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What is Influencer Marketing?

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With the now widespread use of adblocking software and traditional advertising’s loss of credibility, marketing strategists are increasingly seeking to explore new and creative methods of engagement with consumers. One such emerging trend, as evidenced by its Return on Investment of $6 for every $1 spent as found by Adweek, is the use of influencer marketing. Influencer marketing entails an influencer, usually a prominent leader in their field, who endorses the product of a brand through their own content or outreach efforts.

Identifying the Right Influencer

Identifying the right influencer was rated in a survey on the topic as the main difficulty in implementing the promotional approach. Doing so effectively comes down to an analysis of what attributes the influencer possesses. Typically an influencer should have the following characteristics:

1. Vocal

Influencers should be active members of the community and be passionate about a range of causes which are aligned with your brand.

2. Impact

Influencers should have the gravity to deliver a message in a meaningful way and leave a lasting impression on their audience.

3. Networked

Influencers should be well-connected and achieve reach through their large follower base which is ultimately the audience you are marketing too.

4. Pioneers

Influencers should be renowned for their willingness to be disruptive and innovative within their respective industries given it is these distinctive approaches that allow them to gain reach.

5. Multiple Interests

Influencers shouldn’t be one dimensional and beyond their speciality, they should be invested in several other pursuits.

Types of Paid Platforms

It’s often difficult to initiate a connection with an influencer with which you have no connection and it is for this reason that paid platforms exists. Three types of platforms service this need, and each varies in how they facilitate relationships. These are:

Managed Platforms

These providers function as an end-to-end service which includes a representative that will act on your behalf in managing interactions with the influencer. However, this package does not come with relationship management software and are usually more costly than the latter two, as a flat fee is deducted and a cut of the campaign taken.


Marketplaces have a central directory of influencers that can be selected and contacted. Commission is charged on each influencer payment made through them.

Software as a Service

As opposed to paying someone to manage or to access to an exclusive influencer, you have sole discretion over your relationship with them and the campaign. The only cost incurred is acquiring the software license.

Weighing these options up, software as a service is best for developing longer-term engagement and repeated endorsements from the influencers as you have control over the relationship. However, staff must be trained to use the required software proficiently. As such, Managed Platforms and Marketplaces are better suited for companies wanting to outsource the work involved, although it does come at the expense of a deeper influencer relationship.

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Influencer Marketing Techniques

Broadly speaking, an influencer can be employed to market a brand in the following ways:

  1. Directly engaging with influencers to increase their brand awareness to the point that they will speak highly of it to others. This approach can potentially come across as pushy, so it’s advisable not to be too self-promotional in contacting them and to some degree letting the brand speak for itself.
  2. The most common technique is using influencers as a vessel to spruik your brand be it through content they’ve created or a speech they are giving an event.
  3. Collaborating with influencers with the aim of achieving mutually beneficial goals for both them and your business.

Influencer Marketing Metrics

Earned Media Value (EMV)

Althugh EMV is a relatively subjective criterion, one of the most accurate ways of calculating it is through Actual Value Equivalent, whereby the equivalent value is what an advertisement would have cost if the influencer hadn’t promoted a piece of content free of charge.

Cost Per Impression

This method assesses engagement on the basis of how many times a piece of content, produced on your behalf by an influencer, is delivered to a users screen for them to view. The expense of doing this is then evaluated against the number and value of the conversion.

Cost Per Action (CPA)

Also know as cost-per-acquisition, the value of influencer content is determined by how many people click through to the promoting company’s website.

Key Takeaways

Using influencer marketing is a strategic use of marketing resources and one that can serve to differentiate your product from the competition, bringing with it a certain authenticity that is hard to accomplish with a standard advertisement. Questions? Call us on 1300 544 755.

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