Thanks to everyone who came out for our inaugural Influencer Marketing Meetup, Introduction to Influencer Marketing. We heard from Ashley Banks, Director of Digital Strategy and Media at iced media, Talun Zeitoun, digital marketing consultant and voice of the eponomous blog Talun, and Katya Bychkova, the creator of Style Sprinter.
Brands should personalize contact with bloggers
Katya advised brands to follow preferred influencers on social media for a few weeks to get a sense of what they promote, which helps brand representatives to "write something personal". Talun suggested brands showcase their product, recommending "personal emails telling your story, how you got started, etc." He also cautioned against adding influencers to a mailing list as a way to connect.
Brands should make like Elsa and #Letitgo
Ashley told the story of a prestige beauty brand she worked with to develop influencer content. They did two campaigns which featured influencers who starred in the brand video, then pushed out content from the shoot (video, shorter edits, gifs, stills, etc).
"The second video we were not prescriptive in how the assets were shared, so our influencers seamlessly fit them into their content story, shooting custom cover images for video so it felt 'in-feed' for them (but launched into brand video), or picking what images from the multi-day shoot they wanted to use to tell their story, rather than the brand forcing a certain content rollout.
Despite a lower volume of content shared from the second campaign to the first, results were far better. We had nearly double impressions, more than double video views, and over 4x the engagements."
Giving influencers creative control drives results!
Multi-channel strategy is key
Between Instagram's new algorithm and the end of Vine, it's clear that a presence on just one social platform is not enough. Furthermore, all channel presences should be in the same brand voice. Talun thinks of an influencer's blog is as his "government seat," while other social channels are the "embassies" He explained that "we must speak the language of other platforms and follow each's cultural norms." Each channel is unique, but it all represents the same point of view.
Ashley predicted live content will "divide" the influencer era in the same way that sound technology divided film. Katya stressed that the more platforms you can cover, the better. Along those lines, for her the future is "scheduling and formalizing content." Talun is looking ahead to influencer-driven branded content on video.