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About Webfluential

Webfluential is a global Influencer Marketing platform which provides the smartest marketing technology for brands to connect to social influencers. The platform makes it easy for marketers to create, manage and track campaigns with credible influencers and provides influencers with the tools to market their services and monetise their audience.

Mercedes-Benz and Casey Neistat – Influencer Marketing done right

April 29, 2016 2:45 pm Published by

This blog post was originally written by Ruan Fourie. When we think of Mercedes-Benz we think of luxury and the high life. Casey Neistat is a YouTuber and he will happily admit that neither luxury or the high life is part of what he does. How does a luxury car brand like Mercedes and Neistat end up working on an advertising project? Two words: Influencer Marketing As other digital marketing efforts are becoming less and less effective, brands want to reach audiences that are engaged. Influencer Marketing is a great way of doing this, but sometimes the brand restricts influencers to what can or can not be done. Problem is: Influencers know their audience best. In a way it’s similar to how Hollywood works. Creatives create something for an audience, then producers, the production studio and network executives apply changes as they see fit, because they are, after all, fronting the bill. Too many cooks really do spoil the broth, especially when the most vocal cooks don’t know what the people in the restuarant want to eat. Mercedes-Benz have had multiple commercials for many cars over the years and most of these commercials cater to the same audience: High LSM males. If you're in advertising you'll know that target market well! Mercedes commercials look fantastic, but for most of us it just leaves us wishing we could actually afford one of those beautiful luxury cars. The marketing team at Mercedes realised this, and so set out to reach a new audience - but to do this they had to try something they hadn't done before. Casey Neistat - Mercedes Benz CLA This new audience is not the usual target - they are people like you and me, people like Casey Neistat, people who just want to have fun, people that Mercedes-Benz don’t really understand. This can be a problem, for any marketing team. Luckily the solution is obvious. Just find someone who understands the audience and let them create - no strings attached. Casey Neistat stepped up to the plate and Mercedes-Benz armed him with the new CLA Class and bags full of money. Their instructions to Casey? Nothing. “There’s a huge insecurity on my part that my audience might perceive this as: this is something a company is directing, or this is a company that wants to be something else, or this is something that a company is pushing in a certain direction.” said Neistat about his fears when taking on this project. Right from day one, Neistat and his team did not hide a thing from their audience. They made a four-part video series to help showcase their process and the production of the CLA Class commercial. Like any good influencer, Neistat had all cards on the table where his audience could see them. The resulting commercial is probably the best commercial that has even been made for Mercedes-Benz. Instead of making you feel like you need to earn more, the commercial makes you feel like you want to have fun. https://youtu.be/NZ8RiLLt6yg It’s because of this honesty that influencers have with their audience, that there is a different type of connection. A connection that can change behaviour and influence purchasing decisions. Casey Neistat skateboarding behind Merceds CLA The audience also want to support the influencer, especially if branded content is not forced on them under false pretenses. Even though content might be paid for or sponsored, the audience will not mind if the content has been created for them. In fact, in most cases the audience will support the brand, because the brand supports the influencer. This shows us that trust between brand and influencer is key.  It’s only natural for a brand to be concerned about what will happen to their brand when placed in the hands of an influencer. Influencer Marketing is the future of marketing, but it will be critical for brands to identify influencers that understand branding and marketing as well as they understand their audience. A real influencer builds his own audience using branding and marketing skills. If a brand can trust an influencer, and give them the creative freedom they deserve, not only will the campaign be a success but a mutually beneficial relationship will blossom between the two parties. Once a mutually beneficial working relationship is created between brand and influencer, the influencer becomes a brand ambassador for life - and that is more valuable than any other form of media a brand can buy.  


Influencer best practice – Branded content on Facebook and Google

April 19, 2016 11:01 am Published by

Influencer Marketing guidelines toward branded or sponsored content has recently been addressed by both Google and Facebook. As an Influencer, we advise familiarising yourself with recent updates made to the branded posting guidelines issues by these two major networks. branded-01 We’ve summarized the updates below for our community of influencers to read. At Webfluential we pride ourselves for being in the forefront of this growing industry, and therefore want to make sure we communicate all the rules and guidelines as they come into play.

Google guidelines for bloggers

In a blog post released on the Webmaster Central blog Google advises bloggers to add the nofollow tag to links that were created in exchange for goods or services, stating that these links are against the Google guidelines on link schemes. “Influencer engagement isn’t necessarily about receiving links but more about reaching the audience of a particular blogger or online ‘personality’,” says Henry Ellis, head of SEO agency Tamar. There has been speculation on how Google can determine the difference between an organic link and a link that has been placed in exchange for goods or services. Nonetheless it would be advisable for all marketers and influencers to familiarise themselves with Google’s guidelines on the matter. Top Tip from Webfluential: Use the nofollow tag on links in your blog posts about brands, and disclaim to your audience that content is sponsored in a note at the end of your post, be that on social or native channels.

