If you’ve ever doubted influencer marketing, then you need not look any further than the Playlist Live conference to prove its power.

During the weekend of March 1st-3rd, somewhere between 10,000-13,000 (mostly) teenage girls descended on the largest Marriott hotel in the world, located in Orlando, FL. They were there for the opportunity to meet their favorite YouTube and social media influencers.  Mind you, this was not them hanging out for hours with the popular creators; each ticket entitled the holder to a guaranteed meet & greet with an influencer for 2 different sessions.

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an influencer’s social connection with fans sets them apart from celebrities.

So how does this prove the power of influencer?  Well, the girls had to get there somehow, and with the majority of them not being old enough to drive or have a credit card, that means they had to convince somebody that did how important it was for them to attend.  It also means that those at the conference felt like they knew the influencers they were going to see well enough that meeting them in-person could validate all their beliefs about them.

On the flip side, it shows the power of influencer from a creator perspective.  The influencers recognized that their social connection to their fans is what sets them apart from celebrities.  Keeping those connections healthy and growing is what allows them to keep having influence.

So, how do you use this information to your advantage? For brands --  If you’re targeting the female and/or Gen Z demographic, it would be worthwhile to to attend and meet the creators who are influencing their buying decisions. It would also be worth considering sponsorship of the event if you want to quickly get your product into the hands of a very socially active group.

If your brand isn’t oriented toward rabid teen and pre-teen females, you should be asking yourself if there is a population who is the ideal demographic or interest group for your company and how you can find the people they listen to.  Knowing the answer to that question could be the difference between incredibly effective, targeted marketing, and wasting enormous amounts of money putting advertisements in places nobody is looking.

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