Influencer Marketing is Changing: How to Adapt
In the beginning, brands aimed to discover and partner with influencers who had the largest following. However, social media changes happen fast, and influencer marketing as a whole has changed significantly. Now, partnerships can seem forced and tired, and algorithm swings limit the display of brands’ posts. Influencer marketing is far from over; however, it's become a more challenging environment. Brands need to adjust their influencer marketing strategies in order to compete in this market.
Make Long-Term Influencer Strategies with Micro-Influencers
Industry leading reporting highlights that micro-influencers are more authentic and have a more loyal audience base than macro-influencers. They also have higher levels of engagement. However, it is not enough to have a one-off campaign with them. People want to see real collaborations that last. Re-engaging micro-influencers to create long-term, meaningful collaborations is essential.
Instead of working with many influencers on small campaigns, start working long-term with micro-influencers who match your brand’s voice and style. One vlog or Instagram post provides only short-term results. But, if you cultivate long-term and quality relationships with a micro-influencer, and eventually consumers, you will get more engagement and more quality content, driving long-term results for your brand.
A good example of this is the long-term collaboration of the open-air shopping center City Creek Center and the micro-influencer Melissa Hendershot. Through Melissa's pictures and videos she's highlighted her experience and the products she's used.
Embrace Influencer Events
A glamorous, insta-worthy event for your influencers, where they can enjoy and mingle, will give them the chance to share their experiences through live updates. Your influencers will try out your services or products and get a sneak peek into your new offerings. Your brand and influencers will get to know each other better, increasing the potential for longer collaborations.
We know that not every brand can afford luxury vacations for their influencers. However, you can apply this concept in simpler ways, unique to your business.
Differentiate your Brand
We advise brands to give your influencers freedom to share their observations and thoughts about your service or product – not scripting every word they post. People will notice that! Just tell them your general ideas and leave them to talk to their followers as they normally do.
Brands know how to handle their message, but influencers often have better strategies in communicating with their audiences as they already know what they need. To convert their audience into leads for your brand, you will need the creative input of your influencers.
Take for example the company Yes To and the blogger and content creator Bethany Aroutunian. Her creative images, long-form, and genuine captions help successfully spread the word about this brand.
Leverage Artificial Intelligence
AI is a growing tool in PR strategies and marketing, and it has great potential for influencer marketing strategies. Using AI, you can test your influencer strategy. Artificial Intelligence allows you to choose the best content formats and topics, so you can hit the mark with every aspect of your strategies. AI can analyze loads of data in a few seconds and deliver helpful predictions and trends that you will use to modify and boost your strategy.
At In/Spree Brands, we match your business with the right influencers who will help you keep up with all influencer marketing trends – we have you covered! Using technology and that human touch, we've helped brands across a wide variety of sectors grow. Schedule a demo with us here.
The Power of Instagram Influencers for Small Businesses
When it comes to growing a business on social media, influencer marketing is a proven growth asset. However, it's not only for big brands, influencer marketing for small businesses can reach a new audience, level-up a campaign, and build brand awareness on a budget.
Determine your Ideal Influencers
Find influencers who will strengthen your brand’s mission and vision, and support your brand’s values and ideals. It is best to collaborate with influencers who are already discussing and engaging with your business or have an audience that align well with your brand.
This way, when they post about the collaboration, it will feel like a natural and genuine one. The easiest way to find the influencers who are actively engaging with you is to look at your posts’ comments. Also, you can search for relevant hashtags that will lead you to the right influencers.
A good example of this is the fragrance brand Jo Malone that collaborated with lifestyle and beauty blogger Fleur. Fleur has been using Jo Malone since 2014 and has posted about her love for Jo Malone many times before.
Share Resources with Your Influencers
Set up a shared Google Drive folder or a Dropbox for your campaigns and a resource folder with information about the brand and editorial style guide. Highlighting some examples for inspiration and general talking points allows the influencers to have some creative direction. Trust your influencers to design an engaging and authentic campaign. Make your project as streamlined as possible!
Build Trust with Your Target Audience and Generate More Engagement
Building a targeted community that you can communicate with daily is important as a brand. If your followers start to engage positively with your Instagram content, it will be easier to create a lasting relationship with them. Share with your followers a behind the scenes view of your business to give your brand a personal and authentic feel. Working with influencers who are open to a take-over is a great way to further the conversation.
Instagram aims to display content a follower 'likes' the most, without prioritizing anyone. Thus, your content will reach more people, leading to a stronger engagement rate by creating relevant, personable content.
