The use of influencers is a pivotal element in the design of any digital activity. From engagement to amplification, they provide the human element, which is critical to the success of a campaign that is social in nature. Easier said than done! Influencers have been traditionally integrated into an activity based on their proximity to the subject at hand. My opinion is that their selection and the relationship should depend on the current product or service life cycle stage.
A brief understanding of my logic is as follows:
The Introductory Stage:
Budgets are usually tighter at the client’s end for influencers as they are branching into the business and have other areas of acceleration which have high costs. The normal tendency is to activate a spread of ‘C’ category influencers as well as lifestyle influencers. This strategy allows for a quantitative bump in digital results. However, on branding terms, the results are extremely short termed and have no recurring benefits.
I generally advice consolidation of budgets to be utilized for a Class A, subject expert influencer. The engagement may be short term but the asset or engagement has a greater lifetime value.
Growth and Maturity Stages:
Amplification is extremely important for a product or service today. The business is
constantly expanding and needs to sustain buzz for extended periods of time. It’s quite normal to engage with a 20:60:20::A:B:C strategy; this keeps the engagement high and supports the volume that is necessary to sustain buzz.
Also, this is a stage where I like to suggest long-term engagements with upcoming B category or extraordinary C category influencers. These influencers have proved themselves with proximity to the subject and overall will allow you to deliver better results on your budget.
This is where things get really difficult. Whatever you do, nothing will seem to work with
activities coming across as repetitive or irrelevant. Two strategies are suggested here:
Double Down: Keep things relevant by activating high volume Class A influencers. This portrays that even though things are slowing down, your product or service is still the boss. Marketers don’t like to propose this strategy as it comes across as boring or lazy but sometimes it’s the best way forward.
Wild Card: Use high risk strategy with a fresh communication engaged by category B and C influencers. Using Class A influencers would make your communication come across as staged and you would be more than likely to gain little by engaging them with your fresh take towards things.
I hope this article helps you to plan your influencer activity better.
The author is the Founder and CEO of Sterling AG.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not in any way represent the views of exchange4media.com.