My daughter loves to watch YouTube videos of young women talking about their “hauls” or in the language of us older folk – the things they recently bought at their favorite store(s). From the hottest shade of lipstick and nail polish to the newest fashion craze to what’s hot in music – she’s on top of it.
In fact, these videos even inspired her to launch her own YouTube channel, which surprisingly has nearly 500 followers with one of her videos reaching 8,500 views! Not too bad for a 14-year-old.
Back in the “old days” our purchases were influenced by friends, classmates, TV commercials, magazine ads, and even who was on our cereal boxes. But today social media influencers are pushing those traditional forms aside, at least that’s the conclusion of a new study conducted by Twitter and analytics firm Annalect.
The study found that 40 percent of those people asked said they purchased an item online after having seen it used by a social media influencer on YouTube, Vine, Twitter or Instagram. It went on to find that 20 percent of respondents shared what influencers were promoting -- nothing like word-of-mouth to boost sales.
Among other findings:
When looking for product recommendations, 49 percent said they relied on influencers. That’s second only to Tweets from friends, who 56 percent of consumers sought for guidance.
Those exposed to brand Tweets had a 2.7x lift in purchase intent over those who did not see an advertiser tweet. And, when exposed to a campaign that featured both brand and influencer Tweets, that lift in purchase intent increased to 5.2x.
What does this tell us? Well, we no longer need to rely simply on a well-known celebrity to hawk haircare products, the hottest fragrance or the coolest car. In fact, many of these social media influencers are becoming stars in their own right and many brands are turning to them to promote their products.
And, while the Kardashians, who are paid to tweet about their products, won’t likely be going away anytime soon, there are enough brand-loving, social media influencers out there to stop and take notice.
For companies, this is a good opportunity to make new connections, to reach out to influencers and make them aware of your product. Who knows, he or she – maybe even my own daughter one day -- may help to take your company to the next level.
Susan R. Miller is founder of Garton-Miller Media, a full-service, South Florida based public relations firm. Susan is a former journalist with more than 30 years of experience. She has two daughters, three golden retrievers and two cats, but just one guinea pig who is happy not to have to share his cage or his daily stash of veggies with anyone.
Garton-Miller Media is a full-service, South Florida-based public relations firm. Founder Susan R. Miller has 30 years of experience as a writer, journalist and PR professional.