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Influencers and The Holy Grail of Micromarketing

Micromarketing: Marketing’s Holy Grail.

Why? Because there isn’t a marketer who wouldn’t give their next bonus to figure out the magic formula to get their customers talking about their products. Not just about the product, but actually tailoring the conversation to the specific interests or needs of the person they’re talking to.

Yes, that means marketers would be able to start the conversation avalanche, then get out of the way and let their customers willingly—and with great joy—do the work.

We all yearn for the paradise of products that sell themselves. The funny thing is, we can have marketing paradise on earth. Once you crack the code of Influencer marketing, you’re well on your way.

There’s a lot of conversation—and confusion—about Influencer marketing. Some believe an Influencer is someone with a huge following on social media. Others believe an Influencer is a celebrity with great public adoration or scrutiny. And yet others believe an Influencer must have both a large social media following and a watchable public persona.

I believe they’re wrong. These definitions are much too narrow and miss the huge impact of the true influencer. Starting with Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point, research points out again and again that true Influencers walk among us.

How do you recognize an influencer?

You know them by their enthusiasm to share stories about products they’ve tried, restaurants they love and services they think are amazing. They are “everyday consumers who are substantially more likely than average to seek out information and to share ideas, information and recommendations with other people” (Warc Study).

Influencers always go further.

They acquire product Stories everywhere they go, during everything they do. They catalog these Stories in their arsenal of interesting things to talk about. Then they pull them out when they have a match: something interesting to share with a person they know will be interested in hearing it. They tailor them to the specific circumstances and interests of their audience.

Take an Influencer who happens to be friends with an avid cyclist. One Saturday afternoon, the Influencer is at a cycling festival and starts a conversation with someone who has the most interesting pedal clips they’ve ever seen. They learn everything they can about those clips. Why? Because they can’t wait to see their cyclist friend and tell her all about these cool pedal clips. Our Influencer has accumulated information about something they’re interested in, but also because they know specific people who will be interested – and they want to have a relevant story to share with them.

Influencers’ story catalogs are vast. As long as a story remains authentic to the promised product experience, that story will never lose its appeal. All the Influencer needs is a listener for whom that story would be relevant and interesting.

A mom whose youngest is 20 can still tell a first-time mom a story about the best cloth diapers ever. And that new mom will most likely buy that product, regardless if her friend hasn’t had a child in diapers in over 16 years. This is the Holy Grail of micromarketing and the power of Influencers.

How can brands capture the power of Influencers?

Spend time crafting your shareable story. It isn’t your brand story. It isn’t your product benefits and differentiators. It’s the story that one person will tell another because it’s interesting and because it will make the listener’s life just a little bit better, a little bit more fun or a little bit easier. Your product becomes the hero in someone else’s story, which will make you the hero at work.

Influencer marketing can help your product gain traction through personable, tailored interactions. Learn more about how to implement a clear, aligned Story that yields Influencer marketing potential in Dave Sutton’s new book, Marketing, Interrupted.

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