Increase Number of Sales
Instagram is one of the best way to find prospects that will convert into sales. Many people follow brands to be in-the-know about new products; so having great content that highlights accessible products is important. Give value to your followers through sales with eye-catching, personable images.
Take for example the home decor company Jonathan Adler. They do not post product shots daily; however, when they do, they create content that has a unique, relatable feel.
Creative Influencer Marketing Campaigns
In today's digital marketing age, brands must strive for visibility and positive feedback to build a solid reputation. Influencer marketing is a perfect opportunity to be unique and achieve this in the eyes of a brand's consumers. Influencer marketing has proven successful for indie brands to international companies promoting their businesses. To get an idea of how brands are yielding impressive results of their marketing efforts, we have put together four influencer-driven campaigns.
How The Body Shop’s Campaign Resulted in 50,000 Likes
The right type of giveaway can result in a successful campaign for both small and large brands alike. The skincare brand, The Body Shop, promoted their new products with a focused, thought-out giveaway. Their influencers promoted the giveaway through a series of Instagram photos. The Body Shop aimed to have influencers utilize their hashtags when sharing their posts. To join the giveaway, the users had to share a post using the hashtag #HealthyMoment. Their influencer marketing campaign resulted in 50,000 likes and more targeted followers. They established brand awareness and reached their target audience. A focused hashtag and aligned influencers is key.
How Sony Reached Over 17 Million Potential Contacts
When promoting their new product, the Xperia Z5 smartphone, Sony collaborated with influencers who concentrated on the phone’s best feature – its mighty camera. They presented its zoom potential with real photos. Their influencers took detailed photos and cut them into smaller shots organized in five layers. Then, they made more than a hundred Instagram accounts joined together with tags. Users used the tags to zoom into some fragments of the photo to discover more than 50 surprises.
The influencers creatively highlighted Sony and had their followers experience the Xperia Z5 smartphone in a unique way, resulting in over over 17 million people reached. They focused their influencer marketing campaign on the best feature of their product, created an engagement plan with a contest - incentivizing audiences to become involved.
How Canon gets 2.9 million Engagements per Year
Many influencers and professional photographers have been promoting Canon’s innovations for years. Canon never stops marketing its products, so they added forty social media photographers to further help with marketing. Their focus was on industry experts, with a focused following. These influencer's audiences are highly engaged, making for a successful marketing campaign.
Canon did not stop there. They recruited filmmakers like Elise Bauman and lifestyle bloggers like Aspyn Ovard as well. In this way, they opened their products to more customers. Canon always thinks outside the box when it comes to working with new influencers and audiences for their campaigns.
How Daniel Wellington Boosts their Sales
More people are purchasing items online, thus the brand Daniel Wellington wanting to attract more Instagram users and boost their sales started using promo codes. By further using influencers like Cheyenne Rowan, the brand connected with more consumers. Cheyenne strengthened their marketing strategy by promoting the brand’s products in her posts and giving her audience a call-to-action with promo codes.
This influencer marketing campaign was a win-win for everyone – the influencers, brand, and the users as well. Influencers are allowed to give something to their followers with the promo codes, keeping them engaged.
At In/Spree Brands, we match brands with the right influencers who help brands come up with strong and effective marketing campaigns! Schedule a demo with us here.
How to Improve Your Instagram Engagement Rate
Instagram is the best place to promote your brand online and get a following that supports your business. A consumers involvement and interaction with your posts indicate their engagement. However, with Instagram's algorithm and many creative brands enhancing engagement, it can be a difficult task for marketers. Our guide below includes useful tactics for improving Instagram engagement.
Collaborate with an Influencer to Create Brand Authenticity
For improving your Instagram engagement and reaching new followers, you need to collaborate with the right influencers. Aligning your brand with an influencers’ voice will add genuine authenticity to your brand. The most important thing is to give your influencers the right guidance and resources to carry out their role on the campaign effectively.
The best collaboration you can have between your brand and influencers is when an influencer loves your product so much they're able promote your business for a long period. A good example of this is the collaboration between the skincare and makeup company Pixi Beauty and the skincare expert and blogger Caroline Hirons. Both collaborated for years, creating more loyalty and trust with their followers, leading to more engagement with their content.
Hashtags are Instagram's main method of filtering and sorting content. Choosing the ideal hashtags for your posts can make your posts appear front and center. If you make the hashtags too generic, such as #fashion or #architecture, your posts will face more competition. Instead, use a combination of industry-specific and trending hashtags to connect more easily with your targeted audience.
