What do Kim Kardashian, Armando Roggio, and your neighbor have in common? They’re all influencers.
Influencer marketing is the digital equivalent of word-of-mouth promotion. Within ecommerce, we can segment influencers into three categories: celebrities, authorities, and peers.
3 Types of Influencers
Celebrities. Most consumers think an influencer is a celebrity. Celebrity influencers are aspirational because they sell what others might aspire to. Millions of Gen Zs (under age 25, roughly) and Millennials (ages 25 to 40) model their purchases after Kim Kardashian, for example. They want the same makeup, food, and clothing.
Aspirational influencers are usually expensive and correlate with audience size — the larger the more costly, especially for mega audiences of 50 million or more followers. I’ve seen fees of $500,000 and more for audiences of that magnitude.
For ecommerce merchants, the practical considerations to using celebrities depend on how broad of an appeal a product or service carries, as well as risk tolerance. Gigantic audiences mean loose targeting. This is why you’ll see Kim Kardashian, with 219 million followers on Instagram, promoting Uber Eats and other generic categories, as a large segment of her followers will presumably find them useful. Niche products with a narrow focus typically experience a poor return on investment with aspirational influencers.