Influencers can authentically promote your products in a way traditional advertising can’t. By building a relationship with a small team of influencers, you can reach new customers while driving brand awareness and sales.
While customers prefer influencer marketing to advertising, managing influencers is a bigger commitment than buying a few ads. To succeed at influencer marketing, marketing teams need the time, staff, and budget to dedicate to these long-term relationships. Influencer management tools, like IZEA Flex, can ease your workload, but you’ll also need to practice these tips to manage your brand influencers year after year.
Communicate regularly, even when a campaign isn’t running
Before, during, and after a campaign, you’ll be in constant contact with influencers. You’ll start by discussing expectations and content deadlines. You’ll check in at the campaign’s midway point to talk about how the campaign’s going, and you’ll likely set up a post-campaign call to review the metrics and discuss ways to improve your next campaign.
Communication is necessary during a campaign, but it’s still important even when it isn’t running.
Consider setting up a mini-communication plan that ensures you reach out to influencers throughout the year. For example, you could plan to send a personalized ‘check-in’ email once a quarter, share the company newsletter with your influencers (that could include an influencer spotlight), and send each influencer a DM complimenting a specific piece of their content.
Set calendar reminders to make sure none of these communication pieces is forgotten.
Make influencers feel like part of your team
Once you’ve found an influencer or two that’s easy to work with and represents your brand well, keep them around. You can do one-off campaigns with influencers, but it’s easier to nurture long-term relationships than find new influencers for each marketing effort.
What’s the best way to nurture an influencer relationship? Make them feel like part of your team. Here are a few ways to show your appreciation and promote a team atmosphere, even though your influencers don’t have a physical desk in your office:
- Send free branded swag every quarter
- Consider sending a branded gift for birthdays or Christmas
- Reshare influencer’s content
- Bring them in for a tour (or a remote tour)
- Host a networking lunch (or a virtual lunch)
Teach them about your brand
The more influencers know about your brand, the more likely they are to support it (even outside of campaign times). The trick is to educate influencers about your brand without seeming as though you want to control what they say about it.
During a campaign, provide a campaign brief that includes all of the necessary details, including the campaign’s goal, KPIs to watch, target audience, brand tone, and deadlines. In addition, you could share selected pieces of your brand guide or customer personas that might help them as they create content for your products. AI Briefs in Flex allows you to input your details and generate a campaign brief easily that you can then send to influencers.
Look for other educational opportunities too. You could invite influencers to a product launch party, for example, or give the influencer team a virtual demo of your product or software.
Turn to influencers for feedback
Ideally, influencers are some of your most trusted customers. As a result, they’re in an ideal position to share feedback with you.
An influencer manager can ask influencers for input on a new company logo or a beta product. Is one of your products dropping in sales? Send the product to influencers and ask them to share their input with your internal team to identify pain points contributing to declining interest.
Influencers can offer more than an Instagram snap or a video review. If you maintain communication with them, they can provide feedback on many topics.
Use an influencer management tool to ease influencer management
Influencer marketing can be a valuable tool for brands, but it’s a commitment. Many marketing teams are already stretched thin, dealing with everything from SEO and blog writing to crafting emails and monitoring social stats.
If your team wants to leverage influencer marketing but needs some assistance, IZEA Flex is an ideal solution. With this platform, you can find influencers, communicate with them, use templated influencer contracts, AI brainstorming tools, accept deliverables, pay influencers, and monitor your campaign — all from one platform.
If your marketing team is overwhelmed and simply doesn’t have the resources to manage influencers, let IZEA Managed Services step in to serve as your extended influencer team. IZEA can handle your campaigns from start to finish, leaving your team to continue its marketing excellence in other areas.
No matter what level of assistance you seek, IZEA has influencer relationship management software for your brand.