14. Develop long-term influencer relationships
1. Go back to your campaign measurement spreadsheet and identify all the potential influencers you would want to continue working with.
The metrics to look at in the Influencer Sheet are around influencer’s Direct Response and/or Brand outcomes that matter to your business the most. Also, your overall working experience and the influencer’s responsiveness play a role here. Did any of the influencers nail the creative angle exceptionally well for your brand?
2. Create a Typeform or Google Forms survey to collect feedback from your influencers and find out what motivates them.
The key to long-term relationships is to make them mutually beneficial. The first step is to understand what your influencers value.
3. Add 5 questions to ask about their motivations to work with brands and their specific experience working with you.
For example, some questions you could consider include: a) Please help rank the value you generally seek from brand partnerships. From the most to the least important. [Options: Money can’t buy experiences; My audience and brand fit; Good pay; Timely pay; Product samples; Digital content by the brand; Creative freedom…] b) What kind of brief you wish brand marketers would come to you with? c) On a scale of 0 to 10, How would you evaluate your experience working with us? [0 = terrible, 10 = beyond my expectations] d) Why did you rank the way you did? [Open-ended] e) On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend working with us to other influencers? [0 = not at all likely, 10 = extremely likely]
4. Fill in the survey yourself a few times to make sure it works well, ensure it displays well on mobile, and send it to your influencers via their preferred contact method.
Sometimes it is worth indicating the survey only takes X amount of time to increase the response rate.
5. Analyze, summarize, and reflect on the survey results with your team and focus on what most influencers expect, their experience with you, and what you, as a brand, can offer influencers long-term.
For small survey samples, you can even use Typeform or Google Forms’ built-in analysis and visualization functions that populate live as you receive responses.
6. Secure a budget for an always-on campaign from internal stakeholders based on your pilot campaign(s).
Base this on the terms you agreed for your first campaign, local market/industry standards, and your budget. Avoid Pay to Post models. This method of compensation usually does not lead to creativity.
7. Create a two-column list for building an always-on campaign relationship with What We Want and What Influencers Want as your columns based on the results of your first campaign and the influencer survey.
List down all the expectations each party has for each other. Don’t overcrowd the list and focus on the most important needs.
8. Formalize the offer into a single-paragraph pitch, approach one influencer in your list, evaluate the feedback, and start approaching others.
Avoid approaching your top-performing influencer first. Your relationship might be affected if they feel like they’re getting a bad deal. Adjust your offer if needed. The goal here is to end up with at least a few year-long agreements with influencers creating content for your brand that you can re-purpose on your website, email newsletter, social media, display campaigns, and other channels.
9. Recruit new influencers for every new campaign you run and only upgrade them to your always-on campaign when you have validated their creative skills, audience rapport, and actual results for your brand.
Upon evaluating new influencers for your always-on campaign, use your measurement spreadsheet to understand audience rapport, such as Engagement Rate, and results for your brand (both Direct Response and Brand Outcomes). Creativity is subjective beyond the point of your past data. Not everything in marketing can or should be measured.