Hezz – Build Your Powerful Influencer Campaign Marketing & Prepare For 2023
Influencer Campaign Marketing? How does it work..?
It’s almost impossible to scroll through social media without seeing some form of influencer campaign marketing, or content creators. Everywhere you look, influencers show off their latest snacks, clothes, makeup brands, or candles, and that’s just the beginning. Promote with Hezz.
From traditional posts to ever-popular Instagram Stories to long videos, influencers constantly find new ways to be sponsored on their favorite platforms.
When defining influencers, it’s important to note that anyone can be an influencer. Like John Maxwell says, “To be an influencer, you must love people before you can try to lead them.” If you have one follower, you have influence. If you get one like on your posts, you’re generating engagement.
So let’s take a moment to acknowledge the aspiring influencers growing their following. These people post about their favorite brands and products simply because they love them. Granted, they’re probably also hoping for a brand deal in the long run, but at the time they post, they aren’t making any money for their efforts.
When did Influencer Campaign Marketing start?
Influencer marketing is a new thing that just became popular recently. Influencer marketing began 15 years ago. PayPerPost, the first marketplace to pay bloggers for branded content, launched quite a bit of speculation. Since blogs were mainly seen as online diaries, many experts were skeptical that adding advertising or sponsorships into the content would feel authentic.
That’s a challenge that today’s influencers are still facing, but for those who can promote products or services and sound genuine and authentic, many rewards must be reaped. After all, people want to buy from others, so they’re more likely to trust their recommendations when they find someone they like.
What Is Influencer Campaign Marketing?
Influencer campaign marketing is how brands can promote their products through endorsements or recommendations from influencers and content creators on the internet. Social media and blogs are home to most influencers, although other creators, like podcast hosts, can fit the bill, too. Influencer marketing is often a part of brand awareness campaigns, but it can also result in plenty of conversions and sales.
While influencer marketing began in 2006, it has changed significantly over the past 15 years. Facebook and Twitter were starting, but Instagram wouldn’t join the social media landscape until 2010. When influencers began, they were primarily bloggers who shared stories about their lives and promoted products they used each day.
It’s a paradox, but while influencer marketing hasn’t changed that much, it’s vastly different in several ways. First, influencers are still sharing stories about their lives and promoting products they use each day. Now, though, many people are career influencers, earning a living through brand sponsorships. When it began, any money a blogger made through a partnership was nice side cash but certainly not enough to be considered full-time income.
Influencer Campaign Marketing By Platforms
Influencers today also have so many more options than the original influencers did. There are countless social media platforms to choose from and many kinds of content they can create. For those who like video platforms, YouTube or TikTok are excellent options. Those who want to share long-form written posts can benefit from traditional blogging or even Facebook. Finally, influencers who wish to do a little of everything can turn to Instagram. While Clubhouse is still a new platform, it probably won’t be long until influencers find a way to turn that into a spot for their promotions.
Influencer Campaign Marketing By The Numbers
Influencer marketing is a top-rated marketing tool right now, and for a good reason:
- Nine out of 10 brands are using some form of influencer marketing.
Unless you want your company to be left behind, it’s time to start exploring your options for influencer marketing. No matter what industry you’re in, there’s sure to be at least one influencer who fits your needs. And don’t be worried if you can only find smaller influencers in your niche because:
- Generate an equivalent earned media value of $18 per $1 spent.
If you’re looking to grow your brand awareness, increase sales, or get your brand’s name out into the world in any way possible, you need to take advantage of influencer marketing. You don’t see a media value like this with other marketing tactics. The most important thing is to approach influencer marketing strategically, so you do it correctly. Generating this kind of earned media equivalence only happens if you work with the right influencers in the right niche.
4 Reasons Why Influencer Campaign Marketing Will Continue to Grow
Influencer marketing is popular now, but it’s not just a trend that will fade away. It’s nowhere near done growing. Instead, it will continue to become more and more popular over the coming years, so now is the best time to learn about it and prepare to incorporate it into your strategies.
1. More people are becoming influencers.
While it might feel like too many influencers, that’s not the case. As social media platforms continue to grow, new people have more opportunities to become influencers.
