5 Key Components for a Successful Influencer Marketing Campaign

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The vast majority of marketers across the globe are increasing their influencer marketing budgets for 2019, and by 2022 Influencer marketing ad spend is poised to reach between $5 billion and $10 billion! A recent study also showed that a majority of marketers will spend anywhere from $25,000 to $100,000 on influencer marketing.

So, what makes a successful influencer marketing campaign? We’ve listed below what we believe to be the top five key components:

 

  1. Proven Influencers

Identifying the right influencers is integral to your campaign, with 75% of marketers identifying it as their biggest challenge. Not all influencers are created equal, and knowing the difference between micro, power-middle, and top-tier influencers will help to determine who is right for your campaign.

Holding influencers accountable for driving business results is necessary for a successful influencer campaign. An effective influencer campaign utilises influencers who have the proven ability to engage with their followers, and inspire them to take action. The effectiveness of influencers is determined by engagement, clicks and conversions, not by their follower count.

 

2. Compelling Story

It’s important to create messaging that can be translated into a larger brand story – stories can affect consumers far more than billboards, statistics, or discount offerings. Information is better retained when it’s consumed in story-form, and influencers are effective storytellers, having amassed their following as a result of their ability to emotionally connect with and understand their followers.

 

3. Variety of Quality Content

As consumers pay less and less attention to traditional advertising methods, it becomes increasingly important for marketers to develop new ways to creatively capture audience attention. Influencer content is valuable because each piece is unique and produced in the same style that made the influencer successful in the first place, while presenting the brand’s core message in a manner that resonates with the audience. The content establishes an emotional connection between the influencer and their influencers, and is effective in inspiring action.  

Content creator and Instagram guru, @allthatsheis, is a great example of how an influencer can use her style and creativity to capture the attention of her audience. Her carefully-curated feed, which she updates once a day, has become something of a modern art form. Major brands such as Disney, Dyson, eBay, Mastercard, and many more, have cottoned on to the Instagram influencer and have all commissioned her to run advertisements on her channels. 

 

4.     Actionable CTA

The call-to-action (CTA) should be short, direct and actionable. Consumers need to be offered something that they need, which will then drive them to the next step in the process. A strong CTA compels consumers to take the further action desired of them, whether it’s visiting a landing page in order to learn more about the product or brand, signing up for a mailing list, a giveaway, a coupon, or making a purchase.

 

Photo credit  @fashioninflux

Photo credit @fashioninflux

5. Tracking your ROI

It's imperative when working with influencers to have a strong tracking mechanism. Ask influencers to use trackable links so you can measure traffic, engagement and, ideally, conversions on your site if possible. Alternatively, you could direct your influencer campaign into a branded landing page in order to measure the ROI of that influencer. The influencers can have as much free reign as you'll permit, as long as they drive their audience where you want them to go. Once on the landing page, you, as the brand, can incentivise the users and capture their lead info for measurement data and future communication.

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NEED SOME HELP?

Not sure where to start with your influencer marketing campaign? Contact us today on 0161 731 0048 or email us on hello@findyourinfluencer.co.uk

 

How to Prevent Influencer Marketing Fraud

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Earlier this year, Unilever CMO, Keith Weed announced that the company “is pushing for greater transparency in the influencer marketing space to combat fraud in the digital ecosystem; create better experiences for consumers; and improve brands’ ability to measure impact.”

It’s a very real concern for brands across the globe, but short of being put off, the WFA found that 65% of multinational brands plan to increase their influencer investment in the next 12 months. 

At FYI, we feel the responsibility falls on influencer marketing agencies such as ourselves, to educate brands and marketers on how to improve the integrity, transparency and measurement of influencer marketing.

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QUALITY OVER QUANTITY

Currently the influencer marketing landscape rewards influencers with the largest following, and using reach as a way to gauge the success of a campaign. In order for this landscape to change, brands must validate that they are partnering with quality content creators with reliable influence, independent of metrics like reach. To be effective, marketers will need to abandon notions of perceived influence based on number of followers and align influencer incentives to the delivery of an actual business result. 

