If You Really Want to Maximize Your Next Influencer Campaign…

November 1st, 2016

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Today’s consumers often distrust brands more than they do politicians.

So when it comes to deciding on where they’ll spend their money, consumers will often turn to experts or friends for recommendations. To help your brand gain trust with customers, an effective approach is to align with influencers – those who have a credible and trusted voice, share your values and are already reaching your target audience.

Engaging with influencers can be tricky though, so here are five tips to help you maximize your influencer programs.

  1. Find the right fit. One size does not fit all. Authenticity is the key to building seamless branded content that sticks.

    When identifying potential influencers, ask yourself these questions: Is the influencer already talking about your product? Is he or she already an advocate for your cause? Or, is this a new area of opportunity for them? Does the influencer reach your target audience?

    Influencers with a vested interest in your brand are more likely to create better content.

  2. Set guidelines and manage expectations. Be clear from the get-go about what the expectations are from the influencer and set guidelines to help manage these expectations. What are you offering the influencer in return?

    Some questions to consider before engaging with the influencer include: What kind of content do you want the influencer to produce? Is your campaign short-term or an ongoing partnership? Can the influencer commit to your deadlines?

    Within guidelines, also consider which metrics are relevant to you and how they will be measured.

    An influencer program is a collaborative relationship. Talking through ‘the ask’ and setting expectations for both parties is key to ensuring that the campaign’s goals are clear and attainable.

  3. Build a story, not an advertisement. You’ve done your research and selected an influencer for his or her expertise or authority in a specific field. Work together to brainstorm ideas, but be flexible and realistic about their creative process. Don’t try to fit a square peg into a round hole. The goal is to create compelling, authentic content.

    Influencers know what type of content works best on their channels. After all, they know their channels and audience the best.

  4. Just like you – they don’t work for free! Time is money and that’s what it takes for an influencer to create content. Long story short – influencers require payment for the time and effort put into producing content to promote your brand.

    Whether payment is in product, perks or cash, compensation should be worked into your agreement from the onset of the campaign. Canada’s new disclosure guidelines coming into effect in 2017 should also be taken into account during this process.

    The best relationships and those that last, are the ones where all parties see mutual gains.

  5. Follow-up and follow through. You’ll likely work closely with your influencers as they create content and then complete their work with your brand. Don’t let those relationships lapse.

    Based on our experience working with influencers and the ROI delivered from these programs, there are many benefits to long-term engagement and for treating influencers as partners, rather than vendors.

    Long-term partnerships with influencers occur when there is vested interest and ongoing support from both parties. If you don’t have the pipeline required for an ongoing relationships, partner with an agency that does.