Did you know businesses get an ROI of $4.87 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing? 🤯
If you’ve been unsure about working with influencers, you might want to think again. Well-planned influencer marketing campaigns are not only cost-effective but help you grow your credibility, reach a niche audience and increase sales.
We'll take you through the influencer marketing benefits that make it worth your investment. We’ll also look at how small ecommerce brands are driving awesome results to inspire you. ✨
What is influencer marketing?
There are loads of influencers on social media. They're people with a following anywhere between 1k and 1 million+. You probably come across them on TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook on the regular.
The influence that these folks have depends on their follower count, the way they engage with their audience, and the reputation they've built. Influencer marketing involves partnering with these people to promote your products, build brand awareness and reach new audiences.
Why is influencer marketing important for ecommerce brands?
Influencer marketing is a way for ecommerce brands to get on their target audience’s radar. It builds social proof and helps grow sales. When your audience sees your products being shared by people they know and trust, they’re more likely to buy.
Just take a look at these influencer marketing stats that show just how important it is for ecommerce brands:
- 71% of people are more likely to buy if it's recommended by influencers they trust
- 82% of brand’s leads from influencer marketing are better quality than other campaign types
14 benefits of influencer marketing
Not convinced yet? Here’s the proven influencer marketing benefits that'll make it worth your time and help you grow your ecommerce brand:
1. Increase brand awareness
As influencers create content featuring your products, awareness of your brand will inevitably grow among their followers.
This is especially helpful for new ecommerce businesses that don't have an engaged audience. It's also a fantastic way to create hype around a new product or collection launch.
For instance, Athletic Greens used TikTok influencers to spread awareness of their nutritional supplements among health-conscious Gen Zers. These social media influencers created content that showed how the supplement can become a part of their audience's daily routines.
The campaign’s success speaks for itself. The hashtags #athleticgreens and #athleticgreenspartner have over 90.6 million views and 39.5 million views, respectively.
2. Crack new markets
Influencer marketing can help you tap into new markets and reach specific audiences. Take Bulldog, a UK-based men's skincare brand that used TikTok's Creator Program to reach a new audience in Germany. And all without even having a TikTok account! Wondering how? They paired with TikTok influencers to create a series of shaving mistakes videos. The campaign led to 29.8 million impressions and a 5%-10% increase in sales.
💡The key lesson here: identify and collaborate with relevant influencers who’s social following overlaps with the niche audience you're trying to reach.
3. Increase social media following
The first step to encouraging sales through your social media? Build an engaged social following with influence marketing.
As influencers talk about you and get their audience's interest in your brand, their followers are likely to follow you too.
💡Partner up on some giveaway campaigns with your social media influencers. The trick of asking people to follow your brand in return for a chance to win a free gift will work a charm. After all, everyone loves a freebie.
4. Get feedback on your product
You can also use influencer marketing to source feedback on a new product, collection, or specific product feature.
Because many influencers engage with specific audiences, they'll have valuable insights into what your ideal buyers are looking for in a product. Plus, by trying your products for themselves, they can share detailed feedback.
Feminine hygiene company, Thinx, did just that. They invited 25 influencers for a slumber party event in Los Angeles with the aim of getting feedback on their new athleisure line. Thinx used the information they gathered to launch clothing that their consumers would be interested in, and grew their sales by giving influencers unique discount codes. This led to $810,000 in revenue with a per-customer acquisition cost of $35.20.
5. Gain credibility and trust
Content that talks positively about your brand can help you build a good reputation. As influencers talk about you and endorse your products, you'll slowly build trust with your target audience.
Skin + Me uses influencers and user-generated content (UGC) in their Facebook ads. From people unboxing their products, to before and after videos to show how their skin has improved after using their products — this is sure to build trust and credibility with their target market. This tactic has worked so well that customers often post their own before and after pics in the comments section showing the improvements they saw after using their products.
6. Increase sales and repeat orders
Influencers can help increase sales — both directly as they share discount codes or recommend your product, and indirectly as your brand awareness grows. Intimates brand, KNIX, collaborates with influencers for this very reason — using custom discount codes to drive sales.
For example, influencer Tiffany Jeffcoat promotes Knix’s products via her TikTok account. You can grab her discount code, TBJEFFCOAT15, by checking out the description under the video. Every influencer has a different code so when someone uses it on their online store, it’s easy for the team at Knix to know which influencer has had the most impact.
What’s more, if your current customers see their favorite influencers share content about your products, they’ll feel encouraged to place repeat orders. 🙌
7. Bring new content to your audience
As a marketer, coming up with new and creative ideas is part of the job. But it can get tiring having to continuously think of new ideas, especially if you're a small team. Experienced influencers can bring fresh, out-of-the-box marketing ideas to the table. They'll have a new perspective on your brand and can offer creative ways to promote your product - with little effort on your part.
💡If you're looking to find influencers or manage your campaigns, take a look at our list of influencer marketing tools ideal for small and growing brands.
8. Use micro-influencers to keep costs down
Another benefit of influencer marketing - and one your boss will love - is that it can be cost-effective. Running influencer campaigns is 30% cheaper than most forms of advertising and marketing strategies.
