Can Influencer Marketing Really Motivate Purchases? (Study)

By Justin Lafferty Comment


More and more brands are realizing that influencers are way more effective than regular users (or even celebrity endorsers) at getting branded messages out there.

A new study by Dr. Jonah Berger from the Wharton School, Experticity and the Keller Fay Group found that influencers have up to 22.2 times more conversations each week than regular users about purchasing recommendations.

But does it matter? According to the study, 82 percent of consumers polled said they were highly likely to follow a recommendation made by a micro influencer.

Brad Fay, co-founder, COO and lead researcher of the Keller Fay Group, commented on the study in a press release:

Many marketers today try to use celebrities as their influencer marketing solution, but they are missing out on a much bigger opportunity. Our research shows that real life influencers who are passionate about what they are recommending have significantly more buying conversations, and consumers are more likely to act on their recommendations.

Other key findings:

  • According to the study, 74 percent of the influencers encouraged someone to “buy it or try it,” something only 66 percent of the general population did.
  • It’s not just on social: 87 percent of the buying recommendations made by influencers are happening face-to-face.
  • Influencers were seen as more credible and believable than average people (94 percent vs. 83 percent), more knowledgeable (94 percent vs. 84 percent) and better at explaining how the product works or could be used (92 percent vs. 83 percent).

Dr. Berger analyzed the findings:

The growing importance of influencer marketing has led marketers to openly question exactly how impactful word of mouth is when coming from different types of consumers. This study has helped illuminate who has the greatest impact and why, which is a great tool for marketers as they try to harness the power of influencer marketing.

Readers: Do you trust marketing messages more from influencers?