There are things that affect the choices you make every day that you might not be aware of; things like trust and authenticity. These qualities that affect your behavior come from someone of influence, like family or friends. Or even from people you don’t know personally but admire, since you trust their opinion and perceive them to be authentic and truthful.
When something influences us it affects our behavior and ideas. Influence is a powerful thing and how that message is received depends on how it’s perceived.
Influencer marketing is a strategy that utilizes influencers -people that have the tremendous power to affect others- as a way to bring in more potential buyers and influence their purchasing decisions.
It’s an alternative to ad campaigns that don’t carry any credibility and it’s crushing it.
Changing The Landscape
Influencer marketing is nothing new, but it has changed thanks to the broad reach that influencers have now (hello, social media), and it’s a strategy that the events community has embraced for good reason.
Influencers can reach people in niche markets more organically and effectively than industries can. They have established a relationship with their followers that is based on trust and the credibility they have built. Couple that with marketing know-how and you have a winning trade show combination.
Influencer Marketing For Your Show
There are many things to consider when finding the right influencer for your show. Do you go with a big player in a particular industry with a large following or do you find a micro-influencer -someone who has a smaller audience but will be seen as more authentic- that might not be grounded in any particular industry but offers a unique perspective?
The answer depends on what your goals are. Are you looking for a professional that can teach your audience something or someone who really knows how to sell sell sell?
Are you looking for more exposure? Increased attendance? Lucrative sponsorships?
Those are all questions that you will need an answer for before you shop around for an influencer.
If you want to draw in the crowds adding celebrity power to your strategy can be very effective. People who weren’t even interested in your show, to begin with, will suddenly be clamoring to attend. A celebrity might be able to sell show tickets, but that doesn’t mean it will improve sales conversions for exhibitors but having a celebrity that is associated with the show’s industry should improve that. For example, if your show’s focus is beauty, having a famous makeup artist give demonstrations using makeup sold at the show can boost sales and attendance.
Most consumers are savvy and won’t believe a product is worthy of being purchased just because some random celebrity touts it on Instagram because they were paid to. They want to know why they should believe the pitch in the first place. This is where it’s really helpful to have someone who has the expertise and background in the industry to attend your show; it adds to the shows authenticity and authority on the subject.
The Motivational Speaker
It’s not necessary to choose a motivational speaker who is tied to your industry. What’s more important is that you choose someone who fits your audience’s needs. Will your audience be filled with young professionals or families? If your audience is a mix of young and old you might want someone with a broad appeal to be the keynote. Paging Mike Rowe…
What’s It Worth?
Influencer Marketing has the capability of raising awareness and reaching new audiences by using their own unique network; its value can be hard to put a price tag (depending on goals, engagement, ROI). The best way to decide if a particular Influencer is worth the cost of getting them to your show is to follow these guidelines…
- How large of a following does the Influencer have?
- Does their audience (fan base) interact with them?
- Research the brand/company they work or advocate for. Does it line up with your wants/needs?
- What do their past presentations/endorsements look like?
- Is their following still growing or has it hit a speed bump?
- What kind of platform do you want to give them? Keynote or booth?
Most influencers will want compensation of some kind, depending on their status. Micro-influencers will cost less, while the more well-known influencers will cost substantially more. Some might be willing to take a smaller amount in return for the exposure you can offer them.
Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook understands the complexity and importance of influence over others, saying “People influence people. Nothing influences people more than a recommendation from a trusted friend. A trusted referral is the Holy Grail of advertising.”
This is people-powered marketing. And it’s here to stay.