A look at the future of influencer marketing

In 2019 we witnessed some wobbles and uncertainty in the influencer world, so what can we expect in 2020 when it comes to influencer marketing?

Firstly let’s take a look at what happened in 2019……………….

 

 

Is the worry over?

At the beginning of the year there were a lot of questions around trust. Uncertainty was rife as to whether influencers were being genuine and how authentic partnerships really were, resulting in the enforcement of #ad. We know as marketers and retailers that good influencer marketing is a key gateway to create brand awareness, so how can we move forward?

As a marketing tactic it can be very cost effective especially for smaller brands and the return on investment can be significant. Building a foundation of trust is absolutely key to the success of influencer marketing & there are certainly a few tactics that can really help with creating authenticity….

Organic influencers

We all know that we would trust someone we know or could relate to over a celebrity or public figure, which suggests that real people equal real influence. Rethinking your influencer strategy to include your customers can have real leverage when it comes to actual impressions.

According to a recent Stackla study 79% of people say that user-generated content (UGC) highly impacts their purchasing decisions, while only 8% say influencer-created content would do the same.

So how can you utilise your customers in this way?

Brand advocates, that’s what you need, the real people that buy your products, love them & want to shout about them!
So what content can be generated and used as marketing material?

  • Guest blog posts – making your customers feel valued can be very beneficial
  • Instagram takeovers from top brand advocates – putting sole trust in the hands of your customer
  • Asking questions and doing polls to your social audiences and displaying the responses
  • Case studies – Just how much impact has this product had on your life?
  • Genuine customer reviews – remember that sometimes reviews can be faked!
  • Testimonials – video & written content
  • Regramming customer Instagram stories and organic posts (e.g top customer of the week)
  • Retweeting and replying to customer queries (and complaints!) – Great customer service is essential….
  • Using user-generated feedback to guide your brand’s future content strategy

In 2020 we predict that there will be a big shift in how UGC is used by brands and how these trustworthy connections can be utilised to make an impact in retail.

So we have user generated content but what other organic forms of influencer marketing can we expect to see in 2020?

Employee advocacy

An employee, a real person, can create passionate and thought provoking content and build brand awareness across social media.

By activating employees on social media you can unlock an authentic voice that’s hard for even the best marketer to conjure up. It obviously isn’t as simple as saying ‘go’, brands need to create a plan with rules and guidelines but trusting your employees with your brand can go a long way!

In 2015 CISCO reported that employees’ social posts generate 8X more engagement than posts from their employer. That was back in 2015 so we imagine the impact will be far greater in 2020.

A great example of a brand harnessing the power of their people is Lush. They build a sense of community and are encouraged to post about what excites them and makes them happy.

If you search for #lushemployee on Instagram there are over 8,000 posts including photos of employees working instore with their colleagues, product reviews and videos, product displays, pictures of employees with furry friends & even photos of Lushies attending climate change demonstrations across the world!

Lush employees social media

Lush employees social media

Lush employees social media

Make your employees passionate about your brand and then open up Pandora’s Box to spread to word!

So there’s two forms of influencer marketing that we should see make a big impact in 2020. If you’re itching to do something like this and you need some support with your strategy then get in contact, we would love to chat.

Here’s to a prosperous year for retail!

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