Collaborating with influencers is a great way to promote your brand and reach out to your target audience. This is perhaps the reason why a lot of marketers have jumped onto the influencer marketing bandwagon.
A study shows that 9 out of 10 marketers plan to maintain or increase their influencer marketing budgets.
So, who’s using influencer marketing?
Several brands, large and small, across the world are leveraging this method of marketing to promote themselves. However, there is a common misconception that influencer marketing is only meant for big brands.
Does that mean that small businesses can also leverage influencer marketing?
Of course, yes.
Not all influencers charge huge amounts of money for brand collaborations.
You can partner with nano- and micro-influencers in your niche to promote your small business. These influencers might not have huge followings, but they are more relatable. And relatability has become a more important factor than popularity for people to follow an influencer.
In fact, relatability has become two times as important as popularity. And nano- and micro-influencers shine at this because their audience perceives them as people who are just like them.
This is perhaps the reason why nearly 36% of marketers today partner with nano- and micro-influencers who charge significantly lower fees than macro-influencers and still generate maximum engagement.
You, too, can jump onto this trend and take advantage of influencer marketing without burning a hole in your pocket.
But how can you get started with influencer marketing?
It can be tricky to get everything right in your influencer marketing campaign.
Here’s a checklist to help you get started:
1. Have You Set Your Goals and KPIs?
It is important to set clear and achievable goals so that you can track your progress. If you’ve done this right, you’ll be able to align your efforts to reach your goals.
The goals will also determine the key performance indicators (KPIs) that you’ll use to monitor your campaign. Hence, it’s crucial to get them right.
Ask yourself these questions to ensure that you have set clear goals:
- Are you trying to drive awareness for your brand or product?
- Do you want to build credibility by providing value to your customers?
- Do you want to garner trust and build on the goodwill of your existing audience?
- Are you targeting a specific audience with particular demographics?
- Are you launching a new product and want to create an easy how-to-use video about it?
2. Have You Identified the Right Social Media Channel?
Creating an effective influencer marketing campaign is one thing, but selecting the right social media channels is a whole another.
Each social media channel has a unique set of audiences, influencers, content, behaviors, and benefits of influencer marketing.
For instance, in influencer marketing campaigns, the most common social media channels used to reach the target audience include:
Instagram: With over 1 billion monthly active users and more than 500 million active daily Story viewers, Instagram is one of the biggest social media platforms.
It has a high number of Gen Z and millennials that actively engage with influencers on the platform.
Instagram offers a variety of content formats like Instagram Stories, live videos, and posts. It also allows you to create long-form videos and upload them to IGTV.
For example, bee-based hair products brand, Gisou, partnered with beauty influencer, Melissa Reyes, for an Instagram Story.
YouTube: YouTube has an audience of all ages varying from Gen Z to Boomers and Gen X. On this platform, influencers can create a wide range of videos such as unboxing, how-tos, DIYs, tips, and incorporate sponsored products or brands into their vlogs.
Additionally, the “Description” box below the YouTube video allows creators to easily insert links that can help drive traffic to your website.
Facebook: It is the largest social media platform around the world, with over 2.2 billion users. Apart from millennials, Gen X, and Gen Z, Facebook also includes a large number of baby boomers.
3. Have You Chosen the Right Influencer?
If you’ve reached out to random influencers to promote your brand or product, chances are you wouldn’t get the value and results you’re looking for.
Because random influencers won’t be able to connect well with your target audience. It won’t make much of a difference if your influencer is popular because relatability is two times more important for the audience than popularity.
So, what should you do?
You must evaluate their content, assess how well they align with your brand’s values, and whether or not they will be able to convey your brand’s message well.
If your goal is to generate sales or leads, your influencer should ideally have high engagement rates. This will increase the chances of lead generation or sales conversion from your influencer marketing campaign.
On the other hand, if your goal is brand awareness, you might want to work with influencers who have a larger reach.
Other factors that you should cross-check are:
- Have they previously mentioned that they like your brand?
- Do they often post content related to your niche?
- Do they engage with their audience on a personal level?
These are some important questions you need to answer before you kick-start your influencer marketing campaign.
For instance, if you have a travel brand, you should search for travel influencers who have garnered the trust of their audience and have a similar follower base to your target audience.
Note how Sun Peaks Resort partnered with Callum Snape to promote their brand. He was a great fit for their campaign as he’s an adventure photographer, and his audience are likely to be interested in a skiing resort.
4. Are You Communicating Well With Your Influencers?
Make sure that you are regularly communicating with your influencers. Host brainstorming sessions to talk about their feedback and opinions on the content plan for your campaign.
Because they know what their audience is most likely to engage with and what will grab their attention.
Furthermore, regularly communicating with your influencers will ensure that the correct message is being conveyed to your target audience.
You should also leverage content marketing tools to ensure that the quality of content that they create is nothing short of extraordinary.
Make sure you give them creative freedom to create the content for your marketing campaign.
Influencers spend years learning what drives their audience’s engagement, interest, likes, positive reactions, and actions. So they know their audience at the core and how to engage them.
You have, however, give them key points to focus on when describing your brand or product.
5. Have You Created a Strong Influencer Agreement?
A well-drafted influencer agreement clearly outlines the expectations from both the brand and the influencer.
Ensure that your influencer agreement covers all the aspects of your partnership. A weak agreement might leave both parties dissatisfied and may lead to conflicts as well.
Additionally, writing and signing legal agreements makes the project more concrete. In case of any conflict, both parties can cite the contract and take appropriate action.
These are some of the points that your agreement needs to address:
- Deadline: Set crystal clear deadlines for the first draft of the sponsored content, as well as the final dates on which the content will be posted.
- Deliverables: The contract must include all the deliverables from each party. You must also describe the basic parameters of these deliverables to ensure that you can raise a concern if there are any issues.
- Ownership: Clearly define who owns the sponsored content after the campaign is live, how it can be used (repurposing), and who has the right to use it.
- Exclusivity: It won’t make much sense if the influencer promotes your competitor shortly after your campaign ends. Your contract should include a list of competitors the influencer can’t work with and for how long after your campaign has ended.
Influencer marketing isn’t a cakewalk. You have to be continuously on your toes to analyze and determine what works best for your brand.
For a successful influencer marketing campaign, you need to find influencers who will represent your brand in a way that not only aligns with your goals but also attracts their audience.
An influencer marketing checklist can come in handy to help you figure out if your campaign is on the right track. This can help improve the chances of it becoming a success.
What are the other most important things that an influencer marketing checklist must have? Let us know in the comment section below.