INFLUENCER MARKETING FRAUD PREVENTION IS BUILT INTO EVERYTHING WE DO

At FYI we verify the legitimacy of our influencers, monitoring engagement rates, click rates, comment sentiment, like-to-comment ratios, and follower growth patterns to verify that our influencers are real people with real audiences.

To discover what real influencers with guaranteed results can deliver for your business, contact us today on 0161 731 0048 or email us on hello@findyourinfluencer.co.uk

 

How influencer marketing accelerates the path to purchase

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While one in three consumers trust influencer opinions and recommendations when making purchase decisions, it’s important to note that consumers are not referring to traditional celebrity endorsements. Rather, consumers trust people who are just like them – peers they identify with who have built sizeable social followings based on authentic content and the relationship they’ve built with their audiences – and they trust these individuals over celebrities at a rate of seven to one.

As a result, more than a third of marketers (36%) will integrate influencer content with e-commerce to drive product sales this year. When combined with traditional shopper marketing tactics like free samples or elaborate in-store displays, influencer shopper marketing can deliver concrete business results across every stage of the path to purchase, from awareness and consideration to conversion and purchase.

1. Awareness

Whether looking to generate awareness for a product launch or a seasonal push, influencer marketing campaigns can activate hundreds of influencers who create thousands of pieces of original content about a product or brand. The influencers then share the content across multiple social networks, increasing awareness through authentic stories and experiences versus the limited amount of real-estate available in brand-created traditional ads or digital display ads.

2. Consideration

84% of consumers say that it’s important to hear about others’ experiences before making a purchase. By nature, influencer marketing is ripe ground for cultivating honest product reviews and other valuable content like tips, recipes, or how-to articles and tutorials. Consumers that are introduced to a product or brand through positive affirmation by a trusted source are more likely to consider purchasing the product for themselves.

Video credit to Jamie Genevieve

3. Conversion

Now that you’ve got their attention, how do you convert their likes and shares into clicks to learn more and email newsletter signups? It’s uncommon that consumers take a deeper action during the first introduction to a product or service, so brands turn to influencer marketing to inspire conversions over time. Today, more brands are investing in multi-flight, “always on” influencer marketing campaigns versus individual, one-off initiatives to nurture prospects into customers and drive deeper loyalty.

4. Purchase

Performance-based influencer marketing programs that are built to drive lower-funnel goals hold influencers accountable for creating content that inspires their audiences to take action. When structured to perform against specific shopper marketing goals, like in-store or online purchases, influencer marketing programs drive concrete business results that go far beyond short-term vanity metrics like reach.

Reaching your target consumer with a relevant message at the moment they are ready to make a purchase and inspiring them to take action is the ultimate goal for shopper marketing campaigns. From awareness and consideration to conversion and purchase, influencer marketing’s ability to drive consumers down the path to purchase through the trusted opinions of their peers is the hottest new tactic in every shopper marketer’s media mix.


NEED SOME HELP?

Not sure where to start with your influencer marketing campaign? Contact us today on 0161 731 0048 or email us on hello@findyourinfluencer.co.uk

Influencer Marketing for the Hotel Industry

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Generating exposure can be tough for any brand, no matter how big or small. And that goes for the hotel industry too.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter how beautiful your lakeside view is or how crisp your linens are if nobody sees them. You need to spread the word far and wide, and one of the most incredible ways to do it is with influencer marketing.

This new approach to social media marketing can generate up to 11 times the ROI of traditional advertising – and it’s hard to argue with cold hard numbers. Keep reading to find out how your hotel brand can take advantage of the up-and-coming trend…

 

Your target market is turning to social media

In this modern age, people are going online to perform in-depth research before making decisions on purchases – and they’re turning to influencers for guidance too.

Did you know that 66% of your audience trust consumer opinions posted online? Add in the fact that only 1% of millennials (that’s people aged 18-34 to me and you) have been influenced by a traditional advert, and it’s easy to see why influencer marketing is skyrocketing.

95% of millennials follow brands through social media. That’s a huge demographic – fresh to the workforce with disposable income – all flocking to the same few online platforms. Whether it’s Snapchat, Twitter or Instagram, it’s incredibly important to ensure your brand is represented in a positive light on the same platforms your target customers are using. And influencer marketing is a powerful way to achieve this goal.

