This is a guest post from Spike Jones — SVP, Managing Director SW Region at Edelman Digital and co-author of the book Brains on Fire: Igniting Powerful, Sustainable Word of Mouth Movements. See the original post this is adapted from and more like it on his blog.
Influencers. The word is always on the tip of any marketers tongue.
And just about any and all PR plans have influencer engagement woven in. So first off, let me say that I wholeheartedly agree that influencers — and whatever your definition of them might be — are great. They aid in awareness, which is one-half of the coin and something that we all want more of.
But I’m also a huge advocate of creating influence around people who are already passionate about your brand or industry. And a new study by the social monitoring website Mention proves that the collective voices about your brand are much, MUCH louder than the few influencers that you are praying will mention you. The study analyzed more than one billion social mentions over the past two years and found that a whopping 91% of mentions about brands came from people with fewer than 500 followers.
Just think about what would happen if you organized, elevated, and empowered all those voices.
It’s not only a solid strategy, but a sustainable one. After all, influence can be created — but passion can’t.