If you are an avid social media user, chances are that you have been exposed to influencer marketing as you are scrolling through Facebook or Instagram. Influencers are changing the game of social media marketing. Companies are partnering with these individuals due to their surplus of loyal followers. An influencer can have anywhere from several thousand to several million followers. Influencer marketing has grown exponentially in the past few years and will only continue to grow at a rapid rate. In fact, according to Digital Marketing Institute, the industry is set to reach $10 billion in 2020. At Cork Tree Creative, we have partnered with a variety of influencers to promote our clients’ campaigns, products and services. We have answered a few FAQs below:

What can collaborating with an influencer do?

When you collaborate with an influencer who has thousands or millions of followers, you are putting your product or service out to that many people.

When an influential person (see what we did there?) posts a product they enjoy, their loyal fanbase is likely to  look into what they are promoting. If they read about it, click into it, or even better, buy it—it’s a steal.

What are the rules and regulations, if any?

As influencer marketing has become a common source of marketing, the FTC has created regulations that influencers and brands must follow. Influencers must label their content appropriately by putting #ad or #sponsored in their posts. This allows consumers to know that they are being advertised to. If influencers fail to include #ad or #sponsored in the caption, the social media platform has the right to take the posts down. Also, the FTC can penalize the influencer and the brand that they are representing.

How to choose the appropriate influencer?

Choosing the right influencer to represent your brand can be overwhelming, as there are so many to choose from. When picking an influencer, think about your target audience. You want the influencer’s followers to resemble potential customers for your business. The first step is choosing the kind of influencer you are looking for, as most of them have a “niche.” For example, if you sell nutrition supplements, you would want to partner with a fitness influencer because their audience enjoys healthy living. If you own a home décor store, you would want to collaborate with an interior designer influencer.

Then, once you have chosen what kind of influencer you are looking for, begin your search. You can search for them on the specific social media platform, such as Instagram or you can simply use Google. Check out each person’s following. Keep in mind that the more followers he or she has, the more expensive they will be to work with. Look through his or her posts to see the quality of their posts, as well as their engagement from followers. You will be able to tell from their profile if they fit as “an ambassador of your brand.”

Once you have found an influencer that you want to work with, what do you do next?

Once you have chosen the person who is the right fit for your company, it is time to reach out to him or her and see if they are interested in working with you. During your conversation, ask for his or her rates to ensure that they fall within your budget. (A lot of times, influencers will take free swag or products as part of their payment.) Influencers’ rates can be anywhere from $200 to a post to $1,000 a post. It depends on the person’s following and experience. Disclose to him or her what you would like included in the photo(s) and caption(s). For example, you might want them to include a special discount code on a specific product or service.

How do you monitor if the partnership was successful?

You want to determine if the partnership with an influencer was beneficial, so you know if you should continue working with him or her in the future. If your goal is brand awareness, check the engagement rate of the post(s). Did it receive a lot of likes and/or comments? If your goal was to drive specific sales of a product, check the sales of the products on the day(s) the influencer promoted it. Did sales increase or did you see no change?

At Cork Tree Creative, we are a team of established individuals who know when and how to appropriately utilize influencer marketing. We also have the connections to help you choose the perfect person to get the job done for your specific market needs. Let us help your product or service reach the masses with influencer marketing! Contact us today.