There are two primary goals of influencer marketing. The first is to generate real sales using the platform of the social media creators you market with. This is a short-term goal and something most businesses prioritize.
Seeing immediate ROI from your influencer marketing campaign helps justify your decision-making. It is a quantifiable result, a way to be confident that your marketing strategy is working.
The second goal of influencer marketing is increasing brand awareness. This is a less tangible and quantifiable ambition but extremely important nonetheless.
What Brand Does Your Customer Know?
Brand awareness is the familiarity consumers have with a product, service, or business. It is not something that can be easily measured, but the value of consumers knowing and recognizing what you’re trying to sell is immense.
People very rarely buy products from a brand they have no association or familiarity with. It is much easier to sell something to people if they are already aware of who you are. According to the Content Marketing Institute, building brand awareness consistently ranks as the top goal of marketers by B2C marketers.
Influencer marketing is a major asset in this regard. Influencers with thousands of followers boost your brand to their large audience, many of whom highly value the influencer’s opinion.
Let’s take a look at why brand awareness from influencer marketing leads to conversions down the road.
Mere Exposure Effect
One of the core aspects of the psychology of influencer marketing is the mere exposure effect. The mere exposure effect put simply, is a psychological theory of human behavior that describes our tendency to develop positive feelings and preferences for things simply because we are familiar with them.
Recurring exposure to something leaves a lasting impression in the brain, and that lasting expression is often interpreted as feelings of trust. Micro influencer marketing agencies play on this effect. Particularly when people follow someone who has turned into a brand ambassador, they will see recurring content that revolves around a business’ products or services.
Consistent exposure to a brand will lead to a positive association that can lead to conversions.
Positive exposure is how brand awareness works overall. Exposure to a brand has a lasting impact on a consumer. Even if the impact doesn’t pay off straight away, the long-term benefits of having your brand displayed to consumers provide serious potential for down the road conversions.
Enters Consumers into Sales Funnel
The very first stage of the sales funnel is discovery/awareness. There are no shortcuts in this process. If you want to appeal to customers, the most important thing is the introduction. If consumers don’t know you or understand your product or brand, there is no chance of a sale.
Even if the first social post from an influencer doesn’t lead to immediate sales, it still accomplishes an important step in the sales funnel process: it increases awareness.
However, the sales funnel is an extensive process. Maybe someone clicks on the link from the influencer’s post, visits your website, subscribes to a newsletter, but doesn’t buy. Maybe they read about your company and familiarize themselves with your business, but don’t buy. These are still good results for businesses because the people go from uninformed about your business to qualified leads.
Measuring the success of a campaign purely in dollars earned from sales is overlooking some important aspects of what influencer marketing provides. It provides a mass introduction, a way to showcase your brand to a large number of people, thereby entering them into your sales funnel. Even if consumers don’t buy or enter your website, at least they now know who you are, and there is value in that.
Allows Businesses to Amplify Core Messages
The best part about the brand awareness you get from influencers is how much of a say in how it is dictated you get. You choose the product being marketed, the message being sent, and the influencer amplifying the message. This means that businesses can amplify the best possible version of themselves to a massive number of consumers.
Influencers are people with large groups of devoted fans invested in what they have to say. Using their platform means businesses get to see their brand’s reputation improve by association. The value of brand awareness in influencer marketing can’t be overstated. A massive example of how important is when women’s shoe company Shoes of Prey used YouTube influencer Blair Fowler for a giveaway promoting their product. The video had 750,000 views and an incredible 15,000 comments. The kicker? It led to Shoes of Prey increasing sales by 300%.
Also, there is a very potent impact that the amplification of your ideal message by social media celebrity has. Whether you use a micro-influencer or a mega-influencer, their followers are genuinely invested in what they have to say. This is an important way to get a positive association for your brand that can lead to long-term growth.
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