The marketing landscape is always changing. The advent of social media and the new opportunities that it unveiled play a key role in how brands promote their products nowadays. Once upon a time, endorsement by a celeb or sportsperson was enough to sell a product. Not anymore. People wants to relate to whomever is promoting a product to them and influencers fill that criteria very well.
Influencers started as the girl or boy next door showing their daily life to their followers and sharing products they use and love. Since people are more likely to buy after a friend’s recommendation or word-of-mouth, brands saw the potential of influencer marketing fairly early on.
And now it is a huge thing. Not only are more and more brands giving it a go but some are even using it as their sole promotion tactic. Influencer budget is increasing, legislation around social media promotion is becoming clearer and people trusts influencers more when it comes to product recommendations.
And that is exactly why your laser spa should work with influencers! Now, let’s dive deeper into what influencer marketing is.
What is influencer marketing
Influencer marketing is not new. The name sort of is though. A decade ago, such marketing was limited only to celebrities and a few dedicated bloggers. Now, it involves social media users who built a strong follower base.
Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing that uses endorsements and product mentions from influencers. Influencers are individuals who have a dedicated and engaged social media following. Some of them are viewed as experts within their niche.
Influencers are so powerful because they have an advertising power surpassing the one of billboards and regular advertising techniques. As a matter of fact, they have built up a high amount of trust with their audience. As a result, a recommendation from them serve as a form of social proof to a brand’s potential customers.
A key element to how that trust was established is how relatable an influencer is. We tend to trust more people we can relate to, identify with and that look like us. That is one reason why an influencer promoting a product always seems more genuine than a actor paid to endorse the same product.
Why your laser spa should consider influencers
As a small business owners you are very familiar with costs and expenses. Marketing may not be your priority nor at the top of your mind. You indeed have more pressing costs to cover. That is where you are thinking wrong.
Influencer marketing should be at the top of your mind and part of your marketing strategy simply because it is very cost effective and produces a high return on investment. For example, in 2019, $1 spent in influencer marketing generated $5.78.
When you work with an influencer, you have access to an engaged audience. If you choose your influencer well and their audience is your ideal audience, those followers are more likely to convert into clients and thus help you increase revenue.
Influencer marketing is very efficient at raising awareness of a brand, putting your business’ name out there at little to no cost and increasing trust in your brand. A social media influencer promoting your business and endorsing it gives a social proof that you are genuine and people can trust you.
What kind of influencers are there?
Before starting to work on an influencer marketing strategy, it is important to know what influencers there are and what each category can bring to your business. You can probably divide influencers in five main categories:
They have 500 up to 10,000 followers on one of their social media platform, usually Instagram. They have a really high engagement rate, from 5% up to 20%. Their audience is highly engaged and responsive to their recommendations. Very often, they have a blog and are active on other platforms with a similar following. You can work with them to get exposure on multiple platforms. They have influence within their community.
They have 10,000 up to 100,000 followers. They can also be active on other platforms and can cross-promote a product as well. Their engagement is slightly lower than nano-influencers but they have the “swipe-up” feature. Thus, they can link to a product or a website from their Instagram stories, which can become a good source of traffic.
They have 100,000 up to a million followers. They are often found on Instagral, Youtube or TikTok. Macro-influencers are great to work with if you want to reach a very broad audience and want to increase awareness of your brand. While the audience will still be fairly targeted to a certain demographic, it will be much bigger than a micro-influencer’s audience. Engagement rate tend to decrease here too.
They are any influencer with more than one million followers. Often, they are reality tv stars or early adopters of social media platforms. They provide brands with a very big reach but at a very high cost too. A bigger audience does not necessarily mean that it is the right audience for your business and that you will see bigger conversions than with a smaller influencer.
They are influencers whose biggest platform is their blog. They will also have a presence on a few social media platforms, where they may have a rather big follower count. However, it is on their blog that they will mostly work with brands. Getting a blogger to write a blog post about your business and service will serve as a great social proof, a review as well as give you backlinks towards your site. The stronger the authority of the blog, the better will it be for your website. Such blogs also are good sources of traffic.
There are different types of influencers and different ways to work with each. You will pick them depending on your strategy and objectives. The bigger the influencer however, the higher the cost since more and more influencers are monetizing their services. Some will accept to work on a gifting basis (depending on the value of the product or service you offer) while others will only work on a paid basis.
How find the find the right influencers for your laser spa
Before you start working with influencers to promote your laser spa, you need to build up an influencer marketing strategy and set up goals and objectives as per what you’re trying to achieve. It is also important to remember that influencer marketing works only when a brand carefully pick the right influencers.
In other words, you need to find influencers who are followed by your ideal audience. As a laser spa, you will be offering laser hair removal services. While it is a beauty service, it is something that people across all industries will be interested in. Who does not want to be hair-free forever after all?
Things to keep in mind when picking the best influencers for your business include:
What your customer persona is
What your ideal audience is (gender, age, location, income, interests, purchasing behavior)
Blog readership and domain authority (if working with a blogger)
For example, let’s imagine you are a New York City based spa. Thus, you will want to work with an influencer who lives in NYC and whose audience is mostly based there too. Their following count should be satisfactory to your standards, with a good engagement rate and high quality content. You will want to ensure that they fit you brand persona, identity and tone of voice.
The closer an influencer’s audience is to your ideal audience, the more likely they are to be interested in your business and convert into purchasing customers.
They are multiple ways to analyze and audit an influencer’s audience. Tools such as Hype Auditor will give statistics on demographics, interests, locations, as well as a percentage of active to inactive and mass followers. They will also show the growth rate of an influencer and flag any suspicious activity that may reveal someone as a fake influencer (i.e. they bought followers).
How to work with influencers
You can start with creating a database of local influencers referencing their blog and social channels against their following and engagement rate. Once you have their details, you can start reaching out.
Try to personalize as much as possible each email so that it does not look like it is a bulk email. After an influencer expresses interest, you can lay out the details of the collaboration. Those should clearearly on in the process to avoid wasting time.
For example, you may gift an influencer with six sessions of laser hair removal. In exchange, they will have to post a few stories during each of their session and produce a static post towards the end of the treatment. Alternatively, you can ask them to write a blog post in exchange for the treatment.
It is important that the conditions are clear from the beginning of the collaboration to avoid miscommunication and misunderstandings. Some influencers will require payment, it is up to you to decide what you can and cannot afford.
Should your product be of high value, they may wave their fee. Follow up with the influencer throughout the collaboration, ensuring that everything is good and that the content is published timely as agreed. You may also follow up after the collaboration, keep contact or offer to work together again.
Influencer marketing always produces better result when it is long term and when an audience repeatedly sees your brand. It creates a relationship, becomes more genuine and memorable.
As a small business, there are a lot of advantages in working with social media influencers to promote your products or services. They will help you increase awareness, reach new audiences, get more clients, drive revenue and strengthen trust.