I guess you might have heard of influencer marketing before landing on this page. In the world of digital marketing, influencer marketing has managed to gain popularity and won’t be going away soon.
It has evolved a lot too due to the influence of social media platforms. One would assume it’s all about brands partnering with celebrities to promote the brand to enhance its image publically.
Though that’s partly true, there is more to it that you need to know probably before you start promoting your brand, products or services through online influencers.
This post will guide you through the process of understanding and starting your first campaign. However, let’s understand what this marketing strategy is all about.
Table of Contents
What is Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is when a brand collaborates with an influencer to promote the brand, its product or services over an agreed period of time. This is a clear, and simple influencer marketing definition.
This could be online or offline. However, our interest is focused on online influencer marketing to understand how a brand could effectively boost growth, enhance online images effectively and efficiently.
One good example of influencer marketing is Nike ads that involve several celebrities on the Ad “Equality” watch the video below.
Nike is a very popular brand indeed. It has done incredibly well with its influence marketing while collaborating with highly successful athletes. Some of the biggest names in their various sports.
In the video above, the likes of “Kevin Durant”, “LeBron James”, and “Selena Williams” are featured in the video. They have done this over and over for many years. This has enhanced their growth, reputation and put them on top of their competitors.
The fact is, Nike is a huge brand and can afford to collaborate with mega-celebrities which does not mean influencer marketing must be done with big celebrities. This is simply an example of how brands use influencers to promote brands.
Who is an Influencer?
An influencer is someone who is capable of influencing the purchasing decision of his or her followers in the context of digital marketing.
Literally, an Influencer is anyone or thing that can influence others to make a decision.
In marketing, an influencer is described as a person with the ability to influence potential buyers of a product or service by promoting or recommending the items through social media marketing. “influencers can add serious credibility to your brand”.
Hence we focus on digital marketing, we consider celebrities with a reasonable number of followers on their social media handles. Also, people within your niche with good email lists such as bloggers or webmasters with a large number of subscribers and traffic could be considered influencers.
Let’s look at some interesting figures
2021 Influencer Marketing Stats
This is simply massive and would even grow more in the coming years. This is the reason you should think of engaging in it now to stay ahead of your competitors.
It’s important you should also understand the classification of influencers in numbers. According to the Influencer Marketing Hub, results show that influencers with smaller followers have more engagement rates compared to bigger ones.
- Micro-influencer: less than 15,000 followers
- Regular-influencer : between 15,000 and 50,000 followers
- Rising-influencer : between 50,000 and 100,000 followers
- Mid-influencer : between 100,000 and 500,000 followers
- Macro-influencer : between 500,000 and 1,000,000 followers
- Mega-influencer : more than 1,000,000 followers
Tip: In the beginning, we suggest you find about three (3) micro and regular influencers to start with instead of looking for bigger influencers that may cost you a lot of money.
Influencer Marketing Strategy
Like other forms of marketing, you need a well-structured influencer marketing strategy. This will help you get it right and possibly get a higher ROI.
The strategy here is basic but very important. Mostly, you need to formulate a working structure on how to find the right influencers and agree on a working relationship. These steps include:
- Reaching out
- Agreeing on a working relationship
- Monetoring and Measurement
- Optimizing your campaigns.
This is the first and one of the most important steps in your influencer marketing campaign. At this stage, you are required to do all the necessary research about your own competitors, what type of content they used for influencer marketing campaigns, who they used, the audience size of their influencers and all that is necessary.
Apart from understanding your competitor’s strategy, you need to also do all the necessary findings of your intended influencers. Their reputation matters and the type of audience matters too.
Get to understand their preferred type of content, how their users engage or consume their content, which platforms work best for them for example, Instagram, Tik Tok or LinkedIn.
Understanding all these will enable you to list and profile your potential influencers before you start reaching out to them to strick a deal which will mostly work for you as an added advantage.
As you do research on your influencers, you will come up with a list that includes their profiles, contacts, number of followers, platforms and possibly average engagement rate.
