Why Influencer Content Marketing Is The Future Of Marketing, PR And Branding And Why Firms Need To Identify The Best Influencers That Mesh With The DNA Of The Brand

By Steve Biko Wafula / Published May 17, 2021 | 7:32 am




KEY POINTS

The marketing role is shifting. The role used to be about building relationships with media companies and public relations firms. Now, companies should build their own audiences.


Social Media

The only things that are constant are taxes, death, and change. Change is inevitable. It’s happening every single day. The interesting thing about humanity is we hate change.

As human beings, we prefer the Status quo. We prefer being comfortable. Leaving the comfort zone is always a challenge that few of us appreciate.

Communication has undergone inevitable change on a daily basis for the past decade that every day feels like a new day in school if you want to keep up with what is happening around you.

The marketing role is shifting. The role used to be about building relationships with media companies and public relations firms. Now, companies should build their own audiences.

Audiences around common interests and likes and are the challenge because different platforms cater to different needs.

Firms need to hire people or influencers who are first, passionate about their brand or product, or service and they have a passionate following and are able to partner with creators of different content that support the brands’ product or service to create the needed buzz for awareness, engagement, referrals, and purchases.

The changes in the last decade have ushered in influencer marketing around the essence of the content. Content that is built around the consumer and the product or service or goods. This is the future of marketing and few brands are even aware that it’s already.

TV and Radio have lost the hold they had. The presented a one-way linear approach to issues. The current consumer wants instant feedback and engagement from the brand.

There are discussions in various digital communities that demand that constant engagement is a must, and most brands don’t have the manpower for this.

This kind of communication is not about what education qualifications that one has but how passionate are you about the various digital platforms and how aggressive is one when it comes to engagement. This is where Influencer Content marketing comes in. A concept that few understand and are deploying in such a manner that is destructive to the brands.

The marketing role of any firm or brand will need to be split in two. One side will focus on the acquisition and retention of long-term customers that the other side of marketing will be getting, through the other aspect of creating partnerships and strategy with content influencers.

This synergy is the future of marketing and communication. Marketing and PR must synergize and ensure that a new realm of engagement is achieved for the sake of the brand and its shareholders.

Even with an existing audience, creator partnerships are the extra nudge to better performing campaigns. These partnerships with influencers are where the crux of the matter is.

Read More: KRA To Tax Influencers 1.5% DST Of Their Income

Few understand the need for content influencers and even fewer know how to manage them. The partnerships need the following to work;

  • They must be of a long-term nature because the influencers must be passionate, they must live, breathe the product and they must be able to talk about it like it’s written at the back of their hands. Passionate and creativity are the denominators of success for this.
  • Budgets are key. Long-term engagement means money must be available. The issue is, money is always available, however, influencers are always paid last like they do not matter, yet in the food chain of the brand, after the owners and shareholders, and they come third, even before management.
  • Big data is the gold standard of Influencer content marketing. Data analytics is critical and must be there for any engagement and campaign. These campaigns are easy to track, monitor, tweak and get the reports of how they are doing, something that TV and Radio could never offer.
  • Brand induction is always key. Something that those in marketing always forget. You cannot deploy influencers, be it for the short term or long term if, first you do not immerse them into the brand. They are your first line of defense. There should not be any regurgitation of content like what we see on trends where a group of influencers is busy copy-pasting stuff to just trend and demand payment and yet the client has not gotten any value for it.

Content Influencers are in three categories; micro, medium, and macro. Learn to create a balance and let each individual influencer create their own content that can spur conversations and through this create the needed grid points that rope on potential clients and the internal team can now harvest the referrals.

Consumers use all kinds of media to make shopping decisions – from YouTube to Facebook – and it’s becoming increasingly harder to put the people that buy certain products into a box than it used to be. This is where influencer content creators are vital.

They create a cult-like following that whatever they say, is the gold standard. If a celebrity says they bought a beautiful hat at an online shop and they post a picture looking handsome or beautiful, their cult-like followers will flock to the shop.

Referrals within the digital communities are very important, delicate, and fleeting like life itself. One moment you are the hero, the next the villain.

Consumer categories like mainstream, or high and low end, are starting to disappear. Segmentation is getting more and more complex. Consumers are banding themselves around influencers and engaging them constantly. For advice, help, recommendations, etc.

The same customer can buy one high-end product and one low-end product at the same time, purely based on their favorite influencers in various sectors. Content Influencing needs authentic and passionate people who can sustain it. It’s a calling that goes beyond the amount of money they are getting paid.

People select which consumer products they want to buy with an unbalanced mix of emotions and rationale purely based on conversations online, irrespective of whether research has been done or not, as long as their favorite influencer has said.

A good example is, many Kenya youth have gotten into farming, because Agriculture Content Influencer Caleb Karuga, who calls himself a ‘Farmacist” has been consistent in documenting his journey as a farmer and why it’s critical for the youth to join.

Read More: To Actualize The Digital Tax, The Government Must Change The Procurement & Disposal Act To Recognize Influencers And Bloggers First

He is the best Ambassador for the Ministry of Agriculture to use to showcase why Agriculture is critical to the country. Any brand in agriculture would be better off with an Influencer like him. But are the brands listening?

The Flip Side of Social Media Influencing;

From Wells Fargo to Volkswagen, the list of disgraced companies keeps getting longer. Businesses are realizing that they cannot escape the transparency offered by social media.

