Creative Influencer Marketing Case Studies for E-commerce Brands
E-commerce brands investing in increasing brand awareness while promoting new products to new audiences have used influencer marketing for years as a bold part of their digital marketing & social media strategy. What’s more, we know that well-known brands such as eBay, Amazon, Shopify, Walmart, Alibaba, Rakuten, Flipkart, and more gain a powerful avenue for promoting their products or services via influencers.
Why Influencer Marketing Is Important for E-commerce Brands?
Why don’t we start with a couple of interesting facts?
According to Forbes, 70% of millennials have more trust in recommendations from influencers than they do in traditional advertising. Additionally, a study by Mediakix found that influencer marketing campaigns can generate up to 11 times the return on investment (ROI) compared to old-school marketing campaigns.
When considering that influencer marketing allows e-commerce brands to tap into the trust and credibility of their followers, these results are not surprising at all. Also, influencers have cultivated a loyal audience that genuinely values their recommendations. When these influencers team up with e-commerce brands, they can effectively reach the brand’s target audience and stimulate sales.
Keep reading to discover these brands’ strategies including influencer endorsement and implicit recommendation.
Influencer Marketing Case Studies
Amazon’s Influencer Marketing Strategy – Understanding Your Target Audience
Amazon’s approach is a great example showing that a well-built influencer marketing allows the brands to reach a large & engaged audience of potential customers.
One might argue that their successful influencer marketing moves owe much of their success to their substantial marketing budget. In fact, for their seasonal shopping festival, Amazon has joined forces with Kris Jenner and yes, she proves to be an excellent influencer choice for the platform targeting a mature female audience.
Another sign of Amazon’s belief in an e-commerce marketing strategy centered around women is its influencer preferences in TikTok. They exclusively team up with influencers who create content related to home decor, food, motherhood, and similar topics. And according to the likes and views, they really know their audience & how to reach them.
The e-commerce platform doesn’t just partner with celebrities like Kris Jenner or well-known influencers; the company also actively promotes its Amazon Influencer Program to individuals with a strong online presence.
Amazon urges social media users & shoppers to share their experiences firsthand by inspiring them and monetizing their content with the brand.
In addition to encouraging people online, Amazon also hosts some events for their “creators.” One of them is the Amazon Creator Summit:
And the other is Fall Kickoff for Amazon Influencers:
And at this point, we should remember Amazon’s TikTok challenge – #AmazonFindsChallenge. As known, via that challenge, the brand encouraged users to share videos of their favorite Amazon products. The challenge generated over 1 billion views and resulted in a significant increase in sales for the featured products.
It seems that Amazon has a premium marketing team trained at handling influencer-driven campaigns. If your business doesn’t have such a team in place, consider exploring our recommendations for influencer marketing agencies.
Walmart’s Influencer Marketing – Encouraging Users to Share Their Experiences
Walmart is another e-commerce brand that encourages its customers to share their unique & personal experiences. They do this through a platform called Walmart Creator, which helps influencers/users partner with Walmart and related brands.
As a part of Walmart’s marketing strategy, influencers can set up their storefronts on the platform to showcase their favorite products and offer personalized recommendations to their followers. When followers purchase an influencer’s storefront, the influencer earns a commission from the sale.
As similar brands do, Walmart teams up with a variety of influencers on social media platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.
These influencers, mostly who have a strong interest in home decor, fashion, and gadgets, produce content that presents Walmart’s products and services. For instance, Walmart partners with fashion influencers to promote their clothing line and collaborate with food influencers to showcase their grocery products.
Big Lots! – Investing in Mid and Micro-Influencers
When it comes to e-commerce brands, it’s worth mentioning that micro-influencers – with fewer than 15,000 followers – achieve the highest engagement rates on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok.
For instance, according to the Influencer Hub’s Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report, micro-influencers reach impressive engagement rates of 3.86% on Instagram, 1.63% on YouTube, and 17.96% on TikTok.
In comparison, macro-influencers – with 500,000 to 1M followers, secure engagement rates of 1.36% on Instagram, 0.44% on YouTube, and 6.20% on TikTok. As for mid-tier influencers, falling somewhere between the micro and macro categories, achieve engagement rates of 1.62% on Instagram, 0.43% on YouTube, and 6.67% on TikTok.
