In our new episode of the Ecwid Ecommerce Show, we talk to Taylor Lagace, co-CEO of Kynship, an influencer marketing agency. He explains why the “pay for post” method of influencer partnership is often ineffective. The best part is, he offers a different, more beneficial approach to marketing with influencers!
Taylor provides detailed step-by-step instructions on how to collaborate with influencers to grow revenue and brand loyalty. There’s an influencer for every space and this strategy is applicable to all industries and brands.
Identifying Influencers to Partner With
First, Taylor recommends taking 2% of your annual revenue, putting that aside, and being willing to send out your product equal to that amount to influencers for a review.
For identifying influencers, Taylor recommends two free platforms. Facebook has a tool called Brand Collabs Manager. As it’s Facebook, they have a lot of data to match you with relevant influencers. The equivalent TikTok tool is called the Creator Marketplace.
Apart from making sure influencers fit your brand, demographic, and buyer persona, Taylor emphasizes the importance of connecting with good video content creators. Do the videos capture your attention? Are they swipe-stopping and charismatic? If you gave them your product, would they be able to sell it through their content? Would you be able to repurpose that content into Facebook ads?
Reaching out to Influencers
Once you have a list of influencers, reach out to them over direct messages on the platform you’re looking to activate them on. Taylor recommends TikTok, as it has unprecedented, viral capabilities. Take advantage of this phase! Reach out to creators on the Creator Marketplace, or over email.
For the initial outreach, Taylor recommends using this message verbatim:
“Hey [influencer’s name], we think you’re a great brand fit. We absolutely love the content you consistently put out. We think you’d love our product and we want to send it to you, no strings attached. Feel free to send us your address. We’ll get this right out to you.”
What you mean by that is you have no expectation of them to post whatsoever. They act of their own free will under no contractual obligation. They are genuine product adopters, which means they will post authentic content if they like your stuff.
The Importance of Content Usage Rights
After influencers make posts about your products, you want to make sure you get usage rights on the content they posted. Taylor recommends sending influencers a message using this message verbatim:
“Hey [influencer’s name], we’re so glad you loved our product so much and you’re willing to share this content with your audience. We’d love to be able to share this content with our audiences as well. Can we have the right to do so?”
Collecting Influencer-Created Content
Taylor shares a helpful social listening tool, MightyScout, so that you don’t have to scour the internet for creators’ posts 24/7. You can just plug influencer profiles into the platform and all of their content mentioning your brand gets collected even if they don’t hashtag or tag you. You can also see all the organic analytics around it and download that content right there.
Using Influencer Content for Paid Ads
If you’re looking for organic traffic, Taylor recommends activating influencers on TikTok. But if you want to use a paid channel, Facebook is far more sophisticated and has greater conversion rates. If you’re gonna allocate a budget across all channels, of course, do it. But if you’re going to choose one and you need performance, repurpose the content into Facebook ads.
Taylor’s biggest piece of advice is to launch all influencer-made content as paid ads, don’t just choose your favorites. This way you remove human bias, and only the top-performing content will get any ad spend. Facebook chooses which content gets advertised based on its real-time performance.
Affiliate Programs for Influencers
The next step of working with influencers is onboarding them to your affiliate program. It is an agreement in which you pay an influencer a commission for sending sales your way through their content.
Not only should you follow up asking influencers to grant usage rights, but also send them a message along the lines of:
“Hey [influencer’s name], we’re so glad you loved our product so much that you wanted to post this content for your audience. We’d love to honor you for any and all future posts by compensating you and involving you with our affiliate program.”
Then based on organically top-performing affiliates and paid ads, you can start paying people to post. That’s where the “pay for post” model can exist and thrive. At that point, you can pay lower rates to work with influencers. They are genuine product adopters and prove to be top performers. That’s the only place the “pay for post” model exists within a profitable influencer marketing program.
Tune in to our podcast so you can listen along as we discuss collaborating with influencers in more detail. By following these tips you’ll be on your way to forging powerful relationships with key industry players who can help take your business to new heights.