A recent study found through a survey that 65% of brands have plans to raise their influencer marketing budget in 2016. They also found that influencer marketing is receiving greater investments than display advertising and affiliate marketing. Influencer marketing is becoming more important for businesses for the following reasons:
- Consumers Use Their Phones to Search for Product Reviews
Many consumers check product reviews online before buying a product. Even if they’re in the physical store, they can use their mobile phones to read product reviews. According to Stacy DeBroff, the CEO and founder of Influence Central, one of their studies found that 70% of consumers sometimes check reviews on their phones while shopping. Even when they are ready to make a purchase, they want the best deal, so they check their smartphones for potential better deals before buying.
- Reading Product Reviews is Part of the Research Process
Customers read reviews as part of the research process before committing to a purchase. They think that it helps them make the right decision. Your brand will naturally have an advantage if a well-respected individual in your niche recommends your product through a review. Many people who come across the review will recognize the influencer as an expert in that niche and will therefore be more likely to trust his opinions.
- Not Only Millennials Care About Reading Online Reviews
The importance of online reviews extends to older generations as well, not just millennials read reviews before buying a product. In a study conducted by Influence Central and Vibrant Nation, they discovered that 95% of female consumers over the age of 45 searched for online product reviews and first-person recommendations before buying a product. 77% of the women surveyed follow brands on Facebook, and 74% admitted that they’re more likely to purchase a product after reading a positive first-person review.
- Influencer Marketing Expands Their Reach
Another reason brands are investing in influencer marketing is it expands their reach. Influencers have large followings of people whom care about what they say. By connecting with an influencer in your field, you have access to his readerbase. Some of their readers will follow you because you have similar interests and are connected to the influencer they already trust. It will be easier for you to earn their trust as well.
- Boost Business Credibility
Influencer marketing is an easy way to boost your business’s credibility. Once you’ve built a relationship with an influencer and he shares your products with his followers, your credibility increases rapidly. It will, however, take time and effort to initially connect with the influencer. Remember that no one will talk about your business just because you send an email asking. Think about how many emails influencers must receive every day from people wanting their products promoted by them.
- Increase Brand Awareness
You could have the best product, but if no one knows your business exists, you’re not going to make many sales. Increasing brand awareness is important, especially for startups and small businesses that wish to grow. Influencer marketing is an efficient way to increase brand awareness because influencers already have large audiences that trust them.
Businesses are spending more money on influencer marketing this year because of how important influencers have become in the buying process for customers. Many people look to influencers for advice on what to buy and product recommendations. They trust the influencers that they have come to like. To speed up the process of earning trust from customers, clever businesses reach out to these social media stars. The benefits of an influencer posting about your business are worth the initial investment needed to build a relationship with that person.
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