Although Influencer Marketing has been a hot, new thing in recent years and is especially picking up momentum here in 2015, it's been around as long as there have been communities of people and friendships. Let's do flashbacks from recent decades though!
I think back to the early days at St. Pius X/St. Leo Grade School and remember "Friendship Pins" and "Ribbon Barrettes." I'm unsure how the first girls found out about the trends, but it started with a few and turned into almost all of the girls making pins and barrettes. I also remember when "Hello Kitty" became a thing. Same scenario: A couple of girls would have Hello Kitty stickers, pencils and erasers and eventually this turned into regular walks to the Hello Kitty store at Westroads Mall so I could get stickers too with my babysitting money.
The cool guys in grade school listened to U2 and R.E.M so sure enough I had to listen too and bought the cassettes (yes cassettes).
Perhaps the biggest example in grade school I remember is all of the popular girls wearing Forenza sweaters outside of school, even at Church. There was one occasion where they were all sitting in the same row at Church, and all of them were wearing the sweater. Not that they were mean girls at all, but it was just like Mean Girls when they all wore pink on Wednesdays! I never got a name-brand Forenza sweater, but boy did I want one and would talk about it all of the time!
When it came to celebrities when I was younger, I wanted Olivia Newton John's haircut so got it... Madonna's rubber bracelets were amazing so bought some of those... I saw "Less Than Zero" and thought Jamie Gertz looked so chic in black so it was around that time I started wearing more black too (my parents hated this!).
The point is: Influencer Marketing is when you see a celebrity, someone popular, or someone you admire using or talking about a product so you want it too. This is a marketing technique that can be used in any decade!
Here is what the cycle looks like:
Six Steps to the Cycle:
1) A celebrity, popular person or person you admire uses and talks about a product.
2) Your brain is triggered: "I want that too."
3) You buy product, or think about buying it.
4) Whether you buy product, or think about buying it, you talk about product.
5) You trigger other people's brains too, "I want that!"
6) Word about the product spreads like wildfire.
Influencer Marketing is timeless. Even before the days of Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat it was in full force, just via different channels. So as long as you keep this basic 101 foundation in mind, you can implement an Influencer Marketing campaign anytime, anywhere.
If you'd like more information, please reach out to me on Twitter @DanaDyksterhuis or email, firstname.lastname@example.org