how to work with influencers
Why is influencer marketing so successful?
It’s been proven that millenials trust recommendations from other people rather than the brand itself hence, why influencer marketing exists & is so successful to spread the word about your fashion brand
An influencer by definition is ‘a person who has the ability to influence the behaviour or opinions of others’
How to choose an influencer to work with
The influencer can be a blogger, a designer, a student or stylist; it doesn’t really matter as long as their audience aligns with yours.
The main thing you need to look for is the level of engagement that the audience has with that influencer.
It’s important to focus on engagement over number of followers & here’s an example to show why!
Emily and Sarah both work as influencers for a knitwear company and get sent a pink fluffy jumper
They both take a photo of them wearing the exact same pink fluffy jumper
Emily has 1 million followers, posts the picture and gets 1,000 likes
Sarah has 10,000 followers, posts the picture and gets 1,000 likes
Only 1% of Amy’s audience is interacting with her whilst 10% of Sarah’s audience is interacting with her!
Influence does not only mean popularity, remember that your goal is to elicit a specific action from your customers so you need to see the reaction that their posts are already getting from products that are similar to yours.
The credible influencers have cultivated their audience over months or years & pride themselves on providing quality content for their followers. When you approach them to work with you, tell them why your brand would be of interest to their followers!
Remember this isn’t an old school ‘spray and pray’ approach to marketing, it is very personal and targeted (which is why it is successful!)
Speak to them as a person and sell them the story behind the product to earn their trust and respect for your brand
To avoid any misunderstandings further down the line, make sure both parties are clear what’s expected
For example :
1 free coat to be gifted in exchange for :
1 feed post using the brand hashtag and insta handle
An insta story discussing the special waterproof features of the coat with a swipe up link to buy
#gifted to be used in all posts relating to the coat
It’s great fun to work with influencers and see your product go viral! However, don’t let the process become a vanity project and set some clear monetary goals before you start!
On average, for every £1 you spend you want to expect £6.50 back in revenue.
There’s so many creative ways to work with influencers now & I’ve listed some ideas to try below!
‘Great content entertains, educates or invokes some level of emotion from your audience. But for whatever reason, brands tend to lose sight of that when working with influencers. Don’t be that brand.’ Sprout Social
Take some time to think about what you want accomplish with influencer marketing.
What are you trying to tell your customers / their audience?
How can you tell them that in a creative and useful way?
Gifting - this is is most common way to work with influencers bu sending them product for free. If there’s no money or contract involved, there’s no liability for the influencer to post
How to - why not try a ‘how to style’ video of all the different ways to wear the product
Event styling - get to know the influencer and watch out for events they’re going to! Ask if you can style them to get your product in front of their audience IRL!
Outfit post - if this is paid for, it needs to say #ad or #paid partnership with…’
Insta takeover - you could ask the influencer to do a takeover on your page and create some original content for you
Create a collection together - self explanatory & something a lot of bigger brands do with celebs. Think of Holly Willoughby doing a collab with Very for example
Long term ambassador - this is a route more brands seem to be taking as it can lock an influencer into a contract with you for a longer period of time, for extra bonus points you can ask them to be exclusive to you
Ecom model - why not ask them to model your clothes on the website - this is great exposure for them and also gives a level of credibility to your website!
The Boring Bit
Years ago, influencer marketing wasn’t regulated in the same way as it is now!
As a brand, it is also your responsibility to ensure your product is being promoted clearly.
If you’re paying an influencer over a period of time (example 5 posts over 5 weeks) it’s not enough to disclose the first post as a #ad and not the other 4 - every single post within the time frame of working together should say #ad (or something of that sort)
Even if you have asked an influencer to put the #ad on the post, don’t assume the have! Always double check or you could be putting your brand at risk of violation to the rules
If you’re still not convinced about influencer marketing for your fashion brand, here’s some top facts to change your mind!
70 percent of teenage YouTube subscribers trust influencer opinions over traditional celebrities. (Source)
51 percent of marketers say that video content produces the best ROI. (Source)
86 percent of women turn to social networks before making a purchase. (Source)
32 percent of US influencers who currently work with brands cite Facebook as the best platform, followed by Instagram at 24 percent. (Source)
71 percent of consumers are more likely to make a purchase based on a social media reference. (Source)
86 percent of the most-viewed beauty videos on YouTube were made by influencers, compared to 14 percent by beauty brands, themselves. Beauty video views have increased 65 percent year over year. (Source)
57 percent of beauty and fashion companies use influencers as part of their marketing strategies, while an additional 21 percent are also planning to add this strategy to their campaigns in 2017. (Source)
11.7 percent of US marketing budgets is devoted to social media, up from 3.5 percent in 2009. (Source)
US digital ad spending will hit $72.09 billion, about 37 percent of total ad spend. (Source)
On average, businesses generate $6.50 for every $1 invested in influencer marketing. (Source)