Part 2 in our 2018 Influencer Marketing Strategy & Planning Playbook series.

It is possible for every brand to create and replicate the opportunity and growth of a disruptive category leader. Every brand has the potential to design customer experiences that live beyond the feeds they inhabit, when they focus on unlocking the power of influence, social proof and social capital at every touchpoint.

Doing so not only creates positive, perpetual feedback loops that drive desire and demand, but ones that live in the hearts and minds of consumers – where the emotional and rational decision to buy one product or another happens.

“That power of the individual person … just the girl … is infinite.”

— Glossier founder Emily Weiss, on the fangirls she credits with 90% of her company’s revenue growth.

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As it stands, integrated strategies (i.e. CX or Journey Maps), as well as planning tools and agencies, do not include influencers – either as a touchpoint, nor as a new insights and data layer to validate and enhance your existing customer experience. If influencer data isn’t integrated with planning data, Influencer Marketing & Relations (IMR) will never be truly integrated. As long as Influencer Marketing & Relations remains a tactical campaign add-on, marketers will continue to struggle to unlock the full spectrum of influence across their customer experience, as well as solve the most basic influencer marketing challenges.

With so much emphasis on the volume of quality content influencers can create, it’s easy to overlook who influencers are. The roles they, as people, play in relationship to your consumers’ context is just as – if not more – important than their ability to create intuitive content. Arguably, if it wasn’t, brand-generated content of similar quality would have equal impact when shared by influencers. But we’ve proven that is not the case. In fact, the opposite is true – impact increases when brands repurpose influencer- and user-generated content.

It’s also no longer sufficient for marketers to rely on influencer networks and  content curation alone to support campaigns. Share of Influencer Voice – the volume of influencer-generated content in comparison to your competitors, is now a measure and indicator of market share and competitive advantage. To create experiences consumers trust, from influencer-generated content (IGC) to reviews, marketers need to design their influencer marketing strategies with more intention.

Explained in our 2018 Influencer Marketing & Relations Trends Report, influencers, by definition, have such rich knowledge, that not including them at the point of research, ideation, strategy and planning, is a significant missed opportunity. As brands and modern business leaders alike struggle for resources, as well as to remain influential and trustworthy themselves, not inviting influencers that are influencing their target audiences into the boardroom is lost business insight.

To architect a cohesive experience that aligns brand, product, and customer experiences with the reality that consumers’ purchase decisions are influenced by people like them, requires aligning your target audiences and the moments in their consumer journey that are best for influencers and influencer-generated content to reach them.

The holy grail of marketing – ‘right place, right time, right person, right message’ – exists not in a singular moment, but in the many micro-moments a consumer experiences to come to a purchase decision. Learn now to impact these moments in the latest of our influencer marketing & relations in 2018 series, 2018 Influencer Marketing Strategy & Planning Playbook: The Opportunity for Growth at Intersection of Influencer Marketing & Customer Experience.