KOL And Influencer – What Is The Difference And How To Apply It Effectively

KOL And Influencer – What Is The Difference And How To Apply It Effectively


KOL and Influencer, are two concepts that appear a lot on social networks as well as marketing campaigns, most consider these two concepts almost the same.

Since both KOLs and Influencers collaborate with brands to recommend products or services, it’s important to identify under what circumstances these two different profiles tend to be used.

However, what is the difference that not many people know and how to apply these two marketing objects? Join me in learning these concepts through this article!

What Are Influencers?


An influencer is understood as an influencer who can influence the behavior of others due to the size of their audience or their persuasion.

Influencers can exert influence through the overall size of their audience (total reach) or because of their authority and reputation within a smaller community of people.

Influencer culture is inextricably linked with consumerism and the rise of technology. The term stands for someone (or something) who can influence the purchasing habits or quantifiable actions of others by uploading some form of original content — usually sponsored — to social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat.

Influencers are of interest to companies looking to pursue influencer marketing. Influencer marketing evolved from the common practice of celebrity endorsements.

A typical form of influencer marketing involves a brand paying influencers to mention or promote their products.

What Is KOL?


KOL is an acronym for Key Opinion Leader who is an expert with great knowledge and experience in a particular field. Their opinions mean a lot to the industry thanks to their trajectory and the reputation they have built for themselves.

The role of the KOL is to demonstrate that the brand has a really good and expertly approved product.

The role of the KOL has become an irresistible economic phenomenon and a great marketing tool for the fastest profitable products.

Key opinion leaders have an important role as trustworthy and quality representatives for a product or brand. KOLs also have similar forms of marketing, that is promoting, communicating, connecting, and advising customers or audiences.

Difference Between KOL And Influencer

Since both KOLs and Influencers collaborate with brands to recommend products or services, it’s important to identify where these two different profiles tend to be used:

Operation Platform


There is one key difference between a KOL and an Influencer. The main difference is that influencers are derived from social media platforms because that is where the concept of Influencer comes from.

They are active online, making their name and making their influence on social media, blogs, and YouTube.

KOLs, on the other hand, have careers in fields like science, agriculture, medicine, politics, technology, and more.

Of course, KOLs may have a large social media presence or have a blog or YouTube channel, but these don’t tend to be their primary means of communication nor do they necessarily need to be posted as often.

Motivational Motivation

Another fundamental difference between influencers and opinion leaders is the drive that drives audiences to follow them.

KOLs are not inclined to recommend products related to their industry in exchange for remuneration.

On the other hand, KOLs do not make a living from these types of actions but treat them as supplements to their daily activities. However, there are still examples of KOLs partnering with brands in exchange for a service.

On the other hand, KOLs do not make a living from these types of actions but treat them as supplements to their daily activities.

Example: Gordon Ramsay, with 6.93 million followers on Twitter, along with 5.9 million on Instagram, is a world-renowned chef but also runs multiple social media platforms.

For influencers, having a community of followers is the most important thing. It is for that reason that they often recommend quality or trusted products and services to their followers. Based on their personality and style of making content closer, they can make the audience trust and easily access the product.

Influencers can also recommend products without getting anything in return. However, this is not a common case as it is usually only true for small influencers.

In the case of receiving remuneration in return for their recommendations, the brands these influencers work with tend to have more exposure to the content being published.

Audiences And Followers

The audiences that KOLs reach will often be larger due to their higher popularity and often work with larger agencies and larger advertising strategies.

Besides, KOLs are often experts or respected in their industry, so they will receive prestigious awards or appear in many major media, thus promoting their prestige and influence.

However, although Influencers often have a smaller audience, followers are often very supportive and understanding. When they introduce their products or launch their products, the support from their followers has a large percentage.

This is because their connection to followers is often very close through social networks and removes the geographical barriers of the Internet.

Besides, Influencer content is often specific and hits a more specific audience, so those who directly follow will feel very personal and relevant to themselves.

Effective Use Of KOLs And Influencer Marketing


Using KOL Marketing

Incorporating KOLs into marketing strategies is extremely beneficial if a brand wants to change public perception and align itself with values ​​such as loyalty, sincerity, and trustworthiness.

For that reason, KOL marketing is directly linked to branding actions, rather than sales goals. If you want your KOL marketing strategy to work, it’s important to choose the right people to lead your campaign.

Just because someone has earned the title of expert in a certain field, doesn’t mean they’re the right person to represent your brand. A special connection between the KOL and the brand is essential.

As well as power and popularity, the ideal KOL must exhibit other important traits, such as good personality, charisma, communication skills, and the ability to be a role model people can identify with. determined.

Their actions and conduct must align with the actions and conduct of the brand.

Using Influencer Marketing

With the development of social networks, a company that wants to be successful should effectively apply the effects of social networks to develop, especially using influencers.

When using influencers, a company can rely on the reputation and personality of the influencer to reach a specific group of customers and introduce specific products. Thereby expanding the company’s access as well as gaining the trust of consumers.

Besides, applying nano influencers or even macro influencers is still much more cost-effective than using KOLs.

Not only do you save money on influence, but influencers are often independent in creating content and KOLs have to pay extra for the company to create content with them.


Although the two concepts of KOL and Influencer have some things in common, they are very different, so understanding this to be able to apply it appropriately in marketing strategies is extremely important for companies today.

Leave a Reply

error: Content is protected !!