Influencer Marketing – what’s the real goal?

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Will Gardiner - I'm an Associate Director at CCgroup and head up the Business Technology PR stream. Apostrophe pedant, Harlequins RFC season ticket holder and (very) amateur cricketer
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As social media increasingly fell under the PR umbrella, the received wisdom was that as long as brands are communicating engaging content via the right social platforms, influencers will be influenced – and to some extent this is true. That said, this methodology is still a few miles away from true influencer marketing and social media engagement.

In a nutshell, B2B influencer marketing is about people and relationships - solidifying a two-way dialogue and relationship and later establishing mutual benefit from it. Of course, there are clear parallels here with traditional PR activities and especially social media. Content production, audience identification, tailoring and persuasion are all skills that are equally applicable to PR as they are to influencer marketing, making the latter really a more commercially aware version of the former. Similarly social media has become a great way to not only engage but listen, again making it relevant to the development of influencer marketing.

However, primary differences remain: goals and timelines. In essence, PR campaigns can deliver far more immediate results and responses from its target audiences, while influencer marketing is typically a far longer-term activity. At a basic level, a re-tweet from an “influencer” is an indicator of successful engagement, but when the real aim of influencer marketing is commercial benefit and collaboration, these indicators of engagement are little more than milestones along the way, not the end goal. The real successes often involve a serious of steps that require an investment of time and resource, and plenty of patience.

So what are these key steps in influencer marketing?

In the latest Best Practice Guide from B2B Marketing Magazine, this time on Influencer Marketing, our very own Richard Fogg (Managing Director at CCgroup) discusses his own experiences in influencer marketing, and outlines the key steps needed to undertake a truly successful influencer campaign.

To purchase your copy of the Best Practice Guide, visit the B2B Marketing website.

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