All About Influencer Marketing – Cornerstone Article
Every brand wants cohesive digital marketing, but nobody wants to follow the old-age keyword-stuffed blog writing thing. It’s the time when you use people to promote your brand in many ways, and influencer marketing is undoubtedly the best way to go with that.
Do you know influencer whitelisting is 20 to 50% better than any other social media ad? That’s what the experts in the industry say. Besides, marketers will be spending approximately 4.5 billion dollars by the end of 2023. Isn’t it crazy? The strange part is, your brand can be one of those because after learning how good it is for your brand promotions, you cannot stop yourself from investing in influencer marketing ASAP.
So, without any wait, here’s everything you need to learn about influencer marketing. Read on and find out every how, when, and why of influencer marketing.
What does Influencer Marketing entail?
Before beginning with anything, first, let’s clear the mist that keeps influencer marketing unclear to most of you. It’s not a surprise that many of you don’t get what influencer marketing is actually.
So, here it is.
What is Influencer Marketing?
To brief it up, influencer marketing is when the company collaborates with an influencer to promote its brand on different social media platforms. Yes, every time when the Kedarshian sisters post something about a product on their Instagram handle, they are a part of influencer marketing by promoting some brand. However, is it what influencer marketing is all about? Maybe not.
For most people, influencer marketing is just about some celebrity or famous face sharing content on their social media platform. In reality, it is about finding the right person who is from your niche and is good enough to promote your product and services to the right audience. That influencer can be anyone from someone with 1k followers to someone with millions. Not just that, it is one slow process that takes time to show genuine results.
Influencer marketing is truly a great way to take your brand to the next level but is it good enough to put your money and efforts in? Down there is your answer.
Source – Wsi-dms.com
Does influencer marketing really boost your brand?
Why do you think marketers are looking forward to spending more than 4.5 billion USD on influencer marketing? That’s all because of how well it works for your overall brand marketing. What else? There are more benefits to it than the ones here.
1. Brand building is its focus
Anyone can start a company but it takes a lot to make that company become a brand. Customer loyalty is what brings in the difference between the two. That’s what marketing strategies like influencer marketing are doing.
When an influencer makes your brand reachable to the right audience and gives genuine feedback about everything they are promoting, they are giving in a first-hand review about it. This is how it altogether builds a brand in the long run.
2. Great for SEO and boosting your ROI
When you go for influencer marketing, you know you are having an expert on board. This person knows the market and every tactic that will make the content reach skyrocket. This is why this digital marketing type is one of the best for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and, as a result, brings in a high Return on Investment (ROI).
3. An efficient and reasonable choice
You know advertising and marketing itself costs thousands of dollars. Influencer marketing is a smart choice to make if you plan to save money in the long run. Besides, it’s usually like creators take over your social media handles and posts and it’s their responsibility to make things work out for your brand. You know how big a relief it is for you.
4. Your conversion rate improves
We all trust the word of mouth and you are actually making good use of this by investing in influencer marketing. Why? People love recommendations from their favorite influencers and when they say your product is good, people who trust the influencer will surely trust your brand. That’s how it boosts conversions.
All the benefits and the reasons ‘why you should choose influencer marketing’ doesn’t stop here. There’s more that you can learn about what and why influencer marketing is in detail here.
Killer strategies to kick-start your influencer marketing
One good thing about marketing is that you have all the freedom in the world to experiment with things to make them work your way. However, when it comes to an initial campaign, it’s better to stick to proven strategies. That’s exactly what works with influencer marketing.
Check out what you can do to start your influencer marketing journey with a bang.
How to find the influencer?
To be honest, while thing about finding influencers for marketing, you were thinking about someone with a big number of followers, right? If you are on a yes, you aren’t on the right side. There are many other things that you need to look at instead of just looking for the number of followers. Such as:
- Their relevancy for the niche you are in.
- Working on the right platform
- Their frequency of posting on their handles.
Once you figure this out, your next step is to set a budget for your influencers.
How to pay influencers?
To make an influencer marketing campaign successful, you would have to allocate the budget and a large part of it goes to pay the influencers. You may think it’s as simple as paying per post but that’s not just it. There are various ways through which you can pay an influencer for their representation of your brand.
Down there are some of the most common ways you can check out:
- Gifting or rewards – this non-payment reward type is best for someone who doesn’t want to invest anything upfront. All you have to do is offer the influencer any store credit or cashback policies to get things started.
