On average, consumers spend about two and a half hours on social media every day. In the United States, social media penetration is above 72%, so it’s no secret that brands need to navigate social networks to meet and engage their customers when and where they are. Social media has become a wildly successful way for brands to stay top of mind with customers when they’re not in shopping mode, and some have cracked the code on influencer marketing to make an even bigger impact.
The influencer industry is a multi-billion-dollar business, and more and more brands are partnering with influencers whose followership reaches target audiences to promote their products and services. We’ve called out a few brands that are leveraging both influencer marketing and social media particularly well, and we think there’s applicability in some of these tactics across brands, and industries.
The well-known quick-serve restaurant has been incorporating TikTok seamlessly into their social media strategy for a while now. With over 8.5 million followers, Chipotle is using social media to humanize their brand presence and create a fun community amongst their customers. They’ve TikTok debuted challenges like the #GuacDance and #FlipTheLid to promote brand awareness and drive customer engagement beyond purchasing a burrito or bowl. And who doesn’t love a good guacamole dance?
With over 21 million followers on Instagram alone, there’s a clear opportunity for influencer representation at Sephora. Enter the #SephoraSquad. Sephora is showing up on social channels with an exclusive squad of beauty storytellers that are engaged annually to promote Sephora products and educate the community in a year-long partnership. #SephoraSquad members create regular content through makeup tutorials and product features to continuously appeal to Beauty Insiders and followers. For a one-stop-shop experience, Sephora has also enabled checkout on Instagram to allow for seamless purchases from within the app – and bonus, you can earn points on your purchase!
The non-athletic footwear brand has tapped self-expression and continues to thrive on TikTok and Instagram with celebrity influencers and brand collaborations. Crocs has introduced customized, limited-edition designs with celebrities like Luke Combs, Justin Bieber, and Drew Barrymore. Brands have partnered up to expand their audience and product lines too; with Staples and Vera Bradley collabs for custom on-brand Crocs, customers can show off their brand love everywhere they go. These limited-edition offerings have received a lot of attention from customers, and digital sales have increased in the double digits.
Another beauty brand with a huge roster of heavy hitter influencers. Maybelline influencers are helping market beauty products to younger generations who rely heavily on social media for inspiration and the majority of their purchasing decisions. From model Gigi Hadid to blogger Manny Gutierrez, they have captured some big names to help market their makeup and beauty brands. They also give their social influencers creative opportunities, whether that’s blog posting or creating an Instagram reel, so that their influencers can more authentically promote on the platforms and outlets that work best for them.
Social media and influencers can be successful channels for brands to reach untapped audiences and build a brand following. Leveraging both can also help brands create stronger relationships with their customers, contributing to big L (brand) loyalty. As with many investments though, securing the right influencer can make or break the partnership, so it’s important to think through the type of content and appeal an influencer will draw.
Contact us to learn more about an omni-channel approach and meet with our financial modelers to see how a social and influencer strategy can positively impact your bottom line.