Photo credit to  Em Sheldon

Photo credit to Em Sheldon

Does influencer marketing work in the hotel industry?

100% yes. In fact, 42% of baby boomers admit that social media influences their booking decision. And, according to research into millennial travel trends, 87% look at Facebook for travel inspiration with 97% posting their experiences online whilst travelling.

Influencers hold significant weight, whether it’s through tweets, blogging or vlogging. They have the power to affect purchase decisions. From 1,000 to 100,000 followers, influencers have clout which can’t be ignored. This is especially prevalent in the travel industry, where consumers are more likely to use social media for inspiration, reviews and recommendations.

Consumers react positively to influencer marketing due to increased loyalty. And people trust influencers to deliver posts that are #travelgoals.

Can influencer marketing help my hotel brand?

With the right know how and the appropriate influencers, hotels and accommodation providers can build prosperous and significant relationships.

As a hotel, you may be missing out on a whole range of guests. Influencers can navigate these people to your website directly, using hashtags, images and videos. The aim is to entice customers with content that makes them want to hop, skip and jump all the way to your front door.

The beauty of the influencer is that they can help you understand and adapt your strategies. Influencers capture data, create original content and boost sales. With relatively little input on your part, you can enjoy a fantastic ROI and a wider global reach.

 

Finding the best influencer for your business

Before jumping into influencer marketing there’s a couple of things to keep in mind.

  1.  You want to build lasting relationships – The more the influencer trusts and enjoys your hotel, the more other guests will. It’s about the long-term engagement, it shouldn’t be a quick fix.
     
  2.  You understand your brand more than anyone else – That’s why it’s important to connect with an influencer who can match this brand seamlessly, whilst still bringing their own original ideas and content. This makes the marketing seem less “staged” and gives a sense of authentic content.

Need some help?

Not sure where to start with your influencer marketing campaign? Contact us today on 0161 731 0048 or email us on hello@findyourinfluencer.co.uk

4 INFLUENCER MARKETING TRENDS IN 2018 

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1. Marketers Fight Against Influencer Marketing Fraud

The shift from surface level, fluffy metrics like reach and awareness signals the growing importance of influencer marketing fraud prevention in 2018. Marketers are willing to invest in the security needed to guarantee the quality of influencers and their audiences in order to maintain the authenticity of influencer content and protect their brands from fraudulent activities. This often includes working with influencer marketing agencies such as Find Your Influencer, who will go the extra mile to monitor the veracity of audience size, online engagements, and click numbers.

 

2. Influencer Content Drives Greater Returns from Paid, Owned, and Earned Media

Influencer content is nuanced, original, and authentic. The most successful influencer marketing campaigns are the ones where the influencer content is used beyond the original scope of the campaign to improve the performance of other channels (email, website, paid social, native advertising, etc.). 51% of marketers that repurpose influencer content report that it outperforms brand-created content, and of those who have yet to test influencer content against brand created content, 59% plan to do so this year.

Expect to see more brands A/B testing influencer content against brand-created content to determine what pieces will deliver the best results. Advanced marketers will then develop a strategic blueprint using those assets to drive incremental performance from their paid, owned and earned media.  

 

3. Influencer Content Integrates with E-Commerce to Drive Sales

More marketers are looking at the full consumer journey and holding influencer marketing accountable for driving lower funnel metrics in addition to awareness and engagement. High-impact recommendations, like those from a friend or trusted influencer, are 50 times more likely to trigger a purchase than low-impact recommendations, like ads in a magazine.

 

4. Advertising/Media Takes Ownership

As targeting capabilities evolve, advertising and media teams, who traditionally have larger budgets, are taking ownership of influencer marketing and managing campaigns with the same rigor that they use with other digital advertising channels. In 2017, 38% of influencer marketing owners were on advertising/media teams, whereas only 15% identified as PR/communications, a notable decrease from 31% in 2016.

In 2018, influencer marketing will more commonly become a line item in the advertising/media budget. The extra pounds allocated to these teams allows marketers to scale the size of their influencer marketing campaigns, increasing the number of influencers they work with and putting more pounds behind the content that’s proven to perform.

