Influencer marketing is the shiny new gem in the crown jewels of digital marketing. We have previously discussed the differences between traditional and influencer marketing, as well as the latter’s advantages in the ever-evolving digital landscape.
This kind of collaborative marketing method can be beneficial for both startups and established businesses. The influence of a popular influencer can lend credibility to a young brand’s reputation. More established brands can also expand their customer base through this method, as people tend to place more trust in individuals as opposed to faraway, faceless corporate entities.
If your brand is looking to work with an influencer, read on to learn about the three major types of influencer marketing.
Barter entails a brand sending an influencer some of their products or services in exchange for social media deliverables. These could be a social media post featuring the products, an unboxing video, or a product review. The process is mutually beneficial to both parties and often does not include any other monetary dealings.
Affiliate marketing is a step-up from barter. A brand may give an affiliated influencer unique coupon or discount codes for their products that the influencer can share with their followers. The influencer makes a small commission every time a lead is generated from clicking on affiliated links or a purchase being made through them. These campaigns may be clubbed with sponsorships. This is commonly seen in the YouTube community, where content creators may be offered discount codes for products in their niche. This can include anything from beauty products, books and even subscriptions to streaming services or skill learning programs.
Fixed fee model
This is often seen with influencers that are already well-established in their respective niches. This makes brands comfortable paying an upfront fee for their services. In a fixed fee model, a brand pays the influencer a fixed amount of money in exchange for a certain amount of social media deliverables.
Influencers turning into entrepreneurs
Apart from being brand ambassadors, an increasing number of influencers are breaking the surface of the entrepreneurial world. Realizing the power of influencer marketing, many are launching their businesses in different fields, such as beauty, fitness and fashion, and creating their own products and businesses from the ground up.
These businesses have the advantage of a pre-existing, loyal customer base due to the influencer’s large following. Followers are likely to buy the product as a show of support towards the influencer. Thus, the initial brand loyalty for the product stems from the bond between the literal figurehead of the brand–the influencer–and their customers; the actual quality of the product itself usually only comes in next.
As followers tend to be a community of like-minded individuals that share similar ideals and values with the influencer, it is important that the products created by the influencer align with and cater to this sense of community.
This can be seen prominently within the beauty industry. The average shopper at a make-up store is likely to be familiar with influencer-created brands like Huda Beauty by Huda Kattan, Kylie Cosmetics by Kylie Jenner, Fenty Beauty by Rihanna, Dragun Beauty by Nikita Dragun, About Face by Halsey, to name a few. Many of these products ascribe to ideals, like being cruelty-free, vegan and more inclusive of diverse skin tones, promoted by the influencers.
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