In the last number of years, we have witnessed a huge flux in marketing with a growing focus on an emerging concept now referred to as “influencer marketing”. While the existence of well known personalities working with brands is not unusual, this new segment of marketing is proving hugely popular amongst brands in all niches.
How has ‘influencer marketing’ emerged?
Influencer marketing has emerged due to the existence and prolific growth of blogs but more crucially platforms such as Snapchat, Facebook, Youtube and Instagram Stories have allowed these individuals to carve out full-time careers where they update their following on their every day existence and lives. Many of these influencers come from fashion or beauty backgrounds but many also simply began blogging at the right time and have built up substantial followings of people all over the globe on their various social media profiles.
Through the use of Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram and so on, they can engage and entertain their followers and crucially also, they can promote specific products and services that they use throughout their day. That’s where the opportunity lies for brands. Brands including hotels can and do tap into this following in order to reach a specific demographic that are influenced by this social media personality.
How does the process actually work?
For a brand to be featured on an “influencer’s” profile, it might require payment or at the very least some form of free product or service. It’s also important to note that different countries have differing laws on what is constituted as an advertisement so it’s vital that a brand familiarises themselves with those legalities before proceeding and outline their disclosure requirements to the influencer clearly in order to comply with advertising and competition laws.
What does this mean for the hotel industry?
For hotels, they have been successfully teaming up with influencers for a while now but it’s so important that they align themselves with the “correct” influencer. They need to fully gauge if the influencer’s followers align with the hotel’s target demographic because otherwise it is truly a waste of time and money. Depending on the following involved, the charges of association with a specific influencer vary greatly so taking on an influencer campaign as part of a marketing budget should not be taken lightly. It can be hugely costly and the return on investment is never guaranteed. You also run the risk of aligning with an influencer whose behaviour goes against your hotel’s values as seen in the example of the recent publicity scandal surrounding YouTube personality Logan Paul. His association with many high profile brands called them into question too and so it’s important to note that hotels and brands are at the mercy of the influencer’s unpredictability.
The guys at The Europe Hotel have put together this infographic which covers the whole area of influencer marketing and what you need to know about it for hotel marketing. Crucially, it explains why and how you should examine the effectiveness of the campaign based on its return on investment. Check it out below…
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