As influencer marketing becomes an important part of the marketing mix, marketers are looking for more direction to decide who to choose and how to leverage their reach. We spoke to the CEO and co-founder of HypeAuditor, Alex Frolov, about the dynamic state of influencer marketing and its trends for 2021.
- With such a big difference between the influencer landscape on Tik-Tok and Instagram, what should companies pay attention to when making decisions about the right platforms and influencers for their campaigns?
OF – A key success factor in choosing platforms for your influencer marketing campaigns is a clear understanding of your target audience. Once you understand who your target audience is, choosing the right platform becomes easier. Our latest research shows that 43% of global Instagram users are between 25 and 34 years old and more than half of TikTok users (69%) are younger than 24 years old, 39% between 18 and 24 years old, which is what people in this age makes up the largest user group. So if you need a younger audience, TikTok is your safe bet. If you need a more mature audience of millennials, Instagram is your best bet.
- Of all the possible influencer categories, which category do you think offers the highest ROI for companies?
OF – Most of the campaigns are in the beauty and fashion categories. We believe these categories offer the highest ROI.
- While financial influencers saw the greatest growth, it wasn’t a trending topic on any of the major platforms. Any insight as to why this might be the case?
OF – A trending topic on platforms like Instagram or TikTok can turn into entertaining, easy-to-consume content. Finance is a more complex and specific topic. It’s difficult to fully reveal in a short, one-minute video. While there are influencers out there who manage to present it in a fun and easy way, there aren’t many of them. Rather, the question lies precisely in the interests of the platform’s audience and in restrictions on the forms of content presentation.
- With COVID-19, social platforms experienced the highest levels of traction and became extremely lucrative. But the troll and scam population also grew. How do companies take these into account when developing a social marketing strategy?
OF – To avoid fraud, you need to review the influencers one by one. To avoid losing money, you need to make your choice based on the data. Businesses more thoroughly screen accounts using specific influencer marketing technologies. Understand which metrics to pay more attention to when choosing an influencer. You will conduct analysis of past campaigns and will continue to work with the developers who have achieved the best results.
- How do you think brands will shift ad spend to influencer marketing?
OF – Influencer Marketing Hub’s survey shows that 63% of marketers plan to increase their influencer marketing budget in 2021. Influencers and their packages are easier to identify and pricing is more transparent than before. There is more expertise on what works and how to use an influencer’s assets.
- In your report, do you find that performance-based influencer marketing is the future? How will this aspect of marketing continue to grow?
OF – Big brands now have a much clearer idea of how their money works in the influencer market, and performance-based influencer marketing is our future. Influencer marketing budgets will grow significantly as more companies focus on influencers’ individual performance and ROI. Companies increasingly rely on the analysis of the companies they conduct. The accumulated experience of what kind of influencers and what kind of content produce the best result.
- How Can Companies Track Influencer Marketing Effectiveness?
OF – It depends on the goals of the influencer marketing campaign. The main objectives are:
- Increased brand awareness and awareness
- Lead generation and sales
- Increase social presence
- Joint creation of content
If the goal is brand awareness, a good metric for evaluating the results can be the reach of the campaign and the number of engagements (likes, comments). If a company wants to increase sales, the company can track sales using individual promo codes for each influencer.
When creating content, the metric can be the cost of content. Companies can use metrics that are critical to their business. In the article Inside Google Marketing: How We (Finally) Proved the Value of Influencer Marketing, Google shared this to determine the success of an influencer marketing campaign and they focus on the brand lift to isolate the impact.
Brand Interest Lift enables advertisers to measure consumer search behavior resulting from viewing the creator’s video. Influencer Lift enabled Google to poll sponsored videos that isolate the impact and link it to brand goals without the need for a standard brand lift poll associated with a media purchase. It tracks the difference in survey responses from viewers of a branded content video versus a control group who did not see the video to determine the impact of the branded content campaign on key metrics like recall, awareness, and consideration.
- With HypeAuditor focused solely on analytics for social media growth, what do you think are the most important metrics when choosing influencers?
OF – The 5 Top Social Media Influencer Metrics To Focus On When Choosing Influencers
- Influence audience. The better you understand your target audience, the easier it will be for you to find the right influencers. Influencer audience is the key metric for influencer campaign success. Gender, age, interests, country, language, favorite films, books, music, who is the authority for your target group – all that matters. For your influencer marketing campaign, you should find influencers who match your target group criteria.
- Engagement rate. The engagement rate is the percentage of followers who engage with the influencer’s content. The more engaged the audience, the more likely they are to interact with paid or partnership placements for your brand. However, you should be aware that two of the five comments / likes you see on any Instagram post are from “bot” programs. So you should not only check the number of engagements, but also the quality and authenticity of the comments and likes among the posts of the influencers.
- Post Frequency and Advertising Post Frequency. Make sure the influencer has regular posts. If the influencer hasn’t posted for more than 30 days, this can reduce the reach and engagement rate of their new posts. Make sure the influencer doesn’t advertise too often. If the influencer has more than 50% of the content advertised in their feed, it is better to avoid these influencers.
- Audience quality of the influencer. This metric shows the size of the quality audience, made up of real people and influencers, excluding bulk followers and suspicious accounts. You should always check the quality of the influencer’s audience. If there are a lot of suspicious accounts and mass followers, it is better to avoid this influencer.
- Influencer campaign KPI. If you are treating influencer marketing as an ongoing process rather than just one-time promotions, you should set and track KPIs for each influencer. These can be conversions, reach, ER, comment sentiment and the number of comments. A brand needs to build knowledge and maintain a history of its influencer marketing campaigns. Knowing what types of posts and influencers are performing best is important. Therefore, after each campaign, you should assess whether the influencer is achieving KPIs.
Alexander Frolov is co-founder and CEO of HypeAuditor, the AI analysis platform for brands that are looking for fair, transparent and effective influencer marketing. He has been named “The Top 50 Industry Players” by Talking Influence several times for his work to improve transparency in the influencer marketing industry. Follow Alex on LinkedIn and @ aleksandr4bd.
Danni White | Danni White is Director of Content Strategy and Development at Bython Media and Editor-in-Chief at TechFunnel.com, one of the top B2B digital destinations for C-level executives, technologists and marketers. Bython Media is also the parent company of OnlineWhitepapers.com, BusinessWorldIT.com, List.Events and TheDailyPlanIOT.com.