My Experience With Influencer Marketing

With now well over a year into my Digital Marketing career, there’s been one major objective that I’ve been itching to tick off my bucket list. This of course, is Influencer Marketing. I’m sure that by now, you’re more than likely sick to death of hearing this term floating around your marketing network, but there’s no denying that it’s a hot practice. With brands continually seeking to engage users in more organic ways, I’ve seen a staggering rise in the popularity of Influencer Marketing over the past year.

Before I jump into things, I think it’s important to first address the obvious elephant in the room. If you’re thinking that Influencer Marketing consists of throwing a bunch of money at a celebrity to post a selfie with your product, you’re completely wrong… to some extent. 

Ricky Bobby influencer marketing television commercial from the movie Talladega Nights.

Influencer Marketing, much like all Digital Marketing, requires immense planning and a detailed strategy in order to be successful. 

At Hydric Media, the app development studio behind Wonder.fm – the indie music discovery app, we’d just released the latest version of the iOS application, Wonder 1.2. When the release news landed on my desk, I wanted to spice things up on the marketing side and experiment with a new approach that was different from what I’d created in the past. After unavoidably hearing so much about the power of Influencer Marketing (when done right), I decided that now really was the perfect time to jump on board and kick-start my own influencer campaign.

Throughout this campaign, I’d chosen to partner with Scrunch, an influencer platform that connects brands to social leaders. Scrunch’s influencer database is vast and the platform hosts an easy to use campaign creator. Brands can efficiently list their campaign objectives, requirements, and rules, and then have the option to either attract influencers or reach out to fitting social figures themselves.

A video demo of Scrunch Influencer Marketing platform in use.

Scrunch is the mighty saviour of Influencer Marketing and I’d genuinely recommend it to anyone looking to create an influencer campaign. 

Being my first influencer campaign, I wasn’t planning on biting off more than I could chew. With a modest budget and pre-planned content strategy, I worked with Scrunch to find the right influencer who I believed would best suit the Wonder brand. As Wonder was a music discovery platform with a younger user base, I’d chosen to shortlist a pool of music and lifestyle Twitter influencers. Although I’d collected a list of strong candidates myself, I actually ended up partnering with one of Scrunch’s recommended influencers. My influencer was a music and lifestyle photographer with a Twitter following of 20k.

 When choosing your influencer, it’s important to not let just the metric of followers determine who you partner with. My partnering influencer may not have had the largest following, however she hosted a high engagement rate within her audience. As her audience was similar to Wonders target users, it only made sense to channel in on her specific niche. The power of working alongside micro influencers who are leaders within a specific demographic, can in some cases outweigh the effect of larger influencers with a broader user base.

So you’ve got your influencer, GREAT! Now what?

Once you’ve selected an appropriate influencer to work with, it’s important to then work on generating content that will be fitting for both your brand and your partner. As I was working with my influencer for a period of five days (Monday-Friday), I’d scripted some pre-canned Tweets for her use. As my influencer was a renowned photographer, we’d chosen to incorporate as many images as possible into the sponsored content. This would help blend the sponsored content in with her regular organic posts. When you’re developing a content strategy for your influencer, it’s important to incorporate them in the process and allow them to give you their insights. You need to remember that no matter how significant of a brand or marketer you are, at the end of the day, no one understands your influencers audience better them themselves. When you partner with a platform like Scrunch, the concept proposal and agreement phase of your campaign becomes significantly easier.

You’re sponsored content’s live! But it doesn’t end there.

Once your sponsored campaign is published and changing the lives of your target audience, it’s important to remember that your work doesn’t stop here. It’s imperative to also actively engage with your influencer’s sponsored posts to leverage the content within your own audience.

After my influencer period concluded, I was sure to make the most of the campaign’s content. As I’d paid an influencer to create custom content specifically for Wonder’s brand, I wanted to continue leveraging it while it was considered relevant. By creating what’s referred to as a ‘firehose’ campaign in my previous growth hacking post, I created a paid media post on Wonder’s Twitter account with an image of a testimonial style tweet from our influencer.

By promoting the post and targeting only our influencers followers, it allowed for an extra few days of engagement amongst her potential user-base. The objective of this campaign was to capture any new users who hadn’t seen the original sponsored posts, or to create a final touch point for any users who had previously seen the ad. The results?

A user positively reacting to a Twitter influencer marketing campaign.

If there was one key takeaway I’d learnt from my first experience with Influencer Marketing, it’s that users can genuinely smell when something isn’t organic and know to shy away from traditional sponsored content. Good Influencer Marketing is about collaborating with your influencer and establishing a strategy that aligns with both your brand and your influencers images.

What’s your experience with Influencer Marketing? Have you got any hot tips that I haven’t noted in this post? I’d love to know, feel free to shoot me a Tweet or connect with me on LinkedIn.