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How to Optimize Your Influencer Marketing Strategy to Increase Sales

Have you implemented influencer marketing and were disappointed by the results? Or maybe you’re thinking of running an influencer marketing campaign but aren’t sure where to start? Influencer marketing has the potential to bring in $6 for every $1 spent. The catch? There are a lot of things you need to do to optimize your influencer strategy to land these results. That’s where this post comes in. Will Working With Influencers Really Bring in Sales? With 82% of consumers depending on influencers for product recommendations, influencer marketing is one of the most effective ways to create brand awareness and bring in sales. Influencer marketing speaks to the modern-day consumer who wants a third-party recommendation instead of hearing from a brand itself. The right influencers weave brands into their content in an authentic way and can showcase how your brand fits into their lives. When consumers see an influencer solving a pain point that they too face, the conversion rates skyrocket. When constructed strategically, influencers will put your brand in front of their engaged and eager audience expanding the reach of your brand and encouraging consumers to purchase. 5 Ways to Optimize Your Influencer Marketing Strategy I’ve been doing influencer marketing since before it was called influencer marketing and over the years, I’ve tested out strategies that power my campaigns. I also made mistakes at the beginning that I learned from. So trust me when I say the following 5 ways to optimize your influencer marketing strategy are absolutely crucial. Create your influencer personas: Start with your buyer personas and determine the criteria for the influencers they follow. Identify things like which social platform they spend the most time on, what are their common pain points, where are they located, which genre of influencers can reach them, etc. Come up with a creative campaign theme: If you don’t give your influencers an engaging campaign theme, you risk earning media that is boring and is a stale review. Balancing your creative direction with an influencer’s creativity is key. Give influencers 2 themes to pick from when creating their posts. You also need to equip influencers with links, hashtags, deadlines, etc. to keep your campaign on track. Enlist influencers for long-term partnerships: Research shows that when an influencer mentions a brand 3 or more times, the conversions go way up. Brands who succeed with influencer marketing often contract influencers for a year and have them post at least once per quarter. Give influencers a unique discount code: Create a discount code for each influencer that your audience uses when they checkout online and gives them 15% off their purchases. This allows you to attribute sales to each influencer and your campaign as a whole. It also creates an incentive for consumers to buy from your brand. Work with mid-level influencers: Mid-level influencers have 50,000-100,000 followers on any given platform and tend to have higher engagement rates than macro-influencers. Not to mention they’re easier on the budget and charge about $400 for a post. I suggest working with 10-20 mid-level influencers that are a niche fit with your brand. Have Influencers Create Posts that Align With Each Platform Often your influencers will have a strong presence on multiple platforms allowing you to implement an omnichannel approach to influencer marketing. Keep in mind that each social platform has a different audience and a different vibe. Take TikTok for instance, it has a younger demographic and a laid-back vibe. You wouldn’t want to post the same video to TikTok and Facebook. Blogs are great for SEO and showcasing a thorough brand experience but you wouldn’t put the wall of text from a blog post on Instagram. You get the gist. How to Get More Leverage Out of Your Influencer Partnerships Aside from conversions from your influencers’ audiences, there are other things you can do to get more leverage out of your influencer partnerships. Dice up earned videos and optimize them for paid social ads–this is great because sometimes you can’t rely on influencer’s organic reach alone and utilizing their content for paid ads expands the reach Utilize content and links generated by influencers in your marketing emails to showcase the social proof that consumers crave Use quotes and images from earned media on your website to show already interested potential consumers a third-party endorsement of your products or services Final Thoughts: Next Steps Influencer marketing probably sounds really good right now. And you have the strategies in this post to set you up for success. So, what next? Run influencer marketing in-house: If you or someone on your team has the bandwidth to run your influencer marketing strategy, that’s great! Follow the best practices and regularly recruit new influencers. You may want to consider an influencer marketing platform and there are tons out there with most offering free trials so you can find the perfect fit. Hire a freelancer: There are many experts out there that can work with you and/or your team to execute your influencer marketing strategy. Be sure to check out their past work, fill them in on your brand and goals, listen to their creative campaign themes, and choose someone that already has influencer relationships in place. If this sounds like a good option for you, I’ve been doing influencer marketing for 11 years you can reach me at Kristen@Rubicly.com Enlist an agency: If you want to supercharge your influencer marketing strategy and have a good budget, hiring an influencer marketing agency may be the way to go. Agencies have tons of relationships and expertise and often give brands a team of people who will work on their efforts. When it comes to recommending agencies for influencer marketing, I usually recommend Rossman Media. Whether you hire help or run influencer marketing in-house, be sure that you or your hired help follows the best practices outlined in this post. Do you have any tips when it comes to effective influencer marketing? I’d love to read your insights in the comments below!