What’s the Difference? Social Media Influencer versus Online Brand Advocate.

  • Social media has become a game changer for word-of-mouth marketing.

  • Generally, an influencer is a person who has influence in a particular community.

  • Online brand advocates are fans of your brand that share their appreciation online.


Social media has become a game changer for word-of-mouth marketing. Facebook,

Instagram, Pinterest, and other social networks provide brands the vehicle to dispatch

consumer referrals all over the Internet in mere seconds. The voices that launch these

brand endorsements can be divided into two camps: social media influencers and online

brand advocates. While the terms are sometimes used interchangeably, there are some

distinct differences and approaches when including them within a brand strategy.


Leader of the Pack

When thinking about word-of-mouth marketing, social media influencers usually come to

mind. Generally, an influencer is a person who has influence in a particular community.

For some, an influencer is classified as a celebrity, and for others, an influencer is just

someone with a considerable social media following.


A good influencer genuinely believes in a product or service and want others to try it, and their community aligns with a brand’s target audience. Influencers typically accept free stuff or charge a small fee to companies hoping for a glowing review that reaches their target audience.





#1 Fans

Online brand advocates are fans of your brand that share their appreciation online.

Their promotion or defense of their favorite products or services is rooted simply in

brand loyalty. Online brand advocates value recognition or special treatment from their

brands over money or freebies. They would rather have advance access to upcoming

releases or a VIP tour of the company headquarters.



Keep in Touch

Whether you are considering working with a social media influencer or targeting online

brand advocates, it is important to explore ways to touch base with consumers

throughout the year without badgering them. Word-of-mouth marketing isn’t a singular

event. It requires consistent engagement with the people who believe in your brand and

can’t stop talking about it.


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