We are a social media agency, specialising in highly cost-effective & targeted influencer campaign over the past 5 years.
We are happy to share our insights in this regard. From the article, you will get useful strategy recommendation to optimise your influencer campaign, and therefore achieve your business goals.
1. Set the Influencer Campaign Objective
Remember, remember, set the objective earlier.
For an influencer campaign, potential objectives include:
- Brand Awareness
- Traffic Generation
- Sales (Don’t be too ambitious at the very early stage)
Learn more about influencer campaign objective definition.
Setting the objective can also help you to track the results of your influencer campaign in an organised way. You can use the following tools to help you:
- URL, promo code, product tag to monitor the ROI.
- Third party social media listening tools to monitor the sentiment and reach.
- Third party SEO solution platforms to monitor the backlinks and impact.
Bear in mind that, there is no one-for-all metric for all the social media platforms. Not to mention some of them provide only limited KPI.
For example, Instagram Story started off with limited metrics. Good news is, now it is opening more and more data for marketers to analyse the performance.
Read our in-depth insight on how to analyse Story performance on Instagram.
2. Segment the Influencers
For an influencer campaign, the most important thing is to decide who to work with. You need influencers that fit your brand positioning, and speaks the right tone to your target audience.
Same with an online marketing campaign, you need to test and optimise the operation. Don’t put all the eggs in one basket. Try KOLs of different audience sizes and genres. Only in this way can you identify the most cost-effective influencer partnership.
Influencers are usually segmented into groups based on the following metrics:
- Based on audience size. An example would be, the first group of KOL has an upper limit of 30k followers; 70k for the second group, and so on.
- Based on engagement rate, which is the performance of likes, comments and shares.
- Based on content niche. Common examples include fitness, beauty, food, and travel.
3. Activate the Influencers
How to get the influencers talk to you? The incentive package, duh! Note that influencer marketing is different from celebrity product endorsement, which money talks the loudest. We have an economic strategy to get you the right influencer or KOL with limited budget.
To do that, first, segment your incentive package into a ladder of values for different KOL groups. For instance, KOL Group 1 get Incentives Package A; Group 2 get Incentives Package B, and so on.
Generally, the audience size and engagement rate play the fundamental role in the value ladder. But the “chemistry” between your brand and the KOL profile affect the final decision. Consider less competitive influencers that are:
- Aligned with your brand positioning.
- Growing engagement proportionally with the audience size.
- Not already sponsored by your competitors.
After all, a cost-effective partnership would be the best outcome of an influencer campaign.
Why this strategy is economic? First of all, cash is not included in the package. Only your product, your service and any exclusive experiences. In this way, you can make sure that the collaboration is based on “true love” – influencers’ love for your brand. They love you, so the content they create will be personal, authentic, and convincing. They will tell your story in their tone of voice, with their creativity, that their fans truly listen to.
Again, influencer marketing is not celebrity endorsement. You are not supposed to drive the content for the KOLs. Let them drive. Social media is all about authenticity. Today’s audience are smart enough to tell a paid ad from an organic content. They expect the latter, not the former.
Sometimes the campaign can be big, and you worry about the results. To have accurate performance report, you can ask the influencers for limited access or screenshots from their Instagram Business Page Insights or Facebook Business Page Insights. If done properly, they would gladly provide the data as a way to demonstrate their influence value. The data can help you to:
- Learn more about the influencer audience before the campaign.
- Optimise the activation during the campaign.
- Monitor the overall impact of the activation.
Plan as many incentive options as possible. From our experience, the KOL with the biggest gift bag doesn’t necessary deliver the most satisfactory results. Segment your incentives as you segment the influencer groups. You never know where your “true loves” are, until you are out there and explore. Very likely, you will find them in unexpected niche.
Mind your tongue. The size of the gift bag may get the influencers talking, but the way you talk to them decides whether the conversation goes to the right direction. Bear in mind that you are not begging, nor condescending. Ask like you would to any business partner for a win-win collaboration.
Dig deeper into influencer activation strategies.
Aim for Long Term Partnership
What happens after the influencer campaign? Only a thank-you note? Should be more of a see-you-again-soon note! You need to develop a pool of influencers that eventually become your organic brand ambassador. They have more value than any 100k-but-irrelevant KOLs.
Asos is a good example of nourishing a team of influencers as a content hub.
A long term activation program with your valuable KOLs can help you align the campaign with your overall marketing objective.
Learn from SEO: Chase the long tail
In SEO, Long tail is a targeting technique. It aims for highly specific search terms, known as long tail keywords that usually consist of more than 3 words. As the competition is low, long tails are much easier to rank. We borrow this idea for influencer marketing.
Think influencers as the search keywords. If you search for “foodie” influencers, it is extremely competitive. Look back at your brand. What are you selling? Not just some food, right? It’s healthy, local made, creative pastry, for example. Then you should look for the exact type of influencers. Avoid irrelevant foodies who are into, say French fine dinning. In this way, you save your budget and shoot at the right target.
Last but not least…
Keep your expectation realistic. Customer conversion will not skyrocket right after the influencer campaign. It takes time. You can repeat the activation and retarget the same audience several times to catalyse the process.
We can help!
Feel free to contact us if you need further advice, training or support on social media influencer or KOL marketing.