What is influencer marketing for you

Influencer Marketing: A Guide for Businesses

We perceive recommendations from people with whom we identify, whom we trust and who serve as role models to be more credible than any classic form of advertising. That's exactly what it doesInfluencer Marketing Benefit: Companies work with us Content creators together who are active in a wide variety of social networks and enjoy the trust of their respective communities.

Research by the Influencer Marketing Hub shows that the principle works. Because generated for every dollar investedInfluencer Marketing an average of $ 5.20 Earned media value. So it's no wonder that almost two thirds of marketers state that they want to increase the budget for influencer marketing in the next year. In the DACH region alone, the entire marketing area for influencers is expected to grow to almost a billion euros in sales by 2020 - and thus almost double compared to 2017.

What is Influencer Marketing?

With Influencer Marketing Business relationships for the purpose of brand communication between companies and influencers are meant. Influencers, i.e. well-known people in the digital world, act as brand ambassadors in this discipline of online marketing. To do this, they use their reach and reputation within the community to act as opinion makers for the brand.

Influencer or brand ambassador?

So that you too can rely on this form of marketing, we explain below what you can do about working with Influencers need to know how to find the right cooperation partner and how successful Influencer campaigns can look like.

When defining Influencer Marketing it is important to loosely demarcate the concept from some related disciplines:

When working with aTestimonial for example, well-known personalities are employed who appear as the face of the brand for a certain period of time (such as George Clooney for Nespresso).

As Brand ambassador Normal customers can also appear who speak out in favor of a product of their own accord and without paying, for example on review portals. These are particularly in the context ofWord of Mouth Marketing relevant.

Influencer however, are a mixture of both approaches. These are “normal people” with a relevant online following on social media, who promote certain goods for a fee or free of charge.

So they combine the advantages of testimonials and brand ambassadors: You have oneRole model function and thePower of opinion within their community, but (in contrast to most celebrities) seek closeness to their fans and followers and therefore appear particularly authentic and trustworthy to the users in their recommendations.

However, the boundaries between the different marketing tactics are becoming increasingly blurred. After all, major influencers have increasingly become celebrities themselves in recent years, who also appear in traditional media such as television. On the other hand, there are celebrities who originally come from this area, but are now increasingly active in social networks, place products there and thus act like influencers (see Celebrity influencers).

The importance of influencer marketing for businesses

For companies, collaboration brings with it Influencers numerous advantages:

  • Influencers bring the brand to life thanks to their large community Range and attention. In a 2017 study, 68 percent of those surveyed said they had become aware of a product via social media.

  • In this way, the Brand awareness: On average, an increase of 17.3 percent can be assumed, for previously unknown brands it can even double.

  • The main characteristic of Influencers is your apparent Proximity, their tight binding to the community and its much-vaunted authenticity. Advertising companies benefit from this: After recommendations from friends and customer reviews, influencers are named as the most credible source of product information.

  • In addition, it is not just about more reach and awareness. The actual willingness to buy is also determined by Influencer Marketing elevated. For example, 43 percent of 16 to 24 year olds state that they have ever used a product based on one Influencer recommendation to have bought. With influencer marketing, companies can have a major impact on the purchasing decisions of potential customers.

Influencer Marketing vs. Influencer Relations: What's the Difference?

The terms "influencer marketing" and "influencer relations" are sometimes used similarly, but they are quite different. While the topic of influencer marketing also includes specific marketing activities of the influencer, which the commissioning company has often arranged for the purpose of quick sales promotion, the term includes Influencer Relations long-term marketing efforts and, above all, maintaining the relationship with the influencer.

Influencer Relations are to be regarded as a sub-category of public relations (i.e. public relations work) of a company. The focus here is on selecting influencers who are ideally suited to the commissioning company. A sustainable relationship is established with them in the most organic way possible.

As part of a longer-term marketing and communication strategy, the influencers recruited in this way should appear as convincing brand ambassadors whose range of activities goes far beyond ads, transparent advertising messages for products or a testimonial. Above all, the corporate or brand image should be positively influenced by the actions of the influencer.

