A few days ago, not many in the Arab world had heard of a media organization called the New Media Academy. As it defines itself, it is an Emirati educational media platform. Social Blade statistics say that until Saturday, June 12, 2021, the number of subscribers to its YouTube channel was only about 9 thousand, and its videos achieved a weak to average spread. With midnight on the same day, everyone was suddenly talking about this establishment after it became the “Trend” topic on social media.
Of course, the reason was the sudden appearance of the Al-Daheeh program, which is very popular among Arab youth, through the channel, and presented by the famous Egyptian YouTuber and content creator Ahmed Al-Ghandour. This contributed to raising the number of subscribers (subscribers) in the channel from 9 thousand subscribers only to 323,000 subscribers in one night, not to mention the addition of two million views, the total views of the channel in one day. By the end of the week, the number of subscribers to the channel had doubled to 650,000 subscribers, and an additional six million views, which is equal to the total number of views had the channel achieved since its inception in the summer of 2020.
This huge growth in views and numbers for an institution that many considered unknown, and its transformation in record time into a source of attraction for millions of viewers from all over the Arab world, raised widespread doubts about the possibility of considering this step as part of a project to attract the masses of emerging platforms accused of normalization with Israeli entities. However, from a marketing point of view, it can be said that the use of influencer marketing has actually succeeded in achieving and polishing the channel’s purpose in a way that cannot be compared to traditional marketing tools. ( 1, 2 )
Marketing through influencers simply means cooperating with the influencer, who has a large fan base of followers, with the aim of polishing and promoting a particular brand in a way that draws the attention of his followers and affects their decisions to interact or buy more than using traditional marketing methods. Typically, this promotion through engaging content leads to positive brand outcomes.
At first glance, it may seem that influencer marketing is a new term associated with the world of social media and the emergence of the concept of influencers who have hundreds of thousands or millions of followers, but the reality is that it is an old marketing principle followed for decades. To rely on icons and celebrities who emerged from the womb of digital development associated with the Internet, and have proven widespread, so that they can be relied upon in marketing services and products through these means. This method has long been considered one of the most effective and effective tools, and the most return on investment (ROI Return on Investment) compared to other usual marketing methods (3).
This is how the global specialist in the field of marketing, Seth Godin, summed up the basic message behind the marketing campaigns, in which the principle of influencer marketing covers the largest part of their budgets, as glamor, creativity and storytelling play the largest role in attracting the audience to interact or buy without thinking long, based on The “magic” offered to them by the influencer, as Godin described it. (4)
According to the European “Media Kicks” platform specialized in influencer marketing, there are a set of basic objectives behind the influencer marketing strategy targeted by companies, institutions and brands, on top of which is undisputed: Brand Awareness and advocacy.
This definition and polishing of the brand always calls for reliance on influencers with high credibility with the audience, which allows it to attract huge numbers of users and customers in a way that its quality is not comparable to other marketing campaigns, which makes this type of marketing an excellent opportunity for two types of organizations: To spread its brand quickly and effectively through credible influencers, as well as institutions that are already in the market and face fierce competition with other institutions, or suffer from the vibration of its brand and the loss of its luster, which makes it lean on the shoulders of large and credible influencers to polish its image. (5)
In this regard, the credibility of the influencer is the key to the success of influencer marketing campaigns in passing the audience’s definition of the brand, and according to the “Marketing Influencer Hub” platform, the use of influencers who provide creative content is the winning formula to quickly attract attention to any emerging brand, and the winning formula Also to polish the image of any institution that is declining in the market or facing problems or fierce competition. (6)