- Free event or trip – if you are someone from the travel or hospitality business, you must try this one out. Offer influencers free trips or free events and let them promote your property, place, or services in their stories and posts.
- Pay per post – This one is classic, pay the creator for the number of posts they post on their social media handles. This type of payment is quite straightforward and clean but does need investment irrespective of if you are getting any reactions from it or not.
- Performance only – This one is more like affiliate marketing. It’s like sharing a part of the income with the influencer whenever they bring in some sales. The best part about this one is you don’t get to invest anything upfront.
Source – blog.hubspot.com
Planning marketing management and the budget
Just like any marketing campaign, you need to plan influencer marketing a lot in advance. It isn’t only about setting up a budget but also about what type of posts you’ll be going for, where can you find suitable influencers, or making sure everything happens right on time. Always remember, those who plan in advance go a long way because they know their track.
Setting goals and spreading the right message.
Do you wanna have more conversions, more reactions, or simply a number of signups on your website? That’s all about setting up a goal for your marketing campaign. If you are planning your next move in your company then you don’t want to miss out on influencer marketing either. So, it’s best to sit down with your team, use your thoughts and start joining the puzzle pieces together.
Finding and reaching out to the influencers
Now that you have the plan ready and you are all set to make it come true, your first step would be to reach out to the influencers who are right for you. Just make sure you check all the items in the checklist like:
- They are related to your industry
- They are taking their influencer role seriously and with consistency
- They are working with the brand like yours
All these strategies are not enough for your outstanding influencer marketing. You can get more of these strategies and learn about each of them in detail when you check out the full strategies for this kind of marketing campaign.
You know what? Having strategies may not work as well for you as you can imagine. However, every piece of wisdom coming from experts in the industry will surely help you to get to the heights.
Influencer Marketing pro-tips
Do you think going for the influencer with the high follower count is the best way to win the influencer marketing game? You are on the dark side of the whole thing, my friend. If you look a little closer, this isn’t the ideal way to go for. Instead, what you can actually do is a lot different from what you have been presuming.
That’s why here are some tips coming straight from professionals in the market that will surely help you ace the game. Have a look at them and plan your influencer marketing steps carefully.
Tip 1: Have influencer-authentic content
We all love the fine shape and crunch of Pringles, but how often do you connect with the ad where the guy’s hand is stuck in the box and if he didn’t take it out for his entire life? That kind of ad seems unreal. Right? The reason is such ads are based on unreal events and are being enacted by people who don’t really give a damn about the product.
This is where influencer marketing stands out. When you see your favorite influencer recommending a product, people would at least check it out once if it’s not about making a deal. Therefore, brands should create content that suits the profile and style of the influencer. If it goes off the track, people will know where the loophole is, and you cannot afford that.
Tip 2: Maintain a relationship that goes a long way
On average, every brand and influencer relationship lasts for about five months. This is not something strange but definitely something wrong. When you have an influencer around for a promotion campaign, you will probably lose connection as the campaign comes to an end. This is where things go wrong.
The reason why you should stay connected to the influencer is trust. When you maintain a relationship, influencers might talk about your brand more often. Besides, it’s anyway hard to find the next best influencer. Hence, you cannot lose the ones who have already given you value.
There’s another reason why you shouldn’t lose touch after your program ends. Here’s why.
Tip 3: Involve influencers in other activities
Don’t forget that influencers can be the source of your first-hand information. So, if you are thinking about losing your contacts after the campaign comes to an end, you are giving up on a lot. So, how to make the best out of it? The best way is to involve influencers in activities other than just talking about your products in their posts.
You must be wondering how to get them more into your company. Influencers would love to be valued if you have them in your promotional decision-making. They know your company, they know your customers, and they know your target audience better than you. So, having them in building your company strategy would be the best thing.
Tip 4: Be true to the audience
Shopping is a tough job especially when we are surrounded by endless brands. In this case, customers would love to shop from a brand that is honest and loyal for every sale they make. Undoubtedly, 81% of customers make shopping decisions on the basis of their trust in the brand. Needless to say, you should always stay honest with the audience through the influencer.
How to do that?
