Social media has reinvented the nature of marketing. What was once the sole domain of the advertising agency has now become open to any individual with an opinion and a twitter account. Many individuals, like gaming marketer PewDiePie for example, have built extremely lucrative careers for themselves out of having a large number of followers on their various accounts, and speaking to these followers on behalf of companies.
This influencer marketing has opened up a range of unprecedented possibilities in terms of how a company can market itself and speak modern target markets in the language of the here and now. And, as with all marketing, the more creative companies have gotten with their use of this marketing, the more success they have been able to find among their target demographics. Here are three examples of how innovative companies are using influencer marketing.
Chocolate Milk is classically something associated with children – a far cry away from professional sports or top-of-the-line rehydration. Yet, through the use of creative influencer marketing adhering to the fundamental rules for successful campaigns, chocolate milk was painted this way during the ‘Got Chocolate Milk?’ campaign. Athletes such as former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward to totally reinvent the image of chocolate milk and recast it as a serious drink for elite sportspeople. The very notion of the campaign here is what made it’s radically creative, yet its execution was seamless and succeeded in changing the national perception of chocolate milk.
Madewell does well
A major failing of many campaigns using influence marketing is their use of influencers who do not necessarily automatically associate to the product or brand being advertised, making the message nebulous for consumers. Madewell did not make this mistake with their recent campaign, and through their innovative decision to limit their number of influencers and to directly target their specific segment with people that may not be instantly recognizable to the public at large, they had great results.
This clothing brand used only five influencers, but chose very carefully the people that most tied into their brand and could directly influence their exact market demographic – people like fashion blogger Bethany Marie. Basing the campaign around their anniversary, Madewell were able to reach more than a million customers with this campaign, showing that quality influencers will always outperform simple high quantity.
Walk the line
Whisky manufacturer Johnnie Walker also had great success using influencer marketing, showing that for even an established company, it is never too late to learn new tricks. Johnnie Walker encouraged influencers to create their own videos and post them on Instagram, going so far as to invite them to the company factories for tours and to play in games like scavenger hunts. This completely energized the brand image on Instagram and, for very little investment and time, Johnnie Walker was able to spread its name and become a company linked to fun and modernity, completely belying its age and establishment reputation.