Content hashtags such as location-based hashtags are especially useful for creating higher visibility. It is also a good idea to use long tail, strategically chosen hashtags that reflect accurately your post context. Instagram allows 30 hashtags per post, but using them all will make you look unprofessional and un-targeted. Strategic brands use eight or fewer hashtags.
Post Instagram Stories Regularly
By posting Instagram Stories daily, your content will be fresh for your followers. The followers will come back frequently to check if you have a new Story, leading to improved engagement. Use the Stories to draw attention to your new posts and increase engagement in this way.
Your influencers can use mention stickers in their Stories to highlight your brand, leading to new followers on your account. The good news is businesses and influencers with 10,000 or more followers can add a link to their Stories. Luxury beauty retailer Space NK collaborated with the Instagrammer Victoria, so when they were launching a new product, Victoria shared a Story on her account with a link leading to the product.
Add a Compelling Call to Action
Make sure the love your followers show on your posts actually lead somewhere by using an Instagram call to action. You can introduce CTAs into captions, but the most effective way to improve interaction and lead followers in a clear direction is to use the CTA buttons available to the businesses. These are perfect for delivering powerful and short CTAs such as “Call Now” or “Learn More” that catches an audience’s attention.
At In/Spree Brands, we match brands with the right influencers who will help you improve your Instagram engagement in no time! Schedule a demo with us here.
Benefits of Using an Influencer Marketing Strategy
Influencer marketing is the quickest way to build your brand online and increase awareness among your audience. Having a clear understanding of how your influencer marketing strategy can accelerate your goals is key in experiencing the best results. Here are four benefits to using influencer marketing to boost your social strategy.
1. Allows Niche Targeting
Relevant influencers will place your content in front of their audience who are interested in your niche. Influencers are specialists in their niche with content highlighting anything from cooking to fashion. As a brand, identify and choose the most suitable influencers for niche marketing. You will increase your chances of selling when you target an audience with specific demographics.
A good example of this is the fashion brand H&M. They owe their enormous Instagram following to niche targeting. They choose influencers who reflect their style charmingly all by themselves. These influencers are models, fashion bloggers, or style bloggers.
For their Conscious Campaign, they collaborated with models Sara Nuru and Ilona Smet.
2. Boosts SEO
Domain Authority (DA) has the greatest influence on search ranking. DA is a score appointed to a website founded on how relevant, informative, and useful content it offers. If you want to increase Domain Authority and your search ranking, you must get backlinks from credible websites. If high-authority websites link to your website, it indicates you have quality content.
If your influencers have a high Domain Authority and link back to your site, your business will appear higher in search ranking. Influencer marketing can help aid in improving your SEO efforts as well.
3. Generates Relevant Leads
Successful influencers have a niche on which they create a content strategy. This niche defines them and their followers see them as experts in that particular niche. Therefore, if your business is related to a specific influencer’s niche, you can get more quality leads quickly with an influencer-marketing strategy.
A great example of this is fashion company ASOS. Their collection ASOS Curve, target audience is curvy women. ASOS created an influencer marketing campaign using influencers like Sara Brown and Chloé Pierre who promote fashion for curvy women or body-positivity. Their followers are ASOS’ target audience so any leads generated from their campaign will be relevant.
4. Aids in Your Content Strategy
It's not easy to constantly create engaging and fresh content to keep your customers interested. Thankfully, influencer marketing can aid with your content strategy since your influencers can co-create the content. With this mutually beneficial agreement, you will benefit immensely from their creativity and aesthetically pleasing content.
Your influencers will put a lot of effort and thought into creating compelling content for their social media channels. They will engage their followers thus bringing success for your business.
At In/Spree Brands, we match brands with influencers who have a connection with their target market so they can benefit from influencer marketing immediately. Schedule a demo with us here.
4 Factors Affecting the New Instagram Algorithm And How To Keep Up
The Instagram algorithm has changed many times over the past few years in order to optimize the preferences and interactions of its users. Here are a few critical factors affecting the probability of a post to appear on top of a users’ feed.
1. Relationship: The Accounts You Interact with
Instagram favors posts by accounts considered to be “family and friends.” Tech Crunch reports everyone gets a personalized feed based on his or her interaction with certain accounts. With the 2019 Instagram algorithm, it comes down to the relationship between an Instagrammer and their followers.
Influencers are not real-life friends, so they need to build sufficient trust and reputation with their followers. A good example of an influencer whose built a strong relationship with their followers is Claudia Padgett, who regularly interacts. She posts photos, videos, stories, and responds to her followers’ comments regularly. Instagram takes note of that and prioritizes her posts in her followers’ feed, making them more noticeable.
