The standard accepted definition of “trend” is a general direction in which something is developing or changing. For fashion, this can mean fringe is back, or short is in, or bright colors are out. For music, this can come to life in the form of autotune or increased instrumentals. For us in the marketing field, trends have a big impact on the successes of our clients, so we make sure the team at MadCap Marketing is always on point with what is expected to gain the most amount of attention. After all, your success is our success!
One of the biggest trends on the rise for 2023 is what is known as Influencer Marketing. If you’ve never heard of Influencer Marketing, it originally took the shape of niche content creators to improve brand awareness, increase traffic, and drive messages to brands’ target audiences. It’s collaboration like this between brands and creators that allows businesses to expand their reach across their buyer personas. We say “originally” because Influencer Marketing has evolved substantially since it first came on scene, and now there are different levels of Influencers, such as micro, celebrity, blog, and key opinion leader. What we want to talk about today, which will help hone your company’s marketing strategy, is the customer influencer.
What is a Customer Influencer and why the heck should it matter?
Authenticity is proving to be key in brand development and trust. Building a customer base has to have trust as a foundation, or everything else will crumble around it. The pandemic forever changed the way customers interact with brands on social media. One of the most significant shifts brands experienced were the number of customers that turned to branded social accounts to address their questions and needs. The pandemic may have felt isolating at times, but the community that came to life among businesses and influencers strengthened commerce more than anyone could have expected. Influencers became a lifeline to businesses that they already supported, and that business became relatable through the eyes of the user.
The customer journey has morphed from the days when consumers would sit back, relax and watch an advertisement. Nowadays, brands are learning that direct interaction with consumers is essential to success. That’s why they’re trying to make the customer journey more interactive for their target audiences, and they’re using messaging that resonates with their customers, which also happen to be their consumers. This is a win.
As businesses adapt to embrace new technologies, they’ve started to use influencers and user-generated content for marketing purposes. This allows them to interact more personally with customers and create both enhanced trust and social proof simultaneously. Influencers carry a lot of trust and clout with their followers as user-generated content tends to feel more authentic and shared than corporate messaging. Listening to someone provide a genuine testimonial with a messy bun in their own home feels authentic in a way that a staged shoot doesn’t.
Does this mean all marketing efforts will soon cease to exist outside of an iphone and a ring light? If you’re strategic in your marketing efforts and want to yield the most success…no. Pairing strategy and authentic user-generated content that supports and enhances the existing branding is the winning combination. Furthermore, utilizing a professional team like Madcap that is skilled at branding and marketing will position your company for success. User-generated content made by customer influencers will help humanize your brand, but the brand has to exist before any of that can happen.
By devising a strategy that features both of these exciting content initiatives, you can create a smarter customer journey that’ll pay off for years to come. Ready to partner with us? Get in touch today.