When it comes to social media, influencers may be the key to converting casual interest into sales. It first helps to define influencers; these are the individuals with the potential of impacting buyer decisions among others due to insight, position, authority, relationship, or appeal. Typically, influencers have some sort of expertise in a particular niche which makes them a significant influence when it comes to shopping, hence the name.

Consider the roles of influencers in terms of the sales funnel:

Inform and Expose

Influencers have the responsibility of sharing information and telling stories that compel viewers to listen- and buy. This could manifest in a product review on YouTube, a sponsorship on Facebook, or brand exposure through Instagram stories and posts. The opportunities to garner brand exposure and foster familiarity via social media are endless- influencers can become trusted friends fast. This early phase of influencing is considered the first segment of the sales funnel when consumers are gathering information and making their buying decisions.

Engage

Influencers are able to engage with the consumer audience, gently nudging them toward making a decision. Commenting on posts, sharing videos, clicking likes- these are all effective ways of engaging with an audience and encouraging products, services, or brands in a gentle, friendly manner. Word of mouth advertising is powerful, and it is estimated that nearly ¾ of buyers trust what others share and suggest online.  In terms of the sales funnel, when the buyer is mid-way through the funnel, an influencer has the ability to push them to act.

Compel to Act

The final phase of the funnel, prior to an actual purchase that is, is when the consumer is nudged with some sort of incentive to act, or in this case, buy. Coupons, campaigns, and freebies are great incentives for those prospective buyers that may still be on the fence. An influencer offering a promo code or a video tutorial of someone using the product is compelling enough to make many want to buy. The smart strategy includes the purchase and payment options on social media pages for consumers that are inspired to buy and that want to respond quickly. This may also be part of garnering contacts for future outreach and campaigns.

Want to learn more about social media influencers? Talk to the industry insiders at Earthlings Digital Inc; a well-laid marketing plan includes elements of social media. Consult with the experts to learn more.