From Curious to Clever:

Be the Know-It-All About Influencer Marketing

Your boss, your competitors, your neighbor talks about it: Influencer marketing. So, either you feel the peer pressure or you know that influencer marketing is the future. Now.

Either way, you want to know how influencer marketing can benefit you and your business. And we’re here to give you the answer(s). So let’s get to it, friend.

What is influencer marketing?

We don’t want to end up in that awkward situation where we blabber about stuff that makes no sense to you. So let’s start this off by getting one thing straight: What is influencer marketing?

To understand that, we have to define an influencer:

An individual who has the power and authenticity to influence a specific audience or affect people’s decision-making process in a positive way.

Therefore, influencers, from our point of view, don’t have the role of advertisers, but the role of advisors and ambassadors. This is the case whether we’re talking about nano-influencers, micro-influencers, macro-influencers, or mega-influencers.

So, influencer marketing is about tapping into the word-of-mouth effect of online social creators – and getting them to talk about and promote a product or a service. Understanding how to build relationships with influential online creators can therefore be a game-changer for many businesses.

So far, so good on the basics. That’s something most agree on.

But now you have to decide where you stand within influencer marketing: Are you the mayfly or the eagle? 

Let’s find out.

The mayfly versus the eagle

A mayfly is an insect that only lives for a few days. Sometimes just a few hours. So, in our case, the mayfly has, as you might have guessed, a short-term and ‘on and off’ approach to influencer marketing.

This means that a brand uses an influencer to make a post or two to promote a new product or service. When the campaign ends, the relationship between the brand and the influencer also ends. And then the brand starts over when they run the next campaign.

This is unsustainable because it’s after the campaign the magic (which in this case means brand awareness and sales) happens.

And it takes content, consistency, and time to move your target audience
from the stage where they are unaware of your brand to the stage where they are ready (and eager!) to buy. As you see in the sales funnel here:
That brings us to the eagle:

In the animal world, it’s known for making impressive nests that both stand out from the rest and can stand against all kinds of weather. Therefore, the eagle just has to add a few materials to the same nest every year. Finally, the eagle is loyal and chooses its partner for life.

In our theory, the eagle makes a long-lasting strategy to found the basis for all its influencer marketing activities. This ensures a consistent, reliable brand story every time something new – a new campaign or a new influencer – is added to it and, thereby, also ensures long-term collabs to drive the best ROI. As you see, the eagle has, as opposed to the mayfly, an ongoing, ‘always-on’ approach to influencer marketing.

When you work with influencers this way, you create a natural feedback loop, where you as a business owner get a rare – and the most fruitful – chance to understand the relevance of your product and your brand’s perception.

In other words:

The influencers have direct conversations with their followers – i.e., your dream customers – and can get their honest opinion about your product. This gives you golden knowledge on how to make it even better.

Also, the ‘always-on’ approach comes with a more authentic experience for your audience since consistency is key: An influencer using and talking about your product consistently is trustworthy and tells a stronger story. Your audience believes the story when they see that it is not just a one-off “thang”-quick-bang-for-your-buck.

So, now you’ve taken the first step into influencer marketing. And hopefully, you’ve joined us on ‘Team Eagle,‘ right?

If you want to be the know-it-all about influencer marketing, right here, right now, feel free to read along.

However, we know that you also have to go grocery shopping, pick up your kids, or take salsa lessons.

So, you can either come back when you have the time. Or you can spoil yourself with an influencer marketing dictionary for later reading by downloading our free e-book Beginner’s guide to influencer marketing.

3 undeniable reasons why you should invest in influencer marketing (yesterday)

You need to get in the game of influencer marketing asap. Otherwise, your competitors get there first and, to say it as it is, snatch all the professional and engaging influencers.

What’s the rush? Because they – and soon you – have realized the (at least) three reasons why influencer marketing can take their business and bottom line to a level they’ve never seen before.

Reason #1: Influencer marketing is a billion-dollar industry

The market of influencer marketing holds a lot – billions, actually – of promise: In 2016, the market was made up of $1.7 billion. At the end of 2022, it is expected to have grown to $16.4 billion.

Investors see the potential of influencer marketing too and have been quite generous with the funds: In total, influencer marketing software platforms raised more than $800 million in 2021. If you eat crispy numbers for breakfast, these will also be a luscious mouthful:
So, we don’t want to stress you or evoke wet pancakes under your arms, but if you don’t get in the influencer marketing game soon, your competitors will get all the attention, awareness, and sales that could have been yours.
Reason #2: 63% of consumers trust influencers more than brands

No matter how authentically you brand your business, your target audience will always have a teeny-tiny voice in their head saying: “The company is just telling me what I want to hear because they want to make money.”

But when it comes to influencers, the trust thing is another matter. Followers either identify themselves with the influencers or are inspired or fascinated by them. Sometimes all three at once. In the eyes of the followers, their favorite influencers are authentic and trustworthy. That’s why they have a follower base that engages with them on various social media platforms.