While influencer marketing can also include the short-term commitment of a well-known person on social media, the goal of influencer relations is more to increase public trust in one's own brand in the long term through well-known people Brand Ambassadors to strengthen.

Types of influencers

Influencer“Serves as a collective term for the most varied types of content creators on a wide variety of channels with a wide variety of topics and focuses. Usually between the following Influencer types differentiated:

Micro influencers

Micro influencers have a comparatively small community with several thousand or ten thousand followers. But that doesn't necessarily make them less attractive for companies, on the contrary: the smaller community often creates one authentic and a close relationship with the followers, which also goes hand in hand with a higher level of credibility.

Because by now most users are aware that large Influencer earn a lot of money with their channels and thus have a monetary interest in recommending products.

Micro influencerswho often only operate their channels as a hobby, an honest recommendation is more likely to be accepted. Often (but not always) micro-influencers also serve Niche topicsthat are not covered by the larger canals in this form. Since there are not so many competitors in this rather acute range of topics, the micro-influencers develop influence more quickly and establish themselves within their community as highly present opinion leaders.

Although the follower numbers may not be earth-shattering, they are Fans of micro-influencers are usually particularly loyal, interested and activewhich is reflected in the interaction rate of the channels.

With around 37,000 followers on Instagram, the channel can still be loved by the lines Micro influencers are counted. It deals with topics related to reading and literature, which makes the channel attractive for publishers and booksellers, for example.

Celebrity influencers

This is Influencerthat are also famous outside of social media. The fan communities of the Celebrity influencers However, they also insist on social media, where this type of influencer usually maintains several channels and thus steadily increases its community.

Here the lines between Testimonial and Influencer-marketing, however, celebrities tend to be perceived as more authentic on their own social media profiles than would be the case with a classic advertising presence (such as television commercials). The immediacy of the medium plays the decisive role here.

Footballer Mats Hummels is one of the celebrities who publish product placements on Instagram.

Blogger influencer

This Influencer type is not (or at least not predominantly) on the social networks, but primarily maintains its own Blog. Here, corresponding products are mentioned or reviewed, paid posts are written about products or commercial guest articles are published.

The cooking and baking blog Zimtkeks & Apfeltarte describes on its own subpage what the collaboration can look like: The blogger provides recipes for Corporate blogs ready to speak in sponsored posts about products or takes over the company's own Instagram channel for a certain period of time ("Social media takeover“).

Social media influencers: Instagrammers, YouTubers and TikTok influencers

Is ofInfluencers Most classic social media influencers who are active on several channels have in mind the talk (YouTubeInstagramTikTok, Twitter, SnapChat and Co.).

This type is the largest and most popular among the publicInfluencer assign. Although they often have a certain thematic focus (such as make-up tips), this usually extends to broader, more general areas such asFashion andLifestyle

The case of Bianca Claßen alias BibisBeautyPalace clearly shows how the success of YouTubers and other social media influencers can go beyond social media. Claßen founded her own cosmetics brand Bilou in 2015 and released her own song together with Warner Music in 2017. Apparently, it's not just her followers who like it: The clip has now received over 62 million views on YouTube.

Key opinion leader

Key opinion leader are considered experts in specific subject areas and therefore have a lot Power of opinion. In contrast to the other types of influencers, they are also in B2B area represented - such as the marketing expert Robert Weller.

Fitness guru Sophia Thiel, on the other hand, can go to Germany Key opinion leader when it comes to exercise and nutrition. In addition to her own fitness program, suitable sports equipment and cookbooks, she has now also launched her own perfume series.

Create an influencer marketing strategy

Below we explain how you should go about creating a solid strategy for your business Influencer Marketing to design.

Influencer Marketing: Set Goals

As with any strategy, the first thing to do is to set specific goals. On the basis of this, you can then determine the measures for the implementation and check the success of the strategy in retrospect based on the achieved (or not achieved) goals.

Typical goals for a Influencer campaign are for example:

  • more Range for the brand via the influencer's community,

  • a stronger one Brand loyalty and brand perception or

  • more Interactions (Likes, comments, shares) in social media.

