To say that consumers dislike advertisements is an understatement.
According to a recent report by PageFair, at least 30 percent of internet users currently use ad-blockers—a number that’s expected to rise in the coming years.
As brands struggle to make meaningful connections with consumers, many of them are turning to influencer marketing to reach their target audience.
But influencer marketing isn’t a magic solution. You need to have a strategy to see results from your influencer marketing campaign.
Uncover Deep Insights into Your Target Audience
The better you know your target audience, the easier it will be to find influencers who are most relevant to them.
Going beyond simple demographics is essential if you want to maximize the ROI of your next marketing campaign and ensure that your messaging makes an impact.
How to Utilize: Developing audience personas is a great way to learn more about who you’re trying to influence.
Audience personas allow you to more easily visualize your ideal customer and will help you choose the best influencer for your campaign.
Start creating personas by collecting basic information including gender, age, location and income level.
Once you have the basics, start uncovering their likes and dislikes, hobbies, aspirations and specific needs. If you have a larger budget, consider using email surveys, customer feedback and customer interviews to learn more about your audience.
Once you have uncovered deeper insights into your audience, you can begin creating detailed customer personas that resemble real people.
With these personas in mind, you can then choose a rising star in your niche that will provide the greatest value to them.
Give Influencers the Freedom to Be Authentic
One of the biggest mistakes that brands make with influencer marketing is forcing their influencer to play by their rules.
If you’ve partnered with the right influencer, then you should trust that they know their audience best.
How to Utilize: Give them a bit of freedom to shape their content how they see fit. In fact, you might be surprised at how creative your influencer can be when you let them do it their way.
This doesn’t mean that you should let them have completely free rein of your content.
By giving them just enough direction, you can avoid placing rules on them that limit their creativity and make them appear less authentic to your shared audience.
Use Prizes and Giveaways
Using prizes and giveaways in your influencer campaigns is an effective way to get the word out about your brand and reach a wider audience.
There are a few different ways to approach this strategy, depending on the goal of your campaign.
How to Utilize: If your goal is to get more brand mentions, consider gifting your products to the top influencers in your niche in exchange for an honest review.
This is an affordable influencer strategy which also has the potential to turn influencers into powerful brand ambassadors.
Another strategy is to partner with an influencer to host a giveaway. This is a great option if your goal is to increase likes, comments and followers. Just remember to check the platform’s specific giveaway rules, as well as your local laws on giveaways.
Create Video Content
You’ve no doubt read some of the staggering statistics surrounding video marketing.
According to a recent Nielsen study, the average U.S. adult now spends nearly six hours per day watching video.
It’s not surprising that many marketers are tapping YouTube stars to reach their audiences. There is an authenticity to video that makes it the ideal format for influencers.
At Tiege Hanley, we’ve achieved enormous success by leveraging our partner and influencer Aaron Marino’s highly engaged audience on YouTube (his Alpha M channel has more than 4 million subscribers).
Aaron had the brilliant idea to document the creation of our men’s skincare brand from its early stages through a weekly series of vlogs, which leaned our brand credibility and made followers feel part of the entire process.
How to Utilize: Start collaborating with your influencer to create video content that promotes your brand. One of the simplest ways to get started is by gifting influencers a free product for them to review.
You can also get more creative and produce a fun video campaign starring your influencer.
For example, Mercedes Benz tapped Instagram’s Loki the Wolfdog and his owner to star in a virtual reality-focused video, which showed the pair exploring the snowy mountains of Crested Butte, Colorado.
The video received tons of views not only for its 360-degree view, but also its engaging storytelling. Loki’s nearly two million followers probably didn’t hurt either.
Think Outside the Box
Influencer marketing is no longer novel. Brands both small and large are utilizing this essential digital marketing strategy to engage their audiences.
While the traditional influencer giveaways and social media takeovers are still effective, it’s becoming more important for brands to get creative.
This is doubly true if you’re catering to a younger crowd, who can be notoriously difficult to win over.
How to Utilize: How can your brand get creative with your influencers? Start with the partnership itself.
For example, sleep mattress brand Simba wanted to test the durability of their mattresses. To do this, they formed an unlikely partnership with parkour influencers. The parkour influencers jumped off high buildings and landed on—you guessed it—Simba mattresses.
Consider your objective and then begin brainstorming how you can meet this objective in a unique way.
By thinking outside the box, you can increase your chances of making your influencer campaign a success.
Test and Refine
Remember to track and measure the results of your influencer marketing campaigns.
When the campaign is over, you can then see if you met your objective and calculate the ROI of your campaign.
If you didn’t meet your object, don’t blame the influencer first!
Before you burn any bridges with a valuable influencer, be sure to pinpoint exactly where you went wrong in your execution. Were you using the wrong social media platform? Was it your message delivery?
Once you pinpoint the problem, you can simply adjust for your next campaign.