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What Is Influencer Marketing? Definitions, Examples, and Resources

May 02, 2016
Aaron Polmeer

By Joshua Nite

Content marketers are facing their most daunting challenge yet. We survived the content glut with solid, documented strategy. We have made great strides toward properly measuring and attributing our content marketing ROI. But the next big bad is even bigger and badder than those obstacles: It’s the Fearsome Social Media Algorithm.

The Algorithm Monster already turned our Facebook streams into trickles. Now Twitter and even Instagram are falling under its spell. The once mighty organic platforms are becoming increasingly pay-to-play. Can marketers beat these algorithm-based feeds to get our content to our audience?

Yes, we can. But we can’t do it alone. As the Lego Movie teaches us, everything is cool when you’re part of a team. With influencer marketing, you can form your own team to take on the Fearsome Algorithm, increase your organic reach, and create awesome content while building lasting relationships.

Influencer marketing is the current hot topic in marketing circles, and it’s not hard to see why. 51% of marketers believe that incorporating influencers into their marketing helps them reach customers. Those who do it well earn an average of $6.85 in media value for every dollar they spend. And the top 13% earn $20 or more.

So, what is influencer marketing? How do you put the pieces together to build something great?

Strap on your Master Builder goggles and let’s explore.

Definition of Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is a marketing tactic in which you identify key individuals with the potential to move your target audience to action, and entice these influencers to promote content on your behalf. The incentive for influencers to work with you can be intangible (added credibility, promotion of their brand) or tangible (cash/booze/puppy slippers).

At TopRank Marketing, we view influencer marketing as the cultivation of long-term relationships. We seek to co-create content with influencers, rather than asking them to promote something they had no part in creating. Co-creation generally leads to higher-quality content that is more relevant to the influencer’s audience. It also creates buy-in for both parties, making influencers more likely to take pride in, and aggressively promote, the finished product.

The Purpose of Influencer Marketing

At its most effective, influencer marketing serves a purpose for everyone involved. Marketers gain credibility with, and exposure to, the influencer’s audience. The influencer gets to take part in creating content that delights their audience. And the audience gets great content they might not otherwise be exposed to, coming from someone they trust.

With TopRank Marketing’s strategy of cultivating influencer relationships, you can build a network of influencers with whom you can continually co-create projects. We’ve found that network rapidly expands to include potential clients as well—our first contact with many existing clients was co-creating content with them.

As influencer marketing becomes more popular, it’s increasingly important to be selective when choosing influencers and strategic in your outreach. See the Resources section below for advice on how to (and how not to) reach out to influencers.

Influencer Marketing Done Right

Here are a few strong examples from brands who excel at influencer marketing by …read more

Source:: Top Rank Blog