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You're watching television, and suddenly Jennifer Anniston appears, holding the new popular flavour-of-the-month skincare product – because everyone wants to look as good as her (the woman doesn't age!)

This is a classic example of a popular marketing strategy that has been around for ages. But these days, simply having a pretty celeberity telling people your product is the greatest thing since sliced bread, simply isn't enough.

Let's take a look at a less banal example:

Lagavulin, a well-known brand among whisky connoisseurs, but fairly unkown to the casual drinker - exploded in popularity overnight. They achieved this by creating a video featuring comedian Nick Offerman, who plays macho man Ron Swanson in the American sitcom Parks and Rec. True to his character, Offerman entertained viewers by sitting in complete silence for 45 minutes, as he sips a glass Lagavulin next to a crackling fireplace.

 influencer marketing example

Even though Offerman has amassed a cult following, he isn't an A-list Hollywood celebrity or a stunning fashion model. This campaign's success is largely due to Lagavulin's hitting the nail on the head by casting Offerman, as his persona is a picture-perfect fit for the brand. The ridiculous length of the video also makes users feel like they are in on a private joke. This is a great example of how choosing the correct influencer, and creating content that your audience can't help but notice, is the key to success.

Obviously, not many eCommerce brands have the option to cast a celebrity to sell their products, but they can make use of a cheaper, modernised version, which is arguably even better: Influencer marketing.

What is an influencer?

Simply put, an influencer is a person who has an established audience in a specific niche. Influencers are people who have the power to affect the purchasing decisions of their audiences using their authority and knowledge.

 what is an influencer

Influencers can be found on all social media platforms, but most prominent on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook.

Back to the eCommerce aspect, using influencers as your marketing campaign is an amazing way to expose your business to a large market, through the word of an expert.

In the current age, social media reigns supreme, with people consuming more and more information than ever, so using influencers will make your product spread like wildfire.

How can influencers help your online store?

Let's say you've just started an online store in a new niche, selling vegan leather wallets. However, your conversion rates have not been doing too great, with sales and new visitors dropping without signs of hope.

Obviously your store just needs to be seen – it's a great idea, but people can't buy it if they don't know it exists!

You've got two options, fork up your money to spend on Google or Facebook ads, while holding thumbs that it will reach your target audience, or, influencer marketing.

 influencer instagram ecommerce

In just a few minutes, you can find the biggest vegan influencers on whatever platform you're looking at. Most, if not all of these influencers have business information on their profile descriptions, allowing you to easily mail them to get an advertisement quote.

Doing this, you're targeting your audience with someone they cannot ignore. This also builds a trust between your new prospects and your business, as they trust their idol (your influencer's) judgement.

 How do I create a successful eCommerce influencer marketing campaign?

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 In order for this campaign to be a succcess, you're going to have to go in with a plan. There are two questions you have to explain to have to ask yourself, to set you apart from everyone else:

Who will be the best fit for your brand?

Is my content genuinely interesting?

 After you have identified your target audience, you will have to put yourself in the position of your customers. Who are they following? Who are they watching or listening to? Doing this is crucial, but your research will be well worth it when you find the perfect fit. This “ideal influencer” for your business will be the one that fits your brand's look, ideals & mission. You aren't hiring someone to simply tell people to buy your product – you are paying someone to create unique, meaningful content surrounding your business and your goals.

 Make a list of all the contextually relevant influencers you find, research them, and their social media pages to pinpoint which options will have the best exposure to reach your target audience.

 As mentioned previously, your marketing campaign is going to have to be much more than simply having someone say “buy this now.”

This is just boring – and honestly might even result in consumers resenting your brand for being so painfully generic.

To get the attention of the followers of your chosen influencer, you want to be pushing out unique and meaningful content. Creating this content can entertain, educate and even create a connection between you and your prospects.

Tips on maintaining a successful influencer campagin

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Use influencer promo-codes

Incentives are an amazing eCommerce strategy, after all, who doesn't like rewards?

To utilize this in your campaign, you can create promo-codes that you can send through to your influencers, that their followers can use when purchasing your products.

These promo-codes drive people to actually visit your website from the influencer's profile because your limited time 30% off promo-code expires soon!

This screenshot is taken from famous YouTube makeup artist PatrickStarrr's video description. As you can see, lots of businesses have paid him to promote their products, by putting links as well as promo-codes to their products in his videos.

This influencer also uses these products in his videos, so when wants to check out what his preferred products are, they're easy to find and buy.

Create a relationship with your influencers and customers

influencer ecommerce

Obviously, you don't want your influencer feeling like you are using them. The best way to see the best results with influencer marketing is to treat your influencer as a personal partner, and not just someone who promotes your product. It should be a symbiotic relationship, where you both benefit and grow from.

A good influencer-to-business relationship will lead to posts where influencers genuinely highlight how your product has helped them, and actually believe that their followers should use the product too.

Now that you've got the rundown, give it a go!

The reason influencer marketing is so popular, is well, because it works! If you put in the time and research to see what exactly works for your target audience, you'll reap the rewards. 

By implementing the tips from this article, you can create more natural social growth with your audience - which easily converts to sales.