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Influencers

An influencer is an individual who has above-average reach or impact through word-of-mouth or social media reach. Influencers are often highly knowledgeable about a specific subject, such as food, fashion, beauty or technology. Many marketers look to influencers such as celebrities, bloggers or vloggers with huge followings to do brand promotion. Influencer marketing has in some circles become synonymous with online channels and social media celebrities, but research suggests offline networks of word-of-mouth remain important.

Key Reading

Important papers from across the Warc database

Using data from Keller Fay, this piece explains what makes an influencer, how to find an influencer and how it identifies what it calls Conversation Catalysts. The article also argues that it is a mistake for the marketing community to be blinded by social media as a surefire way to identify influencers.
A best practice guide to engaging influencers in WOM-based campaigns.
This article discusses the changing nature of communities, and how brands can become part of them.
Why the Apple-owned electronics brand favours working with influencers over traditional research.
This article argues that humans are social animals, and learn and adapt by copying others.

Case Study

This case study shows how Deutsche Telekom, a telecommunications brand, used gaming to raise awareness towards dementia research in Germany.

Case Study

This case study explains how animal advocacy charity WildAid united elephant NGOs and people around the world to persuade the UN to ban the ivory trade in a campaign driven by content and social media.

Case Study

This case study shows how Pedigree, a dog products brand, promoted its social platform and increased brand equity in Russia by focusing on the social misconception towards people with Down Syndrome.

Case Study

This case study explains how Lifebuoy, the soap brand, extended its 'Help a Child Reach 5' initiative to more countries with the help of donors by releasing an emotional film online.

Case Study

This case study explains how charities the Romanian Ornithological Society and Natura 2000 used a YouTube video and PR to raise awareness of Romanian hunting laws and get the law changed to protect birds.

Case Study

This case study explains how charity Ovarian Cancer Canada (OCC) used a playful TV ad, print and digital ads, and PR to increase awareness of ovarian cancer.
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Research Paper

The rise of social media as a marketing channel, and the research that has supported it, has left open questions as to its impact on actual brand performance.

Article

This article explores Johnson & Johnson's 'CIA' – context, impact, action – approach to content, including campaigns using KOLs and Snapchat in Asia.

Article

This article provides an overview of how influencer opinion and recommendations can deliver marketing messages to consumers through social networks and word of mouth.

Article

This article explores how brands can tap into a new 'shopkeeper/storyteller' paradigm on social media in order to facilitate authentic and honest discussion around brands.

Article

This article examines best practice in influencer marketing, including how to identify the right influencers, how to approach them and how to measure the effectiveness of the campaign.

Article

This webinar discusses how social media can help plan and amplify content and why the shape of social media conversations needs to be analysed to give a full picture of effectiveness.
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  1. Article

    This article examines best practice in influencer marketing, including how to identify the right influencers, how to approach them and how to measure the effectiveness of the campaign.

  2. Article

    This article, taken from the Warc Toolkit 2017 report, explores how the proliferation of video is transforming social media marketing by turning social platforms into broadcast media.

  3. Article

    This article outlines how Huawei, a telecommunications challenger brand from China, took on rivals in Western Europe with a product launch tapping content marketing and influencers.

  4. Article

    This paper is part of the China social branding report that seeks to understand the firewalled country through the lens of the biggest brands operating in the market; this iteration looks at KFC, the US restaurant brand, and its Chinese strategy.

  5. Article

    This article offers best practice advice on engaging influencers - defined as consumers who are much more likely than the average to seek out and share information - for campaigns based around word-of-mouth strategies.

  6. Article

    This article discusses changing attitudes towards consumption globally, the rise of the 'sharing economy' and the opportunities this presents for brands.

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