According to a study, 78% of marketing leaders took to influencer marketing in 2020 with about 13% of them engaging in influencer activity for the first time last year. In a similar vein, according to eMarketer, 84% of marketers had contemplated launching at least one campaign featuring an influencer. From a consumer standpoint, a significant 71% of consumers had reported having made purchases derived from a social media recommendation.
In a recent interview with INCA, GroupM’s brand-safe influencer and content marketing solution and also part of WPP, we spoke more about influencer marketing. Arthur Altounian, APAC Client Development Director, INCA, speaks about the revenue and future of these marketings.
Q) What is the USP of INCA? Tell us about your latest associations?
We have access to unparalleled size, resources, partners, and capabilities as part of GroupM, the world’s largest media buyer, and WPP, the world’s leading media investment business, which allows us to maximize outcomes for our customers while ensuring brand safety and client control. We have operational teams with local knowledge in 26 markets spread across four regions across the world, each capable of coordinating global scale across markets for every campaign. We maximize the return on content investment by combining technology, creativity, and mass distribution.
Q) How does the brand association help INCA?
We invest in proprietary technology, tools, and people who deliver expertise matching client demands at the local level.
Q) Brands now have reserved spends on influencer marketing. Why do they incline this segment of marketing?
The reasons for influencer marketing’s rapid growth are largely attributed to e-commerce rise, the expectations and behavior of the young and mobile consumer demographic who drive the economies of many of the countries. Born digital natives, they seek authenticity, individuality, and immediacy.
The relationship is also evolving, heavily driven by precurseur in this space that are D2C brands, beauty & fashion brands who have been using Influencer marketing for the last 4 years and have built their strategy around it as opposed to considering this channel as siloed. Also, from learnings, brands achieve better results by building long-term relationships with KOL and by having an always-on strategy levering influencers for key tactical campaigns or key pillar Vs ad hoc campaigns few times a year. Influencers are one of the best ways for brands to reach and engage with audiences, create high-quality creative that can be repurposed to other channels Vs using standard brand assets.
Q) How do brands calculate revenue through influencer campaigning?
Influencer content drives on average 6x-11 higher ROAS (return on ad spend) compared to social benchmarks and other paid media spend. The number varies per market and industry (source: Facebook, influencer marketing hub, mediakix). Brands can collaborate with influencers to deliver results on each stage of their marketing funnel hence the ROAS would have to be qualified accordingly and aligned with the attribution model. The simplest and easiest is attributing ROAS per sale, download, lead but also important to extend to return delivered by KOl campaigns (compared with another channel) in terms of earned media value (ie. organic traffic to site, search uplift, social pages subscription and engagement) KOl activities impact on brand sentiment and overall brand lift uplift on awareness, recall, consideration.
Q) What is the future of this kind of marketing, according to you?
Influencer marketing will continue to grow in the coming years as the popularity of content creators, consumer demand for two-way interaction, and marketing budgets rise. 63% of businesses expect to raise their influencer marketing spending in 2021. An estimated $15 billion business is expected to emerge from influencer marketing by 2022, according to Business Insider’s latest projections.
Additionally, micro and nano influencers will form a greater part of the marketing mix. Research by Later and Fohr found that the highest engagement rates were seen among micro-influencers, particularly those with fewer than 25,000 followers. Considering that Instagram engagement rates have been dropping, companies are paying more attention to influencers that have a loyal following, even if they have fewer followers. Influencers will profit from a growing number of brand relationships by concentrating on nano and micro-influencers, which will allow companies to stretch their influencer marketing budgets while working with highly connected influencers.