Facebook updates Branded Content Policy

Facebook used to prohibit third party advertisements on Facebook pages without their prior permission. Branded content will however be allowed since a new update to branded content policies was announced on 8 April, also in a blog post: “Today we’re updating our branded content policy to enable verified Pages to share branded content on Facebook.” If you want a refresher on the Facebook branded content policies, you can read all about it here.

Summary

Both announcements by Google and Facebook are clear indicators that Influencer Marketing is on the rise. We live in an exciting era, but in order for us all to move forward together and produce the best content for brands that honour the platforms the content is created for, we must be sure we’re keeping in line with the rules and regulations that surround our Influencer Marketing trade.      


How much would you pay to influence the world? How about 10%?

April 1, 2016 8:00 am Published by

Platform Comparison Table 1

You probably tip your waiter more than you pay for internet services

At Webfluential we’re all about giving you the tools to grow your influence and take your personal brand to the next level. With the launch of Booked By Webfluential, we’ve taken it one step further. Now brands can book you directly from your own website, using a slick-looking booking form that generates a quote for your work. Like other web-based booking tools, we charge a small service fee for each booking you accept - about 10%. What you’d usually tip your waiter. Let’s talk about Airbnb, another online booking service. They’re the guys who changed the face of rental accommodation, convincing ordinary people to open their homes to local or foreign guests and make some extra cash at the same time. So, just like the local B&B or hotel - but at a more affordable rate. Today Airbnb is the best thing to have happened to the tourism industry world-wide. But Airbnb isn’t alone. Freelancer.com and Upwork.com are two sites that have made a name for themselves as portals to cash for hardworking freelancers. Then there’s our influencer marketing platform, reinventing the relationship between brands and influencers by making it easier than ever to connect and collaborate, with our Booked By Webfluential technology. These sites all have one thing in common - we all charge a small percentage on a transaction or booking. Charging a fee makes business sense. It allows us to keep custom-developing useful tools to make your lives easier. For Airbnb, Freelancer.com, Webfluential and Upwork, this percentage is determined by demand and value to both our customers and users. Let’s compare:

Airbnb

The service is quick, easy and fun. Today you’re drinking a cup of tea in your backyard, tomorrow you’re under a brolly in London. Travellers pay a guest service fee, which can be anything from 6-12%. An additional 3% service fee is collected from the host for each reservation. That’s a percent on each side to ensure Airbnb delivers on the following guarantees and services:
  • Customer support
  • Host guarantee
  • Transaction fees covered by Airbnb
  • Personalised service and pretty impressive holiday experiences
Airbnb also charges VAT for hosts and guests in some regions and their own variable exchange rates. There’s quite a bit more happening behind the scenes than what appears on the surface, but still not as complicated or pricey as many other holiday booking sites. Time saved: What’s a few percent when you’ve just saved hours scouring for deals on the internet and you get to live comfortably at a cheaper rate in someone else’s home for a few days?

Freelancer.com

Freelancer.com charges the client a small project fee dependent on the size of the project. Their table can be a little daunting and expects you to do a lot of reading in order to figure out how to get the best value for your bid. The site also charges a percentage fee in contest winnings by taking a 20% service fee from the total service price and a 15% project fee if a freelancer is awarded a recruiter project. What does it offer the user?
  • Anytime cancellation up to seven days from booking with a full refund
  • Protection of payment until work is done to specific standards
  • A project-based structure for cost-saving and broader reach
  • Access to a broad spread of work and opportunity for those who want it
Time saved: Need a competent freelancer without the hassle of emailing a thousand people referred by friends? Here you go.

Upwork.com

Upwork has a service fee - 10% of the total amount charged to the client - which is paid by the freelancer. The client gets the freelancer and the contacts for free. The freelancer has to work out a final charge which can include the service fee as part of the overall price. What are the benefits?
  • Central location to find verified clients and work
  • A clearly outlined rate calculator and help system
  • Access to a pool of talent which is ready to grab and bid on a job
  • A well-established system which accesses a global market
Time saved: All of the freelancers in one space across multiple platforms. When it comes to cutting on time, this is a big one for both client and freelancer. Time saved is enough to take on a new commission and accept payment from an old one.

Webfluential

Webfluential’s booking form Booked By Webfluential is easy to use, plugs into Wordpress, and gives you instant credibility as an influencer. The charge is 10% off the top, without any hidden agendas or secretive extras. And the value add?
  • Free and simple to install which allows a booking from anywhere, anytime by any brand
  • Brands get a professional quote instantly. You get to generate a quote easily
  • Pricing support that ensures that you stay in line with market demand or use your own structure
  • Get paid on time
  • Improved collaboration and reporting with everything from a one-on-one Chat Room function , to bookings, briefs and payments - all in one place
Time saved: One form. A thousand brands. You don’t need 1 000 forms with vendor details, agency lists, payment chasing and frustration. Time saved is enough to write another blog post, engage another reader and build on your influence. Watch our Booked By Webfluential video below:  
 


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