To execute a successful campaign harnessing the power of social media influencers, you are going to want to treat them like a brand spokesperson or a small celebrity of sorts. In the online world, that is what they are. Through hard work and dedication, they have earned a sizable following on various platforms and have attracted thousands of followers who want to see what their latest post is. That includes where they go, what they wear, what they are doing, and what they eat.
Wondering the basics of putting together influencer marketing campaigns? Read on for a complete guide to this newly developed marketing strategy.
Reach Out to Influencers For Your Influencer Marketing Campaigns
The first step in putting together successful influencer marketing campaigns is to decide which influencers you want to reach out to. You should investigate the following of the influencers who are popular in your niche. Let’s say you are trying to launch a new makeup product and you want to reach out to beauty influencers. Compile a list of people who are big in the makeup and beauty space.
List out their profile links, names, and even their location if possible. You should also list the size of their following so that you know what size influence they have. However, you shouldn’t look only at the number of followers they have. Check out their engagement rate their posts and videos get as well. Are there lots of likes and comments? On YouTube, do they have tons of views, likes and dislikes, comments, and so on?
Engagement rates are the real proof of whether or not people are viewing and, more importantly, engaging with an influencer’s piece of content. If this is not the case, there’s a strong chance the influencer has falsified their following and this is not someone you want to associate your brand with.
Make sure their engagement is proportionate to the size of their following. As you check out different influencers, you will begin to see what is standard for people in that industry and of that size.
Lay Out the Campaign Details
Laying out the campaign details ensures that both parties are on the same page. It eliminates any misunderstanding and helps both of you know exactly what to expect as part of this campaign. Details include: the type of post, how you want the product positioned, any special hashtags or verbiage on the post and of course lay out any FTC guidelines to be followed.
Decide on Your Budget
There are still some influencers and micro influencers out there who are willing to work or post for free. However, this is now in the minority. If you want to work with influencers who have hugely popular accounts, you should expect to pay. Each influencer will have a different price point, so the price per post will vary. Deciding on your budget ahead of time will save you time and money.
They may come back to counter you or send you a rate card with their set prices. Negotiate if you have to, but work to find a happy medium that works for both of you. Many brands are not experienced and do not understand the influencer negotiation process.
Remember that you can allocate parts of your budget toward influencer marketing campaigns, like tmarketing dollars you’d typically spend on traditional advertising or digital advertising.
Deliverables and Timeline
When planning the campaign details, you are going to want to spell out exactly what you expect to receive and when you want it done by. The posts, tags, and shares you want from the influencer are called “deliverables”.
Maybe you expect to send them a free makeup kit and in return, you want them to post on their Instagram or make a YouTube video talking about your products.
Lay out exactly what you want. For example, you may want at least 1 minute spent talking about the product, trying it on, and recommending it to others. Alternatively, maybe you want them to post a photo that features your label prominently in a specific type post.
Whatever it is that you are expecting, you should lay it out explicitly so that there is no room for misunderstanding.
Believe it or not, contracts are a vital component of a successful influencer marketing campaign. You want to ensure both parties are protected and feel comfortable with the expectations placed upon them. Signing contracts put expectations and boundaries in place so that both you and the influencer leave the campaign happy. You do not want to run into issues like the influencer backing out or neglecting to uphold their end of the bargain. In the same way, the influencer needs to trust that you will do what you say you will — namely, send their product or make their payment on time.
Once you have laid out everything, signed contracts, and are ready to begin, your campaign will get on its feet. However, how are you to know whether influencer marketing campaigns benefit your brand? How can you determine if the campaign is successful if you have no metrics to measure it by? You will want to lay out your success metrics ahead of time. For example, look for clicks to your site, purchases or pre-orders of your product. Maybe you want more brand exposure, increased followers, or more views on your YouTube videos.
You should let the influencer in on these goals too so that they know what to direct their audience to do. They should also be part of the campaign expectations. They can do this by including a tag to your profile or a link to your site along with their posts. Once the campaign is up and running, carefully track your website visits, conversions, sales and audience numbers. Then you’ll be able to measure how influencer marketing campaigns can boost your business and how well they work for your brand.
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