RhythmOne recently hosted an Influencer Marketing Deep Dive webinar. The live event was moderated by Caitlin Quaranto, Senior Director, Influencer Marketing for RhythmOne and featured panelists, Katie Paulsen, Vice President, Influencer Marketing for RhythmOne and Liz Brock, Vice President, Director – Social Media for Socialyse. During the lively discussion two themes persisted. The first was the role communication has in ensuring a smooth Influencer Marketing campaign.  The second was getting the most traction from the content created.  

Communication every step of the way
One key to success is setting expectations early with the agency/advertiser, as well as the Influencer. All parties should be fully aware of the plan through a detailed Influencer Campaign brief that explains the ins & outs/do’s and don’ts of the campaign. It is very important to set campaign goals and objectives early in the conversation with an agency or brand.

Influencer Marketing is best utilized to connect with consumers on a brand awareness level. However, there are different tactics that can be utilized for those more direct response driven campaigns if and when the campaign is the right fit.

There are so many variables at play with an influencer plan. Ensuring clients are educated on the value of influencer marketing and what to expect with an activation is really critical for success. The priority should be to build brand awareness and consideration, but there is a trickle-down effect driving affinity and lower funnel actions. When executed well, direct response can be a secondary goal. On the influencer side, until all the details are ironed out, the program shouldn’t be presented. This ensures that Influencers know exactly what they are signing up for. In the briefing process, any mandates are noted to maintain the foundation of the campaign idea and give the influencer the ability to craft content aligned with the core idea but maintaining their authentic brand voice.  From there it’s all about communication, communication, communication with both sides every step of the way.

Open, consistent communication on both ends is critical not only for a successful campaign but satisfied and excited clients. It can be difficult navigating clients who are green within digital and influencer marketing, as they can tend to dictate all criteria and messaging of the content creation phase. Clients need to understand that influencers have their own brand and communication style.

Getting the most traction from content
Influencer Marketing isn’t and shouldn’t be siloed from other marketing and advertising programs. Influencer Marketing isn’t a tactic, as stated earlier, it’s a strategy. As content is created and distributed on the Influencer’s own social channels, brands should leverage it across their own channels – part of their marketing mix.

Brands are beginning to shift their approach from building a media plan and ideating creative against it to developing a big idea and strategically crafting how that comes to life. Influencer Marketing is an extension to the communication and activation plan. It isn’t a cookie cutter approach and should be tailored to the campaign especially when utilizing a brand ambassador or other talent to reinforce brand favorability.

Beyond social distribution and amplification, Brands should infuse Influencer content into traditional ad formats and run them programmatically to capitalize on the vast array of targeting available and drive massive reach of the content. No matter how it’s getting done, Influencer Marketing needs the distribution arm to drive optimal success.

An example of Influencer content within a Rich Media ad unit

Want more powerful insights and best practices that were shared during the webinar? Click here to view the full replay and here to download our 2016 Influencer Marketing Guide.