Insights

Separating Fact from Fiction in Influencer Marketing

Brands are investing heavily in influencer marketing – in Asia Pacific, and around the world.

And the reason they are doing so is because influencer marketing integrates products, services and ideas right into the influencers lives. This is powerful because the reality is that consumers relate to and seek inspiration from the influencers they follow. Influencers can be like role models, trend setters and best friends all rolled into one.

But not all influencers are equal nor can all influencers deliver the return on investment that marketing managers need. So the process of vetting and selecting the best influencers is a really crucial factor in the success of influencer marketing campaigns.

Following are some tips on how to vet influencers for your campaign to ensure you get the right partners in content creation.

INFLUENCERS ARE GENERALLY NOT MADE OVERNIGHT

It takes years of hard work and creativity to build a genuine following. And the influencers who have done this are those brands should engage. If an influencer has amassed a huge following in less than a year, it is not necessarily a deal breaker, but it does raise questions about the authenticity of their account.

REALISTIC INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT RATIOS

A real influencer will have their statistical ratios in good health. For example, Instagram influencers tend to follow 1 to 5 percent of their total following. Anything much higher than that is likely the result of growth hacks that can increase the count of followers, but lacking the authenticity that really provides brands with impact.. It is also important see how many likes and comments an Instagram influencer gets, relative to their following. Check at least 10 of your influencer’s posts to verify their average engagement. The number of comments and likes should reflect how many followers they have. Generally, you’ll want to see an engagement rate of 2 to 3 percent.

NOT ALL COMMENTS ARE CREATED EQUAL

Comments that are too simple, too brief or vague are a red flag that deserves a closer look. Meanwhile, comments that react to the content or contain questions are a sign of quality. The best influencers will have followers who comment and engage in a deeper and more meaningful way. Simple comments, such as “great post” or “thanks” may be a sign that the engagement is not authentic

GREAT CONTENT

Above all, Instagram influencers create value through great content. Quality of content is of course subjective. But people working for brands and agencies can easily spot quality storytelling that will inspire followers.

Influencer marketing has a role to play in most digital marketing campaigns. But getting the influencers right is crucial – and so it’s vital to separate fact from fiction in looking at the profiles of influencers, and the impact their account may have on a brand.

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