More companies are learning the lesson that, if they aren’t truthful, they will pay the price: Not only hefty fines from the authorities, but also in lost loyalty and business from their customers.

This has ultimately given the consumer more power than brands would want and it’s made worse because if a celebrity or loved influencer decides to go against a brand, that brand will be a shell by the end of the day.

That’s why long-term partnerships with Content Influencers are critical because they become the Marine Troops you send in when the brand is on fire. Their long-term engagement with the brand will make them perfect to engage with the consumers in diverse digital platforms and reverse the situation and create a balance forward.

A few years ago you would have the digital team on one side and the marketing team on the other. It can no longer be that way.

Digital has to be part of everything now so the two have to be fully integrated. Content Influencers have to be part of the team, as partners because their creativity and passion cannot be caged under the tenets of employment.

As one marketer recently suggested: Companies do not necessarily need a digital strategy, what they really need to know is how to plug the digital component into the complex process of how consumers make purchasing decisions. The needed plug is the Content Influencer.

Read More: Innovative Solutions That Will Help Advertise Your Business Better




About Steve Biko Wafula

Steve Biko is the CEO OF Soko Directory and the founder of Hidalgo Group of Companies. Steve is currently developing his career in law, finance, entrepreneurship and digital consultancy; and has been implementing consultancy assignments for client organizations comprising of trainings besides capacity building in entrepreneurial matters.He can be reached on: +254 20 510 1124 or Email: info@sokodirectory.com

View other posts by Steve Biko Wafula


More Articles From This Author








Trending Stories










Other Related Articles










SOKO DIRECTORY & FINANCIAL GUIDE



ARCHIVES

2022
  • January 2022 (293)
  • February 2022 (329)
  • March 2022 (360)
  • April 2022 (294)
  • May 2022 (271)
  • June 2022 (232)
  • July 2022 (278)
  • August 2022 (130)
  • 2021
  • January 2021 (182)
  • February 2021 (227)
  • March 2021 (325)
  • April 2021 (259)
  • May 2021 (285)
  • June 2021 (273)
  • July 2021 (277)
  • August 2021 (232)
  • September 2021 (271)
  • October 2021 (305)
  • November 2021 (364)
  • December 2021 (249)
  • 2020
  • January 2020 (272)
  • February 2020 (310)
  • March 2020 (390)
  • April 2020 (321)
  • May 2020 (335)
  • June 2020 (327)
  • July 2020 (333)
  • August 2020 (276)
  • September 2020 (214)
  • October 2020 (233)
  • November 2020 (242)
  • December 2020 (187)
  • 2019
  • January 2019 (251)
  • February 2019 (215)
  • March 2019 (283)
  • April 2019 (254)
  • May 2019 (269)
  • June 2019 (249)
  • July 2019 (335)
  • August 2019 (293)
  • September 2019 (306)
  • October 2019 (313)
  • November 2019 (362)
  • December 2019 (318)
  • 2018
  • January 2018 (291)
  • February 2018 (213)
  • March 2018 (275)
  • April 2018 (223)
  • May 2018 (235)
  • June 2018 (176)
  • July 2018 (256)
  • August 2018 (247)
  • September 2018 (255)
  • October 2018 (282)
  • November 2018 (282)
  • December 2018 (184)
  • 2017
  • January 2017 (183)
  • February 2017 (194)
  • March 2017 (207)
  • April 2017 (104)
  • May 2017 (169)
  • June 2017 (205)
  • July 2017 (189)
  • August 2017 (195)
  • September 2017 (186)
  • October 2017 (235)
  • November 2017 (253)
  • December 2017 (266)
  • 2016
  • January 2016 (164)
  • February 2016 (165)
  • March 2016 (189)
  • April 2016 (143)
  • May 2016 (245)
  • June 2016 (182)
  • July 2016 (271)
  • August 2016 (247)
  • September 2016 (233)
  • October 2016 (191)
  • November 2016 (243)
  • December 2016 (153)
  • 2015
  • January 2015 (1)
  • February 2015 (4)
  • March 2015 (164)
  • April 2015 (107)
  • May 2015 (116)
  • June 2015 (119)
  • July 2015 (145)
  • August 2015 (157)
  • September 2015 (186)
  • October 2015 (169)
  • November 2015 (173)
  • December 2015 (205)
  • 2014
  • March 2014 (2)
  • 2013
  • March 2013 (10)
  • June 2013 (1)
  • 2012
  • March 2012 (7)
  • April 2012 (15)
  • May 2012 (1)
  • July 2012 (1)
  • August 2012 (4)
  • October 2012 (2)
  • November 2012 (2)
  • December 2012 (1)
  • 2011
    2010
    2009
    2008
    2007
    2006
    2005
    2004
    2003
    2002
    2001
    2000
    1999
    1998
    1997
    1996
    1995
    1994
    1993
    1992
    1991
    1990
    1989
    1988
    1987
    1986
    1985
    1984
    1983
    1982
    1981
    1980
    1979
    1978
    1977
    1976
    1975
    1974
    1973
    1972
    1971
    1970
    1969
    1968
    1967
    1966
    1965
    1964
    1963
    1962
    1961
    1960
    1959
    1958
    1957
    1956
    1955
    1954
    1953
    1952
    1951
    1950