Some will undoubtedly do this intentionally, while others will simply be sharing about their life and happen to strike up a brand deal with a company they love. Either way, there will be more people growing audiences in specific niches. That means you have a better chance of finding someone talking to your particular ideal audience that’s perfect for your eCommerce store.
2. Influencer campaign marketing agencies are growing in popularity.
As with any business strategy or tactic, influencer marketing is becoming standardized. There are now agencies that represent influencers and agencies designed to help brands find the best influencers for their approach. As the business surrounding influencer marketing continues to grow, the marketing itself will also keep expanding.
These agencies are an excellent option for eCommerce brands that don’t want to dedicate the time or resources to keeping up with influencer marketing trends. However, you can still take advantage of the incredible success that often comes with influencer marketing without learning everything yourself.
3. There are more content options.
Influencers began by creating written blog posts talking about their favorite products. Then, social media became more popular, and the kinds of content influencers were creating change. Nowadays, video is the most popular content for influencers to make when promoting products. Instagram and Facebook Live, IGTV, YouTube, and TikTok have all shown the incredible power of video.
However, the growing popularity of podcasts and the advent of audio-only apps like Clubhouse makes you wonder what the next big trend in influencer marketing will be. While we might not know the answer, it will continue to evolve. E-commerce brands should prepare to take advantage of new, innovative platforms and content by joining these new platforms as they arise. Influencers will likely want to work with you if you are already building a following on a particular platform.
4. Influencers are showing more of their reality.
In many ways, influencers are going back to their roots. In recent years, people have become far more interested in seeing posts that aren’t overly edited. They don’t want to listen to, learn from, or take advice from someone whose life seems entirely unattainable. Instead, they want to see reality. They want to see influencers make mistakes and have bad days, pick themselves back up again, and keep going.
Because of this open transparency, even more, people trust and follow influencers, which means more people will see and buy from sponsored content. As a result, E-commerce brands can reach even more people when they work with influencers, especially if they’re not caught up in showing only the perfect, highly-filtered sides of their life.
Ways Ecommerce Stores Are Using Influencer Campaign Marketing
Influencer marketing is working for all kinds of businesses. Big brands work with celebrities to promote their products, and entrepreneurs who are just getting started to find a way to work with influencers who are still growing their platforms. E-commerce stores are using influencer marketing in a few key ways, and if you aren’t on board yet, it’s time to join.
1. To promote their store.
Promoting an online store is the most common and obvious way eCommerce brands can use influencer marketing. When influencers are talking about or promoting your brand and products, it’s easy for them to provide a link to your eCommerce store. It’s easier than telling someone they must go to Target or “wherever books are sold.” Instead, they can add a link directly to your page, which means potential customers are less likely to get lost.
Tip: Create a code or provide influencers with links to your page. This way, you’ll be able to track and see the ROI of your influencer campaigns.
2. Share user-generated content.
Another great benefit of influencer marketing is having user-generated content (UGC) that you can share. People trust other people more than they trust brands, by and large. However, finding images and content from people outside of your team can feel like a challenge. When you work with an influencer, you can request the use of their content on your page. Then, you’ll be able to re-post their content, showing your audience the partnership you have with this influencer and their images and copy.
Tip: Create a plan for sharing UGC to maximize the benefits fully. If you know you’re promoting a particular product soon, save your UGC for that product until that promotion comes around so you can have the full effect.
3. Use testimonials from influencers.
Every brand needs more testimonials on its website, but sometimes customers don’t want to leave a review or share their experience. You can capture their testimonials and story when you work with an influencer. Put their information on your site or the product page they’re reviewing. Specifically, you can provide more social proof to your potential customers, making them more confident in purchasing.
Tip: Outline what kind of testimonial you want from the influencer at the beginning of your campaign. That is the best way to ensure they capture all the content and ideas you want to see in their testimonials.
4. Offer a promotion with an influencer.
Offering a discount when working with an influencer is a great way to increase your sales and ROI on the campaign. First, as we mentioned earlier, having a discount code specifically for that influencer will allow you to track their conversions. Beyond that, many people will strongly consider purchasing if they can save money while doing it. Sometimes that can be the tipping point that inspires someone to click through to your shop and make the purchase.
Tip: Alongside a base rate, you can negotiate with the influencer to offer them a percentage of each sale made with their code. That can encourage them to be thorough when creating their campaign.
