Companies historically have depended on the endorsement of a beloved or respected celebrity to build their brand, encourage engagement with their advertising and/or generate ROI for their promotions. Now, the whole advertising dynamic has shifted from traditional movie star and professional athlete endorsements to social media influencers who have built their brand using social media. What is it that makes social influencers so much more effective and - more importantly - how can you tap into this trend locally?
Celebrity endorsements have been key components of advertising since the dawn of the industry. In as early as the 1760s, pioneers began using royal endorsements to build brand loyalty. Of course, the art of the celebrity endorsement has grown leaps and bounds since then. In the 1950s, there was the Whitman’s Chocolates campaign that included celebrity endorsements including the recognizable names of Humphrey Bogar, John Wayne, Elizabeth Taylor, Bob Hope and Jimmy Stewart. Their payment for endorsing said product? Amazingly, just a box of chocolates.
Today’s most notable endorsements include the following:
- Matthew McConaughey for Lincoln
- Patrick Mahomes for State Farm Insurance
- Jennifer Aniston for Aveeno
- Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis for Cheetos
The list could go on and on and include thousands of additional celebrities who leveraged their personal influence for the betterment of a brand name. Of course, you can bet that each and every one of the aforementioned modern celebs were given significantly more than a box of chocolates for their trouble. They were paid in thousands if not millions of dollars for their endorsement.
Now, in the present age of advertising, the year 2020, we are seeing a new kind of influencer. This differs from celebrity endorsements in a variety of ways. In fact, the popularity of social media has introduced a brand new generation of influencers, the digital brand ambassador, known as the social media influencers. Consider the following notable social media influencers and their numerous followers:
- Selena Gomez: 144 million Instagram followers
- Kayla Itsines (personal trainer, rated as one of Time Magazine's Top 30 Most Influential People on the internet): 10.5 million Instagram followers
- Cameron Dallas (young entrepreneur featured on the Netflix show ‘Chasing Cameron’): 21 million IG followers and countless other followers on Vine and YouTube
- Cristian Ronaldo (soccer megastar who makes $750,000 per sponsored post): 145.3 million IG followers
This is the new face of the celebrity endorsement and it is only going to continue to grow in popularity. Today, the trend is for brands to choose a social media influencer over a celebrity endorsement for a variety of reasons. In fact, as a business owner or marketing professional, you need to get on board the social media influencer train or risk being left behind.
Stats show that 71% of marketers say that the quality of customers and the traffic they garner from the right influencer marketing is much better than other advertising sources. This includes leveraging the involvement of local social media influencers to further your brand.
Now that we consider how the celebrity endorsement has shifted into the social media influencer, it’s important to consider how you can leverage this trend to your advantage locally.
Your local radio on-air personality is the ideal social media influencer with which to partner. Not only can they serve the role outlined above for a social influencer but they have local pull that is a distinct advantage when engaging nearby consumers. Local DJs have invested themselves heavily into developing a loyal following, not just on the radio stations they represent, but on all their social media channels. They have relationships, influence and a voice. They are local, sincere and authentic...and a perfect fit for local businesses looking to leverage the voice of a social media influencer. But...it takes planning and preparation to be successful.
Find out how more by downloading our free ebook, Tapping Into Local Social Influencers by clicking here or on the link below.