Given those facts, some e-commerce firms invest in micro & mid-influencers – like Big Lots!
Big Lots!, as a discount retail & e-commerce brand with products, including furniture, home decor, electronics, groceries, etc., strategically teams up with micro and mid-tier influencers due to the benefits they bring to the brand’s marketing efforts. For instance, the firm recently partnered with Navy Patten, who is a homemaking and holiday enthusiast with over 50K followers on Instagram, for the Halloween session.
The brand, which really loves teaming up with “moms,” aims to leverage its authenticity, cost-effectiveness, niche audience appeal, high engagement rates, geographic relevance, and diverse voices to effectively reach and engage with customers, driving both in-store and online sales.
Here is another example:
eBay’s Influencer Marketing Strategy + Collections & Partnerships
eBay, an e-commerce platform focusing on Gen Z with digital campaigns most time, is known for reaching large and engaged audiences of potential buyers through social media influencers. We know from published case studies that its influencer marketing campaigns have generated a positive ROI, increased brand awareness, and driven sales.
It’s not all that surprising, especially when you take into account that eBay excels in giving influencers the freedom to create content in their own style and voice. Naturally, this approach leads to the creation of content that truly connects with their audience.
In addition to working with influencers like Chazlyn Yvonne, who is a beauty & lifestyle inspo, eBay also teams up with highly famous figures like Ice Spice by creating special collections.
The brand also uses all its social media channels to raise engagement rate, awareness, and overall reputation.
Of course, Ice Spice, the rising star around the world, is not the first well-known name eBay partnered with. In past years, the brand dropped a world-famous collection with NBA Sneaker Champ, PJ Tucker. And yes, that made a great wave; the following video has been seen more than 2M times, just on YouTube.
However, do not think that eBay is just interested in famous figures; TikTok, the e-commerce platform encourages all the users to share their eBay experiences both via challenges and hashtag actions.
So, it is possible to say that eBay is in love with user-generated content.
Etsy’s Influencer Marketing Strategy + Collections & Partnerships
Similar to its long-time rival eBay, Etsy focuses on building a strong community of buyers and sellers who are passionate about the platform while getting user-generated content. And, doing that, the platform with more than 90 million active buyers, is taking advantage of all types of influencer marketing.
As an example of partnerships with famous figures, John Legend’s Holiday Collab achieved tremendous success on various social media platforms.
Like other brands, Etsy also tends to partner with macro social media influencers like Jillian Harris. As may you remember, the brand published a campaign with Harris just after releasing Jillian Harris x Etsy Holiday Collection.
SHEIN’s Influencer Marketing – Becoming a TikTok Success Story
In case you logged in to TikTok for once, you must have seen a post about “Shein Haul.” Absolutely.
Shein, known for its very affordable clothing and accessories, embraces a great TikTok influencer marketing strategy, aiming to attract young people who may be on a budget. The brand collaborated with a great number of young TikTok influencers to promote its products simultaneously. These influencers create videos and posts showing off their Shein purchases, which inspires their followers to buy from Shein as well. The impact of these influencer marketing campaigns has been nothing short of remarkable, with several videos amassing millions of views, creating a substantial buzz for the brand.
6.2 million views:
Almost 20 million views:
More than 20 million views:
At this point, we can say that Shein owes much to TikTok’s algorithm, which is designed to show users content that they are likely to be interested in. Additionally, many social media enthusiasts already know, that TikTok’s shop updates which allow social commerce, make it easy for users to shop directly from the app after seeing the products featured in videos.
Rakuten’s Influencer Marketing Approach
Unlike other brands, Rakuten works with a variety of influencers, from micro to macro, to promote its products and services without urging them to go out of their interests and expertise.
In addition to the marketing efforts driven by influencers, as a brand with global recognition, Rakuten teamed up with celebs from different areas. Recently, the e-commerce brand collaborated with one of the most popular players in the NBA, Stephen Curry, and started sharing content created for Curry’s fanbase, on all social media platforms at the same time.
What’s more, Rakuten also has its own influencer platform, Rakuten Influenster, which connects brands with influencers.