Brands and influencers have the same goal when they partner together for an influencer marketing campaign: success. For a brand, a successful campaign means higher ROI, brand awareness, sales, social engagement, customer insight or whatever the goals of the campaign are. It also means more followers, engagements, status boosts, future partnerships and payout for the influencer.
While their goals are the same, some campaign details are more important to brands, while others are essential to influencers. Brands that hone in on the campaign facts that influencers care most about find that their campaigns run smoother and ultimately have greater success. Consider the following things influencers are looking for to make your next influencer marketing campaign a great one.
Influencers are creators, and they’ve reached the level of success they have by consistently shaping their own style, tone and voice. Brands who allow influencers to continue to have creative freedom gain the most authentic content that will resonate with their audience. Brands that try to impose too many restrictions or scripted posts on influencers will find that their content becomes salesy and impersonal, which turns consumers away.
Specific Campaign Goals
Influencers prefer campaigns that have clearly defined key performance indicators (KPIs). Instead of a brand saying they want the highest engagement possible, for example, they should specify the percentage of engagement they want from posts or an overall campaign. Influencers can help marketers define these KPIs based on the brand’s current performance and the influencer’s past performance. Having clearly defined campaign goals allows the influencer to set realistic, attainable objectives that will achieve the brand’s goals.
Because of the way social media algorithms work, brands benefit more from partnering with influencers for extended periods of time instead of one-off campaigns. For instance, an Instagram story is gone in 24 hours, and a social media post typically gets buried in users’ feeds after 36 hours. Brands may wonder why the post didn’t reap the results they were looking for in these cases.
But when brands form long-term relationships with influencers, the creators are able to build their audiences’ trust in the brand over time. This can translate not only to wider brand awareness but also to deeper brand loyalty and more sales, including repeat sales. Additional benefits to forming long-term relationships with influencers include:
- Stronger and more authentic relationships
- Simplified invoicing and budgeting
- Deeper understanding of the brand by the influencer
- Ability to plan posts in advance, even for a whole year
Influencers know their audiences. They know what will work with them and what will turn them away. Influencers are looking for brands that trust them to create the type of content their audiences are going to engage with. More specifically, influencers want the freedom to tell a story around a product, service or brand so the post feels more organic and genuine.
When an influencer promotes your brand, they’re putting their reputation on the line. They’ve spent time and effort building a consistent relationship with their audience, usually over the span of years. Letting their audience down by promoting a product that doesn’t deliver would be detrimental to their career.
So, influencers care about the products and services they’re promoting and want them to be high-quality. For brands, this means being prepared to offer free merchandise to influencers. It also means giving them time to make a decision about whether your product meets their expectations.
Influencers are also business owners. Creating content for their social media accounts, websites or blogs is a source of income for them. At some point, it may become their main or only source of income. Influencers care about being compensated fairly for the heart, creativity, time and thought they put into promoting your brand. As you negotiate fees, consider industry standards for fair compensation while you’re striving to stay within your budget.
Depending on the influencer’s experience and follower numbers, they may agree to compensation in the form of free products. Or, they may ask for payment per piece, payment per campaign or pay-per-result, such as pay-per-click or pay-per-engagement. Whatever the case, make sure you strive to create an arrangement that’s equitable to both your brand and the influencer. The results of an influencer who feels valued translate to higher-quality work and longer-term commitments with your brand.
In an influencer marketing campaign, a brand sponsors a YouTube video, Instagram post, blog article, podcast or any other content. The influencer creates it and puts it on their social channels. Regardless of the amount of input the brand gave to the post, the influencer maintains ownership of any content they post on their own accounts.
Brands need to understand that, regardless of how successful the post becomes, the influencer has rights to the content. However, if the brand wants to claim rights, it can negotiate with the influencer to purchase the content’s distribution rights.