What the Influencers Said

What if for every dollar you handed me, I handed you back a five? Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, maybe not. According to Influencer Marketing Hub, For every dollar spent with influencer marketing, it returns $5.78 on average! Influencer marketing is now a $13 billion dollar business and growing with the popularity of Instagram and TikTok. 

Last week, Mid-West Family Madison dove into the influencer marketing waters at our Influencer Marketing On the Rocks event. Influencers and a few cocktails created the perfect combination for a revealing conversation about the secrets of influencer marketing. 

If you weren’t able to attend, here is what the insiders had to say. 

Joe Daguanno, Senior Strategist and Trainer for Navaquest, a sales training company, outlined the three categories of influencers in everyone’s life. Our first exposure and most influential set of influencers is heredity – family. The second set of influencers are people we see regularly and are a part of our surrounding space or environment such as co-workers or neighbors. Our final influencers are those we connect with given our situation and experiences. This is where influencer marketing really shines. 

The goal of marketing is to get people to buy your product and service. Marketing, in all forms, helps to create a message of how a product or service will help make your life better. You are creating a level of trust and product confidence. 

Trust is a key element of influencer marketing. Theresa Timm, General Manager of Navaquest, stated, “true influence is about leveraging authenticity” and “86% of consumers agree authenticity is essential.” 

In short, when someone you trust gives validity to a product, you know you are getting something worthwhile. And people trust influencers. Daguanno explains that we feel connected to influencers, we feel they know us and understand us. They are our friends. 

In turn, influencers understand their audiences because of this connection. The best course of action when working with influencers is to give them full autonomy, so they can be genuine and authentic. So often as marketers, we want to protect the message of our brand but this one time, we have to relinquish the reins. 

Local radio personalities Dee (Biatch), Johnny Danger, and Pam Jahnke all agree. Pam Jahnke, the Fabulous Farm Babe stated, “My relationships are important to me and I have to use the product or service. I know when I speak about my experience, my audience will lend an ear.”

This responsibility to the audience means that influencers are protective of their own brand as well. Influencers shouldn’t work with just anyone or any brand. They need to have a connection with you as the marketer and the brand as well. 

And influencers aren’t just limited to TV and radio personalities, or even celebrities. Could there be a budding influencer among your ranks? A number of employees are already creating content about their daily lives, including their place of employment. It can be easy to tap someone who is creating content about you organically and use them as an influencer! 

So what does your ideal influencer look like? A key point in selecting an influencer to promote your brand is to look at their interests and hobbies. What do they read or watch online? The more detailed you can be in your ideal influencer profile, the more successful you will be with creating trust with the audience. 

Daguanno reminds us at the end of the day, “We are speaking to human beings. You need to stop being B2B or B2C marketers and start being human marketers.”

Once you do this, a dynamic connection is made between influencers, audiences, and your company. People will reach out to share their experiences and stories. Sports broadcaster Bill Michaels says, “What I get out of influencer marketing is the friendship of my audience and the businesses.”