How to Do Influencers the Right Way

Millennials

Everyone wants to use influencers to give their product/brand that “organic” feel. While influencers can be a great awareness & conversion driver, many companies spend money wastefully when acquiring them. Here are some standard issues companies run into with influencers:

1. Fake followers – You hire an influencer with 100k followers, only to find out after that 50% of them are fake
2. Low engagement – The influencer has a large number of followers but none of them actually engage or click on the products/brands they promote
3. Large percentage of fans from geos outside of the country you are targeting- If you are only looking to sell a product in one or a select number of countries, than you need to find influencers who have a majority of followers in those geos. What good is an influencer with 1 million followers if 60% of them are from countries you cannot even ship the product to?
4. No ability to track performance per influencer – A brand selects 10 influencers to promote their product but has no idea what kind of response either of them drove.

There are worthy influencers, of course. Look for those who have an authoritative voice in the category or verticals to which your brand belongs. For example, if you are interested in increasing business in the fitness world, the you want to be able to find influencers who are personal trainers, own their own gyms or have won awards and competitions in their category. Their followers engage with their content because they trust their voice to be legitimate when discussing the category in which they are experts. Individuals who are active on social media and live and breathe personal health, whether because of general interest or because it is their livelihood, are the perfect choice to “influence” your prospective customers.

No matter what your business realm is, be sure to select an influencer who posts regularly. What good is an influencer who only posts a few times a year? It is important to find influencers who are active and engage with their followers on a weekly basis. The flow does not have to be constant, but just active, regular and authoritative. Read a few posts of the influencer you are interested in working with to get a feel for their style and to see if they engage you and make you want to learn more about the products on which they are posting.

Given the many dubious personalities that the nature of the internet allows to gain attention, be very careful with whom you select to associate your brand. Make sure that the influencers you select deal in “PG-rated,” clean content. You do not want to a hire an influencer who has attracted a large following chiefly because of the racy content that he or she posts. No matter what type of product you represent, it is likely that the developers you are working with want to keep content on their brand safe for family consumption.

Equally significant is finding an influencer with an ROI that is measurable. An effective choice is one who has followers that engage and buy the products/brands which the influencer promotes. It should be no different than when you’re working with other forms of digital media where you can attribute a CPM/CPC/CPA to each post.

With our long history serving brands digitally, Kingstar Media has given a lot of thought and devoted a great deal of time to helping our customers to choose digital media partners wisely. We have developed what we call Kingstar’s Digital Influencer Solution – Influential Response by Kingstar Media. This software has access to more than 3 million influencers with detailed data on all of them.

The solution ensures that the influencers’ followers are verified to the extent that 100% of their followers will be real and not associated with fake or “bot” accounts. We’ve also designed the software to be engagement focused. It only features influencers with proven engagement who have followers that actually purchase what they promote. It also allows for geographic verification. The system only chooses influencers who have a high percentage of followers in the countries that the brand/product/service is targeting.

Kingstar Media also made sure that the software can effectively measure performance. It can track every click, add to cart, initiate checkout and sale per influencer. This gives the marketer the ability to optimize and scale those influencers who are driving actual results.

No matter which solution a digital marketer chooses, it is key to stop wasting money on ineffective influencers now. If you are responsible for a brand, do your homework. Use tools that are designed to separate the wheat from the chaff. Digital marketers only have a certain amount of dollars to reach a maximum, engaged audience. Since few brands have an endless supply of money allotted toward their development and growth, it should be spent on the tried and true influencer. In the same way you would select a trained and successful physician for your child, be sure to look for an influencer who will move the needle for your brand.

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