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Influencer marketing is a strategy that every advertising agency, public relations firm, in-house marketing team and social strategist has on the to-do list for next quarter’s major campaign. Why? Influencer marketing captures a niche audience with high engagement rates through seemingly organic content. How? We’re breaking down the basics behind influencer marketing so you can reach new audiences and spread awareness like wildfire.

Influencer: We at Heepsy define an influencer as a social media user with a higher than average following who influences the opinion of those in their community. They may be YouTube stars, reality television personalities, or the face of last year’s viral video. Discover what is a micro-influencer.

Marketing: The Internet defines marketing as the action or business of promoting and selling products or services.

Combine the two, and you’ve got influencer marketing. A strategy that allows online influencers with an existing following to promote and sell your product or service. There are a number of ways influencers can generate awareness and boost your marketing efforts. Here at Heepsy, we suggest any type of collaboration that benefits both the influencer and your brand.

For example, allow influencers to design a product for your line so the influencer can create personalized products that they’re excited to promote to existing followers. Send influencers products and provide their followers with access to discount codes in exchange for promotion. Invite influencers to events and let them share the experience on their YouTube channel. Connect with an influencer and encourage her to become a permanent brand sponsorship for long-lasting exposure. The possibilities for effective collaboration go on and on and on.

Why Does Influencer Marketing Work?

Influencer marketing is nothing new. Brands have been utilizing celebrities and athletes and public figures for years to capture a large audience. However, the birth of YouTube celebrities and famous Instagram users has opened up pathways towards narrow audiences that more effectively capture the specific demographic your product or service aligns with.

Is This Word-of-Mouth Marketing?

The relationship followers have with influencers is comparable to a big sister, big brother, or best friend relationship. Influencers have a two-way relationship with followers who feel clued in to every aspect of an influencer’s life. In contrast, celebrities typically have one-way relationships with fans that feel distant and impersonal. In that sense, influencer marketing often captures word-of-mouth marketing more effectively than celebrity campaigns, although word-of-mouth marketing is really just the avenue in which communication is taking place.

How Do I Create a Successful Influencer Marketing Campaign?

The easiest way to start is by using tools like Heepsy to search for relevant influencers. Use what you know about your brand and the influencer you’ve chosen to create a mutually beneficial, on-brand marketing campaign. We also recommend creating a secondary plan to maximize the influencer’s impact. You can use Heepsy to estimate the reach of your influencer marketing campaign and adjust influencer strategies accordingly.

Does Influencer Marketing Really Work?

Check out a few case studies where influencer marketing generated fantastic results for companies like Bonobos and Hulu.If you’re interested in launching an influencer marketing campaign for your brand or client, check out Heepsy, the one-stop-shop for influencer marketing!