Health care companies are finding innovative ways to reach their targeted audiences. One approach to creating new connections is leveraging influencer marketing. But is influencer marketing still relevant and does it fit for the future of the health care industry?

Influencer marketing is defined as the ability for one person or campaign to sway the purchase decision of a customer or prospective customer. According to the Association of National Advertisers, 75% of advertisers in the U.S. make use of influencer marketing and, due to the success of it, 43% of them expect to increase their spending on it over the next 12 months.

Finding individuals who are passionate about your company, organization, or product is key as user-generated content grows in popularity and as a means to build brand loyalty. Often, influencer-focused content is more authentic than content created by a company or brand. Listen to this Q&A with our digital experts on what influencer marketing is, if it’s a good fit for health care brands and what to expect for the future.

 

Q&A with digital strategist Brittney Hanson and content strategist Lindsey Edson

Influencer Marketing:

L:  We should get out boxing gloves for this.

B:  So what is influencer marketing?

L:  Essentially it’s leveraging an influencer—for example, a celebrity or a micro-influencer who could just be a local business owner who has a lot of influence in your local community to market and reach an intended target audience.

B:  Oftentimes it’s somebody who has had an experience with your brand. Someone who has recovered or gotten treatment and a great experience that they had at the organization as well. So, yeah I think OB of course is kind of a natural fit, in talking to mommy bloggers and tapping into more of the micro-influencer in your local community versus, a macro influencer of an Olympic athlete or a celebrity and that type of thing which is oftentimes much more expensive for the brands.

L:  Right. And so I think that’s why the health care marketing industry as a whole could tap into influencers, especially on a micro scale as an opportunity to reach audience in a really authentic and relevant way.

B:  Maybe that’s a good transition to the future of influencer marketing. Because I think the future is bleak.

L:  I think there’s an opportunity to see the influencer marketing potential reshape for other industries.

B:  So, one key thing you said was ‘authentic’ and I feel like from a target audience standpoint, when you work through influencers, it doesn’t feel as authentic. That’s why I feel like there’s more value, or there’s increasingly more value placed on authentic, owned content or tapping into friends, relatives, etc. I know it’s hard but I think that holds more weight than these Instagram stars that are gonna slowly…

L:  Fade.

B:  Fade! Exactly! But that’s just my take on it.

L:  I still think there will always be a home and a place for influencers. We’ve seen celebrities market for a long time when Pepsi was featured in a TV commercial and there was product placement. I think that influencer marketing is just going to evolve as social channels evolve and how they’re being used. Speaking of influencers, follow us on our Hailey Sault blog and our social media platforms for more.

9 Questions that drive next level health care marketing plans