Influencer marketing has been with us for a long time, and initially brands would focus on Macro and celeb-influencers to endorse their brand and products. As this discipline rose in popularity, so did the “ad immunity” among consumers and the effect seemed to get watered down. The so-called Influencer Branded Fatigue kicked us in the teeth.
Consumers are just like you and me, well they are you and me – we like relevance and context. We like local and trustworthy people who tell us that “this pair of shoes are good”. Not because they tell us they are good, but because they are a perfect fit and that they will do everything we need them to do. One of the good ways of getting to that point of convincing me to convert, is by serving me authentic content.
But what is this “authentic content” anyway? For us here at Cocolab, being authentic means that you believe in the product and message you’re trying to sell. You embrace it wholeheartedly and the experience you have with the product or brand is gained firsthand. If you do not make an effort to get to that point, some consumers will look right through you and the consequence could be that your brand-value drops.
How can you make your content more authentic and true to your and to the audience of your influencers:
Know your audience:
First of all, make sure you know who you are selling to and make sure your influencers are catering to this persona-group. But, you are of course a marketing professional so that part is clear already I’m sure!
Use customers or industry experts:
We wrote another article about why using your own customers is a very good idea, but you should also consider investing in an industry expert. If they are good, they are usually trusted by your audience and seen as an independent 3rd party. Let’s say you run a furniture shop – then it would make sense to use an interior designer / stylist as an influencer.
Let influencers unfold their talent:
Don’t instruct them too much on creative direction. Usually that results in awkward content where it’s clear that the influencer is not in her “real habitat”. The same way fashion shots are clearly “fake” because the model is instructed to pose in a specific way.
Don’t necessarily use “known faces”:
Known faces and celebs can be good for strategy e.g. generating awareness, but score less on the “authenticity scale”. Move down the celeb ladder and try local Micro or even Nano influencers. There is clear evidence that these groups are much more efficient in converting, but also on your cost-to-effect-ratio.
Don’t be too polished (don’t go Photoshop crazy):
Or don’t let your influencers create content that is too polished, as “real life” scenarios will help you make your brand and products stand out in a genuine and trustworthy way.
Don’t only try to sell products:
Selling products and services is good, that’s probably why your business exists in the first place. But also try putting a value on branding and awareness; the discipline which will keep your products top of mind with consumers and will give your business sustainability. Decide how much every 1,000 post views and every 10 engagements an influencers generates is worth to you, and use that as measurable KPIs.
Test different content and scale up:
With influencers you can make small scale tests to see what works best. Which types of content gives the best response and engagement rate. Once you have run a few small tests, it’s easy to scale the winning format up.
The point is that authentic content seems to be the holy grail these days, and often creating this kind of content will take less effort for you and your marketing department. Give it a go! Include it in your strategy – we guarantee it will work.