A recent study by TapInfluence and Altimeter reveals that two thirds of marketers experience difficulty in selecting influencers for their campaigns.
Search for mentions of your brand to find influencers that are already fans of your product, and even add audience demographic info to narrow down your choices more specifically. Narrowing your search makes it more of a sure thing that you’ll find influencers who are good matches for your product. After that, it’s a matter of seeing how your chosen influencers perform in your actual campaign. An influencer vetting platform like SocialBook can be a great tool to help you narrow down your search for prospects, taking a lot of the pain out of the selection process.
Once your campaign launches, front-runners will begin to emerge and you’ll start to see which influencer partners have what it takes to become long-term advocates for your brand.
For a number of reasons, brands are realizing that it pays to seal the deal and foster long-term relationships with their influencer partners. Turning your influencer partners into brand ambassadors—once you find influencers whose vibe aligns really well with your brand’s messaging—is a win-win for brands and influencers alike.
Here we break down some of the most compelling reasons to forgo one-off partnerships and focus on making your partnerships long-term official.
Why Long-Term is Great for Brands
1) Long-term partnerships create trust.
When influencers’ fans see their fav content creators devoted to a brand over the course of several months or years, it has a much greater impact than a one-off post ever could. Such regular and open devotion to a brand conveys passion for a product, and genuine support like that is bound to inspire fans’ confidence. Anyone might be willing to promote a product once, but loyalty over a period of months or years demonstrates real faith in a brand, and is more likely to inspire trust in the audiences of your influencer partners.
2) Longer relationships provide the opportunity to explore different facets of your product in-depth with each post.
With multiple posts over a period of time, it’s possible to explore all of the many different aspects and offerings of your product. For example, if your protein powder promotes weight loss, this may be the biggest draw for a certain segment of an influencer-ambassador’s audience. If it also increases energy, that fact may appeal more to another subset of potential customers.
SocialBook provides in-depth demographics stats of influencers for brands to make marketing decisions.
When your influencers make multiple posts over a prolonged period of time, it’s easier to highlight lots of different, exciting aspects of your product—and appeal to different audiences as well.
3) Long-term partnerships allow brands to test different approaches.
Longer relationships give brands the opportunity to test different approaches with various influencer partners over a much longer period of time, giving marketers the opportunity to refine their strategies.
When the elements of brand and brand ambassador remain constant over time, it’s easier to experiment with different platforms, formats and messaging to see what works best for your product, and to tweak what’s not working so that your campaign can get back on track easily.
Why Long-Term Works Great for Influencers Too
1) Influencers love security.
Long-term partnerships give influencers the security to choose additional brand partnerships with discretion.
You won’t be as likely to accept a one-off partnership with another brand that doesn’t quite align with your message because you feel pressured to accept opportunities so that you can earn a living or expand your influence.
When you choose your brand partnerships carefully, your fans know it. Followers have an intuitive sense about whether or not you are being authentic with them. They are much more likely to trust—and be influenced to make purchasing decisions—based on sponsored posts that result from ongoing partnerships. Once they feel assured that you trust a product, they are likely to as well.
Trust is the basis of all of your relationships and builds your reputation. Once brands and followers feel that they can trust you, more and more opportunities will open up.
2) Gives influencers the chance to get more creative.
The security of a long-term partnership gives content creators the freedom to get more daring and creative with their content.
As influencers, you have ongoing relationships with your audience and know what they like, but what about brands that you are working with? What are they looking for?
Sometimes it can be intimidating to be original and think outside the box when you’re creating a sponsored post for a one-time brand partnership. The marketers you are working with hardly know you and may not appreciate all of the many, wonderful aspects of your appeal and your approach, restricting your ability to freely and creatively express yourself.
You may worry that they won’t understand or appreciate your ideas, simply because you don’t know each other very well, and you haven’t worked together yet.
Long-term partnership eliminates this problem in pretty short order. After you’ve worked with a brand once or twice, they will get to know and love you too—and they will feel comfortable giving you the creative freedom to post content that will feel gratifying for you to create while also appealing to your fans.
3) Ongoing partnerships make it less awkward to reveal sponsored content—which is something you are absolutely required to do!
With long-term brand-influencer partnerships, fans will be aware of the ongoing partnership and more likely to embrace it because of the trust that they already feel toward you as an influencer—as well as the trust that will gradually build up with the brand itself during the course of a long-term partnership. Adding #ad #SponCon is much less awkward when it’s more of an obvious union.
Long-Term Partnerships Promote Greater Creativity
Forming long-term brand-influencer associations may initially appear to be the least creatively adventurous route, but counterintuitively, such a partnership frees up both brands and influencers to be a lot more creative and take many more risks because of the safe, comfortable and trusting relationship. The efforts brands spend on building up and maintaining the long-term relationship will definitely reveal in the final results of your influencer marketing campaigns.
Trying to start a good relationship with influencers? Use SocialBook to increase response rate when contact influencers. Subscribe to SocialBook to find the right influencers for your brand.
This article was originally posted on my LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-you-should-keep-long-term-brand-influencer-partnerships-heidi-yu/