Influencer marketing is most effective when it’s treated as a long-term investment. You can do one-off campaigns, but when you find several influencers who get your brand, it’s best to keep them around for long-term influencer partnerships. As you invest in influencers, they’ll invest in your brand.
To retain influencers, you’ll need to do more than reach out during campaigns. You need to build a relationship, which takes time and effort. Use these tips to engage with influencers regularly and retain their skills long-term.
Pay them fairly
Base your pay on a long-term relationship. If you compensate influencers well from the start, they’re more likely to support your brand for an extended time. Of course, figuring out how much you should pay influencers is probably one of the most challenging aspects for a brand.
For some guidance, read our 2023 State of Influencer Earnings report. You’ll find several helpful charts, like the one below, that provide a baseline for compensation. This chart breaks down how much brands paid creators by platform.
For example, the average cost of a Facebook post is $642, while Twitch content costs $4,373.
While compensation will vary based on experience, audience size, and types of content, the chart gives you a starting point and ensures you’re not underpaying influencers.
Share some social love throughout the year
When you’re in the middle of a campaign, it’s common to share the creator’s content and mention him or her on your brand channels.
To maintain a relationship, show your support for influencers even when you’re not in the midst of a campaign. Share your influencers’ posts, add comments, and praise their work or choices they make that align with your brand.
Keep an eye on their social channels and engage regularly.
Consider a regular touchpoint
To make sure your brand remains relevant, find a way to touch base consistently. You could set up quarterly Zoom meetings, send a monthly newsletter, or have regular lunch dates if you work with local influencers.
You need a way to check in, so to speak, to make sure your relationship doesn’t go stagnant.
Invite influencers to participate in other areas
Influencers know your product inside and out, and that’s a valuable point of view. Rather than just relying on them to create and share content, ask them to help with other marketing tasks. For example, you could get their input on a new logo, ask them to test products or help with focus groups. By doing so, influencers will feel valued and appreciated.
Send a little swag
During a campaign, you’ll likely send products to influencers to try or demo, but consider sending swag without expecting content in return. Send a branded gift after a campaign to say thank you or put together a nice box of goodies for the holidays. Consider sending each influencer something nice for their birthday or on the anniversary of their first campaign with your brand.
You could send them free products, a hot new item that hasn’t hit store shelves yet, or a gift card with a handwritten note. Take the time to package your gift nicely. Try to create an enjoyable unboxing experience for your influencers.
Put reminders in your calendar to make sure you remember to gather the goods and send them out.
Host an event
If your brand has a team of influencers or ambassadors, consider hosting an event just for them. You could host a mini-conference, plan a party around a product launch, or invite the team out for dinner and drinks.
A makeup company hosted a product launch party full of Insta-worthy picture spots and invited influencers out. Creators shared cute snaps from the event, like this little shout-out:
Your brand could do something similar. Pick a venue, bring lots of free swag, and give influencers a chance to network while promoting your brand.
You could host a virtual event, too, like an online happy hour. Send boxes of swag ahead of the event and ask everyone to bring a cocktail to chat.
Retaining influencers is a sound practice to ensure consistency in marketing. Sometimes, finding the right creator to work with long-term is a challenge. Turn to IZEA’s Managed Services team for help. Thanks to our talent partners and vast influencer network, we can help manage these influencer relationships.