Social Media Influencers and Marketing

As you may know, at this time, this blog is being used specifically for my Marketing-265 class and it has been a blast so far. I have learned so much in the past four weeks! But one thing I have been reminded of this week is that I am old. I already knew this. However, this week’s blog assignment is to learn about social media marketing influencers and discuss whether I follow any (among other things that I will get to in a moment). So I read my textbook and resources, including a transcript from a 60 Minutes interview with high profile influencers, and then started some research online to find out who the current social media influencers are (which that tells you right there I am old). I had never heard of any of the biggest influencers right now except for the Kardashians and Miranda Sings. And I certainly don’t follow them on social media!!

As of the time of this article by Mediakix, the top social media influencer has a combined follower total across his platforms of 97.4 million followers. That’s staggering! He goes by the name PewDiePie. The article states, “…the social media superstar maintains extreme popularity online and allegedly earns around $12 million each year.” Marketers pay him well to promote their brand and he’s clearly a success.

This type of marketing has a huge reach – especially to the younger generation. I decided to go watch one of his YouTube videos. Yeah, I didn’t get it. I don’t see the appeal. But maybe there are better ones. Anyway, I digress. Brands have an opportunity to be seen by potentially millions of people, just by paying these influencers to promote them in some way. One influencer, Logan Paul, did an off the cuff Dunkin’ Donuts ad in Central Park. It was completely ad-libbed with his own style. The 60 Minutes article states, “When he posted the ad, it was viewed more than seven million times. And Dunkin’ Donuts told us this spot had the same reach as a primetime TV ad. For one day’s work, Logan Paul was paid almost $200,000.” What??? That’s insane!

These influencers have some sort of “it” factor that resonates with millennials and it works. They gain followers, sometimes very quickly, for their silly, zany short video clips and it grows to a point where major companies like Dunkin’ Donuts are paying them hundreds of thousands of dollars to try to persuade their audience to make a purchase. Brands know that they can leverage these influencers, pay them for their influence, and then reach potentially millions of people – all through social media.

It makes sense that Dunkin’ Donuts would use social media influencers to help sell their products. One of their main target markets is teens aged 18-25 and these are the same people following and watching PewDiePie, Logan Paul and the other major social media influencers. The influencers help to build the relationship between the company and the consumer. After all, if Logan Paul likes Dunkin’ Donuts, then why not me?

References

The Top Influencers Dominating Social Media In 2018. (2018, March 07). Retrieved from http://mediakix.com/2018/03/top-influencers-social-media-instagram-youtube/#gs.tipw5u8

Whitaker, B. (2016, October 23). The Influencers. Retrieved from https://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-kim-kardashian-logan-paul-social-media-influencers/

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