After working in marketing for seven years, I’ve quickly learned the power influencer marketing holds… when you do it right.

If it hasn’t or won’t work for you, you’re probably doing it wrong. It’s as simple as that. Here are some tips on how to do it right and how it can work for your business.

Influencer marketing can be complex. But when it’s done correctly, it’s an excellent tool to increase brand awareness and build reputation, trust and credibility. This leads to ‘influencing’ new audiences and, in turn, growing customer bases, which can be a game-changer for your business, helping to take content to the next level and making you stand out against competitors. And what brand doesn’t want that?!

At the heart of your campaign, there should be a specific, guideline-led strategy, which should include thoroughly auditing each influencer before recommending them for content, building relationships with key influencers to become brand ambassadors and avoiding one-off partnerships, putting authentic content at the forefront of every campaign, and last but not least, creating content that tells a story by humanising brands to emotionally connect with their audiences.  

By following these steps, it’s possible to generate huge success with these campaigns and forge brilliant working relationships with influencers which is what I’m passionate about doing for every campaign at Live & Breathe.

The power of influencer marketing is huge, and it’s gaining momentum year on year – so it’s important to lean into it, and to do it in the right way. So, let’s break down that strategy.

Run an influencer audit  

Choosing the right creators to work with is crucial. While sourcing influencers can be time consuming, it’s always worth the hard work and dedication when you find the perfect partnership to deliver engaging content and drive mass social reach. 

If you’re in charge of conceptualising a campaign, you have a responsibility to only recommend influencers who create high-quality content, have an engaged follower network, and have the correct target audience. It’s also a good idea to look for influencers with top profile growth and those that have not worked with competitor brands or share any conflicting content.  

Meeting all these requirements does take time, but they can help you achieve the desired results and drive your marketing goals forward. In a highly saturated market, relevance and authenticity are essential elements influencer content needs, so it’s important to spend time getting this step right. 

Build authentic partnerships  

Generating authentic content with influencers is the secret to capturing consumers attention. After all, today’s consumers are savvier than ever before – they know exactly when a partnership is not genuine and this can seriously tarnish your businesses and an influencer’s reputation, which could ultimately lead to a decrease in followers and likability. 

That’s why it’s important to spend time sourcing and work with influencers who are already using a brand’s products or services. And those that already have a genuine love for what they’re promoting.  By leveraging relevant influencers who already love your brand, you can generate authentic, high-quality content that followers will actually want to engage with, helping to establish brand loyalty and advocacy as followers won’t just see the content as an ‘AD’ and scroll past straight away.

This is why authenticity is key. If you work with influencers who don’t already have a pre-existing love for your brand and its products or services, the results will not be successful in today’s market. Pivoting away from staged content and working with authentic influencers that align to your business can lead to higher engagement levels, establish trust and reliability, and foster relationships that convert into sales.  And we all know this is exactly what every business truthfully wants, right?

Opt for long-term partnerships 

Building and nurturing relationships with influencers is important, not only because they can become advocates for your brand, but they strengthen your credibility amongst competitors. This is a great way to ensure success when delivering influencer content.  Therefore, it’s best to avoid working with influencers for one-off posts, as this can often convey unauthentic content, especially when influencers are not posting about your brand organically. In the minds of consumers, these one-off posts might seem random and could leave some viewing it as clearly ‘just an AD’. And the bottom line – negatively impacting how the content performs and risk ROI. 

This is why you should partner with influencers who have a highly engaged audience and profile growth to ensure your content hits the ground running. Then continue to work with these influencers as brand ambassadors throughout the year to build trust and brand awareness.  

Working with influencers who share your content consistently throughout the year helps keep your brand front-of-mind when followers are thinking about their next purchase. When you choose a brand ambassador that aligns with your business, you’ll be able to tap into the influencers’ pre-existing audience and reach new markets, ensuring follower growth and success for your business.  

Storytelling with influencers 

Influencer marketing is a great way to be creative, tell stories, and evoke a specific emotion in the minds of consumers.  It shouldn’t be about pushing your product or services, it should be about selling an experience to consumers with the aim of emotionally connecting with them and inspiring them to take action.  

When influencer content tells a story it makes your brand more relatable. Emotionally connecting with followers through a human-to-human marketing approach, rather than highlighting how amazing your products are, storytelling leaves a lasting impact and sparks meaningful connections with your consumers.  And this is exactly what’s needed in today’s market.

Influencer marketing is a fast-paced and ever-changing industry, so next year you could find yourself in a completely different landscape to before – but that’s what makes it so fun!