Influencer marketing is still a widely misunderstood practice. Many brands hire social authorities to craft blogs, videos, and other forms of content that will drive sales, brand awareness, and other business goals.
After the content is published and campaign has run its course, that’s a wrap.
If this sounds like a structure your brand has followed, you’re flubbing the magic of influencer marketing: Longevity.
Influencer campaigns are great at providing companies with a quick influx of revenue, traffic, and followers, but the point of the practice is to generate results and success long after a campaign has reached its conclusion.
There are a variety of ways to determine if your campaign will achieve this goal and even more ways to help ensure that it produces benefits for months, or possibly even years, to come. Here’s how:
Opt for Resonance over Size
In order to build a stellar campaign, brands need to find, contact, and recruit influencers who embody their organization’s message and truths. Many companies simply seek out the largest influencers they can afford thinking that someone’s ridiculous reach will provide the most benefit.
While this seems like a logical approach, and will likely benefit your campaign in the short term, it won’t engender long-lasting payoffs.
It is vital for brands to consider an influencer’s content style, demographic, and engagement statistics before signing on the dotted line.
In many cases, as Mr. Brown pointed out earlier, micro influencers are the ones who will help fortify indelible results. These folks have far more engaged followings than larger influencers and their audiences cling to their every word; including product recommendations.
But if you really want to keep your influencer-assisted gravy train rolling, the next segment is crucial.
Build Real Relationships
In order to build prosperous relationships of any kind, one cannot exclusively think about their own needs. When it comes to influencer marketing, many lose sight of the fact that these are actual people and not just marketing tools; this is always to a campaign’s detriment.
Brands can help build relationships with influencers in a myriad of ways. One of the best things a business can do to further their rapport with social superstars is to loosen a campaign’s messaging requirements so that an influencer can have free reign over the content. This will allow an influencer’s authenticity to shine and make the campaign more fun for them and audiences.
Another way to build trust is by sending an influencer gifts that fit their personality or help make their lives easier; not just a product that needs promoting or one that your company produces. This will help show these folks that you are legitimately paying attention to them and are grateful for their work.
There is also a chance that an influencer will give your brand a shout out for the awesome offering; but don’t do it for the publicity. Do it because you want to build a lasting relationship.
Test Influencers before Committing
One of the best ways to ensure that your influencer campaign will generate long term results is to test out influencers in the short term before committing to the long haul.
Brock Murray, COO of seoplus+, summed this sentiment up beautifully:
“Start with a three-month contract at most, and analyze outcomes over this period to gauge whether results will be sustainable with their audience over a longer period. During analysis, be sure to both quantify and qualify, weighing the stats as well as the audience engagement taking place.”
This is a tactic that Evolve! regularly leverages in our campaigns. It is important to test out influencers in various genres, play around with amplification strategies, and A/B test any element possible in order to determine which features and influencers are most beneficial while simultaneously eliminating elements that don’t perform as well.
The entire point of influencer marketing is the long term successes that it creates. If your brand is too zoned in on the short term, you are missing out on massive amounts of potential views, engagements, followers, and most importantly, revenue.