The Evolution of Influencer Marketing

by | Jan 25, 2024 | EduSocial Blog | 0 comments

Photo by Ivan Samkov

Influencer marketing no longer simply refers to celebrity endorsements, it has evolved past that and now includes numerous collaborations with social media influencers, to leverage the different kinds of audiences across various platforms. Amazingly, it’s working! According to The GOAT Agency, businesses make $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing, and for every 135 brands, there’s a revenue of $20 or more per every $1 spent. However, while influencer marketing appears to be trending, something that has gone almost unnoticed is the fact that influencer marketing has been around all along. 

The Evolution

Influencer marketing started as far back as the 18th century. Josiah Wedgwood was a clever potter in England when his pottery got Queen Charlotte’s attention and he made her a special cream-colored tea set. Because of this, he not only bagged the ultimate influencer which of course was the Queen, but he became the official potter of Her Royal Majesty. That didn’t end there, he went ahead to rebrand his china to become “Queensware,” the world’s first luxury brand. Josiah’s small craft became a sought-after brand because of the Queen’s endorsement.

The famous Coca-Cola Santa Clause ad in 1931

Let’s take a look at Coca-Cola because they’ve been a perfect example of the evolution happening in the influencer marketing space. Coca-Cola’s first attempt at influencer marketing was in 1912 when Hilda Clark, an Opera singer, was the face of the brand. Also in 1931 when the picture of Santa Clause was used in their ads.

In 2018, the ‘Share a Coke’ campaign was launched globally integrating local celebrities across all countries. Programs like the Coke Studio bringing popular artists to collaborate also indicated the success of their strategy. It might also interest you to know that Coca-Cola’s extensive sponsorships span American Idol contestants, NASCAR drivers, and Olympians.

Cristiano Ronaldo in an ad for Coca-Cola in 2020

Selena Gomez doing a paid ad post for Coca-Cola








Alban Dechelotte, Coke’s Former Senior Marketing Manager in entertainment confirmed that the history of the use of celebrities in their ads has evolved over time from the Opera singer to athletes, movie stars, and now social media influencers. It is currently the most valuable soft drink brand worldwide in 2023 according to Statista, with a brand value of $98 billion. That’s enough to show that its influencer marketing strategy has been working effectively.

Best Practices for Brands Using Influencer Marketing

If your brand is looking to either consider or restrategize its influencer marketing tactics, here are some tips:

  1. Be Clear About Goals: Clearly outline what you want to achieve with your influencer marketing campaign and set measurable targets before approaching influencers.
  2. Plan Ahead: Create a strategy for your campaign that reflects your brand and excites both your team and potential influencers.
  3. Choose Influencers Wisely: Pick influencers who align with your brand values, create great content, and have followers in your target audience. You can use tools like NodeXL to find them online. Nano and micro-influencers often provide good value and have dedicated followers.
  4. Personalize Your Approach: Tailor your messages to influencers, sharing specific campaign details to avoid sounding generic or forced.
  5. Negotiate Honestly: Be transparent about your budget and negotiate rates with creators who fit your goals.
  6. Ensure Quality: Make sure all content matches your brand’s voice, message, and look.
  7. Track Success: Evaluate how well content performs against initial goals to identify effective strategies and guide your overall marketing approach.

There’s an influencer with a size fit for your target audience and pocket and that makes it the perfect strategy. They’re generally called micro-influencers, and they’re no different from the big guys only that they have a specific kind of audience that ranges from 1000-100,000 followers. To have an effective campaign, you can’t ignore any potential audience especially not the audience of a micro-influencer.

In conclusion, about 40% of internet users don’t even view the ads that most businesses pay heavily for because of the use of ad-blocking software. The best brands understand the effectiveness of influencer marketing and have been benefiting from this strategy since before social media. It’s not too late to jump on it and use this cost-effective tool to grow your brand’s image and revenue. 


Author: Olaniyan Olawale Abdullahi

I’m Olaniyan Olawale Abdullahi, a passionate wordsmith, and dedicated problem solver. My journey began at Adekunle Ajasin University, where I delved into the world of Physics Education. But my true calling emerged when I realized my knack for connecting people through words.

With an unwavering interest in aiding others, I’ve channeled my skills to assist business owners in crafting captivating blog posts and articles that truly resonate with their audience. Beyond writing, I also embrace the role of a virtual assistant, helping entrepreneurs streamline their tasks and make the most of their time.

My goal is clear: to empower businesses with engaging content and efficient support. Whether it’s weaving narratives, simplifying tasks, or sparking connections, I’m here to elevate your endeavors.

Let’s embark on this collaborative journey together. Reach out to me at [email protected] and let’s explore the endless possibilities.


Submit a Comment