A long-time has passed since the golden age of advertising and standards certainly have changed, that’s for sure. In the early age of marketing, then known simply as advertising, campaigns were usually based around selling a dream.
But this type of marketing that represented a different era doesn’t relate to Millennials and Gen Z. Now is the age of authenticity and credibility. Today, the customer is informed and prefers honest and relatable communications from a brand. And this is when Peer 2 Peer marketing (P2P) becomes a very vital method of advertising.
Why choose P2P marketing techniques?
Even if a brand is happy to spend millions of pounds on a supermodel or a superstar to market its products, the modern consumer knows too well that they are being sold a dream (or more likely a pipedream). These glossy celebrities are too far removed from many of us and lead entirely different lifestyles, and even though we aspire to be like them, we know we live in a different world.
Influencers, on the other hand, are likeminded people, like you and me. Their houses in the background look familiar, their experiences and spending habits seem similar to ours, and so we trust their judgment more.
92% of people confirm that when making a purchase, they are influenced by their peers, while 60% of shoppers are influenced by social media posts or reviews by their peers. It’s becoming more evident that selling a stereotypical ‘dream’ in the digital era has become more difficult; the focus now is on how to represent reality appealingly.
Peer to Peer Isn’t New
Peer 2 peer is the oldest form of marketing and is otherwise known as word-of-mouth – which is regarded as the most effective method of marketing. The only thing that has changed regarding the digital era is how many people have a voice and how many people (your audience) can be reached by that voice.
Have you ever followed a link on a YouTube channel to get a special discount for the product the influencer was reviewing? There you go! Even if you didn’t complete the purchase, you were still influenced by P2P techniques.
Social influencers are not reality stars or celebrities. Yes, they can be well-known, and yes, they reach audiences, but there is no million-dollar budget behind creating them. They got there themselves. And that gives them more authenticity, making them relatable, which is vital for P2P. And most importantly, it sells the products and services.
Another vital aspect of P2P influencer marketing is post interactions. Every time someone likes, comments or (in the best case) shares an influencer’s post, that product is once again endorsed by an average consumer to their social media circle. This brings word of mouth even further along, adding credibility and authenticity to the review.
Reaching the Right Audience
Most importantly, P2P reaches the right audience. The influencers most likely have a niche. Do they have a lifestyle channel, a healthy food blog, or a skincare video? Are they reviewing cars, fishing gear or DIY? Whatever the product is, there is an influencer that could review and advise their peers, people the same as them, interested in the same things as them. That is what makes P2P so powerful – it has the right audience and the right medium to communicate your message.