Exclusively Digital to look at increasing role of influencers in driving sales

Exclusively Digital – the online answer to the Exclusively Show which has been postponed until 2021 due to Covid-19 – will broadcast two webinars next week addressing just how crucial relationships with both traditional journalists and influencers now are, not only to consumer buying trends, but also to actual purchases. 

The webinars will be delivered by Richard Watts – a key link into the influencer world for the Exclusively show.

He explained: “Looking back over the last two years alone, the role of consumer public relations within a brand’s marketing mix has really transformed beyond recognition.  The growing army of social media influencers, bloggers and vloggers feels like an unstoppable force, none of us in the housewares industry should ignore. Every day now, I am working on a gifted collaboration, or a paid partnership with an influencer (or their agent) – yes, the leading influencers are now represented by the biggest talent agencies in the country, sitting alongside the biggest names in television, radio, and music! Who would have imagined until recently that social media stars would become such lucrative revenue generators they are now?

“Having said that, shifting all the effort away from print and traditional broadcast in favour of digital is not a clever move. Print and traditional broadcast remain a vital part of the mix within the lifestyle sector with some magazine titles even seeing a growth in readership, as consumers turn to a glossy mag to unwind and escape their digital devices for an hour or two. In the same way the vinyl record industry has seen a resurgence, many in the media believe this escape to a place of ‘calm’ will evolve even further in the magazine industry. Besides, alongside their online portals, print titles are still a go-to for expert advice within the lifestyle sector, seen as trend drivers by both consumers and indeed housewares industry buyers alike. The latter turning to the pages of key titles to inspire what they stock in-store, because they understand consumer demand is being driven by what they see on these pages.

The role of online influencers and social media is undoubtedly still growing however – and here to stay – and I would advise any doubters who still consider it all just hype and smoke without the fire which will eventually disperse, that the evidence suggests otherwise. Social outlets such as Instagram allow a brand to track the success of a campaign in much more detail than ever before.  Unlike a feature in a print title, there is tangible data to analyse and assess the success of a social influencer campaign and ultimately the sales it generates.  From google analytics tracking and reporting web traffic, to Instagram Insights for example, marketeers can follow consumer actions like never before and measure PR campaigns by tracking a consumer’s online journey to the purchase basket. Concrete analytics are becoming more and more sophisticated every day in terms of assessing sales. Moreover, every campaign and collaboration can inform, build-upon and inspire the next.

“So, it’s never been a more exciting time for the public relations industry to get creative across all media channels, something that Exclusively champions in its Brand Showcase feature. By liaising at the show with the widest variety of consumer journalists and influencers, the Brand Showcase ensures exhibitors get the best of both traditional and digital worlds. The fluffy days of ‘Ab Fab’ PR being all parties and lunches are officially over! Consumer PR has just got very serious, not only in brand building and communications, but in driving sales too.”

Richard will be hosting two webinars in Exclusively Week on Monday 6 July at 2.30pm and Friday 10 July at 10.30am, called: “Independent retailers: How to engage with social media influencers to increase your sales”.

Visit www.exclusivelyshows.co.uk for sign up details.