Compare target groups

Influencer Marketing can only be crowned with success if the influencer's target group matches your buyer persona - otherwise the effects will fizzle out. After all, it is the influencer's followers who are confronted through the cooperation with your brand in the context of content marketing and who should act as potential multipliers and buyers in the next step.

Against this background, it would make little sense, for example, to market baby accessories through an influencer who is herself a mother, but whose community is mostly made up of teenagers.

Select influencer

With the multitude of Influencerswho are now active in social networks, it can be a challenge to find the right representative for your brand. In order to find the right influencer, you should therefore ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does the influencer match the Company image or to product? If the influencer cannot credibly recommend your product, the cooperation will not bring you any advantages.

  • He already has Competitors worked? That would tend to weaken the association with your specific product and slow down the advertising effect.

  • Does my target group use the social media platforms, portals or blogs used by the influencer? As already explained, you will only benefit from the cooperation if the Community of the influencer matches your target group.

  • Which one budget is available and which influencers can I afford for it? Depending on popularity, content quality and number of followers, influencers call up very different prices for collaboration. You should therefore realistically analyze which ones Influencer You should address.

In case you need assistance in choosing the right one Influencers you can contact the relevant influencer platforms. These bring influencers and companies together and usually also help with negotiations and campaign planning.

Clarify expectations of cooperation

The cooperation between Influencer and companies can look very different. It is therefore important that you disclose and adjust the expectations of both sides right from the start so that there is no misunderstanding and all parties know what they are getting into. Among other things, you should clarify the following aspects:

Which form of cooperation is chosen?
There are a wide variety of ways in which companies specifically deal with Influencers can work together. You can send the influencer a classic product that he reviews or at least mentions. You can also invite influencers to an event, for example, which they then report on on social media.

How long does the cooperation last?
If it is all about a single post, you aim for a limited collaboration within a specified framework or should Influencer even become your brand face permanently?

Who formulates the content?
One variant is here, the Influencer To largely leave a free hand in content creation. All you have to do is agree on a few key points for the presentation of the products and leave it up to him in what form and with what formulation he presents the product to his community. This usually ensures particularly authentic content that the community likes.

However, you also have to fully rely on the influencer and their approach. If you are flirting with this variant, you should do so in advance other postings by the influencer Take a close look to see if these tend to be compatible with your ideas.

Alternatively, you can agree that the contributions of the Influencers must first be approved by you prior to publication. Or you even pose pre-formulated posts ready to keep full control of the advertising message. However, you run the risk that the content will have a very promotional effect and will not suit the influencer. If the followers notice this, they could react disappointed or angry and reject your brand ambassador.

What form should the content have?
Just at Influencerswho are active on several channels, the question arises, Where and in what shape Your product should be presented. Do you envision an in-depth discussion within a YouTube video? Should the product only be mentioned briefly in an Instagram story or is even an Instagram post sufficient in which the product can be seen but is not explicitly mentioned?

There are no universal answers to any of these questions; instead, you should consider the individual points individually negotiate with the influencer in question. Since he may already be an old hand in this field, it is certainly worthwhile to try his proposals and Suggestions to include in your own considerations.

However, what you should definitely pay attention to is this correct advertising labeling of the content as part of this marketing measure. Surreptitious advertising not only harms your corporate image, it can also have legal consequences:

The drugstore chain Rossmann was indicted in 2017 and sentenced to cease and desist after a Influencer had merely tagged an advertising post with the hashtag #ad.Because hashtags alone are often not enough: A typical label that you and the influencer should use for postings is the "Paid advertising partnership" in the advanced settings for postings.

Determine the type of payment

The consideration required for promoting your product can vary greatly. While watching small Influencer possibly already with a free product transfer are satisfied, large channels usually demand direct financial compensation.

But you can also suggest alternative forms of payment. Providing one is particularly useful for online shops Promo codes with which the community of the Influencers Gets discounts. This creates a win-win situation: You increase your sales, while the influencer can exclusively offer his community tangible advantages, which binds his followers more closely to him.

Likewise, you can offer the Influencer on your company page in relation to joint campaign to introduce. In this case, the influencer himself can also benefit from additional reach. Are also popular paid trips, in the context of which the content for the cooperation is created.

