Partnering with the wrong influencers will cause your marketing campaign ineffective, but also might harm your brand reputation and image. When deciding with whom to collaborate, you must consider whether your brand and products are congruent with the image of the influencer.
One great example of choosing the wrong influencers would be the Phillip Morris IQOS campaign where they were finding young influencers to promote IQOS. The company was trying to present that vaping is actually healthier than smoking actual cigarettes, but obviously, the campaign led to overwhelming criticism, where opposers did not like the idea of how the brand presented that vaping is actually a cool and trendy thing to do. As a result, the company had to publicly apologize and cancel all of the social media marketing campaigns. After the incident, Phillip Morris switched to only user influencers that are above the age of 35.
Attributable to followers of the influencers who do not share similar interests with your product, it will cause only a small percentage of their followers and audience to be inclined to make a purchase. The downside however could be destroying your brand image and budget allocation for your marketing campaigns all gone to waste.
Follow these guidelines to assist your brand in selecting the right influencer:
- Followers demographic: Collaborate with influencers that include your target market or have a significant overlap with your target market. Don’t be shy to ask for these metrics.
- Brand Values: Avoid choosing influencers that are not aligned with your brand value. As an example, if your brand promotes diversity in beauty, you should avoid working with influencers who promote unattainable or unified beauty standards. Finding influencers that have the same vibe as your brand could help to succeed in your marketing campaign.
There is no way to set a clear strategy if you don’t have a clear goal! When you are unclear about what you expect from the influencers you work with, you cause uncertainty for everyone involved. The unclear goals could impact the clarity of your message which is would make or break your marketing campaign.
To find the goal you should:
- Know your customers and what they need.
- Understand your reasons for why you are running this particular marketing campaign
- Measure your success. A SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based) goal is recommended to use while setting a goal.
- Be clear of your expectations towards influencers
Every brand or marketer approaches the completion of a campaign differently, with some going into great depth and others taking a much broader approach. However, a campaign’s success is determined by a variety of factors. It is a mere common standard to be able to measure your campaign’s success, but more importantly, to understand if it failed and why is that.
A standard post-campaign review should provide intel on where you can make your next campaign more successful. Some useful insights you should know from conducting the review: target audience reach ratio, total reach and view ratio (conversion rate), engagement rate, etc.
Regardless of whether your campaign was successful, there is a final but critical step to take:
- Review of marketing goals
- Evaluate feedback from the market
- Use metrics to analyze your campaigns
It is no mystery that we live in a world where 90% of people we know are on multiple social media platforms. Nevertheless, all social media platforms have different post requirements and formatting, as well as different audiences. There is no one-size-fits-all post across the platforms as posts are specifically created for each platform.
More importantly, if you follow an influencer, there is a huge chance that they are running more than just 1 social media platform account for one simple reason: it helps build and consolidate your profile, your image, and most importantly, your number of followers for all these platforms.
Reposting or recycling the same content in different channels from an influencer would increase your exposure, so when you are working with an influencer, make sure they share your content in all channels suitable for your brand.
When it comes to content generation, it is critical for brands to give influences artistic freedom, from both your perspective and influencers’ perspectives. I think we would all agree that influencer marketing campaigns are successful because most audiences want authentic content, where influencers love what they share and they believe in the shared information. Their followers probably look up to their idol for some reasons, make sure you give flexible sovereignty to influencers to control their strategy on engaging with their fans because after all, they would know their audiences much more than you do.
Ways to solve it:
- Try to construct a framework of what cannot be done, it would help influencers no boundaries they should not cross
- Try new methods to deliver your content, either in photos, stories and videos
- Different platform features could help you in creative content delivery
- Always let content creators compose their own script, you can edit and review it afterwards
Do your due diligence on influencers. The last thing you want would be reaching out to a bunch of bots that would never become your potential buyer nor become your brand supporter. It is harder now in 2022 for us to differentiate if influencers are buying followers since the engagement rate of Instagram is dropping tremendously.
One way to look into it is to use tools like Social Blade. Please note that this is not a sponsored post, but Social Blade gives a lot of insights into a business account on social media platforms. For example, you can track the trends of an Instagram account in regards to their followers and following. One indicator to spot fake followers is if their account follows a lot of people daily, then all of a sudden, they are unfollowing a lot of them. It shows that they are using following/unfollowing tactics, and most probably these followers did not follow this particular account because of the content. Another indicator would be their followers’ count had been on a decreasing trend, it could be because of Instagram kicking bots that are following this particular account. This is why brands choose to work with an agency or a platform. They can provide insights that could help identify which influencers are truly leaders of different sectors.
Spamming the audience is a wrong decision that will cost you your potential clients, plus the ones that already followed you. When you work with an influencer make sure to work with those who promote a certain way of life or belief. The last thing you want is to have an influencer who is merely a sales bot and engagements are extremely low.
Ways to solve:
- Plan your posting schedules
- Work with more KOCs (Nano to Micro-influencers)
- Useful posting guidelines provided by each platform:
-Facebook: 2 times per day
-LinkedIn: once per day
-Instagram: 1–3 times per day
-TikTok: 3–5 times per week
Understanding your competitors is a vital process in building a marketing campaign. By understanding competitors, you could respond to rival marketing campaigns with your own activities in order to stand out in the competition. There is one thing extremely important for you to find out during conducting a competitor analysis. You must find out which influencers your competitors have used because you will not want to use the same influencers. The first reason is that there usually is an NDA, so you would need to wait until they can be your brand ambassador. Secondly, if an influencer had recently promoted a similar product like yours, you would want to give it some time to cool off before he/she promotes for you. Audiences need time to forget about his/her most recent content about the last product. In fact, this is important for both your brand and an influencer too. If the influencer is not aware of this at all, it means that either he/she is spammy of these posts or that he/she is only after the money, hence his/her followers might not be the right kind you are looking for.
Moreover, understanding more about your competitors gives you insights into how you should market your products differently or similarly. You can also learn from their campaign to avoid mistakes.
Things to know while conducting a competitive analysis
- Which influencers have they used
- Similarities and Differences between your brand and theirs
- Structure of influencer marketing campaign
- Relationships with influencers
Consistency is key in influencer marketing, or maybe in everything in life, really. You want to make sure that the influencers you work with are active, by active I mean they have regular posts and they share a bunch of stories. If you are working with YouTubers, you want them to generate videos at least once a week.
On the other hand, you would also want your marketing campaign to be really consistent. For example, if you are launching a product, there are usually 3 different stages in the marketing campaign.
- Preheat: This is when you want to have maximum exposure/reach. Do not worry about conversion just yet
- Launch: During the launch, make sure engagement is what you are really focused on at this stage
- Post-campaign Engagement: After launching you should measure your campaign success, then from time to time you should host events and reuse some of the influencers, or find new ones to collaborate with (Does not have to be offline event)
If you are a product owner and you are working with live streaming sales, it is much easier obviously. But the same rules apply. You should 1) find influencers that regularly operate live sessions and 2) you should keep finding these influencers to collaborate with.
I hope all these give you a brief idea on what you should avoid doing when you work with influencers. If you like this article follow us for more. https://medium.com/@Planup.
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