If you have a limited marketing and advertising budget, social media influencers can help you big time!
Unless anyone is living in a bubble, we all know how social media has taken over our lives. In this digital age, we are pretty much glued to our smartphones, scrolling through social media sites thanks to FOMO, to shop, to interact with people or to be entertained.
If, as an entrepreneur, you are not social media savvy, well, I guess it’s time to jump onto the social media bandwagon. That is one of the best ways spread the word about your product or business. If you are an up and coming entrepreneur with a limited budget, then advertising and maybe even a website are beyond your reach. But can just Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, etc grow your business? If you are offering something fabulous, something unique, something that gained traction and went viral, you are lucky. But that happens to a miniscule number of people.
This is where social media influencers could help you. These are people with large followings who have built a reputation for expertise in certain fields. They post regularly on their social media channels on stuff related to their area of interest and garner likes, comments and interactions from their followers. Many are held in high stead by their followers; so, if they recommend a product/service, chances are their loyal band of followers will be open to trying it.
Social media influencers could be normal people or micro-influencers, celebrities, industry experts, bloggers and vloggers. Research conducted by Gurugram-based influencer-marketing firm, Buzzoka, found that Instagram was the top choice in influencer marketing in 2018. They report, “From celebrities to the rising class of micro-influencers – experts in a specific topic with smaller but more highly engaged audiences – influencers are emerging as a critical marketing tool for brands. Influencers help brands grow awareness and consideration. Increasingly, they’re also helping drive sales.”
As an entrepreneur, here are some reasons why you should look at social media influencers to grow your business.
1. They enhance the credibility of your brand: If you are working with industry experts who have positive things to say about your product, it has a positive spin-off for potential consumers too. Let’s say you are in the business of supplying organic veggies. A well-known restaurateur endorses your product on her Instagram feed with pics of luscious vegetables and talks about how she sources her veggies from you. It is bound to influence others who are looking for something similar. People trust the influencers they follow, so this translates into trust for your brand.
2. You get exposure: If you have a limited marketing and advertising budget, you need some way to get your product known to your target audience. Your social media page may not be enough to garner business because you may be relatively unknown. Social media influencers can help boost awareness of your brand and help it gain wider traction. And, you get this exposure at a fraction of the price you would have to shell out for traditional advertising methods.
3. Followers relate to their influencers: Social media influencers put in tremendous effort to engage with their audience – they respond to their comments and queries and create content that resonates with their audience. So, when an influencer recommends a product, it’s likely that the audience will be positively inclined towards it. Don’t we all get influenced by our friends and family? Aren’t there times we buy something or try something out because of the recommendation of someone we know? In fact, a whopping 92% of customers apparently follow the advice of peers when it comes to buying products. So, you can imagine the breadth of impact an influencer has.
4. Influencers are reliable: In the eyes of their audience, influencers offer authenticity. Advertising can be misleading and many view ads with skepticism. After all, when a brand has a superstar endorsing scooter or a banian, which they know the star will never use, does it really resonate with people? Do they buy into the brand’s promise? Influencers provide relevant information and don’t browbeat their audiences into buying what they are writing/vlogging about. They talk about their experience. They may recommend it. And their followers would be inclined to believe them and try out the product or service.
5. They are value for money: Traditional advertising doesn’t come cheap. You need to hire an ad agency, there are costs for photography, campaigns, television commercials, media, etc. For many startups and entrepreneurs, this is impossible, especially in the early stages. The same goes for if you hire a PR agency. Social media influencers help you connect with your target audience in an authentic and influential manner. And for a fraction of the cost.
6. They drive traffic and convert potential customers: An influencer’s post can drive traffic to your social media page or website and also convert potential customers – your target audience – into paying customers.
7. The SEO factor: Influencers rate high on SEO because user-generated content accounts for at least 25% of search results for the worlds top brands. An influencer’s blog links to your website not only drive traffic to your site but also enhance your SEO ratings.
8. They generate sales: Thanks to the level of influence they wield, if they have tried out a product and recommend it, sales for that product are highly likely to increase. And ultimately, that’s what every entrepreneur or business wants – to increase sales.
In this digital era, we need to spread the message about our product or service on the internet. And social media influencers are one of the key ways to do that, especially for unknown brands, startups and small home businesses with limited budgets. So, start looking. Find influencers who can help enhance awareness of your brand and grow your business.