Influencer marketing is no longer the new kid on the block - it's time for marketers to seriously consider influencer strategies when drafting media plans for upcoming campaigns. Not only is influencer marketing an impactful way to reach consumer audiences, but it's also easily trackable for the brands that employ it. What good is a marketing strategy if you can't track its impact?
A recent study reported that that the average influencer marketing campaign received $6.85 in earned media value for every dollar spent on paid media, showcasing the power it has to generate exposure. But there's more to quantifying ROI of your influencer engagement than earned media value - marketers need to be able to track consumer behaviors that show conversions and generate sales.
Fortunately, influencer marketing allows campaign managers to track conversions and revenues generated through engagement, all which can be presented using the type of raw data company executives like to see.
We compiled a list of strategies for Instagram, blogs, and YouTube that will allow marketers to show real return on investment on their influencer campaigns.
Measure in-store redemptions. Utilizing SMS marketing through text messaging, including coupons or QR codes, allows marketers to track the number of consumers who requested a specific promotion through a specific influencer. It also enables you to track who actually redeemed a specific promotion and how they completed the conversion. An example is a soda teaming up with a movie theater chain to use influencers to push out coupons for a $1 beverage with a ticket purchase. Both the theater and soda company can track which consumers used the coupon, in which geographic areas the coupons were most redeemed, and total revenue generated.
Comment to Buy Feature. One of the easiest ways to track direct conversions is by using "comment to buy." This function allows consumers to comment on a particular influencer's post expressing their interest to buy the product featured in it. They are then emailed a personalized link to complete their purchase, which also provides the brand demographic information on the consumer as well as revenue information for the campaign.
Conversion pixels. Placing a conversion pixel on your website will calculate how many readers of a piece of sponsored content ended up visiting on their own (not via a direct click through or retargeting ad) within a 30-day window. Our data shows that up to 40% of site visits via influencers are not currently tracked because they are not direct click-throughs.
Page views vs. read ratio. Measure the page view to read ratio for a more accurate picture of consumer activity on your blog. Data shows that for every 10 page views, two people actually read the entire article. If the reads on a specific post/page are higher than average, promote that influencer's content as recommended reading on premium publisher sites for increased exposure. For best results, engage with influencers that have the highest read ratio, not the highest amount of page views. Page views don't mean much if your consumer isn't engaging with/consuming the content that would push them toward a conversion.
Links within the video. Ensure you are providing links to click inside of the video to further incentivize site visits, but don't just slap a hyperlink into the clip randomly. Encouraging a site visit within the context of the topic is more organic. You're also enabling your consumer to move right from your content to your end conversion point without them having to manually leave your content to enter a web address.
Track and retarget. Track clicks from YouTube and have specific retargeting ads ready for that audience using the influencer-created content. This provides more content that is relevant to the consumer and another opportunity for them to engage with your brand.
Influencer marketing is a powerful tool for brands, but influencer marketing backed by data is the holy grail. Utilize the information available to you to maximize your campaigns and generate results that move the needle.