We live in an age when anyone with access to the internet can create and distribute content about any subject. Everyone putting in the effort, creating content and posting it online, can be considered an influencer. And this means some exciting opportunities for brands. But when faced with huge numbers of influencers and content creators, it can be very difficult to find the right ones for your brand, manage them, keep track of what they are posting and analyse the results.
Below are 5 of the most common issues our clients are facing with their influencer marketing campaigns – and some of our solutions.
Issue #1: “I struggle to find relevant influencers for my brand”
- I’ve got products I’d like to send to content creators – how do I find the right people?
- I don’t know content creators in the endurance sports and outdoors sectors;
- There are too many people claiming to be influencers. How do I pick the right ones for me?
- I am worried that some influencers have fake followers. How do I avoid them?
- Use one of the numerous Instagram keyword search engines to find the right influencers
- Use a qualitative analysis tool to check if they have fake followers, and what their engagement levels are e.g. SocialBlade
- Before you start working with an influencer, check they have not been collaborating with your competitors (at least not recently) – or it won’t come across as very genuine. Delve into their history – what an influencer has posted recently might not be what they regularly post – to understand their values and who they’ve been working with.
- Contact influencers you are thinking about working with directly to find out more about them. You can direct message through social channels or even sometimes find their email address (in a biography on their social account for example).
…. or simply use the Freestak platform to browse through our list of >1,000 pre-selected, qualitatively vetted sports influencers. Book your free 30-min consultation.
Issue #2: “I don’t have the expertise or time to set up and run influencer campaigns efficiently”
- Sometimes I need to launch a new product and get influencers involved fast – how do I do that without spending all my time on recruitment?
- I have tons of samples I’d like to give out to content creators in my sector – but I’m not sure where to start;
- How do I get content creators postal address and sizes to send them product to review?
- In order to get products out to influencers fast, you need to have a database to hand. This can be kept on a CRM system (such as SalesForce or PipeDrive) or spreadsheets. Beware though – unless you can constantly update your database it will quickly become obsolete.
- To get started with influencers one essential ingredient is a clear brief. The best ones include; what your brand and campaign is all about, what you are offering and what you are asking for in return. Also include key details like the hashtags linked to the campaign, relevant dates and so on. This will allow influencers to assess if they want to work with you and reduce the chances of misunderstandings.
- Probably the best way to keep influencers’ data, like address or apparel and shoe sizes, is to use a CRM system. But remember: for it to be useful you’ll have to update it regularly to make sure nothing has changed.
…. with the Freestak platform you can have a comprehensive influencer campaign live on the platform in less then an hour and be connecting with relevant influencers within a day or two. Book a free 30-min consultation to find out how
Issue #3: “I don’t know what influencers are doing with my product or how they are talking about my brand. Additionally I can’t easily estimate the return on investment”
- I’ve sent products to influencer to test; how can I easily check what is being posting, by whom and when?
- I am worried that I’m spending time and money on influencer marketing but there’s no easy way to see if the activities are having any impact;
- Seeing who has posted – as part of a campaign I’m running – is relatively easy. The problem is working out who hasn’t done what they have said they will;
- One way to see what is being posted is to use hashtags that you can track through the various social media platforms. Remember to use hashtags that aren’t used by other brands or social media users not working with you. Otherwise you won’t be able to see your influencers’ posts for all the others.
- In order to make sure you are seeing a return on investment you need to track metrics; the number of people seeing posts linked to your campaign (reach), how many people react to the posts (engagement), how often content is being posted (frequency) and who is posting. You can do this with social media platforms and a spreadsheet. But it is essential you do it regularly.
- In order to check whether an influencer is posting, you simply need to look at their social outlets. Make a note of who has posted as well as who hasn’t. You probably need to do this for each influencer on every channel they are on once or twice a day.
…. by using the Freestak platform you can see all the content relating to your campaign and download reports with clear metrics at the click of a button. Learn about the power of analytics with a free 30-min consultation
Issue #4: “I Want to build long term relationships with influencers and ambassadors. But don’t know how to do that efficiently and effectively”
- I have been working with specific content creators for a while, but I need more of them – what do I do?
- How do I maintain long term relationships with influencers that are right for the brand?
- Some influencers seem to jump from one brand to another with no loyalty. How do I find the ones that are not going to do that?
- If you have a good idea of the qualities you’re looking for in an influencer, that is a good start. Go back to point (1) and use keyword searches to find more influencers. You can also look at who follows the influencers you are working with to see if anyone relevant is in that list
- Maintaining long term relationships with influencers requires you to make them feel part of your brand. So communicate regularly – email can work but we all have busy inboxes. Perhaps set up a WhatsApp group or use a tool like Slack.
- Ensure you make time to regularly share updates from your brand. And make the basis of your relationship with them clear to avoid disappointment or misunderstanding.
- If you identify influencers you want to work with but you’re worried they jump from brand-to-brand, make it clear that you’d like to work with them exclusively. An agreement between both of you will help. Just make sure you understand what they want in return for exclusivity and that you can afford or justify it.
…. or use the Freestak platform to manage all your influencers and ambassadors in a simple-to-use dashboard. See how other brands are doing this for free by booking a 30-min consultation
Issue #5: “I have given the task of working with influencers to my agency. But it is expensive and not their core competence”
- My agency can’t give me numbers / reports on influencer marketing
- My PR agency hasn’t got the right connections in the relevant sectors
- My agency is charging a fortune for influencer marketing
- When you’re busy, out-sourcing your influencer activity to a third party might make sense. But it is essential you know what results they are achieving. Insist that they monitor reach and engagement levels for each campaign, broken down by influencer as a minimum.
- If you’re agency doesn’t have great connections with influencers in the sectors you are interested in, then you need to either find someone that does or insist that your agency fills in the gaps. Irrelevant influencers are a waste of time and money.
- In most agency relationships, time is money. So if you are asking them to do work that they need to charge for, it is going to be expensive. Suggesting that your agency uses the right tools to streamline the influencer work they do for you is a good start.
…. alternatively you can suggest your agency saves time and money by using the Freestak platform. Book your free 30-min consultation to find out more
The list above is not comprehensive, either in terms of the challenges brands face or in the solutions we have suggested. However we have run dozens and dozens of campaigns now for brands of every size and from every area of endurance sports and adventure. Over and over again, we hear the same issues. So if any of those we have listed above sound familiar, please get in touch – we’d love to help with a free 30-min consultation.
If you want to know more about how we work with clients, here are the three most popular ways.