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The Impact of Social Media on Retail: How Brands Are Leveraging Influencers

Viewed 115 times9-5-2023 03:48 AM

During the past decade, the way consumer goods are marketed and sold has been drastically altered. Various technological factors have been driving this change, and retailers are constantly searching for ways to connect with consumers in more meaningful ways. One popular approach involves the use of influencers to promote and endorse products. Whether they are bloggers, vloggers or social media personalities with large followings, influencers have become a crucial component of a business’ marketing/promotional toolkit.

Influencers have a unique ability to create engaging content that resonates with consumers and makes them want to buy the products they are promoting. They also have a high level of authenticity, making their opinions and endorsements highly trusted by consumers. This combination of trust and credibility has made influencer marketing a key aspect of many businesses’ advertising and promotion strategies.

The 2021 Nielsen Trust in Advertising study found that 71% of consumers say they rely on the recommendations and opinions of others when making purchasing decisions. This makes it especially important for businesses to connect with customers through the channels they know and use most often. Among those channels, social media has become a leading source of customer engagement for businesses, with over 70% of brands surveyed saying that they rely on social media to communicate with their customers. This is higher than the percentage of businesses that rely on email (61%), TV/radio advertising (27%), and traditional print ads (14%).

For many businesses, connecting with consumers on social media requires a more personal touch than just sending a promotional message. This is why many retailers are focusing their efforts on developing content that tells a story and builds a connection with consumers. This type of content is more likely to be shared by consumers and viewed by their networks, which can lead to increased brand awareness.

Aside from creating content that tells a story, some retailers are leveraging their social-media presence to act as extensions of their physical stores. This is most commonly seen in the form of pop-up shops and other creative ways to get people into the store. For example, Nordstrom has partnered with Leith to open temporary boutiques in their stores, while Lowe’s has been using its Fix It in Six Vine home improvement tutorials to drive traffic to its physical locations.

Retailers are also embracing the idea that social media is a two-way communication platform and incorporating it into their customer service and support functions. This has allowed them to forge a more personal connection with their customers, and this has been shown to improve loyalty. In fact, 80% of consumers who have a positive interaction with a brand on social media say they are likely to purchase from them again. This is a huge increase from the 12% of consumers who reported having a positive experience with a brand on traditional channels like phone or online. Interestingly, this number is even higher for younger generations. This shows that social-media-centered customer service is a growing trend that is here to stay.
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