Measure results

To see how successful your Influencer campaign has gone, you should measure and evaluate your results. To do this, you can concentrate on different key figures (depending on your specific goal):

  • Clicks: How many users clicked on a link that the influencer built into its content offer?

  • Conversions: How many users signed up for a newsletter or bought a product during the campaign period?

  • Mentions: How often has your brand or product been mentioned on social media after being promoted by the influencer?

  • Number of followers: Have you gained followers on the channels you serve?

  • Brand awareness: Has your brand gained recognition? You can check this, for example, via market research, the evaluation of the search volume of your brand name or your website traffic.

What are the costs of influencer marketing?

How high that budget is you for Influencer Marketing should be planned, can not be said generally. Too many factors play a role here, including the exact form of remuneration, the usual fees in the respective industry and Notoriety and Range of the influencer.

When you calculate how much you work with a specific Influencer However, you should not only pay attention to its range. Micro influencers are, after all, the perfect example of cooperation partners who reach fewer people, but they do so all the more in theirs Opinion formation influence. Therefore, consider that much more Potency of an influencer.

You can use the number of Interactions moor that generates a post. Many interactions suggest a committed community with a few Fake followers that is particularly attractive to you as an advertiser. If, on the other hand, an influencer has numerous followers, but hardly any likes or comments, their posts don't seem to really reach the community.

Also important for the effectiveness: one low sponsorship rate. Influencers appear more credible in their product recommendations, the less they appear. Only represents an influencer selected brands, that conveys to the followers that the influencer Cooperations carefully selects and enters into it out of my own conviction. Represents a Influencer on the other hand, in every post a different company, your brand will be drowned in the abundance of collaborations and will not be perceived as an authentic recommendation.

Even if the specific prices for Influencer Marketing So vary greatly, you can roughly orientate yourself on the following guideline values ​​for thousand contact prices (CPM):

  • For one Instagram post a CPM of around 2 to 10 euros (extrapolated to the subscribers) is called up.

  • At a Instagram story the CPM is noticeably higher at 25 euros (extrapolated to the views).

  • YouTube videos cost advertisers the most. For an integration of a product or brand over 60 to 90 seconds, a CPM of around 30 to 100 euros is incurred, extrapolated to the views.

Influencer marketing: examples of successful collaboration

The following examples show how the cooperation with Influencers can be a complete success.

HelloBody

When Monique Hoell founded the personal care brand HelloBody in 2016, she only relied on influencers for marketing. Because the brand wanted to appeal to young women around the age of 20 in particular and so also selected the products based on how well they could be presented on Instagram. The meanwhile 25,000 collaborations with influencers, who repeatedly referred to the HelloBody Instagram account made the channel really big.

Image: Instagram HelloBody Influencer

The approach worked: after only three years, the brand, which is still not even available in retail, but only in its own online shop, 500,000 customers and eight-digit sales. Expansion abroad is planned.

Zalando and Under Armor - #SHEPWR

The online shop Zalando and the sportswear brand Under Armor have jointly launched the “SHEPWR” campaign. It is intended to encourage women around the world to do sports together.

As part of this advertising campaign, a whole network of values ​​is conveyed: inclusion, Diversity and equal rights are central issues. In addition, the outdated idea of ​​"women-friendly sports" is being cleaned up and space is being created for new space to develop.

Image: Instagram Lary Poppins # SHEPWR campaign

The focus of the campaign is the Berlin musician and Influencer Lary Poppins (@larypoppins), who was accompanied at a three-day boot camp together with other influencers from the fitness area.

They also shared tips on the topics for four weeks on their respective social media channels Sport, nutrition and Equipment and called on users to share their athletic progress on social networks with the hashtag #SHEPWR. At the same time, Zalando provided a landing page through which interested women could directly buy the right sportswear from Under Armor.

Image: Instagram Kori Nikkonen # SHEPWR campaign

Opel - #breakthebubble

Just in time for the opening of the International Motor Show (IAA) 2019, Opel implemented a campaign promoting the electric version of the Opel Corsa. In addition to testimonial Jürgen Klopp, an essential part of the strategy was 15 Influencerwho drove across Europe for two weeks.

Image: Instagram Xlaeta