How Influencers Influence the Customer Experience
“Customer experience” or “user experience” have become common terms in marketing. But there is much more behind these terms than just a new buzzword.
The customer experience is crucial to the success of a company. This is because, on the consumer side, the customer experience ultimately determines whether a company’s products are purchased. In the past, the customer experience was mainly influenced by the store design. Who doesn’t know it? If the premises are nicely decorated and the lighting conditions are pleasant and warm, people are more willing to put one or two more items in the shopping cart. But how exactly does influencer marketing play a role in the customer experience?
Influencer marketing for the customer experience
Influencers recommend products to their community on social media that they like and perhaps even use themselves. If the influencer has a close relationship with his community, he is seen by them more as a friend who makes a recommendation. The costumer experience is influenced above all in the phase in which the consumer is still searching for the right product. If he or she has shortlisted two products and one of them is advertised by an influencer whom he or she trusts or finds likeable, it is likely that he or she will then also decide in favor of the product advertised as part of influencer marketing. Although the rational person would say: “Product A has the best price-performance ratio”, they still decide in favor of product B because they have often come into contact with it on Instagram or via influencers.
Why is the customer experience so important?
There are many studies that prove that for many consumers the experience is more important than the product itself. You know it yourself: We prefer to buy products in stores where we feel comfortable and where the salespeople are also nice. Transferred to the online or mobile sector, it can be said that a pleasantly designed website helps to increase the willingness to buy. On the other hand, the likeability of the influencers and the trust placed in them also play a role here. If you feel well advised by an influencer on social media, this has a positive effect on the customer experience.
Generally speaking, the customer experience refers to the interaction between the consumer and the company. According to the literature, the customer experience can be divided into four dimensions: Informativeness, Entertainment, Social Presence and Sensory Appeal. Thus, the customer experience represents a multidimensional reaction of the consumer.
Informativeness refers to the information content of the interaction and thus whether the consumer is offered useful and helpful information. In stationary retail, for example, this is influenced by the information found on the product’s packaging. Through the use of influencer marketing, the consumer receives additional information in the form of recommendations, since the influencer often reports on his or her experiences with the product. In addition, the influencer even tests the product directly, so that even more information is made available.
This dimension takes into account the extent to which the consumer is entertained by the interaction with the company. For example, many people enjoy shopping, whereas others consider it downright torture. Therefore, companies use different measures to increase the enjoyment of all consumers. Influencer marketing is one of them. For example, funny and entertaining Instagram Stories or posts can help individuals relate better, leading to a better customer experience. Successful influencer marketing also leads to consumers having a better overall picture of the company and being more willing to purchase the products.
As the name suggests, this dimension refers to the feeling of human conviviality that interaction with the company causes in the consumer. We often associate shopping as a social experience and associate it with spending time with family or friends. But how does this behave online? This is exactly where the crucial point of influencer marketing comes in: influencers take on the role of best friend for us, as we follow their stories on a daily basis and are virtually taken along through their everyday lives. Therefore, we would like to buy the products that our favorite influencers use – simply to be a bit closer to them.
This point refers to how the consumer’s senses are stimulated by interaction with the company. Take the example from the supermarket – we walk through the supermarket and are influenced by smells and lights. Certain lighting conditions make the fruit look much fresher. Or music also plays a significant role: for example, in most supermarkets, different music is played in the morning than in the evening, because the target group is different. But how exactly can influencer marketing stimulate the senses? Quite simply: by the influencer reporting on how delicious product xy tastes right now and how much it reminds him of event xy. This gives his followers the feeling of being right there and perhaps even associating the product with an event of their own.
Customer experience without influencers? Not possible online!
Especially in times when online shopping and thus e-commerce are becoming increasingly important, the customer experience must not be neglected, but should be strengthened through influencers. Influencer marketing has long since established itself as a promising marketing measure. The customer experience can be influenced in all four dimensions that a customer goes through by skillfully placed and authentic influencer marketing.