The benefits of influencer marketing

The Influencer marketing industry is experiencing exponential growth. Did you know that the industry grew from £7.8 billion in 2020 to a whopping £13.3 billion in 2022? Now more than ever, influencer marketing should be an integral part of your digital marketing mix, and there are plenty of reasons why. In this blog, we’ll uncover the key benefits of influencer marketing and how it can drive incredible results for your brand in the long run.

If you’re wondering what the benefits of influencer marketing are, read on to see the extraordinary influencer marketing statistics generated from our creator partnerships, from various industries and businesses. Spoiler: One of our clients reached millions of potential customers with just two brand ambassadors! But first, let’s dive into the benefits of influencer marketing. 

What are the benefits of working with influencers?

1. It can rapidly build trust in your brand

First and foremost, influencers have built a credible and trusted relationship with their audience. People respect their recommendations often because they share similar beliefs, have an aspirational lifestyle or provide entertaining content. 

By working with influencers, you have the opportunity to tap into this highly engaged audience that has been developed through community creation. If you work with a trusted influencer, it’s likely your brand will be trusted by their audience too. You don’t even need to work with tons of influencers to see remarkable results. 

How brands are using influencer marketing to build brand trust?

Hotel franchise Shangri-la worked with Room Unlocked to reach 2.3 million users from just two influencers to raise awareness for their locations. As a result, they received a 34:1 ROI.  

2. It adds authenticity to your marketing strategy

Authenticity is a big buzzword for 2023, and for good reason. We are seeing brands move away from commercial transactions, where brands buy influencers, to genuine connections based on brand love.

Customers are less engaged with highly edited, filtered posts, and more engaged with genuine, authentic content. Influencers who love your brand, are an excellent way of obtaining content that intentionally targets your lookalike audiences, with a touch of authenticity. This is one of the main benefits of influencer marketing, the power to share real opinions that in turn generate authentic brand connections. Find out more about unlocking your brand's authentic advocacy with Room Unlocked here

3. You can reach niche and targeted audiences

Another benefit of influencer marketing is the ability to reach those niche target audiences. Influencers that share content that embraces your industry or company values are perfect ambassadors for your brand. For example, if your product is a sustainable homeware set, you’d want to partner with a creator that talks about eco-living and has an interest in sustainability. Their followers would already be interested in living sustainably (that’s probably why they follow them), so you don’t have to target this niche audience yourself – the influencer does it for you, and you reap the benefits.

If you’re looking to target a particularly niche demographic, micro-influencers are great brand advocates to look for. Smaller creators are usually more engaged with their fanbase, so people often look to them for more personalised and authentic recommendations. 

4. You can save both time and money and get stunning influencer-generated content from talented creators

We know that developing exciting and engaging content can be hard, especially if you’re a small business or startup that has little space or resources to develop high-quality content. An advantage of influencer-generated content is that when you partner with influencers, this worry is taken off your hands. Since influencers work hard to ensure their feed is full of high-quality visuals, you can rest assured that your partnership content will be aesthetically pleasing too. Plus, partnering with an influencer is often much more affordable than hiring a team of photographers, videographers and editors! 

How brands are using influencer marketing to create stunning content?

A great example of this comes from Virgin Voyages’ campaign with Room Unlocked. We partnered our client with 35 influencers from a range of categories, who generated 1181 beautiful pieces of content that went on to reach 20 million users - and, had a 265:1 ROI! 

5. You can educate new customers about your brand

One of the final benefits of influencer marketing is that by fully briefing your brand ambassador on your product or service, you can empower them to create content that educates their audience about your brand in an inspiring way. Rather than just reading a product description, your target demographic can see the product in action by someone they trust. Ultimately, it’s a visual way of showing potential customers just how amazing your brand is.

Example of the advantages influencer marketing

At Room Unlocked we have no shortage of brands who’ve felt the benefits of influencer marketing. One brand in particular who’s influencer marketing statistics speak for themselves is Charlotte Tilbury. They came to us for authentic and inventive content for their social media channels to help drive significant awareness of their 30% off summer sale. From this they received 381 pieces of content in multiple formats across different platforms from a total of 104 brand loving influencers. Because this content was both creative and authentic, Charlotte Tilbury reached an impressive £1 million users, with over £1.2 million impressions and delivered a great earned media value of over £40k. To see more influencer marketing case studies read here.

