Reach the Influencers, Reach the Masses!

In Fashion Law by FASHIONENTLAW™

Reach the influencers, reach the masses! It is that simple. Almost four years ago when I began what is now Ladybrille Magazine, I recall realizing, almost immediately, that as much as I wanted to take my message about contemporary Africa to the Western masses, it would be impossible to do so if I did not do go through Western influencers. These influencers had to be further hyper-targeted to include those that were extremely comfortable in discussing Africa beyond the stereotypical Africans they saw on Western TV.

Over time, I have shared this philosophy, especially with Africa’s fashion and entertainment industries. So, you can imagine how thrilled I was when I read Fashion Marketing guru Macala Wright’s article, thanks to @staciriordan, discussing this topic on Wright lays it out so well, it is a must read, must bookmark, must archive.

“[Stand Out] Macala Wright Lee is the publisher of FashionablyMarketing.Me. Wright Lee is a retail consultant who specializes in marketing consulting for fashion, luxury and beauty brands. You can follower her on Twitter at @FashMarketing.

Simply put, there is no one single way to measure online influence. And in the past, measuring influence has been based on popularity or celebrity. In a recent post, Brian Solis, principal of The Altimeter Group, wrote, “If we look beyond the word ‘influence,’ we see that the ability to measure effect is complicated and elusive. I believe, however, that we’re closer to measuring social capital, at least in a digital sense, than we are [to] measuring outcomes.” This means that online influence isn’t about popularity, it’s about expertise.

Targeting the Right Influencers

It’s important for retailers and brands to focus on targeting small groups of online influencers who are experts in the niches they cover. First and foremost, “don’t think of online influencers as media contacts,” says Derek Skaletsky, vice president of business development for Traackr. “Online influencers don’t care about news. They care about experiences — especially unique experiences that help them differentiate themselves to their audience.”

The need to focus on relevant influencers rather than the most popular “social media celebrities” can be explained in three ways, says Pierre-Loic Assayag, president of Traackr.

  • Relevant influencers create signals. The “big fish” create noise. For decades, advertising has trained marketers that noise equals success, which isn’t true. Getting the attention of influencers who have built authority with a target audience and have earned trust in communities relevant to specific businesses is what yields the best return.
  • Targeting relevant influencers drastically increases the “engagement hit rate.” Instead of reaching out very generically with yet another media coverage request, you’ll be talking to someone genuinely interested in your issues, industry and products. . . “ has the full story.

By the way, have you all seen this documentary on Influencers? It is a must watch.

INFLUENCERS TRAILER from R+I creative on Vimeo.

Closely related is “Whose Cool?”

INFLUENCERS in-depth Series / STEVE STOUTE from R+I creative on Vimeo.