Throughout the years, we have observed a global paradigm shift in marketing. Marketing communications strategies, philosophies, principles and practices have been undergoing a transformation. New trends in marketing communications have emerged—and the role of KOLs is gaining importance as a result. In today’s world, where internet platforms are a big hit, there are many ways social media has changed marketing—and the influence of a key opinion leader has reached its peak. When it comes to aggregating market intelligence, using the best practices in the industry, and conducting adequate studies—it’s hard not to notice how an influential Key Opinion Leader has a huge impact on marketing.
What is KOL?
In marketing and business, a Key Opinion Leader (KOL) is someone with a substantial following—and their opinion matters to those who listen. KOLs often serve as the first point of contact for people seeking information about a particular topic. Because KOLs tend to have large followings, they can act as influencers—meaning their advice has value to the people following them and is likely to be followed by others in their networks. KOLs can be anyone from YouTubers to lifestyle bloggers, but they all have one specialty in common: they have built a community around their content.
15 Benefits of a Key Opinion Leader in Marketing
Here’s the breakdown of the characteristics of a key opinion leader and their benefits to your marketing strategy.
1. More engaged.
KOLs are more likely than other consumers to be engaged with whatever your brand offers. This signifies it will be additionally possible to share their thoughts and experiences with others, which can help you increase your reach. KOLs are more engaged than other consumers, which means they’re more likely to spread your message via word-of-mouth—which can help you improve your reach.
2. Active on social media.
This is an excellent way to connect with your audience, keep up-to-date on the latest trends, and build relationships with consumers using key opinion leaders who can help you make customers happy. They have already established a reputation on various social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram—so you can use their channels to connect with consumers. They also share content relevant to their industry, so it’s easy for you to stay updated on trends, news, and events. And since they’re sharing this information with people in your target audience, it allows you to keep up with what other brands are doing—and ensure that any issues affecting them don’t impact your company as well.
3. Increase your audience size.
KOLs have large social media followings and can direct their followers to share a brand’s content. Key Opinion Leaders often serve as the face of a brand. They have large followers whom they can influence by discussing and promoting products that interest them. This allows companies to collaborate with KOLs and earn their trust to spread product messaging among their followers. While this will enable you to reach a much larger audience than is usually possible for a company with limited resources or funds for advertising, it can also get more people interested in your offer.
4. Create better content and go viral.
These influencers are masters at creating engaging, helpful, and highly shareable content. They can make this happen because they have the expertise to identify problems and develop solutions within their industry or field of interest—something other marketers haven’t thought about doing but should be. Key Opinion Leaders make more engaging content, which makes it easier to go viral. More people will see your brand when a KOL promotes it—and buy from you.
5. Help you with product development and innovation.
Key opinion leaders can introduce you to people making life-changing discoveries in their industries, which can lead directly to new partnerships that create innovative products. Using a key opinion leader as part of your marketing efforts can help establish a business aesthetic for your brand, increasing sales by getting the word out about your product or service. Access to key opinion leaders can help you understand what your customers want in a product or service. Their insight into the market will give you valuable information about targeting and positioning and also point out which features are most important when it comes time to sell.
6. Provide valuable feedback on products.
Feedback from KOLs can help you improve your products, making them more valuable to those who buy them. Valuable insight from them can help you make adjustments to your product or service, which will improve its performance and, ultimately, the success of your business. They can provide valuable information about consumers’ impressions of brands—and what they want from them as companies advance.
7. Establish the brand’s personality.
A key opinion leader can help you to define who you are as a company and how best to communicate with your customers. Consistency is essential for building trust among consumers. You’ll have an experienced and knowledgeable marketing expert who can explain your business’s strengths to customers compellingly—one that resonates with their expectations of the brand. This will ensure that your marketing materials sound the same and are consistent across all channels.
8. More relatable than brand spokespeople.
Key Opinion Leaders are all about providing an authentic, relatable voice to your brand. In contrast to the polished and rehearsed personalities of most brand spokespeople, KOLs are likelier to use language that feels like it’s coming from a natural person. They’re not just people who have a lot of experience with a particular product or service—they’re also people who have a lot of experience with being human. They have hobbies, interests, and lives outside of work and love sharing them with others. That makes them far more relatable than brand spokespeople, who often seem like walking advertisements for their companies.
