How not to do influencer marketing

October 4, 2018

Influencer marketing has been around for many, many years. If Henry VIII wore army pants and flip flops, then we’re pretty sure the majority of the population of London in the Tudor period would be wearing army pants and flip flops (subtle Mean Girls quote incase you were wondering). Nowadays brands are silly not to use influencer marketing, and putting a collaboration together with a person and their opinions and their own personal brand is essential.

Influencers have a lot of power because their followers want to be more like them. For example, a food startup called Klean Plate used influencer marketing on social media to increase its sales 14 times and get 204% more traffic in just 4 months. This example isn’t a fluke, they are typical results for businesses who work with influencers. It works well because of a simple fact: if we see other people doing something, we’re more likely to do that same thing.

Both brands and PRs need to tread carefully to keep the consumers trust when branding a product and choosing the right influencers to use. Here are 7 ways NOT to do influencer marketing…

1. Being too demanding

Brands often expect their products to be the main content across the influencers channels. This isn’t the case, so don’t expect it. Influencers tell stories and that’s what their followers love. If they product place now and again, followers pay attention. If they do it 24/7, people will go off them for being less trustworthy and this results in your campaigns being unseen. If you have too many demands the influencer will have to compromise on other content or not want to be a part at all.

2. Faceless emails

To influencers who receive emails from brands every day, there is a huge difference between a blanket email and a personalised email. Cold outreach won’t produce the results you want. Take the time to get to know the influencer and convince them you are the right brand to work with. It goes a long way.

3. Not knowing your laws

Make sure you know the marketing laws of stating whether the content is sponsored or not in your country. Putting #ad may not be enough…

4. Choosing any influencer

Some common mistakes when selecting an influencer are reaching out and picking the one who looks the best, or choosing someone who has the most followers, or worse, doing zero research. The influencer you choose has to share your values and really be behind the product and have a good track record and reputation. Go through them meticulously, create spreadsheets with stats, find out who their audience is, approach a few and get the best person for your brand.

5. Focusing on numbers

If you’re thinking, “That influencer has more followers than that one, let’s use them”, you’re wrong. Their content won’t reach the entire audience. Before you make that decision, ask the influencer for more info on their statistics, which will give you a much better idea of how the influencer is creating the content and engaging people.

6. Unrealistic deadlines

Content creation takes time for everyone, some take longer than others. Don’t rush through briefs and make sure you’re giving influencers enough time to get the right outcome and collaboration. Rushing will only make lessen the quality of work. It will also eliminate mistakes such as wrong links, wrong hashtags, wrong tags, spelling mistakes, etc. Give them time.

7. Un-personalised content

When you’ve knuckled down the right influencers, ensure the campaign runs smoothly. Keep an eye on them, make everything you want them to do clear before you set them to task. Ask them to rewrite the directions for approval, it’ll make your campaign way more interesting. Don’t do what Scott Disick did for Boo Tea


If you need help with influencer marketing for a product, event, brand or business, get in touch with our team here. We have experience in influencer marketing and believe it’s an essential piece of the puzzle when putting a campaign together.


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