So why will influencers always have the upper hand? Because they’re people. And mugglers like you and us trust other people more than brands: 95% of the decisions we make are based on our (gut) feelings and inner values.

For that reason, influencers build relevance, interest, and trust in a way brands could never do themselves.

But that gives you a golden opportunity: By choosing the right influencers means that all the positive thoughts and values your target audience associates with your influencer, reflect the way they think about your brand. And they get reminded of that every time they engage with the influencer.

Reason #3: Your (potential) customers are skeptical of your ads

Consumers have been fed up with traditional media, pop-ups, and “feels like someone’s screaming through a megaphone” ads for years. This means that 96% of them look like this when they see your ads:

That’s also why 42.7% of internet users have adblockers installed.
And if you’re wondering how to break the great wall of ads like a wrecking ball crashing through a concrete wall, the answer is…

Drum roll, please…

Influencer marketing.

Influencers not ‘only’ have a direct line to your dream customers. They can also make them listen and buy your product in a way you’ve never seen before.

Especially, if you use an influencer marketing software that gives you 360-degree insight into and predictions on data – and if you run your campaigns based on these. Let’s show you a case with a campaign run with Woomio:

42.7% of internet users worldwide have adblockers
Campaign without and with Woomio

On social media, consumers, to a great extent, have made a personal and active choice on what they want – and, not least, don’t want – to see in their feeds on social media. That’s why they are also more open to the influencers’ messages and, therefore, also hear about your product if your use influencers as your voice.

So, there you have them: Three undeniable reasons why you should invest in influencer marketing. If you need more, we recommend you keep reading. Because we got one more reason – it’s so convincing that it deserves to be in the spotlight on its own. Uh, cliffhanger…

Why influencer marketing can kapow! your ROI (and an example to prove it)

Brands and businesses earn $5.78 on average for every dollar they spend on influencer marketing.

So the more influencers you activate, the lower your cost per impression is – and you should keep going like this until you hit the ‘sweet spot’ of your ROI.

But why does it work like that? Let’s take you through the SoMe mechanisms behind:

Followers trust an influencer they’ve followed everyday of their lives, for the past months or even many more years than you. They know – and identify with – their (life)style, preferences, and habits. So, when influencers talk about, show, or use (your) products in a way that aligns with that, the audience is hooked. And much more willing to buy compared to your brand making an ad about it.

The followers see the influencers’ style and preferences as a curated inspiration and shopping board. Followers don’t need to spend hours scrolling on a webshop or be creative since the options are served on a well-polished silver platter in their SoMe feed.

Here, the audience can get the answers – sometimes by asking questions directly – that’ll make them click the buy button:

How does the product feel, how does it smell, how is the fit, what colors does it come in, what is the price, how you can style it, when can you wear it, what pains do the product solve, and so on.

It simply caters to the senses – and convenience.

And it gives the followers a chance to buy a piece of the lifestyle that they adore the influencer for.

If your influencer marketing goes hand in hand with a strategic setup around your business, retargeting, newsletters, social media, an easy website flow, ideal pricing, etc., you optimize your conversions and can make your sales grow faster than Kylie Jenner’s following.

And guess what?

We got the best example – and a true success story – from Flying Tiger Copenhagen to show it:

Flying Tiger Copenhagen sold out of a DYI mug thanks to influencer marketing

A match made in SoMe heaven: Finding the right influencers

Teaming up with the right influencer can add humongous positive awareness and value to your brand and, not least, make the ka-ching! bells ring.

But choosing the wrong influencer can be costly and make your credibility crack. Just ask Pepsi (or should we call them Oopsi?). So, for everybody’s sake: Chose the right influencer.

Easy-peasy ‘cause that’s just the influencer who’s the most popular or has the most followers possible, right?

No. Non. Nein. Nej. No (we’re not repeating ourselves, just speaking Spanish this time).

It’s about strategically finding an influencer who matches your brand identity and core values – and who can therefore also represent your brand in a way that the target audience finds trustworthy and relevant.

And ‘target audience’ is your next clue:

If the influencer’s audience isn’t relevant to you, neither is the influencer.

Okay then. Now we’ve been strategic. Let’s get physical practical:

There are three ways to find influencers: Manually, by using an agency, and by using influencer marketing software.

#1: Finding influencers manually

When you want to get started with finding your first influencers manually, you can start by using the Instagram tag search or just start browsing profiles you know and social creators in their network.

Next, it’s a good idea to scroll through their feed and images to see if they have a ‘look and feel’ and tone of voice that match your brand. But most importantly, you need to be sure that you can tap into the influencers’ personal brands – i.e., personalities, interests, lifestyles, and daily lives.

If you’re selling baby food, it only makes sense to reach out to an influencer who has a baby or is pregnant. Also, it’s wise to check the brands they otherwise work with – in case these are competitive.