5. Work with micro-influencers.
We alluded to this a little earlier, but working with micro-influencers is undoubtedly the way to go, especially for eCommerce brands. Don’t be afraid of working with someone with a small following so long as their engagement rate is significant. If you’re working with an Instagram influencer, it can be easy to feel like you need to choose someone with at least 10,000 followers so they can take advantage of the swipe-up feature, but that’s not true. That feature isn’t a requirement for a successful campaign. Instead, they can use a direct messaging strategy that allows them to rely on the connections they’ve built with their small following to encourage them to learn more or buy.
Tip: Always look for the engagement rate on their posts. Sometimes influencers with big followings have gotten to that point by buying Instagram followers. Unfortunately, these bought followers tend to be fake, which means they aren’t going to engage with the campaign or purchase your product.
How To Build An Influencer Campaign Marketing Strategy
Now that you’re ready to incorporate influencer marketing into your overall marketing plan, it’s time to start with a strategy. Like any good marketing tactic, building a system can ensure that you’re thorough and methodical. You’ll know exactly what you want to get from influencer marketing, and you’ll have a process for measuring it to see your progress along the way.
1. Document your goals and key performance indicators.
Any good strategy begins with goals. When you’re thinking about influencer marketing, there are a number of goals you could have for your campaign. While the most obvious is probably making sales, working with influencers can do more for your brand than just create sales in the moment. Here are a few goal ideas:
Building Brand Awareness
Working with influencers means your brand’s name is getting in front of thousands of people who may have never heard of it before. In addition, they’re learning about your brand from someone they trust, which means they will be more ready to learn about your company or follow you on social media.
Attracting A New Target Market
If you’re looking to change your ideal customer a bit, there’s no better way than working with an influencer. Be advised: explaining to the influencer why your brand is suitable for their audience will probably take a little more work. Influencers are often protective of their audiences because they’ve worked hard to grow their following and earn their trust. However, if you work with the influencer to create a strong campaign plan, they can help you reach a new market.
Facilitating Lead Generation
Finally, influencer marketing can help you get more leads and customers. Depending on what you sell, your influencer partnership should move its followers toward a nurturing campaign to better get to know your brand. Or, send them directly to your e-commerce shop to start making sales.
Once you know your goal, it’s time to identify your key performance indicators or KPIs. These will be the metrics you’ll track throughout your campaign and analyze when it’s over to see how well your campaign did. For example, if your goal is brand awareness, you might want to follow visits to your website or followers on social media. If your goal is lead generation, you’ll want to track sign-ups for your nurturing sequence. You can follow your sales with a unique link for influencers or a special promo code.
2. Understand the influencer landscape.
Before you begin working with influencers, you’ll want to take the time to understand the landscape. First, know the different types of influencers — we’ve talked a lot about micro-influencers, but there are also macro-influencers and celebrities. By and large, you’ll want to avoid stars, as their following is so big that their engagement rate is meager, but their rates are often relatively high.
Take some time to observe influencers and see how they promote brands before you look to pitch your brand to anyone. This will ensure that you’re more well-informed and can make a more significant impression on the influencer.
3. Connect with influencers.
Once you’re confident that you know what you’re doing, it’s time to connect with influencers. You can find influencers that will work for your brand in many ways, but you’ll want to start by looking at others in your industry. Not only will you discover who your competitors are working with, but you’ll also see what size influencers they’re targeting. Then, you can decide whether you want to look for people with a similar-sized following or something different.
Depending on the platform you want to promote, you can find tools to help you identify influencers in your niche. For example, InfluenceGrid helps you find TikTok influencers, and Awario enables you to discover influencers on various platforms. But you don’t have to use tools like this to find influencers. You can also search through hashtags to find people making #sponsored posts. From there, you can look through their audience and see if that resonates with you.
You can also start with your followers. First, click on a few of the people already following your brand. Then, scroll through the other accounts they’re following and see if you can find any influencers. Again, that is a great way to find someone already targeting your ideal audience.
Influencer marketing is here to stay and will only grow more in the coming years. E-commerce brands can genuinely benefit from working with influencers, regardless of their goal. Influencers can help you grow your following, make sales, or get the word out about your business. No matter what, today is a great day to start creating your influencer marketing strategy.