2. How Long Users Spend Looking at Your Post
The Instagram algorithm takes note of how long users spend looking at your posts. When Instagram notices users spending more time than usual engaging with your posts, it will show your posts to more people.
The captions are consumer’s first introduction to your brand so you need to create compelling captions. Users can quickly look at your photo, but it takes longer to read an interesting caption. You need to make them count by encouraging your followers to leave a comment. They need to be interested in your captions and click the “More button” that will add to the time spent on the post.
3. Timeliness: How Recent Your Posts are
Freshness is the main factor in how Instagram fills the feed with posts that are recent and more relevant. The relevance of the post is as important as is the timeliness for ranking higher. Instagram is more likely to show recent posts rather than older posts even if they've received significant engagement.
Take advantage of every feature Instagram offers (story, video, carousel, Boomerang, IGTV) if you want Instagram to put you in its favor.
4. The Engagement a Post Receives
The higher the engagement your posts receive, the higher the probability that Instagram will boost it higher on your followers’ feed. If your posts usually demonstrate higher levels of engagement, Instagram will expect your new posts to also receive quality engagement, and so will give all your posts a push.
The Instagram algorithm notices and rewards influencers who make highly engaging posts that perform well. It ranks their future posts at the top of their followers’ feeds. Instagram's algorithm rewards Instagrammers who bring about rapid engagement. A good example of this is the Instagrammer Maria Taylor, who uses strategic hashtags that result in rapid engagement. Posts with a popular hashtag typically always have higher engagement.
The Biggest Instagram Marketing Trends for 2019
Brands need to stay up-to-date with the latest Instagram trends so they can effectively use them. Some trends are already here and will continue to grow this year. The following trends will help brands know where Instagram is headed and how they can improve their Instagram game in 2019.
1. Instagram Engagement Moves from Likes to Stickers
400 million users watch Instagram Stories daily in recent years. If you aim is to increase Instagram engagement, engage with your followers through Instagram Stories stickers instead of focusing only on getting more likes on your posts.
Instagram Stories stickers provide a fun and easy way to get your followers invested in your content, products, and brand. In 2019, Instagram will introduce more widget stickers as the Poll stickers, Countdown, or Questions.
You can give your brand cute, related stickers. A good example of this is the luggage brand Calpak that created attractive travel-related stickers. They engage Instagram users and their followers with their brand through their fun Instagram Stories.
2. Video Content
If you want to create useful content and build on authenticity, video is the perfect choice for your brand. You and your influencers can create impactful video content for your viewers. You can convert your offers, product reviews, tutorials, etc. from images to short videos and add extra value to your followers.
80% of users prefer live video from brands than reading blogs. 82% prefer live videos to post. People get the feeling that they are with an influencer when they watch their videos. Thus, create videos to increase engagement and keep your followers happy.
3. Micro-Influencers will Dominate the Platform
Followers are becoming tired of seeing pitchy content from influencers. 2019 is all about working with people whose opinions are trustworthy. Micro-influencers are more relatable than macro-influencers since they are like everyday consumers. Micro-influencers exist in every marketing niche and they are considered experts in their niche since they are very engaged. They have fewer followers, but most of them are genuinely interested in their posts.
Take Jackson’s Honest for example. They collaborated with Jenn, a lover of food to promote their chips. Aligning their brand with an influencer who truly loves their product and is excited to share with her followers will build an authentic relationship on Instagram.
4. IGTV for Driving ROI
IGTV is the newest long-form option that allows users to post 10-minute videos and 60-minute videos for verified users. IGTV is an amazing tool for providing longer form content to your followers, which is otherwise hard to do on a story or post. It connects followers with meaningful and comprehensive video content.
When you add IGTV video, your followers will be notified so this is an ideal opportunity to reach your audience and gain new viewers as well. IGTV makes mobile video sharing and viewing a more pleasant experience that helps drive impressions, brand visibility, and click-through rate.
At In/Spree Brands, we match brands with the right influencers who will help you stay ahead of all future trends. Schedule a demo with us here.
How Micro and Nano Influencers Compare to Macro Influencers
Influencers with a macro following might not be the right choice for you. We have seen how nano influencers, with less than 2,500 followers and micro-influencers, with less than 100,000 followers, deliver excellent results for brands wanting to grow their customer base.
1. They have Built-in Authenticity
Micro and nano influencers, provide real customer advocacy being they are authentic voices. Since they like the brands they ultimately post about, their posts are word of mouth. These influencers develop personal relationships with their followers, resulting in followers who show genuine interest in their content. Micro and nano influencers are more relatable than macro influencers and their recommendations have value for their followers.