It’s no longer a question of whether or not influencer marketing works as it’s been proven to drive concrete business results time and time again. So what can we expect to see from influencer marketing in 2018? Not only will brands invest more in the tactic to combat fraud and ensure its authenticity, but they will also use influencer marketing to test various methods to identify which strategies are the most effective at driving results. Once they’ve developed a strategic blueprint, we’ll see the advanced brands scale their campaigns to drive lower-funnel metrics and greater returns from paid, owned, and earned media.

 

Got a question about Influencer Marketing? Email us on hello@findyourinfluencer.co.uk or call 0161 731 0048

Rise Of The Silver Insta-Influencers

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It's the new job on the block - but until now, the coveted role of online 'influencer' has remained pretty much the preserve of young women, as they pout their fresh-faced way to wages of thousands of pounds.

However, this could be changing with the increasing influence of silver surfers and their growing presence on Instagram - in particular older women.

Stats released last year by the Office of National Statistics revealed the use of social media was rising fastest amongst the middle-aged.

It's the new job on the block - but until now, the coveted role of online 'influencer' has remained pretty much the preserve of young women, as they pout their fresh-faced way to wages of thousands of pounds.

However, this could be changing with the increasing influence of silver surfers and their growing presence on Instagram - in particular older women.

Stats released last year by the Office of National Statistics revealed the use of social media was rising fastest amongst the middle-aged.

Two thirds of 45- to 54-year-olds in the UK are now on a social network, while the proportion of 55-to-64-year-olds using social media passed 50% in 2015.

Instagram is after all one of the most user-friendly of online platforms or social media accounts - it's a lot simpler than Facebook as an interface, and tends to showcase the finer things in life, which a senior audience appreciates more.

Sign up, upload photos and boom, you're done. Being such a visual medium, it's easy to share and celebrate your wonderful life, earned by all those extra years you've spent on the planet. Stylish and creative women are more likely to sign up to Insta to get and share inspiration with their own demographic too. They're also more likely to seek out and connect with their own age group online in addition, rather than for aspirational reasons or to clock the latest antics of the myriad Kardashians. They're more likely to follow style legends like Diane Keaton - 12k followers and counting.

The fashion industry for one is turning to Instagram more and more to find its latest more mature stars, after being repeatedly stung by accusations of ageism in recent years.

Instagrammer and fashion blogger Lyn Slater, 63, (120k followers on Instagram) is the current face of Mango and Scottish stylist Gillean McLeod, 61, (3,329 followers) last year modelled swimwear for H&M.

Model Maye Musk (yes, Elon's mum) has 35,000 Insta followers and puts the rise of older models squarely down to the internet. She has said: "Social media has given all women a voice and platform. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have done wonders for me, and I love being able to share my experiences directly with those who are interested, and engage with them."

After all, it's pretty much in every business's interest to embrace age diversity in the media if they want to pocket the silver pound, so it stands to reason that more and more industries and brands will be chasing the over 55s online to plug their products. And nowadays, it's not just those with hundreds of thousands of followers - so-called micro-influencers with up to 100,000 followers but more than 3,000 are being sought out.

It is predicted that by 2018 there will be 20 million over-55s in the UK, making up one in three of the population. Over-50s already account for around 47% of all UK consumer-spending as they are getting healthier and wealthier.

Source: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/jules-lund/rise-of-the-silver-instai_b_16390454.html

42% of Baby Boomers picking holiday destinations based on social media

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Four out of ten baby boomers admit that social media content posted about a holiday destination or accommodation influences their booking decision.

The use of social media during the holiday-researching process is now being extended to older generations, with 42% finding it hard to ignore the level of insight certain platforms, such as Instagram, can give to bookers. 

Despite being a generation that's been associated with playing catch-up when it comes to the use of social media platforms, 37% of those aged 55-64 said they use social media as a way of researching holiday destinations. If they find social media images that show a holiday destination or accommodation that isn't up to their standards, then this will put them off booking. 

