The Value of Blogger Influence in an Effective Awareness Campaign

In some ways, it’s unfortunate for marketers that the average consumer has become more intelligent and wiser to advertising. For those who actually understand that marketing should be mutually beneficial, however, this change is advantageous. In the past, brands could simply advertise their products, tell consumers what they need and enjoy the profits that follow.

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These days, though, community leaders are rising up with influential voices to share information, offer reviews and ultimately decide whether products are good for their followers. As Jayson DeMers of Forbes has pointed out in a recent article on influencer marketing, “Not only does influencer marketing tend to be less costly than traditional marketing methods, it’s a much better fit (i.e. more effective) in our word-of-mouth culture.”

The Influence of Bloggers – aka Blogger Influence

It so happens that a vast majority of social influencers have built their following via blogs. This is essentially the power, and potential value, of blogger influence. For these reasons it is becoming vitally important for brands to seek bloggers to partner with and spread brand communications in a healthy way. These communications are not only mutually beneficial, in the way that the followers of bloggers are seeking and enjoying the information, but are also far more effective, since the communications are coming from a trusted source.

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So let’s take a look at how you can find, create relationships with and ultimately benefit from partnering with trusted community leaders – or bloggers.

 

  • How to Find the Ideal Influencers for Your Brand

 

Most bloggers who have a strong influence over their communities are passionate about the topics they write about for their audience. This is often identified in their writing, the images they source or create, and the amount of effort that is put in to each post. These are factors that make up a quality blog – and are the reasons keeping the readers coming back each day.

Find bloggers who write passionately about news and trends relating to your brand, and those who already have a large following. These bloggers are leaders in their communities, trusted sources of information for their readers, and the ideal marketing vehicles to deliver your brand communications into the hearts and homes of consumers. Partnering with such trusted influencers helps readers become more inclined to listen to what your brand has to say.

Real Relationships Reward Both Brands and Bloggers

As a brand, you only want the best results for your marketing efforts. This is why it’s important to ensure that your brand relationships with influential bloggers are mutually beneficial. By doing so, you also ensure that your brand will be represented in the best possible light, as the blogger will want to reciprocate the benefits that you offer in a way that he or she can.

Sometimes marketers confuse influencer marketing with manipulation, bribing or worse. Influence is something you deserve by being relevant for others. The support of an influencer needs to be deserved by marketers as well. Indeed, by being relevant.

J-P De Clerck

The following are some ways in which you can nurture a brand-blogger relationship and ensure mutual benefits that reward your marketing efforts:

  • Offer exclusive brand insights that no other bloggers know
  • Provide new products or goods to be tested or sampled
  • Invite influential bloggers for store openings, product launches and other exciting brand events
  • Mention partnered bloggers on your site to drive traffic and boost credibility
  • Offer them actual paid positions so they can focus on their blogging, rather than only being able to blog after hours

These are all excellent ways to build, nurture and grow mutually beneficial relationships with bloggers, and are also ideal for connecting with the consumers who rely on the opinions of community leaders.

Connect With Consumers Who Don’t Trust Brands

In a world where consumers are constantly being bombarded with brand communications that over-promise and under-deliver, it’s no surprise that many consumers don’t completely trust brands.

However, this has caused consumers to trust fellow consumers’ opinions a lot more, which is precisely what makes blogger influence so valuable. In regards to bloggers holding a strong influence over the buying behavior of their readers, The Drum, a global media platform with a team who is passionate about marketing trends, stated “a 2012 BlogHer study found that 81 percent of the online population trusted advice from bloggers.”

Rather than simply believing that “this deodorant will attract sexual partners,” consumers are becoming wise and are more inclined to believe when a blogger states, “While the deodorant won’t have you drowning in romance from the very first spray, it does come in a good selection of aromas and is not harsh on the skin.” These human communications are becoming far more effective than concocted brand communications – and are a primary reason why bloggers are invaluable to marketers in our modern age.

Therefore, by connecting with a blogger who has a lot of followers, as well as influence over online communities and subculture groups, you can achieve more than what the majority of expensive advertising can.

Reports from Maximize Social Business, a site dedicated to influence marketing news and trends, show that there are “over 350 blog posts shared every minute through social networks, and nearly 200 million blogs in the world.” This makes blogger influence an almost inexhaustible vehicle to deliver effective brand communications.