02 Feb 2024

Three ways influencers can help your business in 2024

As influencer marketing continues to grow as a cost-effective and impactful strategy for reaching target audiences in 2024, we explore how businesses can leverage them for success.

Kerry Sclater

For at least the 8th consecutive year, influencer marketing continues to grow in investment as it becomes an insurmountably effective (and cost efficient) way to reach and impact audiences. Google searches for ‘influencer marketing’ have risen 400% between 2016-2023.

It’s no surprise influencer marketing is the glint in so many comms and marketeers’ eyes, as countless studies have proven the effectiveness: 

In 2024, 67% of marketers will significantly increase their spending on influencers, and 23% will allocate almost half of their total budget to it.

69% of Consumers Trust Influencers’ Recommendations 

Big trend 1:  Feel and Look

Out with carefully curated, polished aesthetics, and in with the emotion and the substance to influencer content. This is where artful storytelling and authentic emotion combine to create a genuine audience connection. The art comes in choosing the right influencer who can credibly incorporate your message, and bring enough creativity to inject personality and an emotion connection. 

We’d dug into the nuances of how this trend shows up and pinpointed some replicable formats where it’s being applied with great results.

  • The evidence:TikTok and short form, phone shot video means faster and more ‘raw’ content creation is favoured 
  • Cross channel popularity of podcast formats see more demand for ‘real stories’ and focus on substance over style  
  • Human evolution of B2B and corporate: putting the human in corporate and employee influencer content 

Case in point:

The FCA wanted to warn consumers about Loan Fee Fraud in the run up to Christmas: an especially sensitive message given the pressure many feel to ‘keep up appearances’ amidst a backdrop of rising costs. We worked with consumer champion @MisterCarrington to craft a heartfelt piece of content which didn’t give a finger wagging warning, but opened up about this pressure and ways to protect yourself. The video got over 4m views.  

The outtake: Quality over quantity. Choose a partner who can bring an authentic reason to talk about your message, and make sure your briefing is flexible enough for them to inject emotion and storytelling.  

Big trend 2: Crowdsourced content 

Authenticity is often overused as an influencer cliché, but it’s true… we’ve long moved past the days of brands talking AT their audience through the guise of the influencer’s voice parroting their message. People want content for them, about them, and in 2024 BY them.  

The evidence: 

  • 2023 saw ‘street mic’ videos really take off, and we expect this will skyrocket in 2024. This is where influencers take to the street to have honest conversations or ask questions to the public- whether that be how much they earn, their political views, or when they last had a smear test.  
  • UGC or user generated content continues to rise, with brands asking real people and nano creators to share their experiences, often grouped into a challenge or campaign 
  • Any content that feels organic rather than brand led, and invites audience interaction 

Big trend 3: The year of the influential voice  

Say goodbye to your mass following, palatable and filtered content-churn machines of 5 years ago. Make way for influential voices: individuals with a highly niche audience, expertise, or authentic voice who can collaborate with your brand in a strategic and specific. That’s not to say that celebrities and mass influencers don’t still have an important role, but that there are now more opportunities to create impact with highly niche voices -win win! 

Influential voices can fulfil more complex objectives, and targeted impact than the rudimentary #SponCon of days gone – especially for industries beyond beauty, lifestyle, and FMCG.  

Influential voices mean: 

  • New and niche angles: hyperlocal, experts, unique and authentic voices 
  • Longer term and more complex collaboration (as opposed to churned out spon con) 
  • Better diversity  
  • New(er) platforms: the rise of the LinkedInfluencer  
  • Employees take the spotlight 
  • New styles of content e.g. thought leadership   

The outtake: Consider new and niche routes of influence for hard to reach audiences 

What can I as a brand do now? 

  1. Think about your opportunities – if you have hard to reach audiences, want a behaviour/perception change, or want a way to humanise your brand influencers could be the answer
  2. Map your influential voices to look for potential advocates
  3. Mobilise your employee influencers and spokespeople online
  4. Start building a team of long term ambassadors, and collaborate with them to insert some authentic emotion and storytelling into content

Here at MHP we’ve pioneered a lot of work into the Networked Age, looking at the behavioural and social factors that shape communications. We know that we are influenced by individuals like ourselves, and having the right influencer is key for ideas to gain traction. Individuals matter far more than the brands they work for and we tend to listen to experts and voices who share our own values. 

Reach out to our digital team if you want to discuss what influencers could do for your business: [email protected]

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