9. Brand ambassadors for campaigns and events.
Building an extensive network of people who will talk about your brand is essential. Acquiring a Key Opinion Leader—someone with influence over potential customers or clients—can help you do this. They can serve as brand ambassadors for campaigns and events, which means that they can help you spread your message to their followers and get them excited about whatever it is you’re selling. They also can influence peers and colleagues who might not otherwise be interested in what you’re peddling—they could become new customers! This can be an invaluable resource if you’re looking for ways to reach new audiences or get more people talking about your brand.
10. Get publicity for your company or product before it even exists.
A Key Opinion Leader can create buzz around your brand or product before it even launches! You’ve heard of the term “pre-launch” when marketing, but what about a pre-introduction? When you have a KOL on your team, you can create buzz around your product before it’s even available. This is especially advantageous if you’re introducing a new product that might be less well-known or have less social media presence than some of your competitors’ products. You can use the KOL to get people talking about your product and gathering feedback so that when the time comes for release, the hype is already there!
11. Knowledgeable in extensive and current trends.
The expertise of key opinion leaders is valuable to companies looking to promote their product or service; among peers, these people serve as authority figures and can establish the latest trends in your industry. They can provide insights into the latest marketing trends and help you stay ahead of rapidly changing marketing waters. They know what works, and they know what doesn’t. This means you’ll get access to all kinds of content that will help you improve your marketing strategy. You’ll get access to various resources, including templates for writing your business plan and tips on how best to pitch yourself.
12. Reduces cost per acquisition (CPA)
In marketing, CPA refers to the money spent on getting each new customer. The higher the CPA, the more expensive and difficult it is to acquire new customers. You can use a key opinion leader to reduce your CPA because they already have a large following that trusts them, so they’ll be more likely to buy your product after hearing it from them. It’s also easier for someone with a large following to convince others to buy something than someone who has yet to have much of an audience – which means they’ll be able to do this without paying too much money on advertising campaigns or other promotional activities!
A KOL is a wise investment because they attract customers already familiar with the product so that brands can reduce their advertising and marketing budget. A simple, one-sentence endorsement from someone well-known to your target audience has the power to persuade.
13. Drive traffic to your website.
In the digital age, KOLs have become especially useful for driving website traffic. For example, a business owner who sells products on her website and wants more people to visit it might reach out to a famous person offering them free wares in exchange for mentioning their brand on social media. If you’re an eCommerce brand and want more people to check out your site or make a purchase, approach key opinion leaders who influence their followers with endorsements. This is especially helpful if you’re trying to promote a new product or service. With the help of a KOL, you can generate buzz about it and ensure that more people are talking about what’s great—and not so great!
14. Time efficiency.
KOLs are a great way to save time, money, and effort in marketing. They allow brands to better connect with customers, which can make all the difference in loyalty and repeat business. Industry experts also have an insider’s perspective on your industry, which is valuable when understanding what buyers want and how they like things delivered. This lets you concentrate more on the core business while reaching out to customers and potential customers in new ways.
15. Experts in the industry.
Marketing is about understanding your customers; a key opinion leader understands the market well and can help you understand its trends. This person can help you understand how customers think and feel about your product, particularly if you’re trying to develop or change it. They can also advise on pricing, distribution—and more. Understanding your customers’ needs lets you create products that appeal to them. The more time and effort you put into this, the higher the likelihood of producing something people want to buy.
Digital marketing is constantly evolving, and so are the methods and techniques used to gain market intelligence. As a business, you must identify key opinion leaders and use them to discover fresh business opportunities for your products and services to stay ahead of the game. These key opinion leaders are the lifeblood of your company’s success. Without them, you risk becoming obsolete in a world that demands constant innovation. But with a key opinion leader, you’ll be capable of staying ahead of the curve and your competition—by embracing new technologies and approaches that will allow you to respond more quickly than ever.