Traditionally, travel review sites have always played a prominent role in the holiday-reviewing and researching process. When baby boomers were asked whether social media content could be trusted over a review site, over a third said they're now starting to use a mix of both when researching a holiday destination. 

The study by QHotels, managed by RBH of more than 2,000 UK adults found that while social media content does impact the booking process for baby boomers, 'Instagrammability' is not a factor, whereas millennials prioritise how 'Instagrammable' a destination looks before they book. 

When it comes to sharing holiday snaps, over half of Brits (55%) share them while they're still on their trip. For those that wait until they get home said the biggest reason (41%) for this was down to security and not wanting to advertise being away on holiday. Nearly half of baby boomers (48%) would be concerned about the safety of their home while on holiday, which is more than double the proportion of millennials.

John Stuart, Chief Operating Officer at RBH, commented: "We're not surprised to see that using social media to do some extra digging on a hotel or destination is on the rise. What is interesting is how much baby boomers are valuing this content when it comes to making a final decision, and for some, this could be a deal breaker.

"This research gives insight into the changing holiday booking habits of baby boomers, and how the whole researching process is evolving from using travel review sites or just going back to the same place as they always have done. They seemed to have acknowledged the value of using social media in the reviewing process, which has been a trend that has naturally been driven by younger generations. 

"Travel review sites have been a great addition to the travel sector, but social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram offer another layer of awareness into what a certain destination or accommodation is like. Hotels can no longer hide behind a professional photo lens as authentic, consumer-generated content is becoming more important for bookers looking to get a truer perspective on their potential holiday destination. And this is becoming apparent across all generations."
 

Why Influencer Marketing Will Dominate Media In 2018

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This article was originally published in The International Business Times

Keyword stuffing, link building, QR codes, and automated cross-channel posting — all were once promising marketing tactics and strategies that have since been characterized by some as marketing fads. At one point, marketers wondered if influencer marketing was going to suffer the same fate. Many claimed that blogs were dying and changing social media algorithms continued to diminish the organic reach of influencers.

However, influencer marketing has done the exact opposite: The channel is only growing stronger as the industry matures and evolves. And as with any tactic that drives concrete business results, marketers are responding by increasing their investment in the channel.

WIDESPREAD ADOPTION OF INFLUENCER MARKETING

Eighty-three percent of global consumers report that online advertising interrupts their online experience and the time spent watching traditional TV is dropping for every adult age group. As a result, marketers must find new ways to reach consumers with relevant messages in ways that establish trust and drive measurable results. Micro-influencer marketing has gained traction in recent years because it provides brands with the ability to reach their target audience through the voices of those they trust most: their peers.

Today, 86 per cent of marketers are using influencer marketing, 92 percent of whom find it to be effective. Nearly a third of marketers run more than five programmes per year per brand; and according to a new report, The State of Influencer Marketing 2018, marketers are calling for more. Thirty-nine percent of marketers plan to increase their influencer marketing budgets in 2018 to accommodate for more frequent and larger-scale influencer marketing programs. The continued widespread adoption of influencer marketing indicates it is becoming an integral part of the marketing mix and is not a passing fad.

INFLUENCER MARKETING DRIVES REAL BUSINESS VALUE  

As the industry matures, we are starting to see marketers use influencer marketing to drive lower-funnel actions like signups, downloads and purchases. For example, Mezzetta, a popular CPG brand specializing in pickled vegetables, spreads and sauces, launched a three-part influencer marketing campaign to raise brand awareness and grow its email database as part of a broader initiative to increase its U.S. market share. By employing an “always-on” micro-influencer marketing strategy, the brand was able to grow its email marketing database from zero to over 70,000 qualified consumers.

Influencer marketing has also proven that it can successfully drive product sales. Gerber, which turned to micro-influencer marketing to launch its new Lil’ Beanies snack product, was able to drive a 5 percent national sales lift. When asked what made the programme so successful, Gerber’s brand manager said, “If you Googled Gerber, or just Lil’ Beanies, you would see [influencer] sites come up organically that featured beautiful photography of children eating the product or the mum looking for it [in store].”

