Authenticity is a continuing battle for brands looking to level up their marketing endeavors. With Millennials and Gen Z both seeking authentic opinions over brand promises, influencer-generated content is soaring in performance. Between video game streamers, product testers, and online review creators, influencers are the next evolution in content production. The goal from a company level is, therefore, to harness this content and craft influencer-generated promotions over branded company posts.
What is influencer-generated content?
While most marketing professionals understand the idea of user-generated content, influencer-generated content is a new and rising trend. In short, social media influencers create images, videos, and other creative content under their personal brand around your product or release. This conjunction of ideas creates an atmosphere of authenticity that excels above standard company-branded content.
In general, influencer-generated content shows your brand in a positive light, but they do not have to be brand-sponsored to occur. Some of the most successful influencer-generated content occurs without any brand leveraging their community for a purchase recommendation.
Source: Social Publi and 99firms
An Authentic Connection with Consumers
Influencers have a stronger connection to their audience, and this connection can be easily found within generated content. Whether it be a pure passion, specific use of new lingo, or an absolute stellar personality viewers are drawn to influencer-generated content constantly. While most advertising and marketing professionals know of the consumer model template, influencers create an entirely new demographic centered around their content.
Marketing professionals can shift their focus towards this new demographic, and rather than targeting a single “style” of consumer they can tackle an entire channel of viewers. This focused attention creates the
environment needed for influencer-generated promotions to show higher returns than a branded post could ever hope to achieve.
Among Call of Duty gamers, Dr Disrepect is a notorious influencer. Iconic for his unique style, well-built brand, and prior experience as a game developer, he has made a name for himself among gamers across several demographics. By securing a partnership with Dr Disrespet, Mountain Dew’s Game Fuel was able to propel its brand to the right audience using the reputation of this creator.
The Side-Effect of Branded Posts
Branded posts have been a central pillar of content marketing strategies for over 20 years. While the idea of content control and content marketing had created an ecosystem of self thriving promotions, there is an automatic bias found in a company post. Most companies will speak positively about their own brand, and from a consumer perspective, this bias can hide faults within a product.
Similar to a user review on any online shopping website, the more authentic reviews often show a fuller image over product descriptions. With copy pushing for a sale or trying to show the best side of a newly released game, user reviews act as the main threshold in this context for a truthful understanding of the product. This crafts an accidental perspective of mistrust between consumers and a company post, opening the door for influencer intervention.
Rely on Influencer Instincts
While it is important when working with influencers that they prioritize the best side of your new release, it is also vital to trust their instincts. Channels known for critical reviews need to hold their tone first and can not risk their personal brand over promoted content. When trying to stay within the bounds of trust and authenticity, influencers are the best compass available. Companies that trust an influencer’s instincts regarding content creation, and push for the best investment possible, will be able to create content that matters and connects with their audience.
Overall, the goal is to humanize your content creation strategy. Influencers add that vital human component into campaigns and show a more natural side to product presentation. Branded content might look “official,” but nothing can beat a friendly personality that is passionate about your new title.