Have you ever wondered why your favorite youtuber has their own Lyft code? Or how that gorgeous girl you follow on Instagram has her own discount code on Fashion Nova? Or even more specifically why Harlem rapper, A$AP Rocky is the face of Dior’s SS17 Ad Campaign?
This is called influencer marketing and it is taking the marketing, advertising, and fashion industry by storm!
What is Influencer Marketing?
According to the Forbes article,“The Influencer Marketing Gold Rush Is Coming: Are You Prepared?”by John Hall, Influencer Marketing is defined as “A nonpromotional approach to marketing in which brands focus their efforts on opinion leaders, as opposed to direct target market touchpoint”. This basically means that brands are using individuals with large social followings to indirectly and directly influence consumers. This influence can range from consumers actually buying a brand’s product or just following that brand on Twitter. Either way, the brand is still being talked about and is still in the mind of the consumer.
Influencer marketing isn’t a new concept. Businesses have always used celebrities and public figures to influence consumers. But nowadays with social media, the influencers aren’t all necessarily celebrities. An influencer in 2017 is the girl down the street who does makeup tutorials on youtube, or the girl who always posts her cool and edgy outfits on Instagram, and even that funny guy who makes videos on Snapchat. The range and types of influencers is tremendous. Just like each industry has their own target audience, each industry has their own influencers.
Influencer Marketing and the Fashion Industry
The Fashion industry has become a leader in influencer marketing. In The Drum’s article, “What’s the state of influencer marketing in 2017?”, Ian Schaffer, the CEO of a creative agency, says that “Influencers in fashion are no longer the writers in Vogue”. In the 90’s, the ones who covered every billboard and every front page of magazines were super models like Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Heidi Klum. In 2017, the ones who are on billboards, magazines, and even even gracing the runway are rappers like Lil Yachty, reality stars like Kim Kardashian, and even rising youtube stars like the McClure Twins.
The main goal of Influencer Marketing in fashion is to bring awareness to the brand. Obviously regular people cannot afford high-end designer names like Balmain and Dior, but when people see their favorite artist in ad campaign with these brands, it sparks buzz and conversation. The fashion industry for a long time has been very elitist. Wealthy and cultured individuals crafted garments for other wealthy and cultured individuals. If you weren’t in a certain tax bracket, you had no idea who these foreign brands like Versace, Fendi, and Balenciaga were. Now in 2017, modern and regular people like you and I know all about them. Through the use of influencers, fashion brands can spread their personality, mission, and voice to consumers who would have never thought of them. This results in brands and influencers getting more exposure and consumers gaining entertainment and knowledge. Ultimately a win-win situation for all parties involved!
In conclusion, influencer marketing is taking over. The fashion industry is holding onto this power house by the reigns and is not letting go. The future for this type of marketing is looking good.