AdWeek & Forbes have recently discussed the importance of influencers, but not on the scale you’re used to. Influence is no new trend in advertising, but ‘micro-influencers is the next big trend!
I’ve never been a big fan of billboards. I know that they create impressions, but it is the type of advertising that is limited to a brand that has achieved a certain level of market saturation, or, the BIG GUYS. Those big guys need to have marketing and advertising messages at every level of the marketing spectrum from commercials, to billboards, to flyers, to print ads, to social media. I consider billboards a buy that should be one of the last pieces of marketing, once all the other bases are covered. For me, that’s not a viable marketing solution for 99% of the businesses we serve at Crowd Siren. We serve mostly Fortune 500 companies and smaller. Some are local-focused businesses, and others are 'big guys' who need supplemental marketing. It could be a brand on the Las Vegas strip or a small chicken restaurant near the community college. These brands couldn’t and shouldn’t buy billboards. Likewise, they probably can't afford 1 tweet from Kim Kardashian or Selina Gomez, but they can still maximize their profits from influencer marketing.
It's not always about capturing the biggest marketing opportunity, but in this case, brands can capture the smartest marketing opportunity that has true ROI.
Yes, you can make impressions through billboards and influencers, celebrity brands and large publications. BUT, (here is the big butt) who the hell is looking at those messages? Is it the chicken restaurant's target market? Or is it just a bunch of random followers? A bunch of random drivers on a freeway? Randoms, not customers.
With micro-influencers, you have a wider reach to a smaller, more segmented demographic.
Crowd Siren's microinfluencer program is specifically designed to reach a local-based customer.
Here is an example:
135 Facebook Friends < 1M Facebook Fan Page fans
So, let’s break down how these numbers work.
According to Pew Research, the average Facebook user has 338 friends and, on average, 33% of those connections will see and interact with their social messages. So that means for every message a Facebook user posts, on average, 113 of their friends will see that post.
13 Brand Ambassadors x 113 Connections = 1,469 Total Reach
On the other hand, Valley Wag is reporting that the total number of fans who actually see a brand's post is as low as 1 or 2 percent.
1,000,000 Fans x 1.5% Organic Reach = 15,000 Total Reach
Taking the median of 1.5%, that means you’d only need 13 Brand Ambassadors to reach almost 1,500 people on Facebook.
Here’s what I know: Word of mouth is the best leverage that you can get for a brand. This is established through social media marketing.
Let me play out a real-life example for you:
Typically, an event, concert, festival or fun-run would go straight to radio advertising to reach a large market, locally. I get this, you have to make sure the tour can sell-out each stop, that the expenses of the performer are covered, that the street closures are paid for, that tickets are sold and the story is told. How else are you going to ensure that locals get excited about the event enough to purchase tickets?
Micro-Influencers, that's how. This is the untapped sweet spot.
Instead of setting aside free tickets for radio personalities, Crowd Siren will distribute these same tickets/promotions/giveaways to social media micro-influencers based on location.
Providing the influencers with tickets, VIP experiences or additional swag before, during and after the event will promote attendance to a target market in a way that reaches customers who live near the events location.
Crowd Siren ensures that the micro-influencers social media posts are on-brand, that correct hashtags are used and photos accompany posts. Crowd Siren will also track engagements, like, comments and click-throughs. Now, instead of the radio personality answering the phone and talking to the fifth caller, the brand can specify where those marketing tickets go and how far they reach.
The Crowd Siren database will match local micro influencers to the brand's event. These influencers will then share the brand's Facebook posts and tweets to create buzz leading up to the event date. During and after the event, our micro influencers will post user generated content to their social networks, tag the brand, use the specified event #hashtag(s) and we can accurately track and report results.
Here's another example, one that has more to do with products:
My sorority sister from college (~10years past) began writing and photographing her make-up addiction. She's in the first year of a make-up blog, but uses Facebook as her primary marketing platform.
Recently, she posted a photo of her make-up on Facebook and gave kudos to the brand: Kat Von D's Foundation.
Now, I've been an avid Clinique user since I started wearing makeup (age 15??). But, I was intrigued at how great this looked. So, I went to Sephora, got a color match and bought the new makeup. I turned my back on Clinique and now am a huge fan of Kat Von D. I would have never thought that her brand would align with me. I am not covered in tattoos. I never felt like her brand was for me. But the product spoke for itsself. My sorority sister had way more influence in making me switch my loyalties than either make-up brand could have ever had. Plus, since I'm friends with Angeline and her makeup has always been on-point I trust her.
I'm talking about my sorority sister: Angeline Peterson. Checkout her blog: "Betties on a Budget."
She proved to me that a new product was worth my loyalties, worth my money, worth the switch.
Now, she sometimes is paid for these things, but sometimes, it’s just her unpaid opinion. I don't really care either way, because the bottom line is that she SHOWED me that I needed something new. And she was right. It just took her own testimonial to show me the way.
In the AdWeek article, Angeline would be considered an “average joe.” (Although she's super hot and I would never refer to her as such. She's basically a model in the making.)
“The key to benefitting from influencer marketing is to identify the right social users with the influence in a particular field.” the Ad Week article states
Crowd Siren sees Angeline as an opportunity, though. We want her to leverage her influence for brands. So, therein lies the key to her influence in a way that will create recurring revenue for a company. Thus far her influence has been completely untapped because her social following doesn't look huge. She doesn't have millions of Youtube subscribers.
What she does have is 200 friends who live in Nevada connected to her on Facebook. When she posts, her reach averages 5-50 engagements with comments from friends who actually ask for links to buy the make-up she suggests. At first glance that doesn't look like much, but if those 50 engagements turned into 25 purchases of $60 each, that is $1500 for the brand. Now, multiply Angeline by ten, twenty or thirty.
With Crowd Siren's new micro-influencer service, we place brands in front of targeted social media users who live in Las Vegas.
Las Vegas is our first deployment of this service in 2016 and our niche of micro-influencers.
The article references an influencer saying:
“Her relationship is more personal than the relationship celebrities have with their followers, and therefore is the foundation of her power to sway opinion.”
Crowd Siren accomplishes this through very targeted influencer options including the following Las Vegas residents: