The Best Social Media Channels For Influencer Marketing In 2018

The Best Social Media Channels For Influencer Marketing In 2018

The Best Social Media Channels For Influencer Marketing In 2018

I don’t wear makeup.  At least, not really. Yet somehow the social media glam stars of the world can easily convince little old me, the non-glam type, to try out an entirely new look and sign up for the next mail-me-something box subscription as if were better than sliced bread!  Being a marketer, I’m not even slightly in denial over how and why this works on me. And yet here we are!

What would convince you to try something new? Some random ad you’ve seen on TV or a recommendation from someone you trust?

TV ads and big print campaigns do have their place when it comes to giving a service or product some much-needed exposure and generating a buzz. They definitely help increase consumer familiarity. But in a world of binge-watching and commercial-skipping, commercials have had to creep their way into the Prime Time in other ways.  Jimmy Fallon can squeeze in a joke about McDonald’s as if it weren’t paid for adveritizing or he can share a similar message on Instagram or Twitter. It doesn’t matter how we feel about it or how blatant it is. What matters most is that we are paying attention!

There are a lot of good reasons that influencer marketing is reshaping the way that marketing works these days. Millennials in particular are heavily influenced by their peers when it comes to purchasing decisions. In fact, 70% of them turn to their peers for advice when they’re thinking about a product or service. But Millennials aren’t alone — in general, influencer marketing gets an ROI that’s 11 times greater than traditional marketing!

You know you need social media influencers out there to invest in your brand. They need to become your brand ambassadors in their sphere of influence — whether they’re mega-influencers or micro-influencers. You need to find and foster your influencers as if they’re an extension of your own marketing team. But first, you need to know which social media channels people turning to for advice these days. Where do consumers find their influencers right now?

Instagram

Instagram has emerged as a social media powerhouse — and influencers are all over it! In 2017, Instagram saw a 198% increase of sponsored posts, for a whopping 1.5 million total! Hands down, it’s the channel with the strongest interaction rates (boasting a 3.21% engagement compared to the average of 1.5% across channels). It’s a particularly powerful channel if your target market is female. 45% of women admit they’ve followed a brand on Instagram because an influencer recommended it.

Frankly, if you aren’t already using Instagram influencers in your social marketing, you’re late to the party — 67% of marketers are already there! Unfortunately, you may have to look around a bit to find the right influencer for your brand and your budget. While many Instagram influencers charge a max of $1,000 per campaign, some charge as much as $10,000. (F

YouTube

YouTube is only second to Instagram when it comes to influencer marketing reach despite the fact that many would argue it was first to the party — and it may be more powerful among certain demographics.

The platform does seem to have more sway among males. It affects the purchasing habits of 22.8% of men vs. only 13.9% of women. Teenagers feel 7 times the emotional attachment to their favorite YouTube stars than they do to other celebrities.

Moreover, YouTube has strong influencers in a broad array of niches, including automobiles, alcohol, beauty, and toys (just to name a few). Consumers enjoy the funny, sometimes-irreverent, familiarity of their favorite YouTubers and really take their recommendations to heart. That may be why 18% of consumers admit that YouTube has had a hand in guiding their purchasing decisions.

The longer format of YouTube allows connections with consumers at every part of the marketing funnel, driving awareness and delving into the education that consumers need before they’re willing to convert.

Pinterest

Pinterest is one of the new kids on the block when it comes to social channels, but it already has over 150 million users — and 85% of those are women. However, Pinterest doesn’t think of itself as a social media channel so much as it does a “visual discovery tool.”

Despite that, Pinterest is a channel full of consumers87% of users have purchased something because of Pinterest. If you’re a visually-driven brand, Pinterest can be useful. Look for influencers with well-organized boards, easy-to-find keywords, and lots of follower engagement to make it work.

Snapchat

People on Snapchat only tend to follow other people that they know. Because of that, Snapchat influencers tend to be highly-effective at inspiring trust. The downside to Snapchat is that snaps don’t have much longevity. They vanish after 24 hours, maximum. That may limit just how effective an influencer can really be. Influencers, even if they’re paid, will lose their authenticity if they’re constantly repeating snaps on the same product or service.

However, that hasn’t stopped a few companies from incorporating Snapchat into their social campaigns for others. Companies like VaynerMedia and AKQA have found ways to mix Snapchat into their cross-platform social campaigns for MasterCard and the Call of Duty games. It’s a good channel for real-time events, like product launches. Effectively using Snapchat in an influencer campaign can be done — it just probably isn’t the only place you want to pour your efforts. Because there’s no real way to foster engagement, it’s also hard to measure your ROI.

Twitter

Twitter is designed to encourage connections. Hashtags make it easy to find and follow any trending topic. Unfortunately, Twitter probably shouldn’t be your first choice for influencer marketing.

Twitter is a great place for brands to connect directly with their consumers — 40% of Twitter users follow their favorite brands. Most of those people actively want to know more about what those brands have to offer. However, while about one-third of Twitter users follow celebrities and other influencers, only 2% of consumer purchases are driven by influencers on Twitter. That puts it dead last on the influencer scale for social media channels.

Now that you have the details about the top social media channels out there for influencer marketing, it’s time to start diving in. Keep in mind that your choice of channel is going to shape your whole campaign. Each channel has its own unique flavor and audience. If you know your brand and you know your customers, however, you now have the necessary information to figure out where to start your search for the right social media influencers.

Caz Bevan
[email protected]

Caz is the Founder of Be Impossible marketing agency and Co-Founder of Anhelaré startup advisory. Caz has extensive experience blending business goals and marketing tactics into comprehensive company strategies. Her creative innovation and expertise has helped shape customer experiences and drive continual engagement for a variety of companies and products including Sony Music Entertainment and SpeedTV. Connect with Caz: Linkedin