It’s no secret that Instagram is the hub for brands and influencers. The fairly recent addition of Instagram shopping has really encouraged e-commerce to the platform, with brands already online bringing their presence to the app, as well as new brands setting up on the app.
As a recent survey suggested that 89% of marketers said that Instagram was the most beneficial social media platform for influencer marketing, it’s definitely worth your brand getting on board.
Why should you be working with influencers?
With 1 billion monthly active Instagram users, it’s not surprising that this platform is at the heart of influencer marketing. Marketers have boasted a great increase in brand awareness and sales figures through the use of influencer marketing, and for very little cost – this might just be the way to improve your ROI.
No matter what your brand goals are, we recommend considering influencers for your next marketing campaign. In 2020, it was found that the top 3 sectors using influencer marketing are 91% of luxury brands, 84% of sports clothing brands, and 83% of beauty brands. If your brand falls into any of these categories, then I’d suggest checking out these Heepsy blog posts on tips for using influencer marketing for beauty brands and influencer video marketing in the fitness industry. Although, brands outside these categories are also finding great success with influencer marketing. Apparently, Instagram users look at at least one business profile every day, from all different brand types. So, influencers can help to direct these users towards your brand too!
Brands have found great success when moving away from advertising forms such as celebrity endorsement, to working with smaller influencers. Consumers tend to appreciate the voice of nano and micro influencers the most, believing them to be the most authentic when it comes to promotional content. In fact, the majority of Gen Z and millennial users suggest that they frequently make purchasing decisions based primarily on the opinions and recommendations of their most liked influencers. They often follow influencers from the early stages of their career, building a trusted relationship where they appreciate their product suggestions.
Instagram features for influencers
Instagram has released many updated features over the years, with each becoming even more suited to e-commerce on the platform. Most notably, in 2019 Instagram Shopping was released. This allows users to view and purchase products directly within the app, as well as enabling brands even without a previous online presence, to set up a shop on the app. We have seen many big-name brands flocking to Instagram Shopping to engage users here, but have also seen a huge rise in consumer support of small businesses and local shopping.
With regard to influencers, they previously would only be able to upload media content like posts and stories, whilst tagging the branded partnership within the caption. However, Instagram Shopping has enabled influencers to be able to tag the products directly, where following through will take you straight to the brand page or to purchasing choices. This is a big step in improving the ease of the shopping experience for Instagram users, as well as increasing the need for brands to consider working with influencers.
You can expect to see promotional content from influencers within several different media formats. The original method of uploading a post, whether a photo, video, or carousel, is still hugely popular. These are great for highly visual products that don’t need too much explanation. Stories are another great way for influencers to promote your products, at a slightly lower cost. More recently, the increased use of IG Live and Reels for promotional content has been evident, where videos could be helpful for more description such as through reviews, unboxings, or tutorials.
Finding Instagram influencers
When you’re ready to find influencers that can work with your brand, we would recommend that you use an influencer marketing platform. This way you can search for influencers using dedicated filters such as age, gender, location, follower count, audience interests, etc.
In addition to the ease of your search by choosing to use an influencer marketing platform, it also helps to ensure the authenticity of the influencer and direct alignment of their audience with that of your target. The key here is to look for follower growth – has it increased at a steady rate? engagement rate – is this near the average for their follower count, not too high and not too low? and audience authenticity and demographics – do these demographics align with your audience, and does the influencer have a low amount of suspicious followers?
However, if you opt to search for Instagram influencers yourself, then there are a few tips that can help. Something often overlooked, is searching for influencers that are already a fan of your brand. This can be done by looking directly at your followers, although this may be particularly time-consuming. Look for followers that have a follower count to suggest that they influence their own followers, and then take a look at the content that they typically post – you may even have already been mentioned!
A quicker way to do this could be to look at your brand mentions. There will likely be a lot of mentions from general Instagram users, but you can sieve through to find any influencers amongst these. You can also look at the branded hashtags which your company uses, as well as other hashtags related to your industry. Influencers often use several hashtags within posts, so be flexible, and search for many different types of hashtags they could be using.
To sum up, yes – you should be using influencer marketing for your Instagram shop, and finding influencers couldn’t be any easier! Hopefully, this information will help you to realize the success that can come from an influencer marketing campaign.
Figuring out how to search for influencers that match your brand can seem challenging but, with a little help from Heepsy, the process will run seamlessly to help achieve your marketing goals.