There are few joyful moments in a business marketer’s life including implementing a new tactic – and seeing it work like magic. It gives you a sense of fulfillment, especially if it brings promising initial results. So, after a few days of celebrating, the tactic is added in your long-term repertoire, and then you move on, searching for the next best strategy.
And because you’re often thinking of the next best thing, you might not realize that the tactic that worked so well for a few months’ has become outdated. Perhaps even obsolete. Point blank: Before you write a $250,000 check to a Kardashian for a sponsored Instagram post, you should know if it’s still an ingenious way to break through the noise or a total waste of money and time.
The perspective is that it’s quite easy to innocently execute an outdated influencer marketing tactic that sabotages your endeavors. Yet still in some cases, you squander resources on unfruitful collaborations that fail to boost your ROI.
Stop throwing away money on what doesn’t work!
In this post, we’ll highlight 3 influencer marketing tactics you must stop using as they could result in plateauing that’s hard to bust.
Bringing Just Any Influencer On Board
Many marketers will just reach out to someone in their niche to partner with. This is a big mistake. While this tactic may have worked to an extent in the past, the modern consumer is smart enough to identify an influencer whose personality and approach goes against the values of the brands they support.
Hence, the influencer you work with has to believe in your product or service and share your values. You want to collaborate with an individual who will become your company’s brand ambassador, and that means choosing someone passionate, credible and original.
Case in point: Matteo Achilli, founder of Egomnia and once labelled as Mark Zuckerberg of Italy, was picked by fashion brand Manuel Ritz to endorse its brand on social media. He was included in the 2016 #ManuelRitzClan – his 19-year old entrepreneurial track record caught the attention of Italian media and later Achilli received international acclaim, which resulted in a movie called “The Startup.”
However, the rapid attention led journalists to dig into his company, and a backlash began against the over-dramatization of the hyped up potential of Egomnia, which also resulted in negative sentiment for Manuel Ritz.
Obviously, some factors are entirely unpredictable and unforeseen. Nevertheless, the influencers you select should make all-round sense for your brand. They should be credible in your industry but also well-respected.
Asking Instead of Giving
The sweet spot of influencer marketing is to be associated with someone who is highly respected by your target audience. If someone fits this description, regardless of the number of followers he/she has, then chances are they have a busy schedule.
One of the most common sights when approaching such influencers is companies asking them to do something, without describing what’s in it for them. That needs to stop. Rather than attempting to selfishly ride on an influencer’s affinity, brands need to make a genuine offer that explains what’s in it for them.
Take a look at this email for instance:
How are you? I’m Jonathan. I’m a regular reader of your work, and the themes you’ve explored…awesome work! Since the themes you cover closely relate to my brand, I invite you to endorse my products on your blog and social accounts. I’m willing to pay $xxx per post/update. Let me know your thoughts.
Problems with this outreach? No personalization. No mention of the themes the influencer covers, or if the brand owner even knows what the influencer’s work is all about.
In contrast, this email tries developing a relationship first:
I know you have a busy schedule, so I’ll try keeping it short.
I’m speaking from xxxbrand. I was going through your Instagram feed recently and loved the DIY makeup tutorial that you posted on xxxdate. My company recently released a new product that I feel your followers might be interested in knowing about more (perhaps some of them are using it already). Would you like to try it out? I can arrange free samples to be posted to your address.
Also, would you be interested in doing an Instagram live for our brand?
Full marks to this email. There’s a proper introduction, and then the sender kicks off the request by giving first. This can help grease the wheels and make the influencer feel more comfortable. The best influencer marketing tactics are created on the foundation of giving.
Dictating The Campaign’s Content
Have you ever seen an Instagram post that seemed too good to be true? It’s likely you got skeptical and thought it was a dishonest representation of the service or product being talked about. This often happens because brands are still hesitant to grant creative control to the influencer, which casts a negative shadow on their influencer marketing campaigns.
Here’s an example:
The copy isn’t casual enough compared to other posts on Instagram. Also, this looks like a staged photo that endorses the product. (And though it has a decent number of likes, remember that likes are a vanity metric). Anything like this will lose a fair bit of credibility.
Such posts are a common sight, and it’s usually the result of brands giving strict directions to influencers. The brand owner wants to be in control of the word that goes out, so he/she will tell influencer exactly what to say.
This isn’t how influencer marketing works. The whole point of this marketing tactic is to give creative control to influencers, allowing them to endorse your brand in a way that’s unique to them. If you give them some breathing room, they’ll connect more deeply with their audiences, while giving your product a strong mention.
I hope this article has helped you learn from the experience of other companies so you can stop using outdated strategies for your campaigns. And remember, at the end of the day, fulfilling the influencer’s needs is the simplest way to fostering a good working partnership that results in positive sentiment for your brand for years to come
Are you still using any of these tactics? What has been your experience with them? Feel free to leave comments.Clarice Subiaco
Translator, Digital PR expert, and now the Content Strategist for Buzzoole: these roles reveal a love of words, especially the digital ones. Clarice began working in France following her postgraduate studies there, and then gained experience in a SEO agency in Rome before finally confronting herself with a business reality like Buzzoole where each day she meets with new challenges. Get in touch with her at @ClariceSubiaco.
This post is also available in: Italian