Simple, if you are posting a sponsored post, let them know that the video or post is sponsored. If you are involved in an affiliate program with the influencer, let the audience know that the influencer will be earning a commission on every purchase they make. It’s not about confusing customers for their sale but just informing them the deal would work. Moreover, this will help you gain their trust.
These tips are surely not enough for you to scale your influencer marketing turnover. There’s one bonus tip that you don’t want to miss out on. Read all about it and every other tip in detail that will honestly take you to a whole different level of this trendy influencer marketing. However, there’s always a technical way to get things right. No wonder, having a reliable tool will definitely make your track a lot smoother.
Influencer Marketing techniques and tools
Talking about taking on a technically advanced way, there are various tools available on the internet that will make influencer marketing a lot easier. So, down there are a bunch of tools you can try out and see how fast influencer marketing works for you.
Here comes the one that was considered the best tool for influencer marketing in 2020 by Forrester Research. AspireIQ is the one that helps you find influencers best suited for your advertising campaign. This tool literally handles everything from inviting collaborations to measuring results more effortlessly.
Not just that, the AspireIQ tool helps you understand where your campaign is going and how to make it turn into a big success through exposure and better interaction. It is so good that there is nothing strange about knowing how big brands like Bombas, Coola, and Glossier have been it to lead their influencer marketing game. Definitely, a must-try.
Searching for self-proclaimed influencers? Heepsy is the one you should try. This tool was launched in 2017, and since then, it has been doing wonders for all-size businesses. Take it from companies like Red Bull, Rolls Royce, and IKEA that have been using it for their marketing campaigns.
One thing about Heepsy is that it isn’t suitable for nano influencer marketing because it only tracks down influencers with 1000 subscribers on YouTube and 5000 followers on Instagram. Besides, when it comes to digging deeper into an influencer’s profile, this tool does its job perfectly, such as finding past collaborations, approximate fees, and more important stuff.
Next up we have Grin which is the best one for those who are into the eCommerce business. If you are looking forward to increasing your conversions, Grin can be the tool for you. With a list of 32 million creators, you can get in touch with the most suitable ones, create affiliate links or codes, and track the result with ease. So, once your post goes live, Grin will surely take care of the rest. All you have to do is come up with the next best strategy.
Not just you but every company would love to have a tool that is an all-rounder. Look no further because Upfluence will make the difference. With its gigantic list of 3 million influencers, it helps you filter out the best ones for your campaign by making the best use of preferences, keywords, and other factors. Undoubtedly, this is one effortless and easy-to-access tool that is worth every penny you spend.
You need to be pitch-ready when it comes to having conversions through influencer marketing. One thing that actually brings in the difference is the right SEO focus. Here’s PitchBox which literally takes care of your SEO requirement. When it comes to SEO, this makes it the best tool for someone who is going for blog outreach.
Just like any other tool, Pitchbox stands out for a blogger’s search. You just need to come up with a keyword and your preferences, Pitchbox uses tools like SEMRush, Moz, and Majestic and comes up with the finest influencer list for you.
Using tools can help you get the most out of your influencer marketing efforts by making the process more efficient, effective, and cost-effective. Therefore, one reliable tool can actually bring in a big difference to your promotions.
These 5 surely stand out as one the best options for you but you cannot afford to miss out on more. Try out the top tools for influencer marketing and get the best one for your marketing campaign type.
Talking about types of campaigns, check out the next part that takes you through different kinds of influencer marketing. You never know which one will work perfectly for you.
What are the types of Influencer Marketing campaigns?
Your goal and brand focus might be totally different from your top-most competitors. Take it from marketing leaders who say that your marketing should be personal to your brand. Hence, it is essential for you to understand what types of campaigns are there for influencer marketing.
Check out here and understand which one would best suit your promotional needs.
1. Affiliate Marketing
How many times have you seen your favorite influencer tell you how they will be earning some amount on every purchase you make using their link or code? They are definitely involved in affiliate marketing. What is affiliate marketing in influencer marketing? Affiliate marketing is performance-based marketing in which affiliates, aka influencers, earn rewards or commissions on every sale they make. This is recorded using a unique link or code given to them through which their followers make deals.
If you think about it, affiliate marketing can be a powerful tool for influencer marketing because it can help you reach a targeted audience, increase conversions, and improve your search engine rankings. Besides, as a brand, you don’t have to invest any marketing budget upfront. All you have to do is pay the influencer after they make the sale.
