For many, influencer marketing is simply brands partnering with influencers to sell something.
This is particularly the case in the Ghanaian business market. Other than big campaigns, for example, like those in the time of COVID, you would very rarely see an influencer marketing campaign advocating for a cause.
So when I came across the poster promoting the 10th Annual Ghana Garden and Flower Show, I wondered how influencers could add their voices to amplify the messages the movement seeks to promote, while sharing its messages with new audiences.
To assess the impact of any project, I have found it useful to filter it through the Sustainable Development Goals. As far as I can tell, the vision for this project supports five of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals; Zero poverty, zero hunger, climate action, sustainable cities/communities, good health and well-being.
So, assuming project managers want to launch a comprehensive influencer marketing campaign to advance this cause, they can look for influencers operating in the areas of home gardening, sustainability, family and lifestyle. . Influencers who create content in these spaces have similar values that align with what the campaign is trying to achieve.
The main challenge here is that the idea of niche influencer marketing has not completely transcended the Ghanaian market. The entertainment niche is saturated, and of course, because it is the content consumed by the majority.
Nonetheless, influencers can still hone their content to fit a certain demographic while still maintaining the entertaining aspect of content creation. For an influencer to live up to the title, stay relevant and create impact, the goal must be to seek to be an agent of change in the community in which they are located. This is achievable if the influencer aligns with a cause in the first stage of content strategy development.
So, let’s say we’re playing on the theme of this year’s show “Unleashed Growth.” The home and garden influencer group would be comprised of influencers who grow their food. This partnership would work well to highlight the stories of people who have been touched by the Ghana Garden and Flower Movement over the years. This would reinforce and reinforce the credibility the brand has earned over the years, while advancing the Movement’s goal of attracting more young people to horticulture and floriculture. They were sharing stories of how they grew their food and issuing challenges within their communities to get their followers to experience gardening.
Health and wellness influencers would also be relevant here as the majority of their content focuses on teaching their community how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. They can use their platform to update their followers on the show’s health and wellness activities.
The Family Influencer Group will create content about how they try to encourage children to participate in gardening activities and how it benefits the family. Another section will create content around the event itself and the different activities available for children and adults.
The lifestyle influencer group will create content to show that anyone can get involved in gardening, regardless of their lifestyle. Others would create content to promote activities during the show. Influencers to engage would include; minimalist, urban and lifestyle influencers. It was impressive to see that the organizers included lifestyle influencer Tatas Caritas to organize one of this year’s activities, “Karaoke with Tatas”.
This partnership is mutually beneficial as it increases the visibility of both parties, the Movement and the influencer, by bringing their audiences together. It further projects the influencer as someone passionate about causes that have humanity at heart and positions her to be spotted by brands with a similar audience to the movement, who can prospect for cause-driven campaigns.
To create more buzz and excitement around the Movement, in the future, organizers might consider including an influential celebrity. However, this tactic works best with long-term campaigns. Audiences are discerning and can spot an AD from a mile away, especially if it pops up out of nowhere. Alternatively, for an entire year, organizers may decide to work with influencers of varying sizes, across multiple campaigns, and then decide to onboard a famous influencer for their annual flagship event.
This creates a fireworks effect and would feel more natural to their audience as they have become accustomed to seeing the movement and its efforts end like this, creating little need for convincing to support the movement. A long-term campaign with influencers between a year and 6 months, until subsequent shows, would benefit the movement by building a community that will support the cause.
Then yes! Influencers and engaged brands can work together to influence change. For a flagship show like this, an influencer marketing strategy is highly effective as it has the potential to tap into other audience groups due to influencer reach and strengthen community building. For example, gardening enthusiasts living in the United States may plan to attend next year’s show because they saw the impact and vibe of the Movement on an influencer’s page. It may not have been easy to achieve using only traditional media.
To conclude, take a minute to imagine how much Ghanaian tourism could gain if September carried the same energy as December simply because a well-designed influencer marketing strategy for GGFS was designed and executed.