Influencer girl - Image by Alexandra_Koch from PixabayVamp has published findings from research conducted by Atomik Research. The research looked at the impact of influencer marketing on purchasing decisions. Vamp is an Influencer Marketing platform that helps organisations create, manage and report on an organisation’s influencer marketing campaigns. The key finding was that 88% said they’d purchased something based on influencer recommendations in the past six months.

Influencer marketing is important says Vamp

The findings provide further evidence that influencer marketing is important, especially for certain generations. The research found that among 18 – 34-year-olds, who seem glued to their mobile devices, influencer marketing outranks TV advertising, digital advertising, radio advertising and billboards for 85% of the respondents.

For the older generation, the more traditional advertising channels remain the most popular, with 50% of 45 – 54-year-olds citing TV as having the most influence. However, influencer marketing was second, with 18%.

What isn’t clear from the data provided to Enterprise Times is the scope of the survey answers. Was print media included, for example? Also, it is unclear how many responses there were from each country or age group in the survey. The survey included responses from 507 adults from the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Australia and the UAE.

Aaron Brooks, Co-Founder and President of Vamp
Aaron Brooks, Co-Founder and President of Vamp

Aaron Brooks, Co-Founder and President of Vamp, said, “The days of marketers questioning whether influencer marketing is a legitimate channel are over. Now they’re concentrating on how they extract the most value and results from the efforts. In case this is still in doubt by anyone, a great source to speak to are the audiences being targeted by influencer marketing, the consumers. 

“The fact 88% of consumers have purchased something due to a creator’s content in the last six months is yet more evidence that this channel is becoming a major player in the worlds of marketing and advertising. Not only that, it could provide an opportunity for marketers to get ahead of their competition, drive that all important cut through, and impact their business’ bottom line in what is sure to be a highly competitive Q4.”

The survey goes on to break down insights by content type, style and country.

Video rules, but not any video

It is no wonder that in a world of high consumption, people want and are influenced by shorter videos. 55% of respondents said they prefer shorter videos over long-form videos (14%). It isn’t clear if this is a 6 or 15-second video, but the message is clear: brands must capture an audience quickly and tell their message rapidly.

Even better than longer videos is photography (19%), indicating that images that tell a story capture the imagination better than longer videos. Blogs at 12%, are still important and worth investing in.

For influencer marketing, the most important content types are reviews and recommendations (41%), along with product demonstrations (37%). Where a physical presence in a store is not possible, seeing someone use the product seems to be the next best thing. Other factors worth bearing in mind are discount codes, though Vamp did not give a full breakdown on the data around these.

It would be an interesting piece of research to determine what type of discount codes are most favoured when delivered by influencers.

Interestingly, audiences are not always looking for celebrity endorsements. Only 27% are swayed by such things, with most seeking out more real reviews by ordinary people. This explains the growth of nano-influencers. The challenge for organisations is that while 1:1 relationships with celebrities are easy to manage, scaling relationships to many nano influencers requires technology, such as that provided by Vamp.

Authenticity rules

Do people believe in celebrity endorsements? Earlier this year Wharton published a blog on marketing psychology which stated, “People are more likely to choose products that are endorsed by a celebrity rather than a non-celebrity, and they make that choice faster.”

However, the blog went on to note that when non-celebrities look at the product, people’s eyes are drawn to it. For celebrities, their gaze lingers on the celebrity themselves. The inference is that celebrities exude the “vampire effect”, and can turn attention from products. Both have benefits.

However, it is clear that consumers do not want to be directly sold to. Celebrities can get away with more overt messages because their familiarity and status inspire confidence. For influencers, the approach must be authentic. Consumers ranked the following as most important.

  • Opinions on brands they’re interested in – 36%
  • Tutorial/knowledge-based sharing – 35%
  • Inspiration to try new things – 34%
  • Everyday life experiences – 34%
  • Other – 2%

It means that influencers must focus on what they believe in and provide information that consumers want. Nano influencers that grow popular should not confuse their popularity with celebrity. Yes, they can grow an audience, but they must continue to be authentic and provide information about the products they review and demonstrate. Consumers want to learn about the products and not them.

Global variances

As one might expect, there were not only differences between generations but also between different nations. The sample size, however, was presumably quite small for each country but provided outliers from the norm that are worth noting.

In UAE 93% said that they have made a purchase based on an influencer recommendation. 90% feel positive about influencer marketing in the country. An example of a successful influencer campaign is by Tamimi Markets, a Saudi Arabian food retailer that used Vamp to achieve over 3.5 million impressions for their loyalty program, using just seven Saudi Arabian ‘mumfluencers’ as the original campaign seed.

Other nations want different approaches. The top type of influencer content required across different countries was:

  • Product demonstrations – Italy (49%)
  • Ambassador style content – France (28%)
  • Multiple brands features – UAE and Spain
  • UK audiences want a mix
  • Objective reviews – Australia (61%)

The report looked at the wider marketing requirements and surfaced some other preferences.

  • Italians prefer knowledge-based content
  • UAE consumers want new experiences
  • French and German consumers prefer to be entertained
  • British consumers want honest reviews (33%) and discount codes (26%)

What is not known is whether the preferences for discount codes are also seen in other countries, and whether the cost of living crisis is having an impact on that figure. Without data from the previous year, it is hard to evaluate whether there is a trend.

Enterprise Times: What does this mean

The full data set might have provided enough information for a full report. A report that would have had some value to marketers looking to create marketing campaigns across these regions and generations. The data provided did not include enough of the detail.

It is clear from the research that influencer marketing is important as brands seek to cut through the saturated market. Traditional advertising is still working, but it is not always as effective as it once was. While Influencer marketing is relatively new, there are pitfalls that this research highlights.

Scaling influencer marketing is not difficult, but it does require a more scientific approach, something that Vamp can help with.

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