Opinion: 5 under-utilized Influencer Marketing strategies

Aarushi Sethi Influencer amrketing

While offering discount codes and creating pre-launch buzz videos are not bygone strategies, Aarushi Sethi, Pollen emphasizes that the spectrum of influencer marketing has broadened and brands should optimize this medium.

With ASCI’s new rules coming in, there is a renewed focus on content creators. The influencer today commands far more important than they did in the pre-Covid world. Influencer marketing is no longer an add-on but a necessity. ‘Who’ a brand chooses to collaborate with is as critical as ‘How’ a campaign is executed. And if there is anything we learned over the last year, it is that influencers can solve business objectives, if brands leverage them correctly. Here is Aarushi Sethi, Pollen’s insights on 5 underutilized influencer marketing strategies, that brands should use to stay ahead of the curve.

1. Building Relevance Using Pop Culture:

Sometimes brands are far removed from being at the forefront of popular culture and therefore fail to be relevant with their audiences. Influencer marketing makes brands relevant, as the brand is perceived through the lens of the influencer, who invariably uses pop culture references in their content to make content engaging and relevant.

Meme Marketing is a content strategy format that frequently uses pop culture references.  This disruptive content strategy offers high to reach with its easy-to-consume format. An average meme takes 3 seconds to read, making it ideal for both millennial and GenZ audiences. Memes also have a reputation for offering genuine opinions, making it a strong medium to advocate a brand’s quality.

2. Shattering Stereotypes to Encourage Inclusivity

Influencer marketing is an effective advertising tool as it caters to the factor of relatability. Audiences respond better to brands that are represented by people who look like them, speak like them and even share their values. Earlier, brands would choose to work with that one face that could appease all segments. But purpose-driven brands are the future of brand marketing and influencer marketing can be leveraged to identify that purpose, which drives both the consumer and brand

3. Using Unconventional Influencers

a) Employees as Brand Advocates: Influencer marketing runs wide. It ranges from macro to nano influencers to even the brands’ employees. There is a change in how “influence” is perceived today and that can range from anyone who has between 1 million or 2000 followers. Employees allow for a brand to be seen in the most real way possible, making them an extremely reliable and genuine source for audiences to assess a brand.

b) Leveraging B2B Influencers: Industry experts make for an authoritative category of influencers who can persuade the audience with their credibility, knowledge about the product, category industry, and trends. 90% of B2B buyers do not rely on advertising/sales communication while making a purchase and rely more on expert reviews. B2B influencer campaigns allow for a higher reach and credibility with potential buyers.

4. Curating Collections by Influencers

This strategy is most adept for fashion and cosmetic brands and was successfully executed by Nykaa with their Masaba creation. When the influencer is made the creator of the product, their image is attributed to that of the brand. These collaborations not only generate hype but help brands expand their product base, find diverse audiences while increasing brand recall. A big incentive for influencers is a share in product sales, making them more than just a name but equal stakeholders in the success of the campaign.

Also Read: The Impact Of ASCI Influencer Marketing Guidelines

5. Experimenting with New Content Formats

There has been a shift in content consumption patterns.  While video continues to remain one of the most engaging and widely consumed mediums of content, different influencers can be roped in on specific mediums (suited to their image) to achieve a brand’s distinct objective.

Audio Content: Audio content creators are on the rise, given the popularity of podcasts and Clubhouse. These platforms are ideal for brand storytelling and give brands the opportunity to get their audiences to truly listen to what they can offer.

New Domestic Apps: With the Indian consumers spending an average of  4 hours a day on social media, the launch of homegrown apps like Takatak and Moj give brands new avenues to tap into audiences. 

Response Management: Engaging in brand banter is an effective and unique strategy to increase a brand’s reach, engagement, and relevance.

E-commerce Content: Brands need to tap into influencer marketing to accelerate conversions at the bottom funnel. Customers need advice especially when purchasing a product and leveraging influencer-led video content at this time increases engagement, brand recall, and sale conversions. The role of an influencer is often looked at from a top-of-the-funnel perspective and A+ content for example is a great way to influence purchase at the critical bottom-funnel.

The article has been authored by Aarushi Sethi, Director of Pollen.