Social Media InfluencersSocial media influencers wield power. With thousands or even millions of followers, this group of super-users commands attention. 

That’s why many businesses have tapped social media influencers as brand ambassadors. In addition to increasing brand awareness, social media influencers can help drive foot traffic, website visits and sales. For nonprofits, social media influencers can inspire donations, boost event attendance and attract volunteers. 

Who are these social media influencers? The list includes professional and college athletes, musicians, Hollywood actors, celebrity chefs, politicians and TV personalities. Top celebrities have amassed tens of millions of followers. 

However, social media influencers also include “regular people” who have mastered the art of social media. This list of micro-influencers includes local DIYers, parenting experts, food critics, couponers, thrifters, bloggers, auto mechanics and others. These influencers may only measure their following in the thousands, but those followers are loyal, attentive and highly engaged. Thus, they are likely to be influenced by words, recommendations, photos and videos. 

Priority Marketing’s experienced Public Relations and Social Media teams create and execute social media marketing strategies. That includes identifying social media influencers that best fit their brand. Influencers can become brand ambassadors, so it’s important to collaborate with the right individuals. An alternative is partnering with digital content creators who create engaging blogs, videos and graphics for brands to post themselves rather than having an influencer post that content. 

WATCH: 3 reasons to use influencers in your marketing campaign 

Below are three reasons to incorporate social media influencers into your marketing campaign: 

Posts from social media influencers have a long shelf life 

Here today, gone tomorrow. Most social media posts have a short shelf life, particularly posts that don’t receive many likes, comments and shares. 

Social media platforms have complex algorithms that serve engaging posts to a larger audience for an extended period of time. This means social media posts from influencers that are two or three days old will still be served to users. Each time a user shares or interacts with an influencer’s post, it has new legs. 

By comparison, paid advertising on social media has a defined start and end date and time. Paid ads also are not searchable after the specified time has expired. 

WATCH: 3 tips for leveraging social media influencers 

Posts from social media influencers are authentic 

Advertising is everywhere – television, newspapers, radio, magazines and across the Internet. Social media also features paid advertisements. 

Social media influencers, though, fall into a different category. A social media influencer’s post looks like a regular post from every other social media user. It isn’t a blatant sales pitch. Instead, an influencer may be wearing a new jacket in a photo, for example, and comment how much he or she likes it. Or the influencer may post a photo of dinner at a restaurant with accompanying text complimenting the executive chef. 

Research from Insider Intelligence notes the pandemic sped up influencer marketing’s trend toward unfiltered or less-scripted content. The key for social media influencers is being authentic. 

READ MORE: Instagram, Facebook offer platform for restaurants and businesses to capitalize on social media followings 

Social media influencers create buzz 

When businesses introduce a new product or service, they need to get the word out to consumers. Social media influencers can bring that product or service directly into the news feeds and stories of consumers. 

AdWeek research notes that 49.2% of social media users follow influencers and 49.3% have purchased a product based on an influencer’s recommendation. 

Social media influencers can generate buzz and ignite the conversation around products and services. These posts guide consumers directly to the business’ social media profile or website. Forward-thinking businesses also have partnered with influencers for social media takeovers. This cross-promotion allows influencers to share reels, stories and exclusive content directly on the brand’s pages.

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