Successful Influencer collaborations rely on the way that the brand and the Influencer co-create content.
There are a few things to consider: the Influencers chosen to work with, their audience demographic, and the expectations the brand has on the content and how it performs. These are all important considerations when choosing which Influencers to work with. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.
Brands usually have specific guidelines when it comes to their own image and the content around it. As much as Influencers should be given the freedom to express their own creativity there are still elements of content that should speak to the value and personality of the brand. This is so that the audience feels like they are still experiencing authentic content from a creator they trust, as well as engaging with the brand. You wouldn’t expect Mike Tyson to promote red lipstick from Rimmel. It just wouldn’t seem authentic. So, it is important to choose Influencers whose creative style and content are more or less in line with your brand.
The other reason it is unlikely to see Tyson promoting a lipstick brand is because the majority of his audience would not be interested in lipstick. For content to perform well it needs to be served to the audience who are likely to consume it. Looking for Influencers who speak to a specific audience can open up a whole new world of options. For example, if you wanted to sell lipstick you would look for Influencers who spoke to impassioned users of lipstick. You could go with the obvious and choose a makeup and beauty star to review the lipstick. Or you could choose someone like George Clooney who has an audience primarily of women between the ages of 35 and 60 and get creative with the content. Often Influencers can be found with an engaged and targeted audience who are not necessarily celebrities. The point is that they are well known to a specific audience. Making sure the Influencer’s audiences are also your consumers is vital.
So how do you find Influencers who are already relevant to your brands’ audience?
When looking for Influencers, use keyword searches and get creative.
When looking for an Influencer for Adidas, don’t just search “Adidas”. Dig deeper to find the gems. Try search terms like, “parkour”, “The Weekend” (He is their current face), “running” etc.
Broaden the scope. What does your brand’s audience love to do? Are they travelers? Are they business people? Are they moms? Then consider what they love. People talk about what they love. If you can find an Influencer who loves the things your brand provides, a perfect union is created.
There are 6 primary Influencer archetypes; all of which will be valuable to an Influencer campaign depending on the brands objective.
These Influencers have a mega following and are generally well known by the public either in their local community or internationally. The Celebrity plays a role in influencing public opinion. If brand awareness is the objective of your brands campaign, then including Celebrities can definitely help achieve that. In addition, the Celeb is also a great driver of traffic and link clicks. Brands should consider collaborating with Celebrities if they are looking to drive audiences to a product page or website. Spotting a celebrity in the wild is as easy as turning on the TV or reading the news.
Well known for having strong opinions and generating debates online, the Agitator is a good Influencer to include in a strategy when looking to target a specific audience and swing opinion. Agitators generally drive high engagement and responses from their audience. They are able to generate high conversions to public pages but are also strong when it comes to amplifying a message. You can spot an Agitator in the wild by their unique tone, and by the way, they command the attention of people.
Having developed a very niche audience in a very focused topic, Specialists are able to add credibility to your brand’s message and drive conversation online. While oftentimes the reach that is gained from collaborating with a Specialist is not so high, their persuasive power is incredibly valuable. Spotting Specialists is not always so easy, as they are quite rare. You can spot them by their use of references and authoritative tone. They will commonly only speak about a specific topic. You should validate their expertise by extended online research, too.
These Influencers tend to be passionate about a specific cause and create content with the purpose of driving awareness and conversation around that cause. Collaboration with activists should happen when your brand’s cause and an Influencers cause intersect. For example, if a children’s television brand wants to create a campaign about anti-bullying, they could collaborate with an Activist whose cause is anti-bullying. In this scenario, the brand gains credibility but they also gain high engagement and amplification of their message. Activists can be identified by the content of their posts. They generally tend to have long conversations on social media and can be spotted by the long comment threads.
A visual storyteller with creative skills, the Creator is the perfect Influencer to collaborate with on content creation. Their creatives skills can range from photography to illustration, to origami. Creators have built up audiences who appreciate and value their content. Engagement garnered around the content is usually about the quality of the material shared. Some of the best campaigns have a strategy where a creator teams up with another type of Influencer to create and share the content. Spotting Creators is not often very difficult. Their biggest social channels are typically Instagram, Youtube, and Pinterest. Generally, a creator can be identified by the resolution of their images, and by the estimated time required for them to produce and publish their content.
The Foot Soldier
The main contributing factor of a foot soldier is not a particular strength in creative, or expertise in a specific area, it is their collaborative power to cause content to go viral. Foot soldiers have often been called micro-influencers or “pebbles”. They are essentially influencers who do not have large followings and on their own may not cause much noise. However, if you are able to combine the voice of at least 10 Foot Soldiers, you will find that the volume goes up a couple of notches and you are able to start a movement. Foot Soldiers are the glue of many a successful campaign and possibly the most effective tactic to spread a message.
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