In today’s day and age, Influencer Marketing is one of the hottest trends in advertising. Influencers offer a unique opportunity to reach a targeted consumer base that can be difficult to reach through traditional marketing campaigns. Influencer Strategies are an effective way for ecommerce marketers to grow their customer base and increase revenue.
Influencers ranging from chefs and gamers to tech geeks and celebrities have an audience of followers who identify with them and the brands they use and trust. There is plenty of available information on integrating influencer marketing into your overall marketing and ecommerce strategy. But the ones who know this industry the best are the influencers themselves.
Therefore, Vaimo has interviewed Danielle Davis of Lou What Wear and Lemonade PR to dig into the process and enlighten us on what brands need to do to prepare for a successful influencer campaign.
Related reading: Ecommerce Trends – 2022 Outlook
Do Thorough Research to Pick the Right Influencers
The success of influencer marketing is entirely reliant on the relationship between the influencer and their audience. It’s essential for brands to only collaborate with influencers where there is an alignment of values, principles, and audience.
For example, suppose you are Woodford Reserve bourbon, and you’re trying to make a specific impact on the bourbon drinkers of the world. In that case, you should choose someone who has a following made up of those who are of drinking age with disposable income and whose aesthetic and maturity level matches that of your brand. There are hundreds of parameters that you will want to consider when making this choice. Luckily that information is available and reasonably transparent.
Consider What Size of Following to Go After
The size of the following is another thing to consider. Bigger is not always better, and quality can often beat quantity in this context. There is an argument to be made both for small micro-influencers and major celebrities; it all depends on your strategy and goals.
The big mega-influencers undeniably offer massive reach. But though once very sought after, many have gained the suspect reputation of simply being advertisers. That has seriously damaged the trust aspect of the influencer model and taught us that the scale does have a tipping point, and the ROI at all levels is worth considering.
Small, niche players who may have only a couple of hundreds of followers often have a lot of trust built up within their community. That means you can have a significant impact by simply providing them with free products to try and review. Whereas the big influencers with hundreds of thousands of followers would charge very high fees to promote your brand.
Set Clear Goals For Your Influencer Campaign
Setting guidelines for your influencer campaign is the next critical step. Your guidelines and policies need to be well thought out before you contact anyone you think may be a fit for you. We had a chat with Danielle Davis of Lou What Wear and Lemonade PR about her experiences being approached by brands. Danielle works with national brands, charities, and many local businesses and gave us some advice about how to set campaign goals:
“The guidelines are usually put in place based around the campaign goals. Whether they’re associated with a specific event or product launch or if we’re looking to build long-term awareness. Having clear deliverables, deadlines and content parameters is key. Beyond that, allowing the influencer to put their own perspective on the campaign is important. That’s why it’s important to pick partners who align with your brand standards and values and your campaign goals organically.” – Danielle Davis, Influencer
Consider In-social Shopping Options
Suppose your goal is to drive traffic to your ecommerce platform through social posts. In that case, the content must be compelling enough to warrant leaving the platform, or you must tailor your ecommerce experience to include in-social shopping. A large platform like Adobe Commerce offers multiple options for you to extend your ecommerce site onto social platforms. And a good influencer will be able to advise you on what tools will present the best customer experience for their audience and your brand.
There are also many tools available to manage the transition from social platforms to your ecommerce. For example, you can use Gorgias to manage Instagram comments, mentions, and messages created by an influencer’s followers. Gorgias allows you to connect your ecommerce website with your Instagram account to provide a seamless omnichannel customer service experience.
Related reading: Social Commerce Platforms and Tactics in 2021
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Reach Out to Influencers in a Professional Way
So, you’ve done your research, and now you know who you’d like to work with. Then what’s the next step? How do you get in touch with them? When reaching out to social influencers, email is always best, according to Davis:
“The majority of influencers run their accounts like businesses and prefer to be contacted via email, especially since they can get anywhere from dozens to hundreds of DMs a day. When reaching out, I’d recommend having a goal in mind for the partnership. Are you looking to move product? Increase awareness? Drive traffic to a website? Or are you looking for images to use on your own social? Whatever combination of those goals, I’d have that in mind when reaching out. Having a strong goal for the deliverables is key when picking an influencer to work with and engaging with them.” – Danielle Davis, Influencer
Build Long-Term Relationships Built on Mutual Trust
At the end of the day, you must trust the influencer you choose to represent your brand and your shopping experience. An influencer is responsible for not accidentally including anything in any of their posts that conflicts with your brand messaging; for instance, if Chicco strollers hire Davis, but it is obvious in her posts that she pushes a Nuna Baby stroller, the authenticity is lost. They should feel comfortable directing you in platform selection, design, and audience and should be able to deliver content that feels compelling to their audience while maintaining attention to your brand.
Influencer campaigns are a complicated web to weave, and influencers like Davis have the burden of keeping their design and experience as modern and frictionless as possible while taking into account the best use of their client’s time and money.
“It’s really about staying true to your own aesthetic but evolving with it. And staying in tune with what your audience responds to. It’s important to continue to develop your skills and try out new things to see what moves the needle and what doesn’t.” – Danielle Davis, Influencer
- Do thorough research to pick the right influencers
- Consider what size of following to go after
- Set clear guidelines and goals for your influencer campaign
- Consider extending your ecommerce with in-social shopping options
- Reach out to influencers in a professional way
- Aim to build long-term relationships built on mutual trust
How Vaimo Can Help
As a part of your ecommerce strategy, the influencer market is likely to have a big impact immediately. There are more niche influencers out there now than ever. And there’s a wide range of tools and agencies available to help you select the best candidates for your brand. You also have the option to look to your own network to select influencers that you personally know and trust. Various types of content exist so there is no limit to the ways that you can attract people to your ecommerce experience.
At Vaimo, we’re constantly exploring new strategies to help our clients build new revenue channels to complement and even further their current ones. And as always, the key to getting ahead is getting started. Deciding to start working with influencer marketing can be an efficient way to both build brand awareness and drive conversions. If you start now, you’ll most likely look back in a couple of months and wonder why you didn’t take this step even earlier on.
We’d love to help you get started and support you on that journey – get in touch with our team of experts to explore the opportunities.