Heepsy’s Top Influencer Marketing Tips: The Do’s And Don’ts

Influencer marketing has boomed. But, we know this already, right? Did you know that businesses are making $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing? The success rates are incredible, although don’t let this fool you into thinking that it will be an easy ride. Successful campaigns are coming from brands that have been following some of the top influencer marketing tips in the industry. 

Social media has been a huge step in the right direction for marketers, with unlimited opportunities now becoming available for brands. Influencer marketing is just one of these. This strategy requires patience and hard work, just like any other. However, there are a few tips that Heepsy can provide to help you smash your campaign. 

So without further ado, lets jump right into the do’s and don’ts of influencer marketing.   

Do:

1.     Be friendly and open.

 

The first thing to remember is that influencers are real people, just like you or I. Think about the amount of cold emails that you receive and ignore – influencers will do the exact same. 

When reaching out, you need to be friendly and approachable. Imagine you are meeting this influencer in person, you would have a smile on your face and be open and sweet. Make sure that you are doing the same over email or message, thinking about your tone and how the message will be perceived. 

Don’t forget to personalize your message. Influencers can tell when you are bulk contacting. Make sure that they know you have selected them personally. Start with “hi {name}”, but go beyond just this.  

An example of an influencer outreach email.

2.     Get to know the influencer first.

 

If you want to ensure that you are hiring the perfect influencer for your brand, then hopefully you will have spent a considerable amount of time looking at their content. But, make sure and show that to the influencer. 

We all know that sometimes things aren’t always as they seem on social media. An influencer could seem like the perfect fit. Their metrics look great, their followers are within the same demographic as your target audience. But, you need to look much deeper into their content.

Understand an influencers style. What is the aesthetic of their content? What kind of language do they use? What are their likes and interests? Be sure to mention in your message to them anything from their content that you particularly admire. Show them that you have looked.  

3.     Build relationships. 

 

What really makes for success in the influencer marketing industry is the brands that build relationships. We are beginning to see a shift from one-off campaigns towards longer-term influencer collaborations. 

As with any marketing strategy, there needs to be effective communication between those involved. Be clear with influencers so that they know exactly what is expected of them. However, always be open to questions and let them know to raise queries at any time. 

Equally, ensure that you are regularly checking-in with your influencers. Throughout the campaign, and even once it is over, keep in touch with influencers. Ask them how they are getting on and let them know that you are happy with their work. You never know, you might want to work with them again after the campaign is over.  

An influencer marketing partnership.

4.     Make it as easy as possible for influencers.

 

If the influencer has far too many obstacles to step over, then they simply won’t respond. Make things as easy as possible for them, or for their manager or PR team that picks up your email. 

Think about emails that you have received with too many links and CTAs, and little context. You just won’t bother clicking them all and will move on to the next email. 

It should be you and your brand putting in the effort, and be a smooth-sailing process for the influencer and their team. Make your message short and concise. Only add a small number of links, giving relevant context.  

5.     Use measurable metrics. 

 

No matter what your objectives are when commencing an influencer campaign, make sure that you have measurable metrics in place to track the campaign’s ongoing results. One of the biggest challenges faced by marketers in the industry is measuring and proving ROI from their campaigns

It’s easy to think that you’ve gained some new followers, so the campaign was a success. Sure, new followers or increased website traffic is positive. But, are these followers converting to sales? Are these website visitors returning and spending much time on your site? 

Think about the time that visitors spend on your website, leads, conversions, and other valuable data worth analyzing. Create key performance indicators (KPIs) and track these accordingly.  

6.     Focus on engagement above reach.

 

One of the biggest mistakes made in the influencer industry is to focus purely on follower numbers. Yes, reach is important. But, engagement is far more valuable. Take care in looking at engagement rates of influencers and comparing them with others of their type. 

Of course, you want your content to be seen by a lot of people, but generating likes and comments from an interested crowd is what will have the biggest impact. 

Don’t overlook the benefits of micro influencers. This group boasts amazing engagement rates, whilst having a decent enough number of followers, and access to niche communities. Additionally, they are seen as some of the most authentic influencers.  

An example of an influencer's engagement rate.

