Why Influencer Marketing Cannot Be Ignored By Brands

13th July 2017

Simon Heyes Head of Social Media at 8MS

11 Reasons Why Influencer Marketing Cannot Be Ignored By Brands

Influencer marketing is building in credibility, and causing brands and social platforms a real headache. On one hand influencers provide an authentic route to new audiences, but on the other, the ASA and social platforms are scrambling to ensure transparency and credibility.

In fact the sector is moving full steam ahead towards a world in which brands seek ongoing engagement over and above commerce. Genuine recommendations and word of mouth have always been the Holy Grail for brands.

Big follower numbers does not equal big engagement

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Here are 11 reasons to get involved with influencer marketing, and where to begin.

01. Consider Your Objectives

What do you want to use influencers for: Brand awareness? Better reach? Sales?

The type of objective you set will guide the type of collaboration you will want to pursue with your influencers. For example, if you want to promote a new product, you might want to consider a product review + giveaway, ensuring the new product reaches as many eyeballs as possible.

Social Influencer Objectives

02. Audience Matching

Hopefully you’ll already have a good idea of who your target audience are. You might have different personas, based on age, gender, demographics and interests. The good news is that there are so many bloggers out there now, you’ll find it relatively easy to find ones that have a similar audience. If the influencers interests match your products and/or services, then you’ve hit the jackpot.

03. Follow Numbers Don’t Always Matter

Since the recent updates to social media algorithms, big follower numbers don’t always equal big engagement. Quite the opposite in fact.

It has been proven that micro-influencer (those that have a following of 2500 - 10,000) have a far better engagement rate and a more authentic following than those over 10,000 followers. You’ll also find that micro-influencers are cheaper to engage with, so the return you’ll get from your spend will be much greater.

04. Ask For A Media Pack

influencer marketing has come on leaps and bounds in the last couple of years. There are more bloggers than ever before, and even more that now do influencer marketing for a living. And they take it seriously.

Want a rate card? They will send you one. Want to know how many followers they have in Australia? They will tell you. Don’t be afraid of asking for a media pack to get a better understanding of their audience demographics, and their strengths and weaknesses to ensure they are a good fit for your brand.

05. Use Tools To Help You With Influencer Marketing

With a lot of influencer profile data comes a wealth of new tools. Tools to help you find influencers, and tools to help you manage your campaign from end to end.

Tools such as Webfluential and Tapinfluence provide end to end support, and apps such as TRIBE and Takumi allow you to load campaigns on their platform, influencers submit content and you approve whichever content works best for your brand.

Social Influencer Tools

06. Support Them With Social

Influencer marketing should not be conducted in isolation. Think of the benefits you receive:

• Brand awareness

• Wider reach

• Traffic to your site

It’s the perfect time to put your pedal to the floor and really push social media, email and activations such as giveaways. The more you support them, the more they will support you, and be an ambassador for your brand in the future.

07. Think Outside The Box

Influencers that have been around for several years have honed their skills and wowed their audience time and time again. As such, they will have a unique skill set you can tap into. They are bloggers. They are photographers. They are videographers. They are creatives.

If you’re not sure what type of campaign you want to collaborate on, ask them for advice. Let them come up with the idea. You might be surprised what they come up with.

08. Timing Is Everything

Think about your seasonality.

What would be the best way to collaborate? Maybe in low periods when sales or slow, to give them a boost? Or maybe in peak season to help you promote over and above your current levels? Should you collaborate around an event or festival? Christmas? Think carefully about the timing, and what will work best for your brand.

Timing is everything

09. Repurpose That Content

Many brands struggle to create good lifestyle content, both in image and video form.

If you set up an agreement with the influencers where you can use the content they create, then you open up a window of opportunity to use this content on your own social media channels and sites. Always ask for permission to use the content though - influencers work hard to create content and don’t like to find it sprayed across the web without consent.

10. Measure, Measure, Measure

It’s important to keep an eye on reach, clicks, sessions and referrals to ensure you measure the results of the influencer collaboration. Use URL shorteners such as Bit.ly and ask the influencers if they can provide impressions from the social posts they create.

Building a solid data platform will help you show how well the influencer campaign has performed, and give a business plan for future campaigns.

11. Watch Out For the Bots

Many so-called influencers have developed an inflated following by using automated bots to do the hard work for them, programming certain phrases and emojis into comments on tweets and pictures to look like they engaging.

The hard-working influencer community are rightly up in arms about this fraudulent practice, and Instagram has started to force many bot sites to close. But don’t fall for inflated follower figures. The engagement and impressions on their posts will be poor. Authenticity and transparency will win the day and hopefully weed out the fraudsters.

Let’s sum this up

So there you have it, 11 reasons Influencer Marketing must be considered when building a digital marketing campaign.

The beauty of these points are they are appropriate for businesses of all sizes, and digital maturity levels. So give it a try.

We have also given you a guide on how to find and approach an Influencer, so use this to get started.

Good Luck and let us know how you get on.

Think you are up to the task?

The Digital Co offer The Complete Guide to Social Media Training suitable for beginners and those starting out in Social Media. Is this course for you? Check it out.

Simon is our resident Social Media expert and award winning Travel Blogger who works at 8 Million Stories.


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