If you’ve been looking for ways to grow your business online, you’re probably wondering if the benefits of social media marketing and influencer marketing are worth it.
Instead of telling you that “yes, they are”, we’re going to let you draw the conclusions.
In this article you’ll find the top benefits of both social media marketing and influencer marketing.
Plus, you’ll learn how you can use these two types of digital promotion to grow your business, get more leads, and increase your sales.
Social media marketing (SMM) is the strategic and creative use of social media platforms to reach marketing goals and achieve branding objectives.
At a functional level, social media marketing works by driving audience engagement (likes, shares, comments) to increase brand awareness and, ultimately, sales.
To grab their audiences' interest, businesses must create relevant social media content such as images, text, audio, and video.
But there's more to social media marketing than just creating content.
For results to yield, businesses have to develop a strategic chain of tactics that will guide social media users from the stage of not knowing anything about the brand to loyal customers.
To achieve that, the social media content a business creates should focus on solving their customers' problems and/or on entertaining them.
Luckily, social media marketing includes several advanced practices meant to help businesses with their efforts.
Influencer marketing and paid social media advertising are just two of them.
And there's one more thing.
Depending on your target audience, your business needs to identify and select the set of social media platforms worth growing.
At the present time, the most popular social network remains Facebook, closely followed by Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and the newcomer TikTok.
Reddit and Pinterest are also promising networks with hundreds of millions of active users.
However, when selecting your social media channel mix, pay close attention to the demographics that use a specific platform and the type of content they consume.
Your goal is to be where your customers are, so it would be pointless for you to grow a TikTok account if — let's say — you were trying to reach adults over 40 or if you were a B2B company.
Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing in which social media users with lots of followers (influencers) endorse and promote products.
In the past few years, it has grown to become one of the most successful forms of social media marketing.
In fact, despite concerns of influencer marketing decreasing due to COVID-19, it actually increased.
According to a report published by the Influencer Marketing Hub, 75% of businesses intend to dedicate a budget to influencer marketing in 2021.
Its raging success is mostly due to the authentic authority influencers have within specific niches.
In fact, influencers are viewed by their followers as trustworthy experts whose recommendations weigh more than any other type of paid promotion.
Think of them as a new breed of celebrities who are in close contact with their followers.
For you, as a brand, this tight-knit relationship can prove to be instrumental to reaching your goals.
And the benefits of influencer marketing don't stop here.
Social media marketing is, without a doubt, the fastest and most ingenious way of growing brand awareness without breaking the bank.
Social media channels can help your brand tap into a broad audience with little effort and affordable prices.
According to a statistic shared by backlinko, 3.96 billion people worldwide currently use social media.
That's almost half of the globe's population, making social media the broadest channel you could use for your marketing efforts.
Social platforms enable businesses to create hyper-targeted campaigns that address even the most niche audience with the highest precision.
That means you can easily make your brand known by creating a social media profile and launching a series of paid ad campaigns.
Plus, if you include influencer marketing in your overall social media strategy, you'll be able to accelerate your brand's path to fame.
Of course, your success will ultimately depend on the quality of your content and on how well your marketing strategy stacks up against people's needs.
However, for those who are thoughtful enough to generate content with their audiences in mind, social networks provide a vast playground.
Social media marketing can help you drive more website traffic by capturing the attention of people who've already shown an interest in your brand.
There are several ways by which you can achieve this.
One way is through organic traffic, and it implies you sharing content from your blog or website pages to social media pages.
Another way is through paid ads, and it involves you creating campaigns with call-to-actions that drive users on specific website pages.
Social media marketing allows for tons of creativity, so don't limit yourself to only one type of content format.
However, make sure to adapt your content to the platform your posting on, as each platform excels at a specific genre.
Social media marketing is an ingenious way to build backlinks, which are an essential part of any off-site SEO strategy.
In essence, backlinks signal search engines that a particular subject on your website is relevant and helps build authority.
The more backlinks your website has, the more authoritative it will appear to search engage algorithms, and the higher you'll rank.
There's one catch, though: the websites linking back to yours should also have a high authority rank.
Luckily, social media platforms have almost 100 authority scores, so any link from them to your website is golden.
To make the most of social media marketing, make sure you create valuable, relevant content that your audience will want to share.
All shared posts that link back to your website will help you improve search engine ranking.
By authentically engaging with your audience on social media, you'll give customers one more great reason to stick with you in the long term.
For example, hosting a community by creating a branded group is one of the various ingenious ways you can pave the way to new levels of interaction.
Of course, traditional social media techniques can also help you to create habits among your followers.
With just a few well-placed posts, you can invite customers to sneak peek into the backstage of your business, and thus induce more trust.
However, for these techniques to yield, you need to ensure a consistent posting schedule. consistency.
That means posting regularly, and accustoming your followers to certain types of interactions, so that in time they will form a habit out of checking your page.
If you don't have enough time to invest in creating a social media strategy, or the assets that would drive it forward, consider hiring a social media marketing agency.
Social media breaks the unnecessary barriers between you and your customers, allowing for an easier communication stream.
That means that each time your clients have a question, you'll be able to answer them without delay.
With functionalities such as direct messages and comments, you can address customer concerns, interact with potential clients, and build trust all around.
The most successful brands use social media marketing to win the loyalty of their customers through incremental victories.