Statistically it's easier to relate to a micro or nano influencer that is promoting a product. That is the case with the food blogger and Instagrammer @recipesfromapantry. When a food blogger such as this one shares a photo of them enjoying some healthy and delicious breakfast, you don't question the organicity of such content.
2. They are Cost Effective
Both the volume of micro and nano influencers, in addition to their smaller following, makes their sponsored rate a more affordable one for brands looking to work with influencers as well as those wanting to increase their investment. Less investment is one of the many benefits of collaborating with micro and nano influencers. Brands can work with several influencers simultaneously and reach a more engaged audience over a sustained period.
Micro and nano influencer marketing is cheaper than traditional advertising and compared to macro influencer campaigns is far less costly.
3. They have Higher Engagement Rates
Posts from micro and nano influencers have higher engagement as compared to posts from macro influencers. A survey conducted by HelloSociety showed micro influencer campaigns drive engagement rates 60% higher than standard marketing campaigns. It also showed that their campaigns are 6 times more effective per engagement than campaigns of macro influencers.
The reason for such a high level of engagement is their big influence. Micro and nano influencers cater to a niche audience and their trust level is high. Even though they do not have as many followers as macro influencers, they reach deep into their niche market and help your business reach prospects more efficiently.
4. They are Easier to Work with and Easier to Recruit
Influencers with smaller audiences are easier to access compared with macro influencers. They are everyday people, and have time to maintain good communication with their audience and answer their questions. They are more open to a collaborative process that will produce content that will present your brand in an relevant way, while still feeling authentic.
The brand Sperry, worked with many micro influencers on Instagram. Sperry’s influencers are usually people who were already sharing photos of its products. One of these Instagrammers Alexandra Ford Hamilton, had a strong, loyal following. In her photos, she wears Sperry’s shoes in scenic and exotic locations.
5 Predictions On The Future Of Influencer Marketing
The future of influencer marketing is subject to changes in trends, technologies, and audiences. Below you'll gain some insights and future trends into the potential changes that will affect influencer marketing to help you execute successful campaigns.
1. Increased Demand for Authenticity
Influencers help brands to create authentic content, this content helps them in acquiring new consumers. However, with the increase of paid influencers who produce co-branded content and speak on behalf of brands, there will be an increase in demand for authenticity. Consumers will continue to watch carefully for signs of accuracy and sincerity.
Intimissimi is a good example of a brand that carefully crafts partnerships with authentic influencers. Instagrammer Tamara creates authentic content with trustworthy information that engages her audience, wins their trust, and drives them to the brand.
2. Brands will Integrate the Concept of Confluence Marketing
Marketers will shift away from direct sales targets and adopt a more socialist approach. Confluence marketing, which blends relationships of content and influencers, will be a top priority for SMEs and companies in digital marketing strategies.
Relationships with influencers and content marketing form a winning combination for organizations and businesses. The quality of the brands’ relationship with their influencers favors a better distribution and message reception with their targeted clients.
3. Video Content and Podcasts will be the Main Information Channel
Due to consumers using mobile devices more than ever, video content will promote storytelling and become the focus of younger generations. Leveraging the right influencers in creative videos is a good way to expand a brands reach to new consumers and build brand authority. It is advisable for brands to take advantage of live videos on Instagram as well.
In addition, podcasts will become the new blogs of influencers. Podcasts are both - content and influencer marketing. Podcasting will help brands build organic, powerful, and authentic relationships with important names in their industry.
4. Micro-influencers and Niche Influencers will Replace Celebrities
Brands see the great value of micro-influencers and niche influencers. While they do not have a huge following like celebrities, micro-influencers and niche influencers are more relevant as they are ordinary consumers with a more pointed audience. Therefore, their opinions and recommendations are a trustworthy source of information.
Even brands like Adidas have started implementing such influencers in their marketing campaigns. They worked with thirty players from English football academies.
5. Instagram will Remain a Crucial Influencer Marketing Channel
Instagram will continue to be the number one platform for influencer marketing, and its popularity is only going to increase. Since Instagram introduced Paid Partnership tag, they've become a great asset for transparency. Influencers include the tag in the sub-header of the sponsored post. In doing this, influencers maintain transparency about their campaigns and retain the trust of their followers. Their followers can easily click on the tag to land on your brand’s profile.
An example of this is Reiss and Inthefrow, who teamed up on a sponsored post and used the Paid Partnership tag.
At In/Spree Brands, we match brands with the perfect influencers who drive proven results and will help you stay ahead of all future trends. Schedule a demo with us here.
New Year, New Idea:
Influencer marketing platform