Influencer marketing is flourishing because advertisements are dying a slow, painful death. Consumers today have lost all respect and interest for advertisements that disrupt their activities and vie for their attention in a forced manner. A number of consumers are turning to ad blockers to create a barrier against unwanted intrusion of advertisements on the social media. Many are even willing to pay monthly subscriptions for TV channels, podcasts, and YouTube channels to protect themselves from the torment of advertisements.
Influencer marketing is so important because even if prospects and target audience are closing doors to advertisements, their interest in blogs, tweets, Pinterest, and Instagram content are piquing rapidly. They want to read, watch, listen to, and experience content that is interesting, adds value, and has an augmented emotional element. Influencers can sometimes promote a brand or a cause by acknowledging their association with it or they may promote it under the garb of preserving their objectivity towards it. After all, a car lover will probably be much more willing to read a review article written by an “independent” auto expert than read an ad, which knows will only highlight its strong points.
However, many brands have still not understood the purpose of influencer marketing and how to leverage influencers for maximum return on investments. Some common mistakes and remedies are as follows.
Common mistakes to avoid with influencer marketing
1) Not granting creative freedom to influencers: Many brands want to use influencer marketing channel similar to other channels of marketing. They simply want the influencers to promote their products or services just like an advertisement. This can surely lead to some level of engagement but on most levels, it will be a massive failure and loss of opportunity. An expert influencer with a strong identity and voice in your niche is expected to understand his/her audience pulse extremely well. He/she knows exactly what audience expects, what kind of content they prefer and the inputs they expect in every interaction. If a brand doesn’t give the influencers the carte blanche to act and take a call on the creatives of the campaign, they would soon lose trust and the interest of even their most relevant audience. It would be disastrous for both the influencer and the brand.
A brand can draw a broad contour of the expectations or outline a campaign. However, it has to act in coordination with the influencer. Ask them for their opinion and allow them to frame the content in line with your policy.
2) Not choosing the right influencer and expecting wrong returns: A number of brands choose influencers simply looking at the number of followers they have. They also expect unrealistic returns. Usually, a thoughtful picture with a nice caption and sensible hashtag would drive greater engagement than a video. However, a video can receive greater views and can go viral quickly. If you choose a lifestyle blogger/ Instagrammer to promote your book on management simply because he/she has over 5 million followers, you may soon receive a jolt and your expectations would be dashed. Also, see what kind of content the influencer usually shares. Is it text, pictures, music videos or demonstrative videos? Set your campaign expectations accordingly.
3) Not choosing a mix of large and small influencers: It has been shown that the larger the number of followers, the lesser is the strength of relationship and engagement. However, most brands only choose influencers with million plus followers. They are unaware of the role that micro-influencers can play to drum up quick engagement, support, and visibility.
Have a balanced team of influencers. Choose a few from each social platform. While very popular influencers can give you immediate visibility, small but highly targeted influencers can help you to get a more relevant audience, with a greater chance of conversion.
Avoid these common mistakes because influencer marketing campaigns are no longer cheap. If you are spending money on something, you would expect the best returns and expect to enjoy all the benefits. That will only happen if you find the right balance between your creative inputs and expectations.
Ifluenz can help you promote your brand or product with effective influencer marketing strategies.