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A Peek into the Minds of Influencers and their Brand-Marketing Relationship

November 11, 2015

Capturing the opinion of thousands of online influencers to help marketers get better insight into the minds of influencers and what they are looking for in the influencer brand marketing relationship.

According to a recent survey on more than 5000 influencers in the GroupHigh network – the common thread among all influencers is they look for monetary compensation as an important element in the brand-marketing relationship.

However, the influencers will only accept compensation from brands with products and services that align with their readership and personal branding.

Along with many takeaways, one of the most cutting-edge findings is that 70% of influencers prefer monetary compensation on a per-post-basis over affiliate partnerships, running ads on their blogs or product trade.

The findings further reveal that influencers are acutely aware that there is a line between sponsored and organic content, and that there is a risk in alienating the readership and audience if they stray too far from being “true” to the brand.

Andy Theimer, founder and CEO of GroupHigh says, “There’s a fine line between authentic content and fair compensation, and brands need to build long-term, mutually-beneficial partnerships with their communities and their influencers.”

Some noteworthy findings according to the survey are:

  • 75 percent of influencers are unsure or believe they are not being fairly compensated
  • Close to 85 percent of influencers accept payment for posts
  • The average cost for a sponsored post is $200-$500

See: The Habits that Highly Influential People Cannot Do Without

Brand-Marketing Relationship Tips for Influence Marketers

  1. Re-evaluate where marketing dollars are being used. A topic that is heavily debated is whether or not influencers take money to talk about brands. With over 86% of influencers reporting that they accept monetary compensation, marketers should align their outreach plans and strategic partnerships accordingly. The budget that was once used for traditional advertising tactics is arguably better used when put toward influencer marketing.
  2. Influencers are aware of their power to cause brand lift. Naturally they want to be compensated by brands for the consumer awareness they have created that turns into dollars for brands.
  3. The key to a successful marketing relationship is transparency. If you are going to pay influencers for posts, make sure they are clearly labelling the post and make sure they authentically align with your brand.
  4. Whether it’s through sponsored posts, free product or a combination of both, make sure that the influencers who write about your brand know they are valued. The key is open lines of communication to ensure influencer relationships are healthy and mutually beneficial.
  5. Determine what criteria equals influence for your campaign before you search for and reach out to influencers. When vetting for influence, use an identification tool to pull important data for content creators such as social following, blog traffic and post topics so you can gauge how much you are willing to spend on a paid post.

The lessons for agencies and in-house brand persons are to integrate paid campaigns into the organic campaigns, and look beyond traditional influencers into the new audiences that will fit the brand identity.

Also read: How do Professionals Make Career Decisions Today?

Image credit: simplymeasured.com

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