What is a Digital Influencer?


Each and every day new content is published online, a lot of new content. As a result, the Internet is fundamentally changing the way consumers discover and share information. A study by Nielsen found that 70% of consumers trust online recommendations and look to them before making purchasing decisions, compared to the 30% that trust ads. Marketers have noticed and are taking action; hence the birth of “digital marketing” otherwise known as “digital influencer marketing”.

What is digital influence exactly? According to Techopedia, it’s the ability to create an effect, change opinions and behaviors, and drive measurable outcomes online. What makes someone a digital influencer? Digital influencers are leaders, they are people that have gained the respect of large numbers of people within communities and have powerful social networks to match. Here are the three main types of digital influencers:

  • Social – Social influencers are individuals with a large social following, whether it’s on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, or a combination of channels. In the technology space, Robert Anthony aka NewYorkBob, is the number one influencer on Pinterest with 1.2 million followers. Robert is a traditional journalist as well, writing for the New York Daily News, but his large social following classifies him as a social influencer.
  • Video – Video bloggers, or vloggers, are a large group of digital influencers that are a great resource for promoting your products and brand. Some “unboxing” and review channels in the technology space have close to 3 million subscribers, such as tech vlogger Marquess Brownlee.
  • Lifestyle Blog – Influential bloggers typically have a large amount of traffic to their blog site, as well as followers on a variety of social channels. It’s hard to imagine today’s blogosphere without the presence of mom bloggers. As of January 2015, there are 7 million mom bloggers living in the United States, and 33 percent of them have 5,000 or more followers online.

No matter which form a digital influencer takes, there are a few attributes they typically share: These are people that have large followers on their particular channel(s), are looked up to and trusted by others, are involved in their particular community and tend to be trendsetters.

Take the time to research the digital influencers in your company’s product space and develop customized programs and pitches that they will respond favorably to. These are, after all, relationships that you can build and develop into key brand ambassadors for your company.