‘It's a match!' Diving into influencer-brand relationships

Kartik Kala, Business Head, TopSocial India explains the deep and profitable relationship between brands and influencers

BuzzInContent Bureau
New Update
Post Thumb

Kartik Kala

With the pandemic we are going through, the world is taking a virtual route. Brands are all the more focusing on influencers for their marketing goals. Both influencers and brands depend on each other to find a ‘great match for a virtual campaign.’ Influencer marketing requires time, efforts and certainly more emotional investment than other advertising methods. However, influencer-brand relationships with a profound base survive in the long run and can prove to bear great fruits for the brands. The Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report 2020, states that most businesses make $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing. Now, this ROI is what compels many brands to increase their budget on influencer marketing.

Brand-influencer relationship results in friendly terms with consumers

Influencer marketing breaks the clutter and stands out. It is because an influencer is a channel that doesn’t vandalise the creative experience of consumers. Influencers share a very friendly bond with their follower base and people are looking forward to their posts. It is this follower base that brands seek to leverage upon.

In a relationship, it is easy to connect to your partner’s friends if you are amiable and have a friendly tone. Similarly, it is easier to resonate with the influencer’s audience if the brand appears more human, friendly and one among them.

Should you swipe right? Finding the best fit

Though there are so many influencers on social media, the ones that help to convert people as consumers are few. 61% of marketers find it difficult to find relevant influencers for their marketing campaign.

Some of the factors that brands should consider while finding an influencer are:

- The niche of the influencer

- The platform where the influencer is active

- The demographics of the followers

- Match the follower insights of an influencer with the TG of the brand

The more natural the collaboration looks, the better results it generates. If the brand and influencer don’t naturally align, the content looks spurious.

The onus of natural and organic content also lies on the influencer while choosing a brand. The product/service endorsed should be in accordance with their niche and follower demographics.

Co-create: It is an affair of equal partners

Unlike traditional marketing, influencer marketing doesn't rely solely upon the brand's messaging. It can't control and dictate 100% narrative to the influencer. Brand's brief, in this case, is just the skeleton wherein influences have the autonomy to structure it in a beautiful body. It must be at the discretion of the influencers to create content that resonates with their followers.

The brand knows what’s best in the product and the influencer understands how best to communicate it to the audience. We got to appreciate the expertise of both parties in a good relationship. Isn’t it?

Not just a fling! The guiding values of influencer brand relationships

One bad experience can prove to be very heavy for both parties in this fragile relationship. Consistency in efforts and performance from both ends translates into long-lasting partnerships. It trickles down to building stronger bonds with brand’s consumers and influencer’s connections.

1. Trust: Since influencer marketing is at a nascent stage with no set rules and standards, it is very important for brands and influencers to trust one another. The claims made by brands and influencers should be honest to the core. Authenticity and credibility are the virtues that should be held high, be it the deliverables agreed upon or timeline of execution.

2. Reliability: Fake followers are a threat that daunts upon the entire influencer marketing space. Schlesinger Associates’ Survey showed that 75% of brands regard verified web traffic as the most important factor while choosing influencers. Influencers show concerns on false product claims by brands.

Brand’s image and influencers’ audience are the assets they hold very close to them. A compromise on these two fronts calls for the demise of a good relation.

3. Co-dependence: With intrusive marketing losing relevance, brands rely upon influencers to reach their target audience in a more humane and approachable manner.

On the other hand, influencers are always on the lookout for brands to collaborate.  As per Mediakix, close to 69.4% of influencers choose to be influencers so that they could earn revenue. However, most social media platforms don't have a content monetisation policy in place. Sure, independent creators need ‘sponsored posts’ to get them going!

In for a long-term committed relationship

A study by Activate suggests that 50% of influencers and brands share a common sentiment of long-term partnerships being beneficial. Influencers ensure long-term work and shield their viewers from a parade of sponsored content. Meanwhile, brands secure a creator who can be seen as an ambassador and build a long-term narrative. It’s a win-win situation on both fronts. So, keep the communication going and make the relationship last longer.

P.S. The brands and influencers should love each other and work towards the greater good. Influencer Marketing agencies love them anyway and will keep striving to build stronger brand-influence relationships.

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of www.buzzincontent.com and we do not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.)

TopSocial India Business Head Kartik Kala