2. Taking over social media
While in other influencer marketing campaigns, influencer share posts about your brand. However, there is one unique way that will ensure trust in your audience. What if the influencer takes over the social media handle and does your part for the audience?
What influencers can do is get in touch with your audience using your social media accounts and get them first-hand experience. They can do that by going live, sharing stories, or simply sharing posts about an event or trip. That’s how they make sure your audience connects with the experience of the influencer and understands how amazing your product or service is.
3. Guest Blogging
Up next is one of the most effective ones that you can say is pretty traditional. Guest blogging is when you have an influencer sharing content about your products and services in their blogs. This blogging technique is amazing for your brand because not only is increase your brand visibility but also improves your website SEO which makes it reachable to a large audience.
Not to mention, when it comes to building relationships and trust with the market and having effective credibility, this is a good option for you. However, it may be not as fast in showing results as other influencer marketing types.
4. Hosting impactful events
How about having all influencers in one place and showing off your brand through their posts and stories? That’s what brands do whenever they come up with a new event. What they do is talk about their new launch or just their journey or maybe celebrity their anniversary and invite influencers to such events.
The experience as a brand makes influencers share stories about the brand on their social media. This one can be cost-consuming but is, indeed, highly effective because the audience will trust the words of the influencer when they talk about all the good things about your brand.
5. Making influencers your Brand Ambassador
Last but not least we have a brand ambassador campaign where, instead of hiring some celebrity for your ads, you hire an influencer as your brand ambassador. When you hire an influencer to be your brand ambassador, you are actually ensuring trust amongst your audience. The only thing that makes it a bit different from other brand ambassador strategies is when you have an influencer, your audience can literally connect with them which is otherwise not that possible.
There you have it, the types of influencer marketing campaigns. However, the list doesn’t end here. There are more types that you must try out. Don’t forget to check out other types of campaigns and make sure you pick out the best one that suits your brand requirement and your preferences.
When it comes to having the best of any marketing campaign, not just influencer marketing, it is significant to know what will be coming next in trend. Check out the top trends that will be coming in influencer marketing in 2023.
Influencer marketing in 2023
Don’t forget, influencer marketing tips and tricks are constantly evolving, and it’s all because of the change in trends. By keeping an eye on future trends, you can stay ahead of the curve and be better prepared to adapt your influencer marketing strategy as needed.
So, check out the top influencer marketing trends that are going to level up the game in 2023.
1. Preference for Micro and Nano Influencers
Gone are the days when you have to run after influencers with millions of followers because micro and nano influencers are doing a better job. Their level of niche focus and follower engagement is so accurate that they will show the true side of your brand by giving their best to promotions.
Not just that, think about how well you will be saving because you wouldn’t pay paying heavy money for the followers but just for the hard work, these small influencers are putting in.
2. Live shopping is the new norm.
Have you ever seen an influencer going live and talking about a brand and all the good things about it? This usually happens when they are selling live. In the coming time, this is going to be a big trend because when an influencer is the face of your brand promotion, the audience can ask questions and clear their doubts right away before making a purchase. Besides, this can actually have good conversion in a very short time.
3. Employees are new influencers.
How about having your employees as influencers? Think about it, employees know your company insights and they would actually want your company to grow by providing a first-hand experience. No wonder, in the near future, more and more companies would be having their employees work as influencers and connect with the audience.
4. Emphasis on multi-platform creators
Are you just thinking about Instagram or YouTube? This is where you are making a big mistake because it’s not the time to focus on just one platform. It’s time you start focusing on influencers who are working on more than just one platform. This will not only help you increase your reach on multiple platforms but also gives your brand a higher level of authenticity and turn into a long-term relationship.
These trends are here to ace the influencer marketing industry but these are surely not the only ones. Check out the top trends in detail here and use them wisely in your strategies to stay ahead of the competitors.
Summing It Up
Now that you know everything about Influencer marketing, you must have realized how powerful a tool it can be for reaching and engaging with your target audience and building your brand’s online presence. There are some things that you need to consider when developing an influencer marketing campaign and that includes having the right influencers, establishing clear goals and objectives, and creating a clear strategy for working with influencers. However, the only thing you need to keep in mind is the careful planning and execution of an influencer marketing campaign so that you can effectively promote your brand and achieve your marketing goals.