Marketers are increasingly employing influencer marketing in their strategies. Nevertheless, the biggest challenge that faces them now is how to choose the best brand representative to maximize their impact and benefits. Brand representatives aren’t simply influencers, but there are other different classifications that can contribute to the influencer marketing campaigns. In other words, brand representatives can include: influencers, ambassadors, advocates and celebrities. Although they might sound like synonyms, there are significant differences in their impact, their costs, and what or how they work for brands. So, companies that can achieve this kind of marketing, must understand the difference between them, and choose whom can represent their brand in the best way.
Brand Representative #1: Influencers:
Influencers are widely-known people, but unlike celebrities, they specialize in certain niches or specific industries. Their knowledge and contribution to that field, gave them large following on social media and great influence on people. To sum up their definition, influencers are strategic individuals with a deep reach to large numbers of people, because they operate in a specific topic or area of interest.
What makes an influencer a unique brand representative?
Influencers use their blogs and social media as their own business. That’s what makes them work hard to protect their expertise and people’s trust. Furthermore, they write and share about the brands they like. As a result, they have the ability to persuade others to buy their brands. They value and protect their own brands, and honesty is one of their major features. That’s why, however, they provide negative feedback to brands whenever they are unsatisfied. In addition, they care for their followers’ happiness more than this of the brand.
Brand Representative #2: Advocates:
Advocates are highly-satisfied customers and super fans of the brand, who talk favorably about it. They love the brand so much that they are willing to take action if asked.
What makes an advocate a unique brand representative?
They spread positive word-of-mouth about the brand, without asking for compensation or payment, as a result for their brand affection. They answer people’s questions on behalf of the brand, and defend it against negative comments and reviews. Furthermore, due to their genuine passion for the brand, they have long-lasting loyalty that qualifies for a long-term brand advocacy.
Brand Representative #3: Ambassadors:
Brand Ambassadors are people whom companies hire for a long-term relationship; in which they promote for the companies’ brands. Unlike influencers, brand ambassadors don’t need to have lots of followers, but must be famous among the company’s target demographics.
What makes an ambassador a unique brand representative?
They are considered to be positive spokespeople who only talk good about the company in front of its customers. They are also customers’ first-choice to go to when they have concerns or questions. As they wear the brand proudly on their social media, they usually have inside information and knowledge about the brand.
— BECAUSE (@BECAUSE_MAG) September 25, 2016
Brand Representative #4: Celebrities:
Celebrities are notable people for their work in the fields of music, television, art, film, modeling or politics. Usually, companies give them free products to wear, eat, drink, etc., and hope people will see them and ask about these brands.
What makes a celebrity a unique brand representative?
Although they lack expertise and aren’t as connected with their followers as influencers, celebrities’ endorsement can significantly increase brand’s awareness. As a result, this might drive sales.
Brand Representative #5: Bloggers:
Blogger are regular people with passion or expertise in a certain topic that they discuss on their blogs. Sometimes, bloggers write in these blogs as a hobby, but usually bloggers treat them as their personal brand or business.
What makes a blogger a unique brand representative?
Bloggers deliver valuable content and information to their readers. Sometimes, they publish posts about brands to engage more readers, or to create and strengthen their relationship to these brands.
Brand Representative #6: YouTube Stars:
YouTube stars are influential figures who create short videos and vlogs and post them publicly. In these blogs they discuss a certain topic, trend, passion or even a brand. Depending on their style of presenting their videos, and their level of engagement, some YouTube stars can become powerful influencers.
They learn and apply the needs of their followers. As a result, they know how to market to a certain demographic or target audience. Moreover, the way they promote content makes it interesting for followers to watch, especially that it’s based on visual communication. They can, especially, be useful for companies that prefer to show their products or services, and visually explain their usage.
We got Mohanad H and Sherif Fayed to take a look at our new range of pizzas and create their own. Do you dare to… https://t.co/n7Qu3q5Ywl
— Pizza Hut Oman (@PizzaHut_Oman) January 29, 2016
Planning a successful campaign of influencer marketing is not about selecting a great influencer. However, companies must detect the type of brand representative who can benefit them in the best way. With the spread and impact of social media, more types will appear, so marketers must always pay attention to the updates and new trends.
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