A Comprehensive Guide to Influencer Marketing for eCommerce

Social media strategies can be modified specifically where you could take advantage of them to elevate your brand.

In this digital age, eCommerce businesses have a lot of opportunities to market their products. From pushing search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and content marketing efforts to establishing great customer relationship management (CRM) strategies, digital marketing opportunities are evolving. 

Arguably though, social media marketing is the most relevant driver in the eCommerce industry. People spend more time online, wherein approximately 71% of adults with internet access use social media. As such, eCommerce companies can leverage various platforms to build an online following, raise brand exposure, and improve sales. 

Social media strategies can be modified specifically where you could take advantage of them to elevate your brand, particularly through eCommerce influencer marketing which has now taken social media feeds by storm. The influencer marketing industry is expected to reach $16.4 billion by 2022, and 93% of marketers include it in their development plans. 

But what is influencer marketing exactly, and how can you incorporate it into your eCommerce business’ marketing strategies? Read this article to find out!

What is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing is a type of marketing where businesses establish partnerships with influencers to increase brand awareness and tap into a bigger audience.


These influencers are composed of content creators, prominent personalities, and opinion leaders or experts with a solid reputation and social following. They often present themselves as gurus or reliable sources of information within their respective fields.


Due to the steady development of this type of marketing, businesses can discover credible methods of promoting their products and services with real-time and substantial results. Additionally, influencer marketing makes an excellent approach to engaging with your target audience and raising brand recognition among people who share the same interests.

Why is Influencer Marketing Essential for Your eCommerce Business?

Influencer marketing allows you to harness your customer base for marketing instead of splurging on advertising that may or may not work. Ultimately, its goal is to reach more potential customers, enhance your brand’s visibility and credibility, and build brand loyalty.


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Here are the benefits of using influencer marketing: 


  • Improves brand awareness and reach

Most social media influencers have a huge following. Take the top 50 Instagram profiles as an example with almost 2.5 billion followers. When you collaborate with influencers whose specialization complements your goods or services, you get a chance to reach plenty of prospects through them as your brand ambassadors.


  • Establishes credibility and trust

Brand campaigns can easily be integrated into the style and personality of influencers. Since they have created an online identity and a genuine connection with their audience, your influencer marketing strategy passes as a suggestion rather than a form of advertising. 


Many find commercial advertisements and online ads disruptive and overwhelming. By collaborating with an influencer, you share your eCommerce brand’s story as they connect you with their audience. Hence, driving your conversions. 


  • Saves cost and time

In contrast to the escalating price of sponsored advertisements, the cost of working with an influencer is more flexible. The value is mostly determined by the size of their following and their specialization. 


A study backs influencer marketing’s cost-saving aspect, with 41% of marketers saying they have minimized their expenses on content development by incorporating content creators into their business development scheme.


In terms of time efficiency, your eCommerce business may also reuse influencer-created content in line with marketing efforts—ultimately saving the use of other resources in the long run.


  • Drives purchasing decisions

If your company wants to boost sales, this kind of marketing can help you do just that. With consumers turning to influencers for references on the goods or services recommendations, you can be sure to amplify your brand’s name out to a wider scope through these partnerships. 


As social platforms continue to grow in popularity, so has their ability to reach your target market and potentially attract new segments.


  • Provides long-term benefits

Influencer marketing is a long-term strategy. You shouldn’t expect a single post to result in a significant spike in revenue overnight. Rather than a one-time push, it is focused on relationship development. Remember that building customer confidence takes time but with the help of your brand ambassadors’ already established following, you will get there eventually.


How to Build an Influencer Marketing Strategy for eCommerce

Implementing an effective strategy depends on your target audience and the influencers you will be partnering with. Here are some pointers you should consider in building a successful influencer marketing strategy:


1. Determine your audience

Every marketing strategy begins with identifying your target market. Define why customers are looking for your offerings and when they will utilize them. This will help tailor your influencer marketing initiatives to meet customer demands.


To do this, survey your clients to know their preferred social media outlets, the type of influencers they like, their shared values, and how they make purchasing choices. You can also learn about your prospects by looking at the posts they favor, reviewing online forums, and listening to what they have to say on social media.


2. Be clear about your goals

Create key performance indicators (KPI) to help you determine whether or not you have obtained your targeted results. Additionally, these will keep the influencer’s content aligned with your desired outcomes.


When determining KPIs, remember to include the total reach, interaction, website traffic (e.g., views, unique visitors, clicks), search interest, and media mentions. Whether your influencer marketing campaign aims to sell or generate certain user activities, make KPI a top consideration. 


3. Select a social media channel

Some social media platforms may be more useful for influencer marketing than others. For a staggering 89% of firms worldwide, Instagram stories and posts are crucial. Consequently, more than two-thirds of marketers use this platform to promote their products.


For your eCommerce business, choose a platform based on your target audience’s demographics, interests, company objectives, and the possibilities of what each channel offers. For example, 830 million professionals and 90 million senior-level influencers are on LinkedIn. This makes B2B enterprises profit more on this platform.  On the other hand, beauty and lifestyle B2C companies can make the most out of the young population on Instagram, while more technical brands like electronics can benefit more on  YouTube for its video-based format wherein certain audiences can digest more easily.


4. Set your campaign budget

Your budget is critical since it determines the entire campaign’s reach. Influencers establish their rates based on the number of followers, market rates, advertising preferences, etc. 


A post on a big follower account may cost you millions. Conversely, smaller follower-based opinion leaders with an engaged audience could be more effective if you’re on a budget. They can better assist you in achieving your goals with lesser investments. 


5. Scout for influencers to partner with

When brands work with suitable ambassadors, they can earn more than five times their usual spending. To select the best profiles to help your firm achieve results, research each candidate, analyze their distinctions, and compare the benefits against your company’s objectives. 


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Here are the various categories of Instagram influencers you can partner with, depending on the size of their following:

  • Nano influencers – 10,000 followers or fewer
  • Micro influencers – 10,000 to 100,000 followers
  • Macro influencers – 100,000 to one million followers
  • Mega influencer – More than one million followers

6. Launch the campaign

An influencer’s role mainly revolves around creating content. To meet your objectives, you must thoroughly explain your campaign expectations and goals. The best approach is to craft a campaign brief containing key elements such as the platform, product or service profile, and message points. 


To conduct your eCommerce marketing strategy, here are a few campaign ideas your company may work on with an influencer:


  • Create product or service reviews

Consumers often depend on the feedback of previous customers before purchasing a product. They read eCommerce ratings, vlogs, and comment threads on social networks, groups, and communities to see if they’re getting their money’s worth. 


  • Post creative content

The secret to any successful influencer marketing campaign is to provide relevant content for your target market. It’s a collaboration that captivates and inspires others to believe in your brand. 


But to do all of this, you’ll need materials that will entertain, educate, and connect people. Discuss with your influencers the narrative of what your brand wants to tell, how they can creatively deliver your message, and how your audience will benefit from it.


  • Conduct giveaways

Influencer announcements of your brand’s sale or discount periods is an excellent way to boost your campaign sales and return on investment. Many consumers are more likely to purchase if they know that they can save money. Most of the time, this is the deciding factor when convincing someone to visit your online store and make a purchase.


  • Use authentic content

Check whether your influencer can integrate your products or services into their content. Consumers normally don’t mind a blatant product promotion but they never like inauthentic brand remarks, so make sure to keep this in check as well.


7. Track the success of your campaign

There’s no way to determine whether your advertisements are hitting your targets without performance monitoring. This is essential to keep track of the effectiveness of your strategies, observe user behavior, make campaign changes, and ensure that the investments in your marketing efforts are paying off.


Below are several factors on how you can assess and measure your campaign success:


  • Return on investment (ROI)

Influencer marketing helps established companies attract more consumers while allowing small enterprises to scale up by increasing their exposure. It results in higher returns than traditional marketing channels. 


In fact, influencer marketing initiatives focused on interactions generate eight times more ROI than other programs. To determine whether your ideas are successful, the revenues from your campaign must outweigh the expenditures.


  • Conversions

Conversions may help you identify whether your ambassadors drive your customers’ buying decisions. People trust their favorite influencers, resulting in a more favorable response to the brand.


Nearly half of today’s consumers rely on influencer recommendations. A staggering 40% say they bought something after seeing it or being recommended by influencers on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, or TikTok.


  • Referral traffic

Promo coupons are the most effective way to get referral traffic. Giving influencers their own discount code helps monitor the sales that they bring in and identify how they enhance your conversion rate.


  • Social engagement

The number of followers is not the sole factor in identifying influencers. Engagement rate has become a vital indicator in choosing the right influencer for your brand. This metric counteracts fake followers and deceptive marketing tactics. 


You can detect a true following count by evaluating interaction rates, which is more likely to result in higher traffic and conversion for your company.


Build a Relationship With Your Customers Through Influencers

As of today, influencer marketing is the quickest-growing digital marketing initiative. People are now seeking genuine recommendations from fellow consumers which influencers provide as some can relate to these personalities. That’s why it is an effective way to showcase your business and your brand’s message in a unique, accessible, and engaging manner.


Since the eCommerce sector is a competitive field, it is critical to have an excellent set of people to develop and execute online marketing strategies for your brand to remain ahead of the curve. With that, consider collaborating with a well-established company that can help your brand get traction in the eCommerce industry.


etaily is an end-to-end eCommerce enabler that can establish and boost your business. from building your brand through influencer marketing, managing your operations, pulling and analyzing extensive data sets to handling management tools, etaily is your all-around eCommerce partner.


Ready to e-tail your business? Contact us to learn more!