Influencer marketing is making waves among B2B tech companies because it provides valuable third-party credibility and brand awareness to engaged, well-connected audiences. Influencers can amplify a brand’s social reach, often beyond traditional media outreach, and boost its SEO ranking.
The results speak for themselves – 70 percent of B2B companies report that referrals convert better and close faster than any other type of lead.
Although many brands would like to launch an influencer marketing campaign, the challenge is deciding on the who – then effectively managing that relationship to success. There are lot of nitty-gritty details to understand before jumping into an influencer marketing campaign. Here are some important factors to keep in mind.
One-Size-Fits All Won’t Do
- Picking influencers must be done strategically because having the wrong influencer promoting your brand may do more harm than good. Some important factors to consider include:
- Brand relevance – A big-name influencer may be alluring, but if they don’t connect to your target audience, it’s not worth much.
Audience reach – The size of an influencer’s audience matters and should be taken into account to avoid wasting time and energy on a market that’s too small.
- Audience engagement – It’s about more than numbers alone, if an influencer has 300,000 followers but averages just 20 likes per post, it may mean they have a more passive following.
- Tone – Though every influencer has a unique voice, it’s crucial that their tone is aligned with your brand to ensure consistency across the campaign content.
Tracking To Success
If you can’t measure the effectiveness of your influencer marketing campaign, it’s impossible to determine if it’s helping to improve your business and if the investment is truly paying off. There are a number of criteria that can help measure success.
For campaign-specific influencer engagement programs, monitor the following:
- How many pieces of content were created,
- Sales attributable to influencer relative to influencer channel spend, and
- The influencer’s engagement or shares of campaign-related assets such as content, URLs and codes.
For an ongoing influencer engagement program, think bigger:
- Tracking web traffic,
- Conversions, and
- The number of brand mentions over time.
Keeping an eye on this information can provide a clearer picture of year-over-year value. It’s also important to note the sentiment of influencer mentions. What are people saying about the influencer’s content? Is it positive, negative, or neutral? Having more than 400 comments on a post may seem promising, but if the conversation is negative, your influencer may actually be damaging your business.
Small Product, Enormous Influencer Success
In 2015, we worked with electronics distributor Newark element14 to announce the launch of Raspberry Pi 2, a pocket-sized computer that offers six times the speed and twice the memory of its original version. We utilized a three-phased influencer marketing campaign to drive sales and grow product awareness among purchases and enthusiasts. In addition to traditional media outreach, we engaged with influential vloggers on YouTube and coordinated giveaways on social channels, generating buzz in places that buyers frequented.
The results were palpable – approximately 40,000 combined shares on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as 84 media placements in a month. Outreach to key influencers resulted in the influx of these social shares and influencers’ videos received more than 60,000 total views. All in all, the company saw a 67 percent growth in sales following the product launch campaign.
Whether you’re looking to harness the power of influencers for a product launch or a long-term campaign, the most important part of the process is cultivating a trusted relationship and measuring the campaign to success. To learn more about the B2B approach to influencer marketing, download our white paper “Under the Influence: A B2B Brand Guide to Influencer Marketing.”
Several months ago, we began using Bambu, Sprout Social’s employee advocacy platform. As an agency, Bambu allows us to broaden our social reach and invites our employees to engage with tailored internal and external content and messaging. The platform removes the fourth wall of social media and helps create brand awareness with our people at the forefront.
To begin, employees are invited to the platform and asked to link their social media profiles. From there, they have access to a main feed full of marketing, leadership and practice area related content that they can share directly to their own social media platforms. To make sharing even easier, the software allows you to draft suggested copy that automatically populates with the linked content.
Every week, the application sends out a content roundup newsletter, making it super simple for employees to share content with one click. Newsletters include everything from internal job postings, agency news and weekly client placements.
The platform is a win, win, win. When employees share our suggested posts, they’re advancing their own professional platforms as well as helping to circulate our agency messages and in the case of sharing placements, making their clients look good. Everybody wins with Bambu.
What we love most about the platform is the ease of use. Everything is laid out in an intuitive manner, which makes adding or editing content seamless. They have a full support team available for assistance, but we rarely find the need to reach out because the platform is effortless.
Sound like a platform that would work for your organization? Request a demo for free today at getbambu.com.
I love scavenger hunts. I love organizing them, I love participating in them and what I love most of all is when a bunch of Walker Sands employees get together and enjoy one.
Scavenger hunts are great for many reasons. They’re a fun way to inspire a little competitive spirit. They shake up the office and help employees get to know team members they might not work with on a daily basis. And they introduce people to the hidden side of Chicago, a city that is certainly worth exploring.
This year’s company scavenger hunt took our teams to places like Fulton Market, the Loop, the beach, Lincoln Park and more! The day ended at our downtown office, where teams enjoyed a hotdog truck and refreshments while I tallied the scores. Team Nope came away with the win, but I’d say everyone was a winner because they all got to participate in a scavenger hunt. Did I mention I really love scavenger hunts?
Here are a few of our favorite challenges from the event:
Build a sandcastle at the beach
We’re pleased to announce that Clutch, a DC-based research firm, has named Walker Sands Digital among the leading San Francisco Digital Marketing Agencies and the leading San Francisco SEO services firms.
Clutch reviews hundreds of agencies in the digital marketing space and selects those to profile on its web site based on their ability to meet client needs. Their selections are driven not only by companies’ past experience and market presence but, most importantly, by what these companies’ customers have to say about them!
Having a social media presence is almost imperative for businesses today – when used to its full potential, it can be a powerful, effective way to increase traffic to your website and ultimately generate leads. But managing every social channel can quickly become challenging and even overwhelming. Luckily, there are many great tools out there to help manage, track and report on your company’s social media efforts. Here are the top five tools I use at Walker Sands:
1. Sprout Social – This powerful social media management tool does more than just help you schedule your messages. Sprout has “smart inbox” that allows you to see and actively manage all the messages coming to you across your channels. This allows you to see incoming messages quickly, and be able to respond and engage in a timely manner. Sprout also offers integrated reports that allow you to see what days of the week your audience is most active on your pages and more.
2. Buzzsumo – This is actually a new tool I have been using recently, but I love it so far. Simply put, Buzzsumo is a content generator site, but it does more than just aggregate valuable content. Buzzsumo will pull the top content (articles,videos,infographics,etc.) on any search topic and show you how this content is ding on multiple social channels. This allows you, as a social media manager, to see what content is or has been trending, or what hasn’t quite trended yet, putting you ahead of the game.