Influencer Marketing: Ins and Outs
By Nicole Danneker
After the marketing and public relations disaster of the Fyre Festival, the industry is not only a-buzz about the mess influencer marketing made, but also the effect it had. Influencer marketing is essentially the online version of word-of-mouth marketing. It uses key people, either in the community or in the field, to speak on your product or service in their own words. This allows for a business to better relate to their consumers and to establish a brand and lifestyle, rather than just advertising for a hard sell. This form of marketing has taken off with the rise of social media, allowing businesses to approach their market from another direction. But, the success of your business’s use of influencer marketing depends on your own transparency and goals.
Risk and Reward
This tool boosts SEO, comes off as less pushy and more genuine advertising, and provides niche marketing you may not have had before. With these benefits come risks to caution including fraud accounts/followers, influencer scandal, and possible distrust. Check out the following tips to avoid a Fyre Festival level disaster and start a successful influencer marketing campaign.
Step 1: Look into the Authenticity of Potential Influencer Accounts
Choosing influencers to be the voice of your brand should not be a quick and easy decision. You are choosing an extension of yourself to reach an online targeted audience. Look out for fake followers and fake likes. According to Bianca Gregorio of business2community.com, “It’s been revealed that 30 percent of US and UK influencers do not have an organic audience and this is even higher when it comes to micro-influencers.” Taking this fact into consideration, it is important to look through comments and measure engagement vs. non-engagement. This can be found through engagement metrics or a quick glance at comments. When most of the comments consist of just an emoji or one word, they lack intelligent engagement and may not be organic. If an influencer does not have real followers, they won’t be reaching an audience that will benefit you, which diminishes the whole mission of influencer marketing.
Step 2: Find the Perfect Match
After confirming an influencer is genuine, you have to make sure of two things. They have followers that match your target audience, and that they are transparent. An influencer has to be truthful about your product/service and not make false promises that will, in turn, punish your brand through customer outrage. Influencer marketing only works if your message is honest.
This includes making sure your influencer is up-to-date with the most advanced technology and have the knowledge to make posts that will have maximum reach and best ROI for you.
Step 3: Communication!
Once you’ve found the perfect match for your brand, communication is key. You and your influencers should have the same outlook on your product or service and want to highlight the same things. For instance, if you are marketing a health drink rich in vitamins and antioxidants to be used in addition to regular meals, you do not want your influencer to market it as a meal replacement.
Communication is also essential when measuring the analytics of your influencer’s posts. Likes and follows may be helpful to understand how your posts are functioning but are not all you need to know. Other metrics like impressions, reach percentage, engagement and views will give you more of an insight on your campaign’s success. According to Nikki Gilliland of Econsultancy.com, “Another method used to measure direct impact is to include affiliate or attribution links in the influencer’s content, which will then provide clear data such as click-through rate as well as conversions. Promo codes can also be effective in this way, as they offer a direct link between the campaign and levels of conversion.”
Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
Influencer marketing is a great tool no matter the size of a business. These ideas can be scaled to work for you. Seeing influencer marketing as another tool to widen your reach will keep your business credible and ahead of the game. If you have any more thoughts or ideas about influencer marketing, let us know!