When you’ve found your influencer(s), you should, ideally, follow the influencer for a few weeks to gain a solid understanding of what they show and tell. 

For instance, their Instagram stories can be just as different from posts in their feed as summer is different from winter.

It’s also important that you scroll through their likes and comments to gain more insights about the influencer’s audience.

Before jumping into collabs based on beautiful content and the number of followers, remember to at least ask for screenshots of their audience and performance (impressions and reach on their sponsored content). It’s also a good idea to check the influencer’s engagement rate.

So, as you see (and maybe already have experienced), it takes a lot of time and steps to find influencers manually. Let’s have a look at an alternative then.

#2: Finding influencers by using an agency

An agency can save you a lot of time and trouble by letting them filter through an (already existing) influencer base or network. They can give ready-to-use data about influencers who are relevant and valuable to your brand.

Choosing an agency to take care of your influencer marketing ensures that you get expert help with your influencer marketing. And it can help you better tap into new markets.

However, it also means that most expertise and knowledge will always stay outside your business since both are gathered by the agency. Unless you get them to work and report in your own influencer marketing software.

#3: Finding influencers by using influencer marketing software

To save time and money and at the same time build golden knowledge and expertise over time, an influencer marketing software for internal use is key.

All it takes is a person who can manage this part of your marketing mix. It can even be a student assistant who has had the proper training or who has access to a world-class playbook. This lets the person know all there is to know about managing influencers in your business.

There is, of course, a cost related to this. But(!) if you’re just getting started, you can compare the cost of, for instance, an agency versus the cost of an influencer marketing software plus student worker hours.

Playbook: Creating a bulletproof influencer marketing strategy

Do you go through a single day without asking Google for answers? 

Neither do we. 

That’ll also be the case with your new influencer marketing playbook.

An influencer marketing playbook ensures that every employee knows what to do (or can find the answer to it) in any given situation, making sure to align all working processes and communication. 

The playbook is therefore also key to a long-term successful influencer strategy.

Also, if an employee leaves your company (or is simply out sick, on holiday, or on maternity leave), your playbook ensures that all golden knowledge about your influencer marketing doesn’t leave too.

The playbook gives answers to everything from how you reach out to influencers and whether your goal is to get brand awareness, sales, user-generated content, sign-ups, more followers, social proof, etc. Your playbook also covers your decisions and processes when it comes to:

  • Social media platform(s).
  • KPIs.
  • Budget.
  • Monitoring and reporting.
  • Tags.
  • Giftings.
  • Tone of voice when reaching out to influencers.
  • Use of emojis.
  • … And exhale!

Let’s save the rest for another time when you’ve caught your breath.

All you need to know is:

The playbook holds a lot of golden info to avoid misunderstandings, gut-feeling decisions, manual work, and double work and, thereby, save you (or your team) a lot of time and money.

We’d be happy to do the ‘dirty work’ for you.

Our influencer marketing specialists have been sitting on both the influencer’s, agency’s, and brand’s side of the desk. They can, based on your input and goals, create a playbook that covers all details and blind spots for you. This is to make sure that you get a bulletproof influencer marketing strategy.

Hiring the right employee to manage influencer marketing

OK, you’re ready and eager to go all-in on influencer marketing (hooray!). The next step is to find the right person to run your influencer marketing activities.

In the ideal world, every business should have a designated influencer campaign specialist/manager. However, we know that the ideal world doesn’t exist: It takes a strong business and strategy to sustain and grow an influencer marketing department.

Instead, we recommend that you start out with a student who has a thoroughly worked-out playbook that will support and describe all working processes and help onboard new colleagues.

Qualities to look for when you hire

So, to find the right match for the position, you should look for a person who:

  • Has an endless interest in social media and influencers.
  • Knows the latest trends on social media, especially Instagram and TikTok.
  • Knows how to communicate and connect with others through a digital screen.
  • Is just as structured as an Excel worksheet and learns just as fast as a robot.
  • Has flawless writing and communication skills in key languages.
  • Studies within marketing.
  • As a bonus, has a sales background (influencer marketing calls for a lot of persistence and a yes!-mentality, which many people with sales experience grasp).
  • As a bonus, has experience in doing influencer marketing campaigns or using an influencer marketing software.

Since we’ve already written half of the job advert for you, we might as well carry on. The tasks and overall processes the person will be doing are:

  • Juggling with your different influencer tracks:
  • Influencer (re)searching and mapping.
  • Influencer nurturing (CRM).
  • Campaign management.
  • Analyzing and reporting.
  • Ensuring first-class data discipline so that influencer dialogue, important info, content agreements, etc., are documented (ideally in an influencer CRM platform like Woomio).

When you’ve found the right match, you can reach out to Woomio. ‘Cause we’ll make sure that your employee(s) get all the training and tools to succeed.

With Woomio, you can:

Sounds pretty cool, right?
Ready to find your favorite brands and boost your personal brand? Let’s get you signed up today, then.
dm illustration influencer marketing