Connecting With Your Audience in the Age of Influencers

Cape Cod social media marketingby Brittany McSorley

While we covered the deinfluencing trend a while back, its root word, influencing, is the practice that’s completely changed the social media landscape over the past few years. These days, no matter who your target audience is, your marketing strategy still needs to acknowledge the fact that most of the internet now caters to Gen Z’s digital habits. That means videos are getting shorter, social values are becoming more important, and impossibly youthful stay-at-home moms are using Instagram Reels to sell you Hello Fresh subscriptions.

 

In case you’ve somehow been mercifully spared from this aspect of the internet, a primer: Influencing is word-of-mouth marketing dialed way up. People with large social media followings are sought out by brands to create sponsored content, driving traffic to said brands with recommendations that seem more genuine than old-school advertising.

 

According to the Digital Agency Network, the online landscape is trending away from people connecting with brands and toward people connecting with people, which explains how often you see this kind of content on your social feeds, and how much money influencers can make by partnering with brands.

 

But don’t worry. You don’t need a mega-influencer — like Kylie Jenner, for example, who earns more than $1 million per sponsored post — for your business to make a marketing impact. (Though if you have an in with Kylie, you should certainly use it.) You can rely on the same methods by sharing user-generated content like reviews from happy customers.

 

Here are some other ways to engage with your audience in the age of influencers:

  • Shorten your content. Unlike my fellow cool and mysterious Millennials, Gen Z has never known what life is like without technology, and now that they’re grown up, the collective attention span online is trending toward theirs: short. You have around eight seconds to get the average user engaged with your content, so make those videos snappier and cut away at those captions!
  • Show what you care about. More and more, consumers want to know about the social causes that brands support. Don’t be afraid to speak up about the issues that matter to you and your company. Your authenticity will be rewarded with customer loyalty.
  • Keep things organic. Overly sales-y content is a major turnoff for the modern internet. (We admit, this creates an unwelcome challenge when your goal is, you know, selling stuff, but we soldier on.)
  • Stay true to your brand. Video content is outpacing photos, but if your company showcases itself best with photo over video, there’s no need to change things up. Trends come and go, but you know your brand best. Remember when Sandy wore leather and picked up smoking to impress Danny Zuko? In hindsight, that was not the right move. He’s just a guy! You get it.