2011 is set to be a big year for “influencer marketing“, with several brands launching campaigns that recruit influencers in the hope of embedding their brand into the culture of online communities.
One such example is SonyEricsson who has developed a campaign to find four bloggers to create online content around film, fashion, gadgets, and music and help build an online community where the brand can associate itself with these areas of culture. This is a smart move by a technology company that should allow it to build more brand equity around its products, and attract a wider audience to its advertising than what a more traditional campaign may be able to achieve.
Another example is Streets Cornetto who have recruited seven bloggers across Australia and New Zealand to share their experiences of connecting with people over summer. This campaign has a multi-channel strategy including TV, Outdoor, Experiential, and a large digital component.
These campaigns demonstrate the increasing importance of developing content as part of a digital marketing strategy. Whether it be blog posts, video diaries, behind the scenes footage, photos, recipes, or a heads-up about a great gig to go to on the weekend, it is content that people can more easily consume and share than more traditional advertising messages. They also demonstrate the rise of the influencer within our culture.
Social media has provided the platform for people who generate interesting content to have a voice, and distribute that voice to a wide audience. As this audience grows, so does the individual’s influence. Brands and their agencies are recognizing how powerful this can be and are starting to investigate ways to associate their brand with this content.
That raises the question of “what constitutes ‘good’ content?”, and “How do you develop a content strategy for a brand”. That however is the subject of a future blog post so you will have to wait until then.