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I might be late to the influencer marketing party however it is a risk I am willing to take. With Facebook becoming increasingly difficult to successfully run profitable campaigns, there becomes a need to look elsewhere for opportunities to drive massive traffic.
It is massive traffic after all that allows us to create big brands, the brands and return we’ve come to expect through running the top of funnel traffic from big blue.
In the past, I’ve dabbled in influencer marketing with my first Shopify store Velocity Bicycle Co to mediocre success. I did sell a couple of pieces however it was through lack of clear focus on building out a proper funnel that I inevitably failed.
This time, however, the stakes are different. I am actively focusing on using influencers to help move products. I am focused on finding the holy grail outside of Facebook and I believe Influencers are the key to unlocking this success.
But before I share my future article with you about my findings on my own success with influencer marketing I am going to share with you some companies that have had massive success by utilizing someone else's following.
So what can you expect from this article? Well, that's easy. I'm going to show you 3 Companies That Have Used Influencer Marketing to become incredibly successful.
The Companies that Won Influencer Marketing
Of course, I don’t know all of the companies that have been successful with IM, however, these are a selection of the ones that I know of who were able to leverage the power.
They each started out like most folks in the ecom game, at the bottom with not much idea of how they were going to scale their business.
By being in the trenches and hashing out a plan they able to leverage the power of influencer marketing. These are those companies.
HiSmile | Teeth Whitening Kits
These Aussie lads started in 2014 with $20,000 of their own money. When you want someone to look up to in the e-commerce space that has absolutely nailed their influencer marketing then it’s these two lads from Gold Coast, Australia. Alex Tomic and Nik Mirkovic have joined the ranks of Australia's Young Rich list with their success from HiSmile.
As for their strategy in how they were able to contact celebrities that were actually willing to promote their product is unknown (at least to me). What is known however is that it worked, and worked, and worked.
I do have a hunch that perhaps the Tomic lad was connected with Bernard Tomic (who is a famous Australian tennis player) and that connection helped to facilitate a deal with his agent and the HiSmile crew. Afterall, Bernard and Alex are both from the Gold Coast.
Do you get your toothpaste delivered? @HiSmileTeeth #hismile #teethwhitening #toothpaste #ad pic.twitter.com/kGorBB54Bo
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) August 21, 2017
HiSmile claim to have an annual revenue exceeding $20,000,000 and aiming for $40,000,000 for the 2017-18 financial year.
It would be very interesting to see how the Facebook changes have affected their business. It certainly wouldn’t be as much as some considering the power of influencers.
I absolutely love the story of PopSockets and how David Barnett (A professor of Philosophy at a research University) was able to create one of the fastest growing products of the last couple of years. See David is a true entrepreneur, a man that set out to solve a problem he was having in his own day to day life.
He got tired of pulling tangled headphones out of his pockets and decided to make a trip to his local craft store to buy a couple of buttons to glue to the back of his phone. The intention was to wrap his cable around them before he pushed his phone into his pocket.
As unattractive as the buttons were they served their purpose. Needing to improve on the idea he came up with over 60 different prototypes. In 2012 David successfully funded a Kickstarter campaign that saw the buttons integrated into the back of a phone case to serve as both cable storage and a stand.
The Unlikely Value Proposition that sold over 40 million units
The incredible thing about the success of PopSockets was that the reason people were buying them in the millions wasn’t what customers ended up using them for. Fairly quickly after purchasing, the customers were using the PopSocket as an extra support that allowed them to access the full screen of their mobile devices.
If you want to learn more about the story behind PopSockets, be sure to listen to the Shopify Masters Podcast and the interview they had with Barnett.
Since starting in 2012 he has sold well over 40,000,000 units and has an ever-increasing supply of demand. Why? He was lucky enough to attract influencers to the product.
Ahhhh thank you popsockets these are the best people have been tweeting me their orders it's the coolest https://t.co/j1Uh5I2PVz
— Jenna Marbles (@Jenna_Marbles) July 16, 2016
Jenna Marbles caught on early and drove massive traffic to the brand. I guess you can expect that from an influencer has a reach of over 5,100,000 alone on twitter!
And if you want to see who all the celebrities are that have PopSockets… you should check out this article here. From Ryan Seacrest to the LA Dodgers, these little dooby whackers are being seen everywhere!
Gretta Rose van Riel is crazy good at scaling ecommerce brands and has amassed a following of over 16,000,000 followers across all her Social Media channels.
Her initial success with Shopify was not unlike mine where she scaled SkinnyMe Tea to $600,000 in 6 months. She was the original person to coin the phrase TeaTox that started a Instagram revolution. That company now has well over 300,000 customers and lead to her launching The Fifth Watches…
Has gone on to since sell over $1,000,000 of product in a day! And we all think those $1,000,000 month screenshots in the Facebook Groups are mind numbingly awesome!
But how did Gretta start her influencer marketing journey?
“Back in 2012, one girl from Tasmania had 1000 followers posted our tea and made the most sales we ever had in a day. After that, I’d screenshot every girl with over 1000 followers and reach out to them with our tea.”
If you would like to read the full interview you can read “How to Make $1M in a Day With Gretta van Riel, Instagram Queen”
Since her success with SkinnMe Tea and The Fifth Watch she has since gone on to find several other businesses including DROP Bottle and Hey Influencers.
Which is a fantastic segway into the next part of our journey in this article…
The one thing we can take from these companies is that they did the test and were rewarded for their efforts. Like anything in e-commerce, it comes doing to testing and measuring, scaling what works and getting rid of what doesn't quickly.
If you know of anything other companies that have crushed it, be sure to let me know in the comments below.