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The concept of the “three Rs” was born around the idea of influence in the age of social media. Brian Solis was one of the first to propose this concept as the three pillars of influence to measure the rise of the digital influence of individuals. For years, marketers and influencer agencies have recommended relevance, reach and resonance as influencer selection criteria for brands, but experts suggest this could evolve into a new way to guide content. brand digital marketing. Hootsuite describes the three Rs of influence as follows:
Relevance: Influencer shares relevant content for your business and industry
To research: The number of people who can be searched through the influencer’s follower base
Resonance: The level of engagement an influencer can create with an audience relevant to your brand.
These criteria are used to select the right influencer, but what if marketers used them to shape their marketing communications? Could the brand become the influencer?
Related: 10 Factors That Will Make or Break Your Influencer Marketing Campaign
The Benefits of Being an Influencer Brand
Today, more than 60% of media consumption is through fragmented digital media compared to traditional mass media. In the era of voluntary engagement, it has become more difficult to interrupt the customer journey. It’s not enough to reach audiences through other content creators. An influencer is simply someone who can influence others by being a social content creator to build an audience. A brand with the right content and an authentic, timely response can create its own groups of dedicated and engaged followers. Some brands have already done it very well, but we had to change our mindset.
Of course, content-creating brands have been around for decades. Content marketing is about creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract/retain an audience, resulting in profitable action. The difference is that influencer brands have shifted their entire focus to a consumer-centric Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) mindset. Influencer brands go beyond head-pleasing blogs, infographics, e-books, testimonials, and how-to guides. They have learned to touch the hearts of their audience.
This comes from seeing the world from the target’s point of view. A change that can be observed by following the three Rs of influence to lead the creation of branded content. For example, Yeti Coolers content and engagement does not focus on selling coolers. It’s selling a lifestyle that coolers help activate. For example, they organize products so customers can shop by activity. The images and copy lead with stories of adventures their audience can have with the gear – fishing, hunting, camping, near the coast, in the snow, at the ranch and in the rodeo arena.
The bread and butter of branded content marketing are white papers, educational e-books, and how-to videos. Yeti allows audiences to feast on coffee table books, celebrating whitewater rapids, films documenting brand ambassadors competing in canoe races over 260 miles, and fly fishing guides hosting podcasts. Yeti Stories isn’t full of stats, specs, and sales promotions about their coolers. They are inspiring stories from the lives of their audience.
But that’s not the whole plot of their marketing story. The ultimate end of the story is the purchase, and to do that they also need to talk to the head. Yeti provides plenty of information about the rugged construction, legendary performance, smart design, and long-lasting warranty of their products. The core alone doesn’t justify a $300-$400 cooler. They have sales, contests and promotions to incentivize purchase, but they lead with the stories inspired by their audience.
So how do you become an influencer brand? Practice consumer-centric BMI that takes a story perspective. To do this, consider the three Rs as a target for content and brand engagement. Brands that take a storytelling approach through the three Rs can become an influencer, building relationships around brand communities.
Related: 5 Reasons Why Brand Storytelling is Critical to Your Marketing Strategy
Relevance becomes sharing stories that are relevant to your business and your industry – what is relevant to the market. This is the cost of entry for your story to be recognized as being on the right topic. Fitness brands like CrossFit or Life Time create verbal messages, visual messages and brand stories about training and fitness. They don’t create stories about financial planning, vacations, or electric vehicles. No company has the resources to reach everyone in a market, and general messaging tends to fail. Markets are segmented, a target is selected and the product is positioned there.
Reach is the number of people in a defined population exposed to the message. Reach is about conveying the brand story to the target audience. Life Time Fitness and Yeti Coolers place brand messages (Paid, Earned, Shared, Owned) in media frequently read and viewed by their target audience. Not everyone who receives the message responds or responds the same way. A brand’s best customers are its most loyal fans and advocates. Brand advocates engage and share your brand content because it resonates with them, not because you paid an influencer to talk about it. The brand is the content creator and influencer of the community.
Resonance is an engagement generated by extending a message through reflection and amplification. When a message resonates with someone, they want to share it as a signal of their identity to a group, reaching others in the marketplace. Focusing brand content on stories that resonate with your target audience adds momentum to the message. The social identity of the brand matches the social identity of the buyer and the brand becomes the influencer in social media.
Related: How to Get Your Influencer Marketing Right
The stories you tell in the branded content you create and the authentic interactions you have attract and retain an audience, creating connected customers to drive profitable action. That’s what it means to be an influencer brand. That’s why Yeti is more than a cooler. It’s #BuiltForTheWild. That’s why Life Time Fitness is more than a gym. It’s a way for you to #LoveYourLife. Consider how you can scale your content marketing to an influencer brand from a consumer-centric mindset.