We might be used to influencers triggering our purchase decisions (whether we like to admit it or not), but could influencers influence our voting choice? Well, looking at the most recent US election - social media and influencers certainly can play a huge role in shaping the outcome of the presidential run.
We all remember when Bloomberg hired hilarious social media accounts to help him with his campaign at the beginning of the year. He might not have won the election, but he’s won a marketing award for a funny and authentic use of influencer marketing, without it being cringeworthy at all (and when mixing politics and sponsored posts it’s definitely an achievement).
If you’ve used social media at all in the past few months, you’ve seen it bursting with election topics from literally everyone, including your favorite celebs and influencers. And since the physical campaigning was limited, we have again seen proof of how influencer currency increased during the Covid 19 era. Social media and influencers certainly have helped Biden pave his way into the White House - from A-listers to micro influencers, online communities, reaching younger audience with the help of his granddaughters to video games, Insta lives and much more.
Here are five things advertisers can learn from Biden’s influencer approach, and how this can help them win big:
Finding influencers who align with your brand’s values is the first step to a successful campaign. People see through fake collaborations and quickly lose trust. To strengthen the childcare segments of his campaign, Biden connected with two parent-influencers popular among moms. Not only did those conversations help his “Build Back better” campaign, but allowed him to be more relatable to all single parents, him being a single parent as well. The same can be applied to brands - check not only the influencer you are about to work with, but rather their audience and their interests as well . This is where you’ll make the most of your money. And to take it a step further, our X-Ray tool helps you analyze the influencers’ engaged audience data, taking into consideration only those who actually do interact with influencer content on the daily.
2. Influencers are not an afterthought
Influencer marketing was so deeply integrated into Biden’s promotional strategy that it was fundamental to his entire narrative and what he wanted people to know about his campaign aspects. Including influencer marketing in your business plan and marketing strategy straight from the start will give you the necessary time, tools and resources to plan appropriately and to execute a winning campaign. Thinking of influencer marketing as an always-on approach builds trust, both between influencers and advertisers, but also between audience and the brand (or candidate). It also gives you a possibility to make sure your narrative is well thought out in all its forms and for all audiences. “Influencers are not an afterthought. The idea that influencers are, in some cases, the people who have the most credibility or bring the most bona fides in people’s social feeds is a really powerful one and something that we, as the campaign, want to embrace,” Christian Tom, the head of digital partnerships for Biden’s campaign, told Recode about their influencer approach.
3. 'The bigger the better’ is not always the case
Collaborating with huge stars certainly gives you or your brand incomparable exposure within a short period. And yes, being endorsed by Ariana Grande, Lady Gaga and Beyonce can play a huge role in the awareness game. But taking time to talk to people with smaller, but more committed audience base, allows you to really involve the audience in what you’re trying to achieve (or what your business offers). It’s a very smart way to give some TLC to each layer of the cake in order to get a proper celebration cake. Biden’s campaign came down to going where the target audience is. Although you have probably never heard of some of the influencers he collaborated with, they were certainly an important element his campaign needed in order to win. “We’re bringing their fan base into the campaign,” Adrienne Elrod, the director of surrogate strategy for Biden’s campaign, told Recode. “And that is really allowing us to be more specific and more targeted in our approach and in our reach.”
4. Speak WITH your audience, not TO your audience
Biden clearly set a model for his influencer campaign - conversation. He sits in his house and chats live with influencers or celebrities who get to ask him any question from a range of topics. It gave him the opportunity to really pull people in and to have them relate to him on a personal level. Live interviews included actress and talk show host Keke Palmer, Jerry Harris of Netflix's docuseries "Cheer," YouTuber Bethany Mota, dancer Allison Holker and many more. Do the same with your business - let your audience have a say, involve them in the creation process, interact through polls, livestreams and similar formats to allow them to get closer to the brand and what it stands for.
5. Dig into every corner
The fact that you shop at your local supermarket doesn’t mean your entire neighbourhood shops there. There are many other markets, with different offers and prices. The same applies to reaching your target audience - they’re not all at the same place. Exploring as many corners (social media networks), different audience segments, different areas, interests etc, gives you much more exposure to as many eyeballs as possible. Biden did not stick to only one or two platforms. His team ensured they were present on all social media networks, going even beyond that into the area of video games. And he had his little helpers when it came to reaching the youngsters. His granddaughters, who have hosted lives with influencers with younger audience-base were also involved in the campaign.
Influencer marketing can be an amazing tool for winning audiences globally, but only when utilised properly. With so much data at hand, it’s now easier than ever to make sure we work with the right people, using the right tools and platforms to reach very specific audiences. The Post For Rent platform allows advertisers to analyze every bit of influencer audience data, to smoothly run campaigns across multiple regions, with less administration (as it’s all handled by us), and an easy payment and reporting system. Whether you have a small business, or you’re running complex marketing activities for a global brand or you’re preparing to become the next President, make sure your influencer marketing strategy is bulletproof.