Are the marketing methods that used to work for you suddenly falling flat? Are you seeing the ROI on your ad spend going down and down, to the point that it’s hardly worth it anymore? Is organic social media letting you down? Or maybe you’re a startup, and waiting years for organic reach to bring in sales is just not an option.
If any of this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. Consumers, overwhelmed by so many forms of media and inundated by traditional advertising, are starting to tune it all out. In fact, according to one recent report, 45 million Internet users in the US alone use ad blockers – and many who don’t simply aren’t aware of their existence in the first place!
So how on earth does a pet brand get and, more importantly, hold the attention of pet parents? Two words: influencer marketing.
Why Influencer Marketing Works
A 2013 Nielsen Global survey found that “84 percent of worldwide consumers will take action based on the reviews and recommendations of trusted sources above all other forms of advertising.” These “trusted sources” include family, friends, online reviews and, yes, influencers.
Influencer marketing works so well because information about a product or service is coming from an authentic, trusted source rather than directly from the company. After all, it’s expected that a brand will say their pet beds are super durable and comfortable because they want people to buy them!
On the other hand, if an influencer mentions the beds, or shows how much their own pet loves them, the message carries more weight. Why? Over time, the influencer has built credibility with their audience, giving them reason to believe what he or she says. Their fans trust that this person won’t promote anything that he or she does not believe in.
Partnering with an influencer can mean big things for your brand. A study conducted by tapinfluence links influencer marketing to 11 times the ROI when compared to traditional digital advertising campaigns.
The right influencer marketing campaign can also be an effective shortcut to increasing your reach quickly. Influencers are already engaging with large audiences. Information they share with these audiences is likely to be shared with an even broader group of people who may then join your audience.
The First Step
Clearly, influencer marketing has the potential to pay off for your pet business. But before you ever start reaching out to influencers, define what you want to achieve. Your specific goals will influence your overall strategy, clarify the kind of content you want to generate, and determine how you will track the results.
For example, are you looking for a larger email list or increased traffic to your website? Do you want to encourage greater awareness of your brand, create an engaged community, draw more followers on your social media accounts, or drive interest for a new product? Or, are you hoping to increase direct sales?
Influencer marketing can help your business reach any of these goals, but it requires planning. The next step is to find the right influencer to help you put your plan into motion. I’ll discuss that in more detail in my next post.