Influencer PR: what makes influencers influential?

This blog explores what makes influencers influential. And what Influencer PR should look for in their partnerships.

Influencers are not new. The current crop of social media driven ‘stars’ are using social channels to assume a position many others have done so before.

These ‘new’ channels have simply opened up the opportunity to influence to ‘normal, everyday’ people, rather than preserving it for those beamed into homes on TV or the stars of the silver screen.

But, is there a common thread which runs through all influencers? From where they derive their influence? Where does their power lie and why are the best ones so compelling to their audiences?

What is an influencer? What is Influencer PR?

Today’s understanding of the term ‘influencer’ is relatively easy to define. An influencer usually operates as an individual whose recommendations and endorsements can be seen to have control over decisions made by audiences. Simple. You can read our other thoughts on what an influencer is, in a previous blog post.

These decisions may be commercial – buying more of a certain product. Or they can be behavioural; reduce your consumption of single-use plastic for example.

Nevertheless, their knowledge, experience and ability to communicate combine to create a position of power and, well, influence.

This simple but nuanced understanding of influence does not fall into trap of understanding influencers by the numbers of online followers alone. The arms race for ever greater numbers of followers provides a veneer on influence which is not the be all and end all. Quality always wins over quantity.

Influencer PR is the strategic alignment between a brand or behaviour outcome with the chosen influencer within a campaign. You can read more about how to measure the impact of influencer campaigns.

Where do influencers derive their power? What should Influencer PR campaigns look for?

This brilliant campaign from the New Zealand tourism marketing body shines a light directly on where the power of influence truly sits. Along with being funny and well-observed, at the heart of this campaign sits the most powerful element influencers can mobilise. Originality.

There are a number of platforms brands can use to work with influencers. Social media sites such as TikTok and Instagram are becoming key sites for influencer PR. When looking for the right influencer to partner with, it is important to research their levels of engagement, as well as ensure their followers are synonymous with a business’s target market. This ensures the influencer partnership is authentic.

Have a read of our blog, influencer marketing: the importance of authenticity, to find out more about perfecting your influencer approach.

Influencers are a great tool for marketing a business and can be used by PRs to support clients’ KPIs. It is essential that partnerships are authentic and that influencers share common values with the brand it is promoting.

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