Whether you love them or hate them, there is no getting away from so-called ‘influencers’. These shiny, happy millennials are the hottest trend in advertising since the advent of television.
According to a recent study by US marketing and strategy firm The McCarthy Group, a massive 84% of consumers aged 35 and under do not like or trust traditional advertising. This has caused an increasing number of businesses to turn to “influencer marketing” – where products are spruiked by influential people directly to their online followers. (1)
A brilliant example is Marques Brownlee. Brownlee got his start online at the age of 16, making screencasts and software tutorials. Today, he can command millions of views on his tech and gadget focused YouTube channel; an iPhone7 unboxing video in 2016 has racked up 9.9 million views. He’s worked with brands including Google, Apple, YouTube, Tesla, and Nike. (2)
Who are some of these social media influencers?
Some of them are listed below:
Ali Mafucci (New York)
Mafucci started blogging in 2013, after learning about spiralizing – that is, turning fruits and vegetables into healthy ‘noodles.’ Fast forward four years and her empire boasts three cookbooks, her own branded spiralizer tool called the Inspiralizer, an iOS App, and a partnership with a national restaurant chain, Houlihan’s.
The professional gamer is known online as DanTDM and became a YouTube sensation through the popular family-friendly game Minecraft. DanTDM has a following that set a Guinness World Record in 2016 for amassing the most views for a dedicated Minecraft channel – 7.9 billion at a time.
Kayla Itsines (South Australia)
The 25-year-old Australian is the Internet’s undisputed workout queen. Her “Sweat with Kayla” app generated $17 million in revenue in 2016. Itsines and her users often share dramatic before and after body shots with her 6.3 million Instagram followers to promote her program’s effectiveness. In 2016, TIME Magazine named her as one of the ’30 Most Influential People on the Internet’.
Brian Kelly (New York)
Brian Kelly figured out how to game the credit card points and frequent flyer system while living life on the road as a recruiter a decade ago. In 2010, he posted his first blog as The Points Guy, and began doling out tips, tricks and deals. He now leads a team of 20 and commands seven figures for social campaigns.
Hannah Hart (California)
Hart first gained prominence on YouTube, where her weekly series ‘My Drunk Kitchen’ saw her whipping up meals while intoxicated. In the six years since her online debut, she’s published two bestselling books and a now has a first-look deal with Lionsgate.
Ryan’s Toys Review (Location undisclosed)
At just 7 years old, Ryan has made an estimated $11 million in 2017. Ryan, with the help of his parents, unboxes, plays with and reviews toys on his stunningly successful channel, which boasts 10 million subscribers.
How much do social media influencers earn?
It’s an irksome truth universally acknowledged that influencers make big bucks on social media. Influencers rely on the relationships they build with influencers to spread brand awareness, earn links, and get introduced to a new market. It’s a tactic that we’ve all done.
Social media perpetuates trust between us and the people we follow and therefore when someone we follow offers us a recommendation, it feels personal and is more likely to compel us to making purchases that they suggest.
It mimics the effect of endorsing something to a friend.
All it takes is one shot of a lithe-limbed, photogenic blogger reclining on a sun lounger, sporting some little-known brand alongside the obligatory tag and #spon. Depending on their following, this person could be making hundreds from just one, supposedly “candid” photograph or video. (3)
Some influencers charge around 50 bucks for a tweet, while an influencer with 5 million followers can charge around $100,000 for a campaign for three social media networks, along with a video post for each platform. (4)
What is the actual impact of social media influencers?
There are currently 2.6 Billion active Social Media users in the world and 1.9 Billion active mobile social users. This is a 10% growth in Social Media users compared to 2015 and 17% growth of mobile social users compared to 2015.
In fact, the average person has five social media accounts and spends at least 1 hour and 40 minutes daily on Social Media.
Social influencer marketing is the ability to reach out to a new audience (big or small) through the social influencer’s platforms from blogs, websites and Social Media profiles. A social Influencer is simply a person who can influence other people. In the beginning, celebrities were used as Social Influencers for brand endorsement, however, now everyone is a celebrity. With a big number of followers on Facebook and Instagram, you are simply an influencer.
Usually, a potential customer is most likely to get influenced by someone close to him as a friend, or family or someone he just admires. However, in the digital world now, it is extending beyond that, into the age of social influencers. We see every day new trendsetters influencing their friends, family and followers. (5)
There are lots of great reasons to be attracted to influencers and influencer marketing. People look up to notable people, want to be like them and often want to purchase products they use or endorse. A relationship with a high-profile social media star can “cut through the clutter” like no other channel can. (6)
So which social media influencers do you follow?
References & further reading: