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Influencer Marketing: The good, the bad and the ugly

Branding, Creative Agency, Digital Marketing, Marketing, Social Media Marketing, What's Trending


Brands want to reach out to their customers using the most innovative ways possible. It helps improve brand recall. And influencer marketing has, over the years, developed into a well-known marketing strategy that many businesses leverage on to reach out to their customers, and to engage them.

More and more brands are choosing to incorporate influencers into their marketing strategy. In fact, 71% of marketers feel that influencer marketing is more effective at driving quality traffic and leads than other traditional media channels.

But still, there are experts who feel that influencer marketing is at a downturn. A major setback of influencer marketing is the irrevocable damage that it does to a brand if it is not done right. It becomes difficult to recover from the damage caused by negative influencer marketing.

The influencer marketing industry is estimated to be worth some US$16.4 billion in 2022 alone. This is itself a major surge from the US$3.2 – $6.3 billion spend in influencer marketing ads back 2018.

The attitude of companies towards using influencer marketing as a key strategy has changed and evolved phenomenally. Big companies with huge budgets are also opting to work with celebrity influencers, in a bid to appear as organic and close to the consumers.

That said, the micro-influencers, which can be easier tapped into by small- and medium-sized enterprises, can be equally effective for influencer marketing as well. It’s all about choosing the right person who can deliver the best job, aligned to your business’s branding goals and values.

Like every coin, this marketing strategy also has two sides to it, both the good and the bad, the pros and the cons. So, before you decide to invest your time and money into social media influencer marketing, it is important to understand in-depth about influencer marketing itself.

Let your creative agency of choice, I Concept Singapore, walk you through the major advantages and disadvantages of using influencer marketing for your brand, and point you to the right opportunities.


What is social influencer marketing: A short history

Social media influencer marketing is the collaboration of brands with influential people, for the promotion of a product, service or campaign. These influential people have established credibility within a specific industry, and have the access and ability to persuade large audiences (their followers) through their credibility and reach.

Influencer marketing is by no means a completely new marketing strategy. Celebrities have endorsed brands since the dawn of time – or at least since 1760, when Robert Wedgwood of Wedgwood China used endorsements from members of the Royal Family to boost pottery sales. Social influencer marketing, however, is relatively new and increasing in popularity. Where celebrities were once used for endorsements, social media influencers have now taken the market share of collaborative work. 


The pros of influencer marketing

  • It helps you reach a relevant audience

Collaborating with the right influencers for your brand can help you reach relevant audiences through social media and digital marketing. 

You need to carefully choose influencers who are relevant to your niche and industry.

Influencers have built their own trusted communities over time. By tapping into these communities, brands can attract potential new buyers more effectively than just with branded content. 

First, you need to think about your target audience, who they are and what they need. Consider their demographic, what content do they like, and on which social media platforms they spend most of their time. Finding influencers, who are mostly talking to that exact audience is far more important than their coverage and reach.

You can approach influencers who endorse brands that are similar to yours. This makes it easier for you to identify influencers who have an audience that you are trying to target. For example, if you are in the hotel or food and beverage industry, then you will need to look for a successful travel or food influencer on social media. The experienced ones will be able to help you engage their followers, by using beautiful visuals and images, and backing them up with genuine recommendations that the audience will buy into.

Finding the right influencer can be challenging, especially if you are new to the world of influencer marketing. If you want to cut down on your time and effort, you may choose to work with established influencer marketing agencies.


  • It helps you build trust and credibility

Trust takes time to develop and people trust the influencers they follow on social media. So, if an influencer talks positively about a brand, then their followers are more likely to believe them. Therefore, one of the biggest pros of influencer marketing is that it helps you build people’s trust in your brand, and enhance your brand’s credibility over time.

However, to build credibility and trust, it’s crucial to partner with genuine influencers who are authorities in their respective niches. Especially on social media. Influencers with firm followings can aid in getting their followers to try your product, especially when they appear sincere and vouches for it.


  • It broadens your brand’s reach

You can reach thousands, or even millions of the followers of influencers, whom you could not have reached on your own.

According to a survey, some 45% of women polled will buy a product recommended by an influencer, in particular when recommended by fashion and beauty Instagram influencers.

Regardless of the social media platform you choose, influencers can help you add new potential customers to your basket. Customers today consider influencers as people they can trust, and they really value the opinions of the influencers they follow. 

Influencers often post questions and polls that engage their followers, to forge friend-like relationships. This makes it easier for them to influence the buying decisions of their followers.


  • It is comparatively less expensive

If you are targeting micro-influencers, you don’t quite need a huge budget. These kinds of collaborations are economical when compared to collaborations with celebrity influencers. 

Sometimes, influencers new to the industry may also agree to work in exchange for products or services.

Working with a number of micro-influencers can be a cost-effective way to promote a recently-launched brand, or other niche-specific businesses.


  • Marketers can save time

When working with an influencer, you won’t have to worry about creating great content

A good influencer knows the best way to create content that can help engage their followers. They know how to develop content that best appeals to their followers. 

In fact, influencer-created content tends to be more engaging than the content created by brands. And the content they create can make your brand look more trustworthy. 


The possible downsides of influencer marketing

  • Working with the wrong influencers can do more harm than good

It takes a fair amount of time and effort for brands to find the right influencer that fits their campaigns. If you don’t collaborate with the right influencers, there is the risk that it may cause great damage to the reputation of your brand.

According to a survey, 61% of marketers find it difficult to identify the right influencers for their campaigns. It becomes difficult to evaluate if an influencer has genuine followers.


  • Influencer marketing mistakes can cost your brand

As a relatively new digital marketing strategy, marketers adopting influencer strategy could possibly make some mistakes in the process.

There is no handbook as yet of a successful influencer marketing strategy, so most of the time, brands learn from their hits and misses.

Some common mistakes that influencers potentially make, which may affect the brand, include:


  • It is difficult to measure results

You put a lot of effort into finding the right influencers and launching a campaign. But your efforts can be in vain if you can’t track and monitor the performance of your campaign. 

You need to analyse if an influencer is able to deliver the desired results. If not, you need to stop working with them. 

However, measuring results, like how many people responded positively to your influencer marketing and campaign, can be a bit tricky.


  • High level of unpredictable risks involved

If an influencer lacks the ability to create impressive content, they might fail to resonate with your target consumers. In such cases, the time and money you invest will be in vain.


Strategise your digital marketing right

Considering engaging influencers to bolster your social media marketing strategies? Not too sure which digital marketing strategy fits your business better? It is perhaps wise to consult with a creative agency specialising in social media, like I Concept Singapore.

Our team of brand guardians and digital marketing consultants will guide you through the different possible approaches and help build a strategy that best fits your current business model and goals. From developing (and renewing) brand identity, through to proposing, implementing and sustaining an integrated marketing strategy for you, our team of designers, creative strategists and programmers can offer you the right advice. 

Looking for eCommerce development options? Our dedicated team of designers and developers can also help you design and set up an eCommerce store online, catering to your specific needs. You can even tap on up to 80% grant funding for the project. 

Feel free to ask us anything and everything about social media and digital marketing.

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Impersonation of I Concept Innovation Pte Ltd (Singapore)

Impersonation of I Concept Innovation Pte Ltd

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