Don’t: 

1.     Don’t just choose any influencer. 

 

I’m guessing that by now you’ll know not to just select any influencer that is free to work with you. But, it’s easy to look at their basic profile features and decide that they are right for you. Maybe you’ve found out that they have a high engagement rate and are also from your desired location. 

However, it’s essential to look at more advanced elements than this. You need to establish whether their audience also aligns with that of your target audience. Consider looking into audience authenticity metrics too.

As well as having strong metrics and an audience that is a great match, you want to consider their personality and individual qualities. Do they have a reliable reputation in the influencer industry? Do their tone, style, and content all align well with yours? Do they hold the same values as your brand?  

A screenshot from influencer marketing platform, Heepsy.

2.     Don’t rush.

 

As with anything new that you are implementing within your business, rushing it can turn into a disaster. Although from the outside, influencer marketing can sometimes seem like a ‘quick fix’ marketing technique, it in fact requires time and thorough planning. 

Prior to contacting influencers, your team will need to dedicate a lot of time to planning your campaign meticulously. This starts with your campaign definition and goals, to your influencer search. Even when using an influencer marketing platform, don’t expect to find the perfect influencer instantly. 

When contacting influencers, you will also need to be patient. Remember that they have busy schedules, and it can take some time to get a response. Subsequently, negotiations will require time to come to the best agreement.   

3.     Don’t expect ‘free’ promotion. 

 

Yes, influencer marketing is known for being a low-cost marketing strategy, affordable to brands of all budgets. Sometimes you can close a deal for your product alone as an incentive. However, don’t expect that you will automatically get free promotions. 

Sometimes brands are lucky enough for influencers to continue mentioning them beyond the campaign. But this isn’t just a given. You need to work on building your relationships as a priority.

People often forget that this is an influencer’s career. A free product is great, sure. But, remember that they still need to pay their bills and put food on the table, just like us. So, be reasonable and fair when it comes to payment.  

4.     Don’t expect too much. 

 

Influencer marketing really is reaping incredible results for brands. You can definitely get carried away when hearing statistics like “brands are generating $5 for every $1 invested in influencer marketing”. 

But, it’s important that you don’t expect too much from influencers. Be realistic with what can be achieved within your time period. It’s great to be optimistic, but don’t put too much pressure on influencers.

Some campaigns do much better than others, and sometimes it is completely trial and error. If one campaign fails, don’t let this put you off. Get planning for the next, taking into consideration what can be improved from the last.  

5.     Don’t give firm restrictions.

 

If you’ve never launched an influencer campaign before, then it can understandably seem a bit daunting. What if it doesn’t go exactly as you imagined? Well, with this type of marketing, it’s best to be flexible. Allow influencers to have creative freedom. 

Be clear with your guidelines, such as including certain hashtags or brand mentions. But, don’t have really tight control over what influencers can post. This can come across as unauthentic if the post doesn’t seem like their typical style of content.

Allow influencers to promote your content in a way that is unique to them. At the end of the day, they know their followers best. You can ask them to send you the post before publishing too.  

6.     Don’t dismiss any social media platforms. 

 

It’s true to say that Instagram is the hub for influencer marketing. You may have already chosen your desired platform, whether this is Instagram or not. But if you are yet to select one, then I’d recommend investigating properly. 

Take a look at the demographic of users for each platform, and compare that to your target consumer demographic. For example, Twitter may not be as talked about, yet is a great way to reach an older group of consumers.

Don’t forget that many Instagram influencers also have a large following on other platforms too. Keep this in mind, because if you are successful with them on one platform, then you might want to consider asking them to post on another one too.  

A TikTok influencer.

Conclusion

By getting to this point, I hope that you have discovered some of the best tips to take away to your influencer campaign planning. There was only supposed to be five do’s and five don’ts, but they were just too important to miss any! Keep all of these in mind, and you’ll be sure to ace the campaign. 

Remember, if you need to find influencers that can work seamlessly with your brand, then head over to Heepsy and you’ll be sure to find exactly what you need. 

Olivia works on the Marketing team at Heepsy as a Content Writer. She is studying for a Masters degree and likes to play sports with friends and explore new cities in her free time.
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