Why Influencers Have Thrived In The Internet Age And Will Dominate The Future As Well
For thousands of years, marketing really didn’t change all that much. If there was something that you wanted to buy, you went to the market, listened to the salesman, then visited a competitor to listen to another, and then you bought based on what you were told. Now the internet has arrived in every part of the globe, prices are lower since many businesses don’t need to have hundreds of stores, thousands of salespeople, janitors, managers, and security personnel. The huge problem that they all have is that, for many of the more technical products, they need to be explained in detail before people will buy. This has led to millions of people setting up detailed review sites online where they take the time to carefully go over all of the small details of various products. If those that read the review, or watch it on video, like what they see, they can then proceed to a major online retailer to buy it.
Some Of The Best Product Reviewers Turn Into Influencers
Lots of the original product reviewers where people that excelled in certain industries and so they took the time to review products to help people that followed their blog. After a while, these original reviewers became so successful that they branched out into other products, in other niches, in order to make affiliate commissions from their product reviews. And, since they had developed a good reputation in their original niche they were able to expand into other niches without any problems. As long as they continued to offer excellent reviews of good products, they were popular. This was the beginning of influencers.
The more market savvy influencers took their abilities to the social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and others to expand their influence, gain more followers, and earn more money. It’s a pretty straightforward way to explain products, how they’re used, what their faults are, and how you can benefit by using them, all done online without a store.
Enter The Big Marketing Companies That Wanted A Piece Of The Pie
Once some of the larger brands and bigger players saw what was going on in the marketplace, they had the idea of taking big-name stars, well-known users of products, and other high profile individuals and make them into influencers for their brand. This is actually an old concept that companies have been using for years, getting popular people in certain industries to pitch their products among their followers. The big difference is the use of social media, like Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and others to reach wider audiences, and be seen by more people.
The hardest thing for large companies to understand is that many of the original influencers were absolute experts in a very small niche. They spent a lot of time helping people for free and then moved into affiliate marketing to gain money from their efforts. They were the ultimate authority on a certain type of products, a person to ask if you had a difficult question or a problem that needed solving. This made it difficult for some TV personality to enter a complicated niche that they had no followers in and be successful. Like a fish out of water, some big-name stars failed miserably when they tried to influence people outside of their area of expertise.
The real way to become a top influencer is to always have top notch content that your followers are waiting to see. Then, stick to the smallest niche and become the absolute authority in that niche before expanding into others. There are plenty of people and companies trying to get into your niche every minute of every day, by specializing you can become the ultimate authority.
Why Influence Marketing Is The Wave Of The Future
If you talk to your Grandparents you’ll note that they still like buying from the local stereo shop where their friend Ed has worked for 42 years. The problem is, most of the younger generation has grown up researching products on their own using the internet. They know how to find the influencer for their niche, read the online reviews, and then buy online to save money as well. This is where it’s all headed and it’s going to get far more centralized in the near future because of some important changes that are coming.
Right now, video reviews are starting to take the product searches away from written reviews slowly, but accelerating every month. The reason for that is that with a video, you can get an actual walk around view of the product you want to buy and listen while key points are examined and explained. While that sounds great, and lots of people are excited about it, that’s not the final nail in the coffin of the small retail store.
What may finally make online research and buying of most physical products really take off starting in 2018 and beyond, is Virtual Reality marketing. Sure, you think those funny looking headsets are for playing video games, and you’re right. But if you don’t think that millions of marketers aren’t going to exploit the ability to actually virtually walk around a product, you’ mistaken. Once marketers figure out how to master making the Virtual Reality reviews for every product on Amazon they will become the newest influencers of the marketing world.
It will be as if you have the small local retailer right in your home. You’ll be able to examine ANY product you desire, inside, outside, underneath, at your own leisure and as often as you like. Influencer marketing will eventually be the only way that most products are sold and the top influencers might not be the people you think of first. They may be those that master the ability to make the 3D VR walk-arounds of products and combine them with detailed reviews, a Q and A site, and then Skype consultations to close the deal.
If you’re planning on getting into influencer marketing yourself, examine your most knowledgeable subjects and find the products in that niche. Then make top quality content, offer help for free, build your followers on social media and worry about the money later. Once you’re an authority, the money should follow but be ready for the VR walk-arounds that are going to explode in 2018 and beyond.