Influencer Marketing 101: How and Why Your Brand Should Work With Influencers

In today’s world, influencer marketing can have a significant impact on brands, helping to increase awareness and generate purchases among consumers. For Gen Z, influencers are second nature. Whether it’s a product recommendation or buzz around a new dining establishment, influencers yield the power to prompt actions with a mere click of a link.  It’s as simple as that. However, for older generations, it can be tough to understand influencers and the strategy behind why brands use them. So, to help, we’ve outlined a few core reasons as to why your brand should utilize influencers as well as some statistics and data behind influencer marketing.  

Influencer marketing has been around for several years and is continuing to increase in popularity. It was estimated that the influencer marketing industry would hit $21.1 billion in 2023, a 28.7% increase from what the industry was valued at in 2022. According to Matter Findings, 69% of consumers trust influencers, friends and family over information coming directly from a brand. In addition, Insider Intelligence forecasts that advertisers’ spending on influencers would top $6 billion in 2023.  According to the same article, it has also been observed that instead of one-off campaigns, brands are participating in ongoing partnerships or ambassadorships with influencers.  

Influencer marketing developed from people authentically posting about brands, products, events and more before it morphed into a business. With ever-changing consumer behaviors and trends such as the use of e-commerce websites, social media and online shopping, brands have begun utilizing influencers to post authentically about their products. Now, most social media platforms have advanced social commerce features that allow viewers to online shop by clicking a product link without leaving the app. This has ultimately changed the marketing game for brands by allowing them to capitalize on this feature to increase sales and promote awareness.  

Now, let’s dive in a little further and discuss three things to keep in mind when working with influencers:  

#1 The importance of partnering with the right influencer 

Finding the right influencer can be time-consuming, but is worth it for the brand in the end. An ideal influencer should align well with the brand’s target audience and should come across as authentic when promoting the brand. When an influencer seems to be promoting something that they don’t genuinely care about, people see right through it and don’t want to support the influencer or the brand.  

#2 Providing influencers with the valuable key messaging points and core values of the brand that you want to be shared in their content  

Providing influencers with key messaging points about the brand is very important. If you don’t provide the influencer with message points to include in their content, they could potentially go rogue and not share the most valuable things about the brand.  

#3 Understanding the difference between a paid influencer vs. a trade influencer 

Paid influencers are just that. The brand will pay the influencer x amount of money for the influencer to share content around the brand. Prices per influencer vary based on the amount of followers the influencer has and whether their engagement rates are high or low. It’s important to remember that influencer rates are typically negotiable and most of the time, influencers are willing to work out a set price with the brand, versus not working with them at all.  

Trade influencers are influencers who will work with you on an exchange basis, meaning that the brand, a restaurant for example, will provide them with a free meal + drinks or a free sample of a product in exchange for social media content. Typically, these influencers have a lower follower count and their engagement may not be as high. The flip side with working with trade influencers is that the brand does not have as much control over what goes into the influencer’s content. You can of course highlight the key messaging points you want to be included, however since the influencer is not bound to a paid contract, they technically have the right to post as they please.  

The Power Group helps a variety of clients work with influencers for brand partnerships every week. If you’re interested in learning more about TPG’s influencer relations services, please reach out to our team at [email protected].