Recap: the benefits of influencer marketing

Influencer marketing, when done correctly, can take your brand to the next level - more exposure, more sales and more brand presence in the market you’re in. The key to really benefiting from working with influencers is to collaborate with content creators that are genuinely interested, excited and in the long term, love your brand. Their content will not only be truly authentic, but they’ll naturally put in the time and effort to create something amazing for your brand. It’s important to find the creators that are right for your brand: personality, content style and interests are all important elements to finding your true brand lovers.

Ready to kick off your influencer strategy?

Room Unlocked is a space where brands connect with influencers that genuinely love their products or experiences. As your chosen brand ambassadors, they’ll create inspiring content that drives trust, awareness, ROI and EMV. It’s a win-win for everyone! Find out how to attract authentic advocates for your brand here.

The benefit of influencers FAQs

Are influencers still effective?

Yes, but only if you choose the right influencer for your brand. Now more than ever we’re seeing a shift in the importance of genuine content. So finding real advocates for your brand is crucial in order for campaigns to be effective. To learn more about how Room Unlocked can help you with this, see here

Do influencers have a positive impact

Increasingly eyes are on influencers to be conscious of the impact they are having on the world, be that due to sustainability or setting beauty standards. Aligning your brand to someone who is aware of these matters will benefit your brand in the long run.

Influencer strategy: How to engage budget-conscious shoppers

What issues are content creators facing?

With content creation under severe scrutiny amidst the cost-of-living crisis, influencers across the board are facing backlash due to out-of-touch content (read more on this here). Sharing luxury products and holidays during a time where many Brits are struggling to heat their homes or put food on the table may ultimately make followers feel that their favourite influencer may be unable to ‘read-the-room’. 

Brands and creators should take steps to adapt their strategy to ensure it ticks all the right boxes when it comes to engaging budget-conscious shoppers, posting products and collaborations with social awareness. 


Why are luxury lifestyles leaving a sour taste? 

The media climate is rife with emotionally charged evidence of how difficult life is right now and influencer culture is at a crossroads when navigating how to evolve during such difficult economic times. 

In just the last couple of months, the latest social media faux pas was taken place by influencer Lydia Millen at the end of last year, after she posted herself checking into the Savoy Hotel after her heating had broken. To avoid losing fans during the cost-of-living crisis - as Brits across the country are struggling to heat their homes, put food on the table and have minimal disposable income - influencer culture must display greater empathy and authenticity towards their followers, with a genuine emphasis on social awareness. Read our co-founder Alex Payne’s conversation with Verge Magazine to see why this is so crucial during the cost-of-living crisis.


Do influencers have a responsibility?

As the UK finds itself sliding into a deeper recession, financial gloom is likely to continue to affect consumers at home - this is no different for (some) influencers, needing to find financial stability. Able to reach millions through their platforms, influencers have a responsibility to tailor the content they post and ensure their message is relatable, well-timed in the current climate. 

Those in the industry are traditionally associated with leading lifestyles of wealth and luxury, a reality that is now out of reach for many. As millions of Brits cut their budgets in order to save, now may be a good time for creators to adapt their content so it does not turn off their audience. 


How can influencer culture evolve during a social crisis?

As users, we have outgrown the culture of perfectionism associated with mainstream social media platforms. Instead, online authenticity is now dramatically reshaping the internet and the way we consume content on our favourite platforms. 

This became clear in our recent study, which revealed that 64% of Brits have lost respect for influencers that are driven by commercial gain and lack authenticity. Valuing un-filtered posts and real conversation over curated feeds and relatable lifestyles, 37% said they identify more with influencers who post with a social cause at the heart of their output. It shows just how vital it is for content creators to use their platforms to make a positive difference in society through relatable messaging.

Consumers also want to see themselves reflected in the creators they choose to follow, with our data revealing that 25% of Brits saying they only follow influencers who share the same beliefs and values as them.


A final note from our founder Alex Payne

In a conversation with Huffington Post, Alex shared that competition amongst influencers has been growing over the last couple of years, especially with the introduction of paid partnerships. This has left many content creators in the position of choosing between their genuine interests and the paid opportunities they are served with. 

