Celebrity endorsements…

Date: 30/06/2020

Eagle-eyed Hayfield fans will have noticed that the stunning Vogue Williams has been snapped out and about in our cool and breezy lightweight Henley Fedora recently. There is nothing that makes me happier than seeing people out and about in one of my hats; it really is the most incredible feeling in the world! I know that the opportunities for people to dress up and show off their favourite clothes and accessories is somewhat limited at the moment, but I really do appreciate every tag and mention.

Sharing Vogue’s photo led to my best ever weekend of sales for Hayfield England, which is an excellent demonstration of the power of celebrity and influencer endorsement. It’s also wonderful timing as the current situation means that my normal sales channel of a trade stand at country and equestrian events isn’t possible at the moment. I thought it might be interesting to talk a little bit about working with bloggers or influencers to see what you can expect to get out of a collaboration with them. Hopefully it will help other small businesses as we all navigate the strangest year ever!

It can really work!

First up, as my personal experience shows, it can really work. Recent statistics from the Digital Marketing Institute show that 86% of women use social media for purchasing advice and 49% of consumers seek out influencer recommendations. That’s pretty incredible! Plus, I wonder if that will rise even further while people either can’t go shopping on the high street or don’t want to (no toilets open = not a fun day out!).

Choose the right person for your product

One of the best places to start is to make sure you work with people whose audience matches your target customers. Even if they have a huge reach or following, it won’t help boost your sales if their followers aren’t the right fit for your product! If you partner up with the right blogger or influencer, your brand is shared directly with people who are relevant and interested in what you have to offer.

There could be costs involved

I’m so lucky that Vogue likes and choses to wear my hats without asking for any payment, but some influencers with lots of followers or web traffic ask for money to work with a brand. You then need to consider whether you want to spend money on this type of marketing. But read onto my next tip for a possible alternative!

The benefits of ‘micro influencers’

Instead of simply looking at the number of followers, you could go for someone who has a relatively small audience but that hangs on their every post. These ‘micro influencers’ can be very powerful in their specific sector. If you find a micro influencer whose audience is right for you, they could be the perfect match.

The risks of influencer marketing…

Of course, there are some risks if you decide to work with bloggers or influencers. They could have bought followers or engaged in some other kind of social media ‘fraud’ which makes them seem more popular than they are. You could also take a good look at the things that they have said or done online before they became influential, in case there are any skeletons lurking. There’s nothing stopping them suddenly doing or saying something that fundamentally doesn’t marry up with your views or the aims of your brand, so choose carefully.

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