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Influencer Marketing in the Digital Age

Influencers must have the ability to reach a large audience, establish trust from their audience and prove their impact through sales.

Influencer marketing has become a powerful tool for marketers over traditional advertising techniques. An influencer today is a person who has the power to affect the opinion of others and get them to do something different.

When it comes to influencer marketing, influencers are the liaison that help consumers buy from the marketer. Influencers must have the ability to reach a large audience, establish trust from their audience and prove their impact through sales. However, in a social media world, brands are navigating how to make a personalized approach while staying professional through their social narrative.

Eirene Heidelberger didn’t set out to be an influencer when she became a parent coach and launched her website Get It Together, Mom! (GIT Mom) Which shows through her authenticity in her online presence.

“I am not a blogger, I started as a parent coach and helped other Moms Get it Together. And now I take such pride that I am GIT Mom because I speak the truth. My followers saw that I was being authentic and I grew a loyal and engaged following on social media,” Heidelberger said.

The mother of three says that her main focus is not as a blogger or influencer, but as a parent coach, which shows in her online presence.

“My brand is parenting and families and moms, who engage with me every single day on social media... So when it comes to taking on campaigns, I value the reality and authenticity that comes with it.”

Influencers are often pitched by smaller brands to make a post for around $50- $100, which can become obvious and reduce their credibility.

Heidelberger knows the importance of being the face of her brand, and would never take on an endorsement for quick cash that does not resonate with her followers. She stresses that there needs to be an existing link between her taste and a brand.

“Anything as an influencer should be easy, because it should speak to not only your brand but also to your heart,” Heidelberger said.

However, while it’s important that influencers know how to say no to brands, it’s also important that they keep the door open.

“You don’t want to make these brands mad because they are the ones who approached YOU and chose YOU for their brand. You also never know where these brands are going. If they don’t fit with your brands message now, it doesn’t mean that they won’t evolve into something that eventually will,” Heidelberger said.

Influencer campaigns can boost engagement and spike followers, so the importance of taking on a campaign that truly speaks to your audience is high. GIT Mom has helped Purell launch a new brand campaign and worked on campaigns with KIND Bars and Mabels Labels, all while being professional but also honest.

“Bloggers are typically writers but the savviest bloggers are a bit cutthroat, they have business backgrounds, they are entrepreneurs and they’re confident. They are influencers who deem their value and show proof to brands on why they demand for their influence. We really put ourselves out there,” Heidelberger said.

GIT Mom has emphasized that when being an influencer, you often wear many hats. Whether you’re blogging, posting on social media, working on a campaign or making appearances, it gets to be a lot to handle (especially when you’re also a full time parent coach—or parent). Which is why like many influencers, Heidelberger hired someone to help run her social media.

Meet marketing consultant, Jem Bahaijoub, founder of Your Marketing Companion, which provides 1 on 1 marketing coaching to small businesses and entrepreneurs, specializing in lifestyle and family and parenting brands.

Bahaijoub works directly with Eirene Heidelberger, which she describes as a very balanced process.

“She has a huge audience online and we’ve had this natural attraction from brands to work with her,” Bahaijoub said.

The marketing consultant knows that communication is key. The brand must communicate clearly with the influencer and the influencer must maintain its personal online voice. One of the biggest mistakes people can make is when they are not transparent. It is key to be as clear as possible with the consumer and the influencer.

“Not researching their market properly, you have to research your industry and see who is naturally interacting with your brand. You want an emotional connection between a brand and an influencer. The authenticity is communicated to the influencers audience,” Bahaijoub said.

Since authenticity is communicated to an influencers audience, you want an honest emotional connection between a brand and an influencer; which is why you must research a market properly. When the correct research is done, you can see who is naturally interacting with your brand. Keeping the ration of original content to paid content is vital too. Having too many #ad or #sponsored will not look natural in your social narrative.

GIT Mom has been particularly pleased to work with her marketing consultant Jem, who she said has done a great job walking her through influencer marketing.

“Influencer marketing is an integration of PR and marketing and I think PR in particular has evolved in an interesting way, in a sense that as publicists we’re not the gate keepers anymore-- with the explosion of social media and the online world. Our job is to help brands refine what their key messages are and how to reach those markets in a way that is authentic,” Bahaijoub said.