Influencer Marketing is a hybrid of old and new marketing tools, enabling brands to connect with highly active influencers with a loyal and engaged audience. It has expanded exceptionally over the past several years and is now used four times more than it was two years ago!
Today it’s a leading marketing tactic, is an essential part of corporate budgets and is a huge priority for brands wanting to establish a loyal engagement with customers.
We have gathered 2018’s likely trends for influencer marketing and how both start-ups and well-established brands can benefit from micro-influencers like Model Villages.
1. The continued rise of fashion models as influencers
Social Media has enabled fashion models to become powerful, every-day digital publishers who have a loyal and established following. Derived from sharing organic content and behind the scenes VIP moments, models are able to show a different angle than celebrities or macro influencers, connecting to their followers on a personal level. So whilst the continued rise of fashion models as influencers grow, so will the distinction between micro and macro-influencers.
2. Think micro not macro
Macro influencers and fashion supermodels such as Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid will always remain secure within their industry influence. Their huge following continues to rise on Instagram alone, with followers higher than luxury mega-brands such as Chanel and Louis Vuitton. However, with such high-demand careers, these supermodels often have low engagement as opposed to micro influencers, who are able to spend dedicated time towards curating their individual profiles and expressing their identity online, building higher engagement and reach.
In 2017 the rising success of influencer marketing continued to show through multiple market reports. Over 67 per cent of marketers surveyed thought ‘micro’ influencer marketing campaigns helped them reach a more targeted audience.
When asked what marketers look for in influencers, a study by WWD reported that « 75 per cent said quality and authenticity of content; 70 per cent said the size of the audience and social following, 64 per cent said engagement, 56 per cent said the cost of influencer and 53 per cent said aesthetic. »
These results reflect that whilst for some large brands celebrities and macro influencers suit their campaigns, for the majority the forward-thinking strategy will be micro-influencer. Model Village’s fashion model influencers present brands with the opportunity to create an aesthetic library of content, with a unique source of exposure to their hyper-engaged followers.
3. Model agencies will become increasingly involved in helping models optimise their social channels
With such high demand and interest towards their social profiles, models are now more than ever sourcing advice to help grow their platforms and create a consistent thread of industry insight.
Model agencies are now providing social media training on things like « optimal posting times » and balancing the right management of activity. Ivan Bart, president of IMG models told BOF that he constantly reminds their talent to think about what they want to say through their social media, encouraging them to work with brands that help portray their personality. He says how models are now « brought up with ‘THE’ device in their hand and it’s a return of the supermodel. », showing a new generation of social media models and with a full support team behind them.
Model Village works closely with all model agencies based in London, Paris and New York to ensure the content produced is of the highest quality and that a secure founding relationship can be established between brands and our influencers.
4. As influencer marketing investment increases, measuring KPI & ROI will become more vital
As brands develop their marketing strategy with influencers during 2018, correctly measuring results will become increasingly important to track success. Whilst large brands will source celebrity influencers, such as Coach’s ongoing partnership with Selena Gomez, other brands will look to work with micro-influencers building upon engagement and reach.
Model Village’s premium service also enables brands to view professional insights and analytics for each overall campaign and each individually published post including engagement metrics, reach and CPE.
Increasing your budget for influencer marketing will be at its most successful when you’ve aligned your influencer strategy with your objectives. For inspiration, you can search the trending hashtag #MVModelMembers on Instagram and discover our #MVBabes and #MVBoys who actively inspire and actively engage with their followers, whilst building long-term relationships with brands.
5. Brands and influencers will foster long-term relationships
Building upon this genuine reciprocal relationship helps encourage an organic promotion of a product or service and allows the audience to constantly be aware of upcoming events, brands and local experiences.
Director of intelligence at L2 Mike Froggatt says how fashion brands will consistently need to continue building relationships with engaged influencers to help sustain their market identity in 2018. Quoting: “That’s the holy grail: relying on a stable of influencers that have a closer relationship with the brand. It benefits everyone to have a long-term relationship, not a series of one-offs.”
Dolce and Gabanna have already started establishing this relationship with their fashion models, as seen in their Spring/Summer campaign, they’ve included the handle of the models within their Instagram posts. Whilst most accounts normally just tag or comment a model’s handle within a caption, once a photo is reposted that identity is often lost. It’s a simple, but powerful way forward to establish long-term relationships.