It's for this very reason that Doe Lashes' founder, Jason Wong, chose influencer marketing over other forms of paid ads for the first 4 months of his brand's launch. Jason worked out that sending a shipment of lashes to micro-influencers would cost less than $10 per shipment. And if he made even one sale from an influencer, he'd break even. If he got 2-3 sales, he'd profit and slowly start gaining traction. This is exactly what happened. One month of influencer marketing led to $2.6K in sales per day!
9. Educate buyers about your product
A non-salesy way to market to your potential customers is by educating them on how to use your product or how to style it — depending on what you sell. By thoroughly briefing influencers about your product, you can empower them to create content that educates their target market about your product in an engaging manner.
Not only does this help grow your sales, but it encourages customers to create user-generated content featuring your product. This, in turn, gives you more exposure and grows brand awareness. Take a page from Supergoop's TikTok influencer marketing campaign.
The sunscreen brand reached its ideal audience by pairing up with influencers in fashion, lifestyle, and beauty niches. Their influencers made creative content that highlighted Supergoop sunscreen's features in a light-hearted and entertaining way. This not only aligned with the brand's voice but also educated the influencers' followers on the importance of wearing sunscreen. They also showed how Supergoop's clear SPF50 differed from the traditional, white-cast sunscreen people are used to. Here's a peep:
10. Collect data to better understand your audience
Next on the list of influencer marketing benefits is the advantage of collecting data about your audience.
As gathering third-party audience data becomes harder, working with influencers can help you source audience data. The more data you have, the easier it is to create better and more audience-relevant marketing content. Your influencer will have data on audience demographics. That's age, gender, and location — broken up into the different social platforms they work on. They'll also be able to tell you the engagement, reach and impressions their posts get. This will be useful in understanding how well your campaigns are going, and whether it's resonating with their audience.
For direct sales attribution, it's worth setting up tracking codes so you can see who's clicked through to your website and into your checkouts. You'll need to give this to your influencer before they start the campaign. Keep in mind though, not all influencers are open to sharing their audience analytics.
Building long-term relationships with influencers can often lead to them giving you access to the demographic data they have from social media platforms and any other tools they use. This, in turn, helps you make better-informed, data-driven decisions.
11. Work with experts to boost brand authority
If you’ve got good brand authority, it means your customers view you as the subject-matter expert in your industry. Growing your brand authority will increase brand awareness and you’ll have a better chance at helping prospects overcome objections.
To increase brand authority, you could interview experts as part of your content strategy, create a podcast, run webinars and be a guest on other people’s platforms.
You could also enlist the help of an expert influencer. 💡
This is something one of our customers, Forthglade, does really well. As a dog food brand, they know their customers only want the best products for their furry friends. So as well as providing lots of tips on their blog, they work with different types of influencers like Dr James Greenwood on their social media platforms to provide real, expert advice on how to look after and care for your best friend. 🐶
12. Turn influencers into brand ambassadors
Another key benefit of influencer marketing is the opportunity to build long-term partnerships with your content creators. If they try out your products and genuinely love them, they’re more likely to post about your products organically, as well as recommend them to friends and people outside of their following.
Just take a look at this case study from Grin who helped online brand, Inkbox, create an influencer campaign designed to build a community of brand ambassadors. They got 70+ creators to post about their products across different marketing channels. This in turn created a 40% uptick in unprompted creator posts.
13. Strengthen your online community
Online communities are fantastic places for like-minded people to connect, chat, swap tips and share advice on particular topics. Communities mostly flourish on social networks, which makes them a great place for brands to build connections with their customers. (Just take a look at big brands Gymshark and GoPro to see what we mean).
But building an online community isn’t easy. You need to establish a loyal customer base, a good online following and build enough brand trust for people to want to engage with you. This is where influencers can help. ✨
Take Lick, a UK-based paint brand. They took a slightly different approach and encouraged their Director of Interior Design to be their ‘internal’ influencer. Having this regular face show up on socials is important in building a strong bond with their community.
Here’s what Amie, Head of Social Media and Creators at Lick says:
“It's really nice for our community to know that there are real people at Lick, like Tash, who’re there to give our decorators help and advice. This is important for our brand values as well. It's also given us a unique way to lean into video content across our key platforms like Instagram and TikTok. Plus, Tash creates the colours, so who better to tell our community about them than the person who actually creates them?”
You can learn more about how Lick builds a strong community on social over on our podcast, Ecommerce Marketing 101.
14. Get better quality leads
As we mentioned at the start, 82% of brands say they see better ‘quality’ leads from influencer marketing campaigns over any other campaign. That’s quite an impressive stat and, after learning about the influencer marketing benefits in this post, you can see why. By partnering with influencers who talk about your specific niche, you can reach a loyal audience that’ll be genuinely interested in your products. 💫
How to get started with influencer marketing?
Now you’ve explored all the benefits of influencer marketing, you might be ready to get started. So we’ve curated a selection of resources from our blog that’ll point you in the right direction.
- Plan your influencer marketing strategy: A step-by-step guide to planning your campaigns, setting aside marketing budgets and makign the most of influencer-generated content.
- Pick your influencer tools: Discover platforms to help you find and manage influencer relationships.
- Put together an influencer brief: Download our free template for briefing your influencers.
Finally, if you need a place to store all your influencer content then make sure to try out Dash!
Dash could be just the single source of truth your marketing team is looking for. 😇 Our digital asset management solution means you can search, manage and share your brand's visual content with your influencers. And they can send you content ready for approval.
Want to give it a go? Sign up for a 14-day free trial, no strings attached. 👇