September 20, 2017
Problems can arise with any marketing campaign. Planning ahead for your next influencer marketing campaign is crucial.
Avoiding the following six problems when running your next marketing campaign with influencers is the best way to ensure success:
1. Problems with Transparency
One of the biggest problems in influencer marketing is transparency, or lack thereof. Some influencers may get paid to create posts, and they may do so without labelling them as ‘sponsored’ or as an ‘ad.’ This is strictly against the FTC guidelines and you could end up having to pay heavy fines.
The good news is that platforms like Instagram are introducing features that will enable better transparency for paid posts. They will be introducing a Paid Partnership feature that will clearly display it when an influencer’s post has been paid for by a brand or business. There will be a ‘Paid Partnership with…’ tag just underneath the influencer’s name as you can see in the screenshot below.
2. Working with the Wrong Influencers
Another huge problem you could face with influencer marketing is working with the wrong influencers. In the middle of your campaign, you may find out that the influencer isn’t having the desired impact on your target audience. Or you may find that the influencer’s tone, or how he/she delivers your message isn’t exactly what you had imagined.
Whatever the case may be, you can avoid this issue by taking extra precautions during the influencer research process. You need to take your time, and carefully define what the ideal influencer looks like to you. You can then use this definition as a reference when selecting influencers to work with.
For example, your ideal influencer may be a fashion influencer who has an audience size of 10,000 to 100,000 on Instagram. The influencer has a specific sense of style that’s minimal and chic with lots of muted tones.
You can use this reference to shortlist some of the most ideal influencers among the hundreds that popped up in your search results.
3. Restrictive Content Guidelines
As a marketer, you’re inclined to expect high-quality content when executing any marketing campaign. And when it comes to influencer marketing, it’s only natural that you’d expect influencers to produce high-quality content. But in your attempt to generate such content, you may be too overbearing with your influencers.
Some marketers and brands try to control everything the influencer creates. In doing so, they can be too restrictive with the content creation guidelines. Ironically, this can take a toll on the content quality and negatively impact the authenticity of the influencer’s voice. According to CLEVER, 80 percent of influencers may refuse to work with you if you do this.
4. Brand-Influencer Relationship Issues
In many cases, brands may face issues in their influencer marketing campaigns because their relationship with an influencer isn’t working out. Maybe you feel like the influencer doesn’t like your brand very much, and they’re not making enough effort to ensure the campaign is a success. Or you may have disagreements in terms of content creation, compensation, etc.
All of this can be harmful to your campaign because how an influencer feels about your brand can reflect in how they speak about you. If they don’t like you or your product they may not be enthusiastic when speaking about you. Or they may not want to work with you again.
To form a solid, genuine relationship with influencers, you need to respect them as creative individuals with their own desires and expectations. Your focus shouldn’t be on your brand, but on the influencers. For example, you need to listen to influencers if they feel that the content you ask them to create will seem too promotional, and may dissuade their audience from trusting your brand.
And you definitely need to provide sufficient compensation to influencers to show them that you value their creativity. Additionally, the subject of creative freedom that has been addressed earlier also figures into this. These are all the top reasons why influencers would work with a brand more than once, according to a Crowdtap survey.
5. Inability to Win Over Influencers
Some brands and marketers may face issues when it comes to winning over influencers. This could be for a number of reasons. Maybe the opportunity doesn’t seem appealing enough to the influencer. Or maybe you’re not communicating with them in a way that shows you respect them. In some cases, it may even be because the influencer just doesn’t like your brand.
According to the previously-cited Crowdtap study, the main reason why influencers would accept a proposal is because the opportunity is relevant to their followers. So this means that reaching out to the right influencers that are relevant to your brand is crucial. It’s also important that you properly communicate with influencers if you want them to accept your proposal.
6. Disagreements on Compensation
It’s also possible that marketers may face problems related to influencer compensation. You may have a limited budget that prevents you from paying influencers the amount they expect. Or maybe you’re expecting influencers to promote your products without any financial compensation. These problems can be avoided if there’s clear planning and communication right from the start.
When you reach out to influencers, be clear about it if you can’t afford to compensate them monetarily. Or, if you’re going to pay them for their efforts, make sure you find out their fees right from the start. This will help you plan your budget accordingly, and avoid working with influencers that you can’t afford.
These are six of the biggest problems you may face with influencer marketing. And they can have a huge impact on the success of your campaign. But if you plan your campaign thoroughly, and make an effort to avoid and/or tackle these problems effectively, it can make all the difference for your campaign.
Gaurav Sharma is the co-founder of Attrock, a digital marketing company. He has worked with a number of influencers to monetize their influence and eCommerce sites and SaaS Companies to increase their revenue. He is Google Analytics and Adwords Certified and regularly contributes to reputable publications such as Huffington Post and more. When Gaurav is not working you may find him exploring various attractions across the globe.