Thereafter, we suggest you contact the top 10 with your proposal. Your proposal should be as concise as possible. Get them to understand the product or services you are offering to your prospects and the concept of your brand.
Possibly, you could also ask their availability, how long it will take them to create and publish, the cost involved and the means of payment.
These will help them to reply with all their requirements which will give you the opportunity to profile them furthermore and make your final section.
Understand also that good communication matters a lot. Reply as quick as you can and as concise as possible during your negotiation period.
Agreeing on a working relationship
At this stage, you have done your research, reached out and pretty much made your choice(s). The next important step is to agree on terms and conditions.
Terms and conditions here involve the cost, time, content ownership, publishing and every necessary condition you both need to agree on should be done at this stage.
It’s also very important to set deadlines, and if possible, a written MOU should be signed by you and your influencer which will give you both rights over the produced content and other necessary terms and conditions you both have to agree on.
Monetoring and Measurement
At this point, you need to take a look at your KPIs to understand how your campaign is performing for example, how many websites visits you received, how many sales you made, email enquiries etc.
This is the only way you can be able to measure the impact of your influencer campaign. It’s very important to understand what works and if you use multiple influencers, which of them has the most impact and at what time.
It’s only with these figures you will be able to monitor and measure the effectiveness of your campaign. With these figures also, you will be able to decide on who to continue the influencer relationship and what basis further campaigns will be based on.
Optimizing your campaigns
Once you have your influencers sending loads of traffic to your website or landing pages, it’s time to track your audience behaviour and optimize the process.
Here you will need to do audience segmentation for the purpose of remarketing to increase your conversion rate.
All the people that may sign up without completing the intended actions could now be transferred to your email list. It’s important to understand if they attempted other actions while on your website or only signed up.
Continuously, you will engage them with emails and gradually increase your conversion rate. It is also important not to spam but gradually and tactically get them to become your paying customers.
Influencer Marketing Agencies
There are probably thousands of Influencer marketing agencies out there, however, there are few ones that stand out which we recommend based on their reputation and effectiveness. Each of the Influencer Marketing Agencies listed below has unique features to help you reach your goal.
Here they are:
One of the most popular influencer marketing platforms is Upfluence with great features such as advanced search filters to enable you to set your prices and find Influencers that suits your budget.
It’s basically a serve-serve influencer marketing agency used by some of the biggest brands like Amazon, Verizon, Universal, and Zappos.
Most of the features you need to make the right choice about your preferred influencers such as their content posting behaviour, engagement rate, and most importantly audience size are all made available on the platform.
One thing I adore about Upfluence is its data collection and analysis which is made available for other marketers to use for more effective campaigns.
The platform collects data of previous campaigns such as audience behaviour and makes it available to improve other related campaigns. Data is the foundation of every online marketing campaign. It makes targeting better and ad campaigns more effective.
Creator.co is pretty new in the market but has a significantly huge number of influencers. Their platform has over 500 million influencers to choose from. It’s known as an automation software for young brands to connect with the right influencers online.
It’s also used by very big brands such as Walmart, Colgate, Milkadamia, Zerowater, Parkland and more.
Creator.co offers also offer a self-service option where you can find influencers manually. It also offers a “hands-free” option where you define your ideal influencer and campaign, then its automated system finds the best fit.
Another great influencer marketing platform is Grin. it has over 38 million influencers across some of the most popular social media platforms such as LinkedIn, YouTube, Tik Tok, Instagram, Twitch and Snapchat.
Grin offers relationship management tools to nurture authentic relationships with influencers. As well as everything from reporting and analytics to content management and payments. It also integrates with Shopify to handle shipping logistics for sales made through influencers.
Apart from using the above-listed influencer marketing platforms, we advise you to do your homework and find, and reach out to influencers on your own.
If your business target a specific audience in a country or region, it will be better to look for influencers within your region or country and work with them. It might be more effective to do so as they may appeal to your target audience better.
Influencer marketing is gradually becoming the new normal in digital marketing. As always, marketers who take advantage of it initially will benefit the most.