In recent years the influencer marketing industry has grown quite a bit. It has more than doubled in market value, and in 2021 has reached a value of $13.8 billion. If the market’s value is increasing so fast, the strategy must be effective for companies that invest in it.
However, if you’ve not tried influencer marketing before it’s possible that you’re not in a position to simply start. So we’ve put together an array of suggestions to help you understand how to navigate the five phases of an influencer marketing campaign.
Campaign Definition: Define your goals and your target audience
The first thing you need to decide is your goal. Do you wish to work with influencers in order to increase awareness of your business? Maybe you’re trying to attract new customers and increase your sales. Whatever the reason, ensure your objective is specifically defined.
Establish some KPIs (key performance indicators) to track your progress towards your desired goal. For instance, for a sales campaign you may want to record how many customers use discounts from influencers, as well as the sales and profits generated.
Alongside this, it is essential to be aware of your buyer personas. You must know who you are trying to target by your marketing campaign. Consider the gender, age, languages, location, and interests of your target audience, so you can understand these people.
Finally, find out where your customers spend most of their time online. This is the social network where you should launch your campaign. Demographic data can help you determine this. For instance, if you would like to engage teens, then you should consider working with TikTok creators.
Campaign Setup: Find influencers who work within your budget
There are a variety of aspects that influence the price an influencer will charge you, including their country of residence, engagement rate, and the kind of content you’d like them to create. But another important factor is the number of followers.
To better understand this, let’s break down the different levels of influencers:
- Nano influencers, 1-5K followers
- Micro influencers, 5-50K followers
- Medium influencers, 50-100K followers
- Macro influencers, 100K-1M followers
- Mega influencers, 1M+ followers
- Key opinion leaders, no set follower range
The higher you climb in those levels, the more expensive influencers get. Micro influencers and nano influencers often offer to work with you to exchange for free products, or at times for an amount of a few hundred dollars. They’re therefore a good option for those on a budget. But starting at the medium level and beyond, expect fees to start rising more swiftly.
A KOL, or key opinion leader, is someone with an excellent reputation within the field they work in. Because they have other avenues to express their opinions, aside from social media, they don’t have a defined number of followers. KOLs can be costly to deal with and are difficult to connect with, so ensure you consider what kind of return on investment they could offer you.
In any event, make sure you look over influencers’ profiles to look for signs that indicate influencer fraud. No matter if it’s a micro or mega influencer, take a look at the growth of their followers over time, their engagement rates, and the authenticity of their audience to ensure that everything is legitimate.
Campaign Launch: Talk it out, and decide if you’ll need the help of a contract
When you have selected some influencers you want to work with, contact them. Reach out to at least twice as many influencers as you believe you’ll require, since some influencers will not respond or even open your emails.
Negotiate with influencers who are interested in working with you. Consider topics like:
- How much you’ll pay for them (consider both free products as well as costs)
- What amount of content, and in what form, they’ll create
- Posting deadlines
- Any disclosure requirements that the campaign content must meet
- Hashtags or names you’d like them to include
Also, consider whether you require a contract. If you’re offering influencers free products, you typically do not require a contract, except in the event that the product is very expensive. However, if you’re charging fees, it’s better to put the agreement in writing.
If you’re not sure where to start when you’re creating this kind of document, get an influencer contract template. Change your variables so that it includes specific information for the campaign you’re running. And review any questions you might have with your lawyer.
Campaign Tracking: Don’t miss media and results
After your campaign is up and running, be sure that you have a system in place to record results. It is important to monitor the content that influencers share and also track data such as how many comments, likes and impressions those posts get.
To achieve this, you should monitor your brand’s mentions and hashtags associated with your brand. If you’ve asked influential people to use them in their posts, you’ll be informed when they make use of these hashtags. In the event that you don’t work with many influencers, you can log in manually to find out when they’ve posted.
For results, collecting data is dependent on the type of metrics you’re seeking. Google Analytics can capture data regarding your website, such as visits, the links that brought visitors to your site and so on. E-commerce platforms such as Shopify can give you information on sales and revenue. However, you might also have to request from influencers their private information from social media, such as the amount of impressions their posts generated.
Campaign Analysis: Keep in mind that success is relative
The measurement of the effectiveness of your campaign is the last step in your influencer campaign. It’s tempting to compare yourself to peers, or even to other successful campaigns you have seen. But don’t do it!
Success is relative, meaning that you shouldn’t look at yourself in comparison to others. Your success should be measured by looking at the outcomes of your campaign in relation to the money you invested in it.
For instance, if you paid a micro-influencer $100 to help promote your brand’s latest sneakers, and provided them with the sneakers at $50, the investment would be $150 in total. If the influencer generates the sum of $250 in sales then you’ll know that you’ve made money and therefore have succeeded.
Another way to gauge the success of your campaign is by comparing it to your initial goals. Imagine that you employ an influencer, and you pay them $200, hoping they will get 50K views of their content. However, in the end they’ll actually earn 75K. You’ve exceeded your initial expectations, the cost per impression was lower than anticipated, and you can therefore say that you’ve been successful.
Influencer marketing can be difficult. So keep an open mind during the process. It’s possible that you’ll need to make last minute changes, and the result may not be what you’d hoped for. If you don’t end up achieving your goal, examine the reasons why. And look for opportunities that you didn’t anticipate. That way, you’ll be prepared for the next time.