When collaborating with influencers, it’s important to anticipate and address potential missteps. The members of Forbes Communications Council discuss some of the ways influencer marketing can go wrong and how to avoid them in the future.
1. Spending Too Much On Macro-Influencers
Spending an excessive amount of money on macro-influencers may help with awareness, but going wide rather than deep frequently results in a lack of meaningful conversion. Establish authentic and long-term relationships with micro- and nano-influencers who resonate with your target demographic and connect with your customers more meaningfully to ensure a higher return on investment.
2. Misalignment with Your Brand
Not all press is favorable! Influencer marketing campaigns can backfire if your brand is not carefully aligned with the appropriate influencers. You must get to know each influencer personally in order to minimize your brand’s risk when aligning with them. Depending on their character, actions, and integrity, the influencer you choose to represent your brand can make or break your reputation.
3. Poor Product-Influencer Fit
An influencer is defined solely by their market and audience. Marketers who do not properly align their product with the influencer who best represents their audience, brand, and values may experience negative consequences from this form of “paid public relations.”
4. Lack of Business Savvy on the Influencer’s Part
At the end of the day, influencers are individuals. Many of them lack business acumen and have no concept of what it takes to run a business. They can be unreliable in terms of listening and meeting deadlines. Ascertain that the agreement is clear and concise to ensure that both parties understand their respective responsibilities. This will result in the formation of a strong relationship.
5. Not Leading With A Mutual Purpose
Marketers must do more than define specific campaign objectives and identify the appropriate influencers to ensure the effectiveness of influencer campaigns. They must also develop a shared purpose with their influencers so that everyone involved in the campaign shares not only the same “what” and values, but also the same “why.” Leading with a shared purpose is critical to the success of influencer campaigns.
6. Focusing Only On Vanity Metrics
Conduct additional research beyond the “likes.” Sometimes brands become hypnotized by the massive amount of likes and attention that certain influencers receive and fail to conduct due diligence on the individual. If an influencer holds views that are potentially divisive or detrimental to your brand, terminate the relationship and prepare a statement in case any questions arise.
7. Unclear Guidelines and Expectations
Brands and their agencies that work with influencers must establish more explicit guidelines and expectations for successful outcomes. Brands frequently approach influencer campaigns with similar expectations to how we approach channels. While it is necessary to quantify and expect a certain level of performance, the same metrics do not always have to apply to a different outcome.
8. Not Vetting the Influencer
While influencers act as spokespersons for your company, products, or services, brands do not always vet influencers in the same way they would an actual executive. It’s critical to align with influencers who align with your brand, and you must be quick to address situations that arise when an influencer experiences their own crisis. Be explicit and transparent about your decision-making process.
9. Not Sharing the Influencer’s Values
One risk associated with influencer marketing is that the individual with whom you collaborate may have values that are at odds with those of your company. To avoid this, it is critical to conduct thorough research. If this does occur, it is critical to communicate your brand values and to be willing to take a stand.
10. Overreliance on Influencers for Brand Growth
The hype surrounding influencer marketing is often exaggerated. Many implies that influencer marketing is the most critical method of brand growth. It’s critical to understand how it can contribute most effectively to yours. Do you use influencers to create content or to help you tell more complex stories? Establish a specific objective and ensure that it is authentic to your brand.