As media consumption continues to change, so does the decision making process and buying cycle for the consumer. As consumers, we’re not only influenced by carefully curated ads, but also by the recommendations and the opinions of our peers, favorite bloggers, and celebrities.
Leveraging influencers can create trust for a brand and reach consumers at a deeper level than a regular ad impression. As you plan influencer marketing campaigns, consider these tips to set yourself up for success.
As you search for potential influencers, be sure that your influencer’s values align with your brand’s. Dig into your influencer’s past posts, comments, and shares to ensure that the influencer is someone you’d be proud to have represent your brand. Beware of conversation, imagery, or any incriminating content that could reflect badly on your brand by association. This will allow your brand to avoid potential PR fiascos and negative sentiment. Find an influencer whose persona also aligns with your audience demographic. If your brand prides itself on producing vegan products, find someone who also takes pride in being vegan. If your brand strives to simplify the lives of moms with kids in elementary school, find an influencer who is also passionate about simplifying her own life as she juggles the day to day with her family. These personas speak to your demographic and create a feeling of belonging that can be associated with your brand. The more you can align an influencer with your brand’s values, the more your influencer will be an advocate.
Help your influencers to see the entire picture. Communicate your marketing plan to the influencer and help them to understand your brand’s goals. This is the step that you need to be very vigilant about… once you build this foundation, give your influencer the freedom to be creative with their posts and work together to come up with mutually beneficial content. As you paint your brand’s vision, consider the “Why?” of your product. Drill down past your product’s features, quality, and price to find the emotional reasons to buy. Does your product save time and money for busy parents? Do proceeds from your product support a certain cause? Will this product help your consumer feel more confident or healthy? Find the emotional connection to build upon.
Creating a mutually beneficial partnership will help both your brand and the influencer feel better about the campaign. Offer incentives to your influencer as a part of the agreement. Incentives may include money, free products, exposure, or even tickets to an event. When thinking of incentives, consider that most influencers are looking for great content to post on social media. Event tickets or experiences make for great content and interesting imagery for your influencer’s page. These experiences also help the influencer break out of the boring #sponsored posts that can come across as ingenuine. Fresh and interesting content is key.
As you are scouting out potential influencers, try engaging with their posts to see if the influencer engages back. Having influencers that are not afraid to engage with other members on social media can have a farther reach and a stronger impact than those that don’t. Engaging with posts also allows the influencer to warm up to your brand, so when you approach them with a proposal, they’ll be more comfortable working with you.
Ambiguity sours relationships. As you work with influencers, ensure that specific guidelines and stipulations are laid out for the campaign. Stipulations include payment, deadlines, platforms, number of posts, and trackable details such as UTM links, promo codes, and hashtags. You’ll want to work with the influencer to define these items to ensure that both parties are benefitted. Creativity and flexibility should occur in content creation, but definition in the partnership will ensure that both parties have set expectations that can be fulfilled.
Using influencer marketing can help you reach new audiences and build trust for your brand. As you search for and approach influencers, keep these tips in mind to maximize your results.
For more information on how you can monitor and identify impactful influencers, contact us for a demo.