indicate when a post is sponsored. This does not necessarily have to be negative, since you as a follower have now seen the product and the actress is a reasonable ‘fit’ with the brand. But it doesn’t seem really authentic. Especially when an influencer promotes a different brand every week, it can come across as unfair to the followers and thus counteract.
3. Micro-budget = Micro impact
Most companies do not have the budget to look up Doutzen Kroes or Brad Pitt as an influencer. The high costs compared to other marketing tools are therefore a disadvantage of influencer marketing. Micro-influencers are a more affordable and accessible option. A micro-influencer is an influencer who has between 5,000 and 25,000 followers on social media.
A disadvantage of this is therefore already in the name: Micro influencer. Due to the smaller reach, micro-influencers are cheaper than a Doutzen Kroes with millions of followers, but this also means that your brand reaches fewer potential customers. There are plenty of marketing tools you could use that are cheaper and create more reach.
4. You don’t have complete control
As indicated earlier, the price tag is due to the influencer you work with. The bigger and more famous the influencer, the more budget you need. But smaller influencers are also expensive compared to other marketing tools, and you cannot predict in advance what the exact results of the collaboration will be. After all, you work with another person who can determine how they want to promote your brand. For example, if you ask as a clothing brand if an influencer wants to share a garment on Instagram, the person will create the image and the text below. As a result, you sometimes do not have full control over the influencer marketing process, and the results may deviate from what you would like to see.
5. Influencer marketing is difficult to measure
The biggest drawback is the fact that it is difficult to measure the effectiveness of influencer marketing. It sounds cliché, but the measuring is knowing. If you cannot measure the effect, you cannot say whether a campaign has worked or not. It is not certain whether the result was really due to that influencer, or to one of the other means used.
When brands use influencer marketing, they often look at the range they can get with it. The range is, therefore, one of the easiest statistics to measure. But for the same price that you pay an influencer to post something about your brand once, you could also buy a billboard or start a Facebook campaign for months. This ultimately gives you much more reach.
The measurability also depends on the goal with which you use influencer marketing. When you create a personal discount code for an influencer, you can see exactly which conversions are due to the influencer. But this is only in the case of a webshop and when you want to steer sales as a company. And for the same money, you have a successful Facebook campaign where you can see exactly what effect the campaign has had.
Is the hype surrounding Influencer Marketing justified?
There are certainly disadvantages to influencer marketing. When entering into a collaboration with an influencer, there is no guarantee that your target group will feel addressed by the chosen influencer and the reach is often much lower than expected. The biggest problem for marketers is the fact that the effect is difficult to measure, while it takes a lot of budgets. The costs are often higher than previously thought.
But using influencers can certainly increase the reach and awareness of the influencer’s followers. Loaves webshop is an example of how the consistent use of smaller influencers can increase brand awareness. In a few years, the fashion brand has become a huge success on social media. About 80% of all content they post is created by micro-influencers. Nowadays Loavies don’t even have to pay for this: in the meantime, the brand has built up a large fan base who voluntarily uses the hashtag #girlsgoneloavies in their posts. In return, the best posts are then used on the channels of Loaves. In addition, the photos of influencers are also used on the website, whereby the products in the photos can be purchased directly.
So is influencer marketing really the answer to your marketing question?
This, therefore, depends entirely on what you want to achieve from your influencermarketing and what your budget is for this. Influencer marketing is not a suitable tool for every purpose. Influencer marketing has increased reach and brand awareness at Loaves. But for these and other purposes, there are many more alternatives that are more affordable and reliable. Therefore, first look at the different options (e.g. digital marketing Services) before you decide to use influencer marketing.
Name- Raunak Pandey
Bio- Raunak is a Mechanical Engineer by qualification & Marketer by passion. He is the founder of Maiden Stride, a leading digital marketing company that provides world-class search engine marketing services and website & application development.