When we talk about influencers, they are people that have, in several ways proven to be able to convince a vast number of the public to do anything that they put forward. These classes of people have entirely of a large group of followers, most of which are loyal followers. And they abound in virtually every sphere of life.
We find them in our entertainment industry, on the social media, and even politicians are influential people. Part of what makes them thick is the respect and admiration that they get from their followers. When we talk about brand awareness, it is majorly down to the popularity of a brand in the public domain. In the world of marketing, brand awareness is the most important topic.
Every brand and company aims at improving their brand awareness as much as possible. This is because, when it is done right, these leads are likely to turn to loyal customers. This would, in turn, lead to improving sales and more substantial profit. For new and emerging start-ups, on the other hand, brand awareness is the needed leverage that is required to sustain the brand and improve sales.
In the world of marketing, influencers fall into the following categories: Brand Advocates, Brand Ambassadors, and Social Media Influencers. With social media being the principal channel for generating customers and these categories will be discussed in subsequent chapters:
1.Brand Advocates: Brand Advocates are a set of people that are devoted to promoting the brand. They can either be paid to do it or voluntarily do it because of their firm belief in the brand. Brand Ambassadors and Social Media Influencers also fall under this term. It is a general term used to classify people that work towards promoting a brand. A perfect example of a brand advocate is a religious evangelist. Such a person goes all out promoting the brand and working towards attracting new members to its fold. While a religious evangelist believes that his reward is everlasting life, a brand advocate is usually paid to do what he does.
2.Brand Ambassadors: These set of people are especially paid to represent the brand. They use the product and freely represent the brand whenever they are called for. They comprise of entertainers, actors, and actresses and are bound by a contract that’s signed by them and the brand. Part of the agreement is that they use the brand in everything that they do, starting from music contracts to roadshows to their websites.
Brand Ambassadors are quite popular with multinational incorporations. An example is the former England soccer player and captain, David Beckham, who was a brand ambassador for Adidas. These days, many popular soccer stars like Neymar, Messi, Ronaldo, represent multinationals as brand ambassadors.
3.Social Media Influencers: these classes of people are the most popular, and are very well used by start-ups. Their influence over their followers is more direct and very well visible. They abound in most social media network and their form of influence is measured. Unlike Brand Ambassadors who don’t know their group of followers, these categories of influencers knows them and are more personal with them. And their influence is far-reaching. Although this category is relatively newer than others, brands use them more often than others. This category of people has devoted more time and developed their content to grow their followers. As a brand, it might take a while to find the right person for this category, but once it is done right, has far-reaching gains and better results. Before you pick a person in this category, you must watch out for the following:
a. They have quite a wide following and loyalty. Also, keep it in mind that the followers are the right followers for the brand. Keep it in mind that as a brand, you wouldn’t want to engage a person whose followers are more of religious devotes when your brand is an alcohol making company. This is an important point.
b. In addition, ensure that the candidate’s followers are active followers. It is not just enough to see that the possible client has a wide and large following, also ensure that majority of his followers engage him/her in conversations; that he gets a lot of comments whenever he posts, and also shares or retweets. Because such a client will be able to link you to a network of influencers, and are in the best position to spread the brand awareness beyond his network of followers.
c. Having the right influencer means that he is credible. After all, not every influencer can be said to be credible. It is important that brands work with clients who have a high percentage of credibility in him. This is because since he will be projecting the image of the brand, he would act as a representative of the company. It would not be morally right to have a questionable character as the image of the company.
d. He must have the right content. The influencer must have the right content; one that represents the company. His language use must be right, even the tone of his write-ups must be in tandem with the brand and the message that is being projected. For example, you can’t have an influencer on social network or blogs who is into politics represent your brand that deals with alcohol.
e. Ensure that he is dynamic in nature. And by so doing, the influencer evolves as trends are evolving while keeping to the primary goal.
f. He also needs to be authentic and not just a copycat of another. He should be original and stay original.
g. Lastly, most brands go for influencers that are able to convert leads to quality sales and loyal customers.
Having the right type of influencer will not necessarily reflect on sales and profit immediately, but will do so in the long run. It also has a far-reaching effect as influencers tend to build loyal customers who take a longer time to pledge their loyalty.

The Importance of Influencers in Brand Awareness
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Published by Davide Zucchetti

Co-founder HiSkill; Business School Sole 24 Ore Professor; ICOBooster Co-Founder; FintechReview Co-Founder