You can better manage your reputation and use what other people are saying about you to nurture a cohesive, mature brand.
The most immediate benefit of influencer marketing is brand awareness - which is the essential prerequisite to sales.
Because to convince people to buy from you, they first need to learn that you exist.
And here's where partnering with the right influencer can make a huge difference.
Through influencers, you can have an open road to tap into new audiences and thus increase brand awareness.
Not only that, but your entrance will be smoothened by the influencer's expert image in those particular communities.
Brand awareness gained through influencer marketing weighs more than other types of awareness promo, simply because they engage an audience that trusts the source of the communication.
Speaking about trust, influencer marketing can help your business build credibility and authority.
After all, it doesn't matter if the whole world knows about your business — your audience needs to trust you.
Associating yourself with an established influencer will boost your trustworthiness among their followers who might also become your followers.
Fact is, your messages will have more traction if it's delivered by an influencer, as their credibility would also transfer onto your brand.
Remember that influencers are seen as small-scale celebrities and experts in their industries, which undoubtedly reflects the trusts that audiences.
Some niche audiences are extremely hard to reach because they're built as closed communities.
To enter, you need a pass, or a vote of confidence from an insider.
Influencer marketing can be your ticket to the core of such communities you wouldn't otherwise be able to access.
You can leverage the expertise of an established influencer to expand your brand into new territories and win the trust of niches.
The odds of people responding positively to an invitation extended by an influencer they trust are promising.
If you're looking for new followers or prospect clients you could pitch new products and services to, influencers can help you gather new contacts without hassle.
For example, contests or giveaways launched by influencers are great ways through which you can gather more followers on your social media profiles.
Make following your page one of the mandatory enrolment requirements and ensure your prize is worth the effort.
Then, ask an influencer that aligns with your brand values to launch the contest and encourage their followers to enrol.
Yes, generating leads can be that simple.
According to a study conducted by the Influencer Marketing Hub, influencer marketing produces $5.20 for every dollar spent.
That's right - we're speechless too.
The high return on investment is proof that the authority influencers have within their communities is amazingly powerful.
In essence, the recommendations they make are seen as proof that a certain product/service is highly desirable.
And followers will try that product or service soon after they've seen it endorsed by an influencer.
That doesn't mean that simply getting an influencer to post a photo of your product or service is enough to make your sales boom.
Be realistic with your expectations and be prepared to put in the needed time, creativity and resources to produce engaging influencer marketing campaigns.
Or, if you don't have the time, turn to a social media marketing agency for guidance and implementation.
Influencer marketing can enrich your strategy and offer your posting schedule a much-needed refresh.
While coherence is important as an overall strategy, you also need to disrupt your usual agenda in order to keep followers interested.
That's why bringing influencers on board can be of tremendous help.
Not only will they offer you access to new audiences, but they'll also reignite the attention of your current followers.
Plus, if you choose your influencer strategically, you'll reinforce your brand values through content that is meaningful and useful to your audiences.
Like a snowball effect, this will lead to more engagement, trust, and credibility.
Of course, all these will, later on, translate into sales.
Influencer marketing can help you bring a more authentic dimension to your social media efforts.
By combining these two types of digital strategies, you can reach all your awareness goals, and then some.
But how to use influencer marketing on social media?
Well, there are different types of collaborations you can propose to influencers, depending on your marketing objectives.
For example, you can reach out to influencers and negotiate a partnership to produce sponsored social media content.
This means that, in exchange for a fee, the influencer will post a number of social media posts and stories endorsing your product or service.
This type of collaboration works exceptionally well for building brand awareness, for promoting offers, or gaining more leads.
Another typical way of collaborating with influencers is through gifting.
In this case, your business offers a free product sample or a complementary service experience that the influencer will review on their social media channels.
For this approach to work, you need to make sure that the influencer you’ll be sending the gift to is open to such an exchange.
So make sure to explain expectations in advance, outline what you can offer in exchange, and be transparent.
Since gifting collaborations have reviews as an objective, these types of influencer engagements are perfect for product launches or for introducing new services.
Moving forward, if your end marketing goal stretches over a longer time period, you can consider a brand ambassadorship collaboration.
In a brand ambassadorship type of engagement, an influencer dedicates themselves to your brand in the long-haul.
That means they will regularly create content about your business and promote your products/services during a commonly agreed-upon period.
Brand ambassadorship can help your business gain more credibility, authority, and win over niche audiences.
However, before you extend an invitation, make sure you carefully shortlist a few influencers who match your brand's style and values.
You also need to carefully analyse their profiles and look at their engagement metrics to see whether or not they have the reach you're looking for.
Also, it's a good idea to run their profiles through a professional followers' check tool to ensure their audience contains real profiles and not bots.
A social media marketing agency can help you at this point and come up with verified influencers that fit your brand.
Once you shortlist your influencers, reach out to them with a clear marketing brief in which you state your goals and expectations.
Social media marketing and influencer marketing go hand-in-hand.
By creating a joint strategy, you can amplify your reach and accelerate your results.
We, at Neox Marketing, specialise in helping our clients achieve new audiences through innovative digital techniques.
It's what we love and what we're great at — and we'd love to help you as well.
If you're serious about your marketing efforts, give us a sign, and we'll take you on an exploration meeting to discover how we can best serve your needs.