So many people have a love/hate relationship with influencers. Why is that? Perhaps it’s all the free stuff they get. Or how they document their picture-perfect lives on social, somehow able to evoke both envy and annoyance at the same time.
Either way, the industry is BOOMING and, whether you love them, hate them, or try your hardest to ignore them, influencer marketing is here to stay.
According to The Drum, the influencer marketing industry is set to hit $15 billion in 2022. That’s a lot of dough. But it’s worth it when you have a viral TikTok video, featuring an influencer you sourced, generate multiple sales. With everyone and their mother trying to get into the influencer game, how does a brand know who they should partner with?
Here are 3 areas we focus on when looking for influencers to help grow our clients’ Brand Communities:
Pick The Right Niche
First, you need to choose influencers in the right niche. We ask ourselves ‘What does this influencer post about?’ Do they share their favourite recipes, places to travel, makeup tutorials or financial advice?
People can be influencers in any niche these days, so it’s important to understand what type of content they create. Next, we ask if the brand we’re looking to promote aligns with this person’s niche. This can require a bit of investigation and detective work.
After we’ve created a shortlist of potential influencers, we start a deep dive into their feed. We look for the language they use, any political views they share, anything that points to their personality, which is the essence of their brand.
After we vet our list of influencers, and have narrowed it down, it’s time to start the outreach. When we choose influencers correctly, we get a mutually beneficial partnership!
What Platform + Content Are You Looking For?
Here are a few important questions we ask when working with influencers:
- What kind of content are you looking to have them create?
- What platforms is this influencer on?
- What type of their content performs the best?
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and YouTube are only some of the platforms these creators could be putting content out on. As an advertiser, it is vital to ensure you know what you’re looking for. If you want long form videos, work with influencers on YouTube, and have them organically fit the product or service into a video.
With TikTok, we like to work with influencers on several short videos, to the brand featured in multiple pieces of content, which we know performs better with their audience. People generally don’t enjoy looking at ads all day, so when they see an influencer they admire consistently using the same product/brand, it enforces their level of trust.
Engagement Metrics + Rates
We know that influencer marketing is no longer a ‘gifting opportunity’ space. If you want to work with quality influencers, you better be ready to pay! Many of them operate as full businesses, with set rates for their services.
At Blade, we explore how influencers will add value and not just what the costs (or investment, as we say) will be. But how do you know how much they’re worth? That’s where engagement rates come into play. It’s important to thoroughly analyze an influencer’s likes, comments and followers to ensure they’re getting the kind of engagement you want, so there’s a high ROI. Unfortunately, there are a ton of fakes out there – it’s not hard to buy followers, and even engagement so before any outreach, do an in-depth analysis of all their stats.
At the end of the day, influencer marketing isn’t going anywhere, and it’s a much stronger method of advertising compared to traditional TV, magazine and radio ads. We turn the detective skills on, and are selective when choosing influencers, knowing those that make it past our initial investigation can become strong advocates for our clients’ brand community.