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Influencer Marketing: Top Examples from #SDSummit

Influencer marketing is all about connecting with the people and groups that have sway over your target audience.

They may be viewed as trusted advisors or experts, they may have published a book or two, or they may be renowned on social media. Many companies will opt to work with influencers to build brand awareness, co-create content, drive demand or leverage thought leadership.

The truth is that influencers come in all shapes and sizes and are no longer just editors, reporters and analysts. Earlier today Julie Ogilvie of SiriusDecisions shared the analyst firm’s new influencer marketing framework, which identifies seven types of influencers ranging from:

Big-picture visionariesTrusted advisorsIndependent voicesAssociationsValidated SMEsExperience amplifiersRelevant colleagues

Each of these influencer types can be leveraged to help educate, engage and create value for a company’s target audience. What’s more, influencer programs are most effective when they create value for the influencers as well.

Julie presented the SiriusDecisions Influencer Programs of the Year during the session as well. Here are some details about each winning program.

SAP SAP tapped into the community of independent voices and developed a program to foster hundreds of conversations with its blog to drive new business insights. By getting multiple bloggers on board, it was able to get visibility into the storylines that were gaining traction among the community and provide strategic advice.

Polycom Polycom’s influencer program focused on the trusted advisor influencer types to align business goals with analyst value to drive results. By offering insights on industry trends, Polycom was able to garner input on strategy and messaging in addition to influencer $60M in revenue, while helping make their influencers more influential.

LinkedIn LinkedIn opted to use influencers to overcome a stigma, establish trust and teach new skills to its audience. Through its program, LinkedIn was able to build a positive community of supporters, improve bookings and get its main buyers to leverage LinkedIn as a useful tool.

Lattice SiriusDecisions chose to highlight our MKTGnerd program! We are so excited to be included alongside the other

examples of influencer marketing success. We harnessed an influencer program to help launch a new app while getting our target audience to get engaged and co-create content. The program helped us surpass our goals for lead generation and we are on our way to achieving our pipeline and closed opportunity goals. If you are interested in learning more about our program, check out this write up from Heinz Marketing.

The Makeup of a Winning Influencer Program

Julie summarized the following as being key components of successful influencer programs.

Leadership: Each example above combined the understanding of the influencer and audience needs to meet objectives.Alignment: Ensure there is alignment between the brand, messaging and activities across the entire program.Share value: Any influencer program should create value for the buyer, influencer and company.Creativity: Each company approached their influencer programs with an ‘out of the box’ mentality. Try something new and don’t be afraid to experiment.Good internal support: Don’t forget that employees are influencers too. Each example above kept employees in mind and capitalized on their strengths.

Top Takeaways for Marketing, Sales, Product from SiriusDecisions

To wrap things up, Julie offered the following action items from the Sirius perspective.

Marketing: Incorporate influencers into content creation and campaign strategies. Research your influencer preferences and build your influencer lists. Sales: Work with communications to help identify cycles where influencers can help and leverage influencer outputs. Product: Understand who the influencers are in your area, start fostering those relationships and start building your own influencer brand.

What are your favorite influencer programs?

   Image Credit(s):                Sean MacEntee                    

Written by

Amanda Maksymiw
May 22, 2014

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