An influencer is any person who has a significant following on social media channels (like Twitter, snap chat, Instagram, Facebook, etc..) and can sway opinions for a brand, a service or an idea.

In social media world, anyone can be an influencer.

No. A celebrity can be an influencer. However, we believe that celebrities are more credible as endorsers of brands, services, and ideas rather than influencers.

An endorser is any person who has established authority and can vouch for a product or service or an idea. An endorsement can be considered a certification. It can only come from a person with a certain amount of authority. It is almost like saying "I am telling you that this product is good, or you should support this service or cause." A good example of endorsement is movie stars appearing in cosmetic products advertisements. Often, endorsements are paid assignments. More often than not, viewers see endorsements as commercial engagements. And, this commercial aspect makes the endorsements less credible.

Influencing, on the other hand, is rooted in peer-to-peer recommendations. There is no obvious commercial connection between the brand or service or idea and the person making the statement. This disconnect makes the statement more credible. The 'authenticity' factor is high. Anybody can be an influencer as long as they have large number of followers and their followers want to hear what they have to say.

Yes. A celebrity can be a strong influencer if the cause is patriotic, non-profitable or community service related. A very good example of celebrities acting as influencers is Hollywood stars working as Brand Ambassadors for various causes under the aegis of United Nations. The key to using celebrities as influencers is to factor out 'commercial engagement' thought from the mind of the person receiving the message.

Various researchers have indicated that consumers give more weight to peer-to-peer recommendations than advertising claims by companies when making decisions. Word-of-mouth (WOM) is seen as more credible. Influencers bring this WOM to the marketing equation without being directly associated with the brand.

The reason influencers are effective is because they are perceived as 'independent' of the brand. Their mention of the brand or service is seen as genuine. A direct or commercial association with the brand robs them of this 'genuine' factor. Hence we never recommend the use of any influencer as a spokesperson.

Engagement rate is fine metric to follow for a brand but not an influencer because an influencer is not a brands' spokesperson. An influencer is an opinion former, is a subject matter expert. Reach and number of followers are better metrics to evaluate an influencer.

There are two starting points

  1. There are influencers hidden amongst your own followers; and
  2. There are people who have reach within your followers but are not following you.

Start by analyzing your own followers data and then look outside in the social media environment.

Broadly speaking there are two lines of enquiry that should be pursued while deciding upon an influencer

  1. How many common followers do you and the influencer in question have? The higher the number, the better the chance that the influencer will be effective for your brand; and
  2. Interest analysis - are there common interests between your followers, the influencer in question and your brand?

Our professional analysis covers the above and also looks into more areas to find the best influencers for your brand. Get in touch with us using our contact form.

This depends upon your strategy. If you are a operating in a niche category, a one influencer strategy might work. If you are operating in a mass category e.g. a bank, then you would need multiple influencers because you would be dealing with multiple consumer persona's.

Followers segmentation is similar to customer segmentation in marketing. A well executed follower segmentation allows brand owners to have more focussed engagements with their followers.