21 December 2011 2 Comments

Brand relationship marketing: How to get it right online

Author: yinkaolaito

Yinka Olaito is happy,excited and passionate Communications & Media specialist, Trainer and speaker. Yinka Olaito helps Profits and Non-profits with effective communication and positioning for premium service delivery and returns. Yinka Olaito also has special interest in Development Communication and has consulted for noted UN Agencies. Yinka Olaito is the CCO of Michael Sage Consulting(Communication/digital media), African Child Education Right Initiatives(NGO) and Content Director, Africa Development Talk( online Platform for discussion on Policy, Governance, development across Africa) and Africa Foundation for Young Media Professionals

Brand relationship marketing or management in the time past used to solely relied on an act of ensuring a brand builds and gains the support of relevant offline  industry influencers who can invariably help influence the market in favour of the brand.Online relationship marketing, online relationship management, onlinfluencers' relation, brands and online influencers' relationship mangement

Beyond this, every step is put in place to ensure brand’s clients are satisfied so they could become avowed, dedicated members of the brand loyalists. Through effective influencers’ relations, the brand commands more attention, gains relevance and has authority over the competitors in the market. As we know, influence, authority and power of the brand are highly essential to brand’s success today than any other factor.

I gained a great insight on the topic from a recent Ebook produced by Openview, authored by Nick Hayes titled ‘The value of Influence’. The idea is defined as ‘a practice geared toward targeting and building relationships with key individuals that have influence over your target segment — and ideally your target buyers’.

If your brand has been involved in offline relationship marketing management and has not considered the same at the online world, the case of the brand may be hopeless. Online world is becoming stronger and powerful in building both local and global dominance more than ever before.

To begin online influencers’ marketing management, there is need to first identify the thought leaders, analysts, online Television owners, strong and long standing respectable bloggers within the industry and start a relationship before you need them. The mistake I have seen many frontline brands in Nigeria and Africa made is that they will rather concentrate on advertising on global influencers where they have no plan of developing new market instead of dominating their regions where ninety percent of their brand users are domiciled.

There is no evil in creating global awareness, but that strategy works well if the local market is already saturated with brand name. The danger of using advert as bait in online influencers’ marketing, which is common practise now, is that it may not guarantee millions of link backs, mentions, listing and visibilitywhich proper and strategic  influencers’ relationship management can offer.

To begin online influencers’ relations, brand owners must first see a need, create a department or incorporate this function in an existing Corporate/marketing communication department. The choice of selecting staff for this function must be influenced by brand’s goal, knowledge and experience of the personnel involved. If these key points are overlooked, the ROI will be poor.

 If skills required are not in-house, a consideration for outsource Agency can be considered in order to reduce cost. The above named Ebook outlined the starting process of influencers’ relations as: first develop lists of influencers and their personas. This will help in the way to begin influencers’ relationship building. There is also a need to priotize names of influencers based on the targets they reach. After these, start a relationship and improve on the programme along the way.

Nick Hayes also identified several valuable and cost effective opportunities proper online influencers’ relationship marketing management can bring. These include:

-It amplifies brand awareness in geometric level.

-It launches a brand and enhances brand’s thought leadership position

-It also steers and increases traffic to brand’s website: this invariably promotes more brand knowledge.

-More importantly, successful online influencers’ marketing relationships often leads to more sales.

Often a level of trust will be established through the influencer’s recommendation. Much potential are often turned into lifetime customers.

Are you involved in online influencers’ relationship marketing or missing out?


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