Influencers Are No Longer Only Media Personalities, But Full-Stack Content Creators

When it comes to marketing and especially media and marketing strategies, influencers are commonly divided into a pyramid consisting of four levels of influencers:  Celebrities with high reach, publishers and bloggers, brand fans and peer influencers.

The pyramid also describes the four levels of reach, influence and engagement power the influencers have.

The WOM (word of mouth) effect has been proven to have the highest level of influence and it is what most brands wish to achieve. This can be part measured through the net-promoter score (NPS).

When we think of influencers’ capabilities to create a broad reach and high engagement among their audiences and peers, what is the one single skill that these different types of influencers have in common?

The answer – It’s their capacity to not only create authentic content at scale and speed but also their ability to add that extra, engaging element to all their visuals.

Living in a world dominated by imagery, where scrolling and swiping stories becomes an automated reflex, the real mastery occurs in the propensity to capture an audience’s attention in under 2 seconds through these feeds, streams and stories.  This is, without doubt, the most valuable influencer attribute a brand can harness.

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Because living on a planet fueled by picture rich feeds and algorithms, time really does equal money for brands and marketers. The quicker a brand is able to generate engagement via Instagram comments, views and shares by way of its visual stimuli, the better they succeed in the eyes of algorithmic social media engines.

However, the influencers’ capabilities do not automatically benefit the brands and marketers when it comes to securing content on a global scale. This process of influencer sourcing and asset creation is a very different beast to the practices agencies and brand managers are accustomed to.

The primary point to remember when managing influencers as creators, is that influencers who produce content are used to working independently. They are skilled enough to decipher a complicated brief and they know to ask about campaign targets and content specifications if needed. They are target driven and want to deliver to the best of their ability on what has been requested.

As we know, when a client or agency has briefed an influencer for a campaign, they do not direct or participate in the influencer’s creative process. With traditional photo shoots or when staging an ad, they tend to get involved but when you’re working with creators who operate in such a fast-paced environment, where the audience consumes the content directly, this is not the case.

When managing this type of venture at an international level it is important to be mindful of the multiple tools and networks available for automating this process.  Procedures which can be automated include everything from contracting and licence agreements to price negotiations and finding the right talents in the right countries, who have access to the necessary resources and an easy, borderless payment process.

The reason so many influencers utilize these kinds of marketplaces and platforms is because they enable them to work more effectively and efficiently.  In short, it makes life easier.

Using these systems, brands simply upload their briefs and influencers respond by creating and delivering a pool of applicable content.  Brands can then cherry-pick and buy the subsequent product which best suits their needs, paying only for what they use whilst simultaneously appropriating licenses which are often lifelong and global.

Since the brand only procures its favorite pieces of work from the supply, this mechanism stimulates healthy competition between the different content creators.  The extra effort made from producers to help their content stand out from the crowd is, therefore, evident in the final results.  Influencers working as content creators through these platforms have a genuine passion for the brand and the way they go about it is beneficial to all involved.  Furthermore, it raises the overall quality of future production.

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These marketplaces usually also work as influencer networks.

For instance, let’s take an influencer who is an expert in producing pictures of food and who has a long-term influencer deal with a specific brand. This influencer might not be able to participate in a competitors’ influencer campaign, but they can most certainly use their skills to assist in a content creation program for any company since the influencer will not be using their own face, likeness or media space. These marketplaces give an opportunity for brands and influencers to work with a much broader network than they would normally.

What about the pricing of these marketplace content creators?

It’s a win-win situation.  For brands, it is a very cost-effective way to source original branded content and for influencers, who are consummate professionals in creating this kind of output, it means more income.

In the end both the brand and the influencers value and believe in the same things – Authentic and engaging audience content at an attractive price-point.  It is exactly what modern marketers need in a content driven world.

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