Working with influencers can be a bit of a minefield. Whether you are looking for bloggers or social media influencers, there are thousands to choose from – most of whom will not be suitable for your brand. From narrowing down your selection to discussing compensation, influencer campaigns can cause major headaches. But they don’t have to. We spoke to industry experts who regularly work with influencers. Here are some of their tips for getting the most out of your campaigns:
“When you are choosing which influencers to work with on your campaign, one of the most important things to consider is the individual’s engagement with their audience. Do they interact with them on a regular basis? Will they reply to comments that are left on their posts? Are they actively engaging in conversation with other profiles? People buy from people and ensuring you are working with an influencer who is happy to talk about your brand with their community, means so much more than 100s of empty likes.”
“Lots of brands have successfully created new sales channels built on and driven by influencer marketing and relationships – it’s never been more difficult to get the attention of busy influencers with your product or brand. Influencers get pitch emails every single day asking for the same thing. Be brief with your initial emails. Get to the point and make it easy for the busy influencer to respond. Don’t fill your email with product or brand information – simply include a link to your website so you can keep your first email short.”
Ruby McKenzie, Digital Content Executive, Ellisons
“Authenticity is the buzzword when it comes to working with influencers. It’s so important to collaborate with someone who has an emotional affinity with the brand, as they are more likely to convey authentic messaging and extra coverage.
Influencers who genuinely love the product or experience will convey a believable recommendation to their followers. We’ve found they’ll go above and beyond to feature the brand as much as possible across their social media channels, and some of the ones we’ve worked with have even done so without the need for payment.”
“When working with influencers, it’s highly important that you do your research beforehand, to ensure they fully represent your brand and values.
Never discount the micro-influencers either: sure, big names may have more followers, but micro-influencers will often have a more highly-engaged audience, and be more willing to work with you.
When working with influencers, I would recommend considering a range of ways in which you can work together, and listen to your chosen influencer(s) ideas – after all, they know their audience better than you ever will!
Whilst outfit posts and vlogs are obvious, if the partnership is going well, then why not consider a long-term collaboration, whereby your influencer(s) becomes more like a brand ambassador?”
“Build relationships! I would much rather have a handful of my ‘go to’ influencers who I have a strong relationship with. This is something I have noticed changing in the beauty industry recently. Lots of brands are now recruiting ‘ambassadors’ as opposed to getting influencers to promote their brand as it looks a lot more authentic to the consumer.”
“When you’re working with influencers, don’t forget the small guys. Often overlooked in favour of those with huge numbers of followers, we have had some amazing results from beauty influencers with less than 1,000 followers. Their fan base, although small, is generally incredibly loyal with a lot of trust in the person’s honesty – particularly when it comes to beauty product suggestions. Don’t dictate what the influencer must say, either. We find it’s much more natural to let them explain the product in their own style and words. That said, if your product has a strange name (as ours can do) it’s very worthwhile letting them know exactly how to pronounce it!”