To achieve your dream content, do your homework.
Influencer marketing is an extremely popular marketing tactic and for good reason. Many brands are seeing success connecting with their audience by leveraging content creators on social platforms like Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. The programs that are getting the most headlines are the ones involving “superstar” influencers with a large following who are working with big brands. These programs are a good indicator of some of the success that can be found with influencer marketing but they overlook a much more important component of influencer marketing. The content. Whether you’re asking influencers to share posts on their channels or just asking them to create content for your channels, this content is extremely valuable for your Instagram marketing efforts. Influencer produced content gives you a unique opportunity to connect with your audience through authentic visual imagery. To do this right, you need to put in the pre-planning work and guide the content creation so it matches both your feed and theirs. When this work is done, you can trust that the images will resonate with your targeted audience.
The first step to gaining great content is establishing content guidelines for the creators involved in your program. These guidelines inform all of your stakeholders (other members of your marketing team, clients and influencers) what the content will look like and how it will be shared. Making these concise and clear is vital to effectively educate the influencers on proper program involvement. It’s also important that the guidelines are open and flexible enough to give the influencers some room for creativity to create content that matches their posting style. These guidelines don’t mean that you get to dictate exactly what to photograph and exactly how to caption the images. Rather, they exist to educate the content creators on your brand, the goals of your campaign and provide them with inspiration to spark their creativity. This is also the place to share compliance information and disclosures to make sure you are in accordance with FTC rules and regulations. You want to make sure that your influencers are following the right rules with their posting. Successful content guidelines will ensure that your program runs smoothly and produces authentic content for your brand.
The whole point of influencer marketing is authentic content. You don’t want content that will stick out awkwardly, or appear overtly-sponsored in the content creators’ feeds. The posts that achieve this match in posting style will better resonate with the program’s audience and drive better engagement. Authenticity is determined by the followers’ expectations of what they are used to seeing in your feed and the influencers’ feeds. The best way to achieve this authenticity is with great content guidelines. And if you’ve built a successful framework with those guidelines then you can trust the content your influencers are creating.
Trust the Content
If you’ve selected the right influencers and established proper content guidelines to drive authentic content creation, then you’re in a great position to trust the influencers’ posts. Trying to force edits or the re-creation of posts can lead to broken relationships with creators and a lack of authenticity visible to the creator’s audience. This is why it is critical to create comprehensive and detailed guidelines to ensure that the posting both follows the appropriate rules and meets the followers’ expectations.
Pick a Partner
This posting guidelines business can be tricky. Brands have to walk a fine line between ensuring brand representation and letting go of the reigns. Not to mention that influencers are humans, they occasionally lose track of the date or forget a hashtag. This is why top brands prefer to work with trusted partners like SEEN & Snapfluence. As a third party, we can help build and maintain relationships with both the content creators and the brands, so that both parties are equally represented and the program runs smoothly. We can help you get that ideal content, and also negotiate the content rights so you’re able to use it just the way you planned. (We also handle all of the tracking, auditing, and the hundreds of coordination emails! )
Influencer marketing is a valuable tool to increase the reach and engagement of your social media programs, but it is the authentic, unique visual content gained from an influencer marketing program that evokes real emotion in your target audience. When planning an influencer marketing campaign, do your homework. If content direction is given the proper emphasis, the results will pay dividends.