INFLUENCER MARKETING TRENDS AND CHALLENGES FOR 2018

Influencer marketing is not going away. As the industry evolves, the channel is adapting to keep pace. While 2017 saw the rise of the micro-influencer, the survey found that 52 percent of marketers plan to leverage multiple types of influencers (celebrities, top-tier, mid-tier and micro-influencers) as part of an integrated strategy in 2018. Determining the ROI of influencer marketing remains the top challenge going into 2018, calling for marketers to take a serious look at their measurement methodologies and hold their influencer marketing programmes to the same measurement standards as their other media investments.

The key to realising influencer marketing ROI is to leverage the content beyond the initial campaign to improve the performance of other programmes. The survey found that 81 percent of marketers are using influencer content in other channels, with 51 percent reporting that it outperforms brand-created content. Of those that haven’t tested influencer content against brand created content yet, 59 percent plan to do so. In 2018, you will start to see marketers use influencer marketing to develop a strategic blueprint that will enable them to drive greater returns from their paid, owned and earned media.

 

How To Overcome The Top Four Influencer Marketing Challenges Of 2018

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This article was originally published in Forbes

Influencer marketing shows no signs of slowing down in 2018. A recent survey by my company of 181 marketers and their agencies found that nearly 40% of marketers plan to increase their influencer marketing spend in 2018. On the other hand, only 5% plan to reduce their influencer marketing budget.

As the industry matures, marketers are using the channel to drive real business value — from building awareness as part of a product launch to driving sales of a new or existing product. However, as with any emerging channel that proves successful, there are challenges.

From proving ROI to time management, here is how to overcome the top four influencer marketing challenges of 2018.

1. ROI Of Influencer Marketing

Seventy-Six percent of marketers cite that determining the ROI of their influencer marketing programme is a top challenge in 2018.

One of the keys to generating ROI from your influencer marketing programme is to leverage content beyond your original campaign. This will not only help improve the performance of other programmes but will also impact your marketing mix as a whole. Of those surveyed, 81% of marketers said they use influencer-related content to improve other channels. More than half (51%) reported that this type of content performs better than brand-created content. In the next year, we will see more marketers use influencer marketing to create a strategic blueprint that will help drive more ROI from all types of media — earned, paid and owned.

2. Changing Social Algorithms

Amidst Facebook’s new requirement that influencers tag all sponsored content on Facebook and Instagram via its branded content tool, marketers are concerned that changing social algorithms will make organic influencer content less visible. Forty-Two percent of survey respondents cite this as the next biggest challenge of 2018.

Brands using this tool will have a transparent view of how their influencer marketing programmes perform organically, including actual reach, impression and engagement metrics. This is good news for marketers, although it will likely make influencer marketing more expensive. Savvy marketers will use their organic programmes as a content testing lab, where the initial media investment helps determine the best performing pieces of content. Marketers can then use paid media to scale that content for maximum reach.

3. Lack Of Bandwidth Dedicated To Programme Management

Nearly a third of marketers (31%) run more than five influencer marketing programmes per year per brand, which can be extremely time-consuming. In fact, 50% of marketers estimate spending more than 25 hours managing each programme and 25% spend more than 50 hours managing each programme. As a result, 35% of marketers are looking to decrease the amount of time that it takes to manage influencer marketing programmes in 2018. To accomplish this, marketers should seek partnerships to handle the time-consuming aspects of programme execution — from influencer identification and compensation negotiation to reporting and payments.

4. Fake Followers And False Engagements

Marketers must be hypervigilant in monitoring for influencer marketing fraud, like fake followers and bot-driven engagements, which have increased alongside the channel’s growing popularity. To combat fraud, marketers are looking at real results like conversions, downloads and product sales. The bottom line is that bots never make a purchase. When selecting influencers to work with, steer clear of influencers whose followers to engagement ratios are significantly disproportionate. Additionally, examine the quality of their engagements. Comments that are full of vague praise or excessive hashtags are likely purchased.

Influencer marketing has proven its staying power. In 2018, the channel will start to make a cross-channel impact as marketers realize the ability to drive real business results with influencer content. Savvy marketers will adopt strategies that enable them to remain nimble and adapt to changing social algorithms and other market shifts, tying everything back to metrics that weed out the potential for fraud.