Believe it or not, Influencer marketing is the holy grail compared to other marketing strategies out there. Thanks to social media, these incredible individuals known as influencers have amassed millions of followers that trust and love them, with Cristiano Ronaldo with a whopping 426 million followers and Kylie Jenner with over 328 million followers.
In 2021, the brand, Zara, set a world record when it reached over 2 billion people and 300,000 mentions on Instagram - beating even the giant company herself. Going forward, eMarketer estimates that in 2023, spending on influencer marketing campaigns will approach $5 billion, making influencer marketing a formidable marketing strategy to grow your business.
The numbers don’t lie. However, to harness this marketing strategy, you need to start with knowing what influencer marketing is.
What is Influencer Marketing?
Simply put, influencer marketing is using the influence of an individual to drive sales and exposure. It could be endorsements or product mentions from individuals with a massive social following, known as influencers. Most often, they are experts in their niche and have been successful in building trust with their followers.
To grow your business using influencer marketing, you need to -
1. Start with a plan
To get the most out of influencer marketing, you need to start with a plan - a blueprint that would guide your marketing efforts and passion. That entails knowing your ideal target audience and creating a biodata identifying their needs, challenges, problems, and pain points.
Once you’ve clearly defined your potential customers, you need to determine your goals for the campaign and create a metric to track performance. Your goal could be to build brand awareness, expose a new product or service, or perhaps trigger social engagement. Whatever your goals are, it starts with a plan.
2. Identify Influencers
Do you know that there are over 37.8 million influencers on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok combined? There are tons of them, and getting the ideal influencer for your business requires research.
First, you need to delve into a platform where your brand already has a presence, like Instagram or YouTube. Social listening can also help you identify where people are talking about your products and brand.
Your industry is a crucial factor that determines who you’re going for, either a celebrity with massive followings like Justin Bieber or micro-influencers with 5 - 10k followers. You should also consider:
- The type of content they share
- Their target audience
- Engagement rates
- Their niche
- And authenticity
Take note that your goal isn't to reach the whole wide world but rather to reach an audience you can sell to - people interested in what you have to offer.
3. Build a relationship
Influencers are humans like yourself, with emotions, feelings, and principles. Maintaining a great working relationship with them means you’ll get the most out of your influencer marketing strategy.
Once you have an influencer you can work with, ensure you provide them with your brand guidelines and clearly define their role. Create a content plan they can follow, and give them creative control without having to always look over their shoulder.
A great working relationship with your influencer will ensure they review your products interestingly and honestly. There are some tactics you can incorporate into this strategy, such as:
- Making them long-term brand ambassadors
- Asking them to create interesting contents and videos that drive results
- Collaborate with them for contests and giveaways
- Have them contribute to your blog with an authentic content
- Allow them to take over your social handles for a day.
4. Monitor performance
The only way to tell if your campaigns were successful or not is by tracking the performance of your influencers. That means documenting their strategy, engagement, and results from start to finish; and comparing the results with other influencers.
Depending on the platform you’re using, you can always leverage the reporting feature of the social media platform to track traffic and sales. For instance, Facebook insight gives you a detailed overview of engagement, reach, and total spending on the ad manager.
There are numerous tools you can utilize to monitor your campaign performance, such as Traackr, Klear, GroupHigh, etc. No doubt, these insights will help you understand what works and what doesn’t, thereby helping you make informed decisions while improving your strategy.
5. Your budget and what to pay
In 2022, influencer marketing costs between $1000 to over $1 million per post. That’s massive, and a lot of factors come into play such as the type of influencer you’re dealing with, the social platform and industry. Larger accounts and celebrities often need compensation and might even require you to go through a talent agency.
While micro-influencers, on the other hand, work independently and are focused on a few topics, and accept products. It all boils down to your negotiations with the influencer or their agency.
In 2017, influence.co shared the result of their research into Instagram influencer payment and the average cost per Instagram post, and this is what they found:
- Micro-influencers with fewer than 1000 followers charge $83 per post
- The overall average price per post was $271
- Influencers with more than 100,000 followers charge $763 per post
With research, you will get an idea of the average cost per post in your industry which will help you create a realistic budget. However, one of the challenges that most businesses face is paying influencers who don’t have a company. Do you pay them a salary with taxes declared, or do you wire the money to their bank account?
For a long time this was a problem simply because many influencers don’t have an automated solution to process payments. This solution, no doubt, will save you time and effort; while improving your working relationship with your influencers.
That is why companies like memmo, adrecord, Woshapp, and even vembia use Gigapay to instantly pay their influencers, with taxes and social fees declared. It’s unbelievably easy to use. Feel free to book a demo, and we’ll get in touch with you shortly :)