If you’ve been tasked with matching your brand to potential influencers for an upcoming campaign, it’s vital to understand some of the myths around this marketing tool.
After all, if 90% of marketers believe that it’s effective, it’s not a question of whether to try it, but rather how to implement an effective strategy.
Consider the following myths to help ensure your next influencer marketing campaign is worth the return on investment.
7 myths about working with influencers
More followers mean better engagement.
Ask any experienced marketer and they will tell you “quality trumps quantity” when it comes to audience and the same is true for influencer marketing. Finding your target market is only one step in the task funnel to filter down your potential partners.
You’ll also need to look at influencers’ social media platforms, engagement statistics, post frequency, and trust among their followers. An authentic voice that can sway consumers (or businesses) in a niche may be far more valuable than a celebrity influencer with millions of fans.
Don’t rule out experts—whether it’s a nano influencer who posts about Star Wars collectibles or a micro-influencer who reviews the best vegan makeup for people of color. Knowledge plus authenticity makes for a winning combination.
In addition, fewer followers is often an assurance that the influencer didn’t buy a list of fake followers. A few minutes of research on the profiles of those who engage most with the poster may give you some insights into the authenticity of the number.
Influencer marketing only works for B2C companies.
Smart companies don’t rush out to buy the newest product or service because it’s the cheapest—or most expensive. They seek advice from experts who can spell out the pros and cons.
These influencers have often earned the trust of those who regularly view their content based on their experience, knowledge, and straightforward approach to deciphering why a product or service might be beneficial (or not) to companies who invest in it.
Plenty of B2B companies have seen a huge return on their partnerships with influencers.
Lesser-known influencers work for free.
As you may have noticed, mega influencers’ rates can take a chunk of your marketing budget. But that doesn’t mean lesser-known influencers work for free. Although it’s true that the rates for campaigns tend to decrease as you get into mid-tier, micro-, and nano-influencers, these specialized content creators still invest a great deal of time into their social media efforts.
Take a minute to review any previous campaigns they’ve worked on and request a media kit if you don’t see one posted on their platforms.
Influencer marketing only works for younger generations.
Worried Gen Z and Millennials aren’t your audiences? When it comes to reaching your target demographics, lean into the best media to showcase your product or service, like video, text, images, live chats, or slide shows, and research the various social media platforms to see who’s using them and how.
Depending on what your brand is promoting, you may want to look at age, gender, income, education, devices, marital status, and even political leanings. For example:
- More than 496 million Facebook users are 45 or older.
- Among Twitter users in the United States, 59% have either completed some college or have a degree.
- More than 78% of YouTube users access the site from a desktop computer.
You can use influencer marketing for every generation, but you can tailor the message, post type, and platform to your audience.
There are no rules for influencer marketing.
Although brands and influencers can work together to set guidelines on what to post and how to address comments, there’s a third party to consider: the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
With the explosive growth of social media, the FTC has to continually evolve in the face of misleading endorsements, fake reviews, and the identification of paid sponsorships. The governing body is now doling out penalties— up to $43,792 per violation.
Take some time to review the potential offenses to ensure you and the influencer with whom your brand partners are playing by the rules.
Influencers will work with any brand … for the right price.
Don’t assume that any influencers operate without integrity! Many will turn down offers to partner with brands they don’t trust or whose products or services they don’t genuinely like.
There’s also a concern (for both parties) regarding an alignment of values, especially in the modern era of divisive politics and religion.
Don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions to avoid the potential backlash that could come out of a mismatched partnership.
It’s impossible to measure ROI on an influencer campaign.
If you’re not already leveraging tools to track real-time data when working with influencers, consider them a true marketing investment.
Immediate sales may seem like an obvious measurement of success, but so are things like brand awareness, engagement (both with the influencer and the brand), and the campaign’s ability to create and reuse influencer-generated content and fan-generated content.
If you work with an influencer marketing platform like ours, you’ll have metrics like API, click traffic tracking, and campaign and project performance in a centralized dashboard.
Using what you’ve learned from these seven myths about working with influencers can help you find the right influencers, create long-term partnerships, and maximize your return on the time and money you invest into campaigns.