Influencer marketing enables you to build trust and reach larger audiences, strengthen your brand’s messaging and identity with authentic endorsements, and influence the buying decisions of more engaged and better-qualified audiences. It is believed that an engaged influencer network can deliver a higher ROI than paid media. This high ROI comes from working with influencers who are specialized in a specific category of content, like gaming, fashion, tech, fitness, etc. which aligns with your target customer profile. This means that brands can gain direct access to a wide-reaching and hyper-targeted audience who is then exposed to a brand which has immediate credibility and the trust foundation influences their buying decisions.
Randomly engaging friends and family and sending them things won’t create any strategic successes. Instead, you must map out a plan of attack, implement it, and then use analytics to adjust your efforts so you’re engaging the right people with the right rewards at the right time.
NextBee has been helping companies develop successful brand ambassador and influencer engagement programs that engage audiences and provide incentives for influencers to keep the audience engaged.
Here are some steps to consider; some thoughts, ideas, tips, and tricks that can help you create a successful, fun and exciting influencer marketing program.
Plan Your Work According To The Goal
If you are considering using influencer marketing then you probably have the goal to elevate your brand’s awareness and increase your sales. But, it’s important to remember your message is just as important as your awareness and sales goals. Therefore, while you create your target audience and search for influencers, make sure you are looking for influencers that align with your brand’s core values and message. Doing so means you can set goals for growth and have influencers who are happy to work the plan to achieve those goals with you.
Estimate, Tweak, Repeat
Every type of incentive and every user interaction you have as part of your program needs to be there for a reason. At NextBee, we take the guesswork out of deciding which incentives and which rewards are best for each project completed and goal achieved by constantly reviewing the numbers. NextBee’s seasoned team of account managers, developers, and designers not only take your program all the way from start to launch but we work hand in hand with you to review what’s working and what’s not. Our easy to use Admin interface makes it easy to see how much is being generated from influencers no matter what the goals (e.g., more sales, giving out affiliate codes, tracking links, etc.). It’s all just an easy click away for seeing what you need to tweak. After that, it’s just a matter of analyzing, tweak/adjust, and then repeat the process which we work with you to do every week and then once a month for a strategy session.
The first part of your research should be choosing which network you want to focus on first. While it’s tempting to be everywhere and you’ll get there eventually but when you’re starting out, just stick with one. Preferably, pick a network where your brand already has a presence and that makes sense for your industry. For example, gaming is huge on Twitch and beauty/fashion stands out on Instagram and YouTube. Finally, what type of influencer are you interested in engaging and what’s your budget for rewards and compensation? If you’re unsure of where to begin, then connect with one of our specialists for a free consultation.
As you plan your budget be sure to also factor in time for planning, executing and reviewing your strategy. While a successful influencer marketing program can be highly automated, it’s never really “set-it-and-forget-it” type of strategy. You’ll need to use analytics and monitor what’s working, what’s not and then adjust accordingly. Since influencers are human and frequently balancing multiple partnerships, it’s best if you can provide modules that while customizable, are already branded with approved messaging and tags. From there you can combine automation and a hands-on relationship to refine your approach for your niche. Refined ambassador programs, like the one we have with NetFlix and their DVD Nation, work great for a company to promote new products (shows/movies) and diversify their social feeds to showcase what they offer.
As mentioned above, the first part of your research should be choosing which network you want to focus on first but the second part is researching what influencers you want to connect with and why. The “why” has to do with determining if the influencer is a good match. Do they create content that’s aligned with what you’re wanting to be promoted? Have they worked with similar brands? Are they legit? Making sure you have someone who is excited about your product, has promoted similar products and isn’t a fraudulent/spam account is vital since at the end of the day they’ll be representing your brand. Then that leaves the question, how to connect with them? Micro-influencers are usually accessible via direct messages on platforms they frequent, celebrity influencers may have agents that you need to work through. Most of the time a professional email or message will get the ball rolling. But, an introduction is awesome if you can get one!
Influencer marketing is here to stay since it quickly enables you to build trust, reach larger audiences, strengthen your brand’s messaging and identity, and influences the buying decisions of more engaged and better-qualified audiences.
However, the world changes and that means you need a partner who can adapt with you so that in five years when everything is drastically different from today, you’re taken care of and prepared. Working with influencers can be tricky but at its core it’s the same as setting up just about any campaign: research, set a budget, determine goals, find your influencers and review and revise.
Here at NextBee, we’ve been helping companies develop successful brand ambassador and influencer engagement programs for the past 10 years.
Connect with us today, we’re excited to help you grow and succeed!