How Caribbean Brands Can leverage the fast growing Influencer Marketing Trend

influencermarketingGC

 

Influencer marketing, is by far the fastest growing marketing channel this year, and it doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. According to the eMarketer poll, 84% of American marketing professionals plan to launch at least one influencer marketing campaign within the next year and Caribbean Brands are fast in catching on.

Now, using Brand Ambassadors  or Influencers with a following is nothing new in the Caribbean, from Usain Bolt, Shelly Ann-Fraser and Asafa Powell lead in the Athletes as Ambassador category. Machel Mantano, Trinidad’s soca king just signed on with Uber the ridesharing juggernaut to be their Uber Trinidad ambassador as they launch there, the company’s first move into the Caribbean.

Additionally, with recently emerged  brands such as Quite Perry, Trabass, Majah Hype, Chelan, JustGotHItchedNowWhat, ChefandSteward and TheWorldUpClose showing us how Caribbean Brands are valuing the social currency individuals are creating.

You see Digital Influencers and Tastemakers — the Bloggers, Youtubers, Snapchatters, Tweeters, Instagrammers  have blogged, videoed and podcasted themselves into social media stardom and have proven credibility among and even sales to a specific target audience. This is where the action is and will be for a long while.

Add to that, according to Reuters, 47 percent of online customers use ad-block technology and if they aren’t doing it, some Telecom Service Providers are, cue Digicel ad-blocking arguement and net neutrality fight in the Caribbean. All this, has further created the grand opportunity that’s fuelling the growing industry of Influencer Marketing in the region, a mirror of what is happening globally.

Further, it has been reported that while 78 percent of brands increased their content output over the last two years, average content engagement has decreased by 60 percent…thanks to ever-changing algorithms and platforms changing their rules – did someone just shout Facebook. lol. This illustrates, that effective engagement, requires more than just creating content and targeting ads.

So if follows naturally, that as is happening globally, more Caribbean Brands are relcalibrating their marketing and advertising budgets, to connect with current and prospective customers online  especially on via mobile first platforms, in a bid to get attention in fresh ways and grow their businesses.

Influencer Marketing is the New Advertising.

What Influencer marketing campaigns target are potential customers on blogs, inside of news feeds, bypassing ad-blockers and utilising word-of-mouth to gain trust, visibility and leads. Put simply, if your brand wants to stay relevant, you need to launch an influencer marketing campaign and get the help you need to succeed.

5 Key Steps in Getting Started  Digital Influencer Marketing Campaign.

Remember what determines Digital Influence is Reach, Relevance and Resonance, so take your time.

1. Find Better Influencers. Not Cheap Ones. Research each digital influencer, background, popularity their audience. Remember you are seeking to access an influencer in order to get something valuable from them. This should work both ways. You should offer them some value in order to get it back in return.

2. Select the ones that are aligned with your goals and experience.  They are all kind of digital influencers, blogger influencers, Twitter/Instagram, Snapchat/Youtube influencers.. The kind of influencer adn socail reach you need will depend on the kind of product/services your business offers and how you expect them to be received by the audience.

3. Do the GroundWork. Coldcalling, emailing with influencers have a high failure rate. Spend time observing and engaging with the ones you believe are aligned with your brand and its goals. Seek to create a connection and a relationship before you approach.

4. Keep your dealings transparent. Don’t overpromise or overcompensation about your product. Do not life. An unhappy influencer equals a failed online marketing campaign. Seek to be transparent and expect transparency from the start of the relationship to the end of the campaign.

5. Measure your results. Keep track of the relationship you are building with the digital influencers and how fruitful the result are. This should be easy as you must always start with clear, obtainable goals in mind, so that expectations are managed and analysis of all metrics are done well.

Influencer Marketing is Powerful
A study by McKinsey found that “marketing-induced consumer-to-consumer word of mouth generates more than twice the sales of paid advertising.” And of those that were acquired through word-of-mouth had a 37 percent higher retention rate.

#DigitalCaribbean

Follow up Reading
10 Reasons Why Influencer Marketing is the Next Big Thing