Authenticity has quite rightly become king and disingenuous content has become increasingly easier to spot. Finding influencers that are right for your brand, is absolutely essential for a successful campaign. 

We passionately believe that relationships between brands and influencers can be built on love, not money and provide an alternative to traditional, paid routes for content creation. Find out how our platform connects and creates mutually beneficial and lasting relationships regardless of the current climate here.

Top five social media and influencer trends for 2023

Are you preparing your social media strategy and need some pointers on the key trends to follow in 2023? You’re in the right place! With 57.6 million (yes, million!) active social media users in the UK, it’s harder than ever to stand out from the crowd. That’s why our social media experts have revealed their predictions for what sort of content will be performing best on our feeds. From exciting video-based content to empathy-driven posts, there’s more for you to find out! Whether you’re a brand or an influencer, read this guide and get a head start on all things social this year! 

1. Video-based content will be everywhere

Get comfortable with video, it’s here to stay! Short-video clips will continue to dominate the social media landscape in 2023 with platforms such as TikTok continuing to grow in popularity. Did you know they reached 9.2 million users this year in the UK? One of the reasons this platform can to attract so many content creators is the fact that they offer high levels of organic exposure.  

Top tip: TikTok revealed that two in five users believe 'lifting their spirits' is key in motivating them to purchase a product a content creator has shared, so don’t be afraid to spread those positive vibes! Read more TikTok specific tips here.

2. Followers want sensitivity from their favourite creators  

Three in five consumers in the UK told us that seeing luxury lifestyles on social media is infuriating during the cost-of-living crisis. With two-thirds of UK consumers planning to cut non-essentials this year, it’s a good idea to tailor the content you post to ensure it’s well-timed in the current climate. There’s no need to completely alter your content, just be aware of who follows you and be consistent with what you post.   

Top tip: Focus on building empathetic content whilst focusing on your personal brand. For example, you could share some personal anecdotes or chat to your community to encourage honest discussions. This also shows your community that any partnerships you do are authentic and genuine.

3. Micro-influencers are going to thrive 

If you’re a micro-influencer, get ready – it’s your time to shine! Smaller creators are more engaged and connected with their followers which often means their fanbase see them like friends. If we compare that with macro-influencers who may not have the time to follow up with the thousands of messages they receive, you can see why users are super engaged with those who have less of a following. Plus, brands that micro-influencers work with are usually more related to them and their niche, and they might genuinely use their product or service, whereas larger content creators may promote any product or service just for the money.  

Top tip: If you’re a content creator, get rewarded for sharing the brands you truly love by joining our influencer network here.

4.  The big players remain most relevant, for now

If you’re a brand, it's likely that ad spend on platforms such as Instagram and TikTok will take a key share of your marketing budget. More creators and business owners are expected to increase their ad spend to get more visibility as organic reach decreases. That means now is a good time to start experimenting and testing ads while the prices are still low as they’re expected to rise in 2023.

Top tip: In order for paid ads to be successful, they must target the correct audience. Dedicate time to understanding your followers so that any paid content is tailored perfectly to their interests and needs.

5. Authenticity beats quantity every time

Last but not least, authenticity is key to growing your audience in 2023, particularly if you’re targeting Gen Z. Young people have a strong focus on quality and authenticity online, with our trusty data unveiling that close to half of young adults say they cannot relate to or identify with any influencers. It’s no surprise that TikTok is Gen Z’s favourite social media app, thanks to its personalised experience and inspirational content. Plus, look at how popular BeReal became last year. This app prompts users to post just one photo a day to reveal exactly what they’re up to in that moment, without any filters or editing.

Top tip: To grow a genuine fanbase this year, post authentic and unfiltered content that is true to your own interests and beliefs.

A final note from our social media experts

If social media is a big part of your marketing strategy this year, take note of what’s worked for you so far and merge it with the five trends we’ve looked at today. Look at the networks your followers are most active on and take stock of their key interests. Rather than trying to jump on every single trending TikTok song or popular hashtag, pick those that fit your niche and remember there is nothing wrong with staying authentic - it’s exactly what will make you stand out on social media. After all, your followers will thank you for it! Ready to join our influencer network platform to work with brands that you love? Follow this link to apply.