When thinking about the rising social media stars, names like Zoella Sugg (over 10 million followers on Instagram) or Tanya Burr (more than 3 million Instagram followers) come to mind.
Brands who want to position themselves in the blog and influencer market often want to collaborate with famous stars. The impressive gross reach of these influencers posting about fashion, lifestyle and food seems very attractive for spreading a brand’s message and gaining a lot of attention. This reach focused approach is not a very strategic one when looking for the right influencer for a campaign. It is crucial to not focus on pure reach, but to take a holistic approach and consider these different aspects:
1. Does the influencer fit with my brand?
2. Is the pricing strategy transparent?
3. How high will the expected return on investment be?
4. Does the influencer have high credibility with their followers?
The fourth point is regularly underestimated. According to a study that focused on influencers, medium-sized influencers perform better when it comes to credibility (94% vs. 83%), competence (94% vs. 84%) as well the quality of explanation (92% vs. 83%) than rising social media stars. The so-called “micro influencers” are the hidden gems of the market. This difference in performance has to be taken into account when choosing an influencer for your brand.
Reach vs. Interaction: Important criteria for picking the ideal influencer
Strategic and well-thought out influencer marketing doesn't just mean focusing on the gross reach of an influencer, but taking into account a mix of criteria consisting of (net) reach, relevancy and the target audience as well as engagement (likes, reading duration, comments, etc.), creativity, personality, individuality and authenticity.
This criteria combined with a technical solution allows a high degree of automation in the campaign handling, pricing and detailed reporting during a brand collaboration. This finally makes it possible to analyse the return on investment based on scalable KPIs (e.g. cost per reader). Only the direct collection of data from the influencer channels allows a reliable estimate of the expected return on investment and therefore, the whole influencer marketing campaign.
Integrated Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is included in the entire marketing mix with an average share of 5-7%. Influencer marketing is a fundamental part of a complete marketing strategy and therefore should be treated the same way as other marketing channels. The analysis of results and a reliable reporting system are necessary: a scalable and automated process is essential.
The central analysis and reporting of the influencer’s activities on their different channels is the last logical step of a successful influencer marketing campaign. By keeping this in mind, influencer marketing can be conducted in a scalable and predictable manner without using high cost social media stars.
Jan Homann is CEO & Co-founder of blogfoster