Tracking the success of an influencer campaign is not a straightforward process, and it’s certainly not an exact science.
The truth is, some of the benefits are measurable (and impressive!), but the unmeasurable benefits extend much further.
One study has shown influencer marketing to have an 11x higher ROI to traditional forms of marketing. Small to mid-sized campaigns wouldn’t benefit from employing the same high-level of technology that allowed tracking such a significant impact. However, it’s proof that this marketing strategy is not only working, but is worthy of exploration and investment.
First off, the costs associated with influencer marketing are relatively low compared to more traditional forms of media advertisements. There is no need to pay designers or set fees, or actors and models. All of the creative fees are wrapped into the influencer’s fee.
Second, the company receives a lot more than just advertisements that run for a predetermined set of time. Influencer content stays around for a long time, and that content is pulled up and amplified every year, especially if it’s tied to a holiday, season, or yearly event (think Christmas or back to school content).
Part of our contracts with influencers includes a right for the brand to reuse photos and videos produced for the campaign on their own website. This professionally produced content is all wrapped into the influencer’s fees, and is a great way to build a library of beautiful content to share with the brand’s own following.
And fourth, we trust those we follow online. A recent study found that 86% of women turn to social media for recommendations, advice, and opinions prior to making a purchase. Recommendations made by people we trust are way more valuable than those made by the brands themselves. It’s only natural we are skeptical of the brand’s own motivation for promoting it’s own product. We trust influencers have chosen to work with brands who develop products they really love, knowing we are likely to love them as well.
Cost Per Impression
We can track how many impressions the content receives during the campaign duration. With this information, a cost per impression rate is produced. This rate is compared to studies of traditional print and visual advertisements for comparison.
It’s important to keep in mind that with a traditional media ad, those “impressions” would end with the close of the campaign. Influencers are very likely to pull up the content they created and share with followers again and again in years to come, so the “cost per impression” during the campaign is really just the tip of the iceberg.
Social Media Followers
We can also track the effect our influencer’s recommendations have on your social media
numbers. Throughout campaigns, we record starting numbers, and can show how each publication from our influencers impact’s your brand’s social media following. It’s important to note the benefits from growing your following are long term, and immeasurably valuable.
Increased Traffic to Website
Google analytics tracks website traffic from referrals, making it possible to see the impact influencers have on visits to your website.
Throughout a campaign, looking at traffic sources will show spikes in site visitors from the social medias influencers are using (for example, increases in referrals from Facebook and Instagram). The goal is that these spikes will result in overall increased traffic over time, because the client’s social media accounts should also receive a boost in followers.
A marketing savvy client will use this boost to their advantage, and stay active on social media to really benefit from this boost.
Google analytics also shows how much traffic a site has received as referrals from influencers.
Smaller brands or new companies will be able to gauge a boost in sales during the campaign, but it’s just about impossible to affirm what portion of the sales are due to the campaign apart from other strategies the company is employing.
In the end, increased sales is the ultimate goal. All the other factors will over time lead to increased sales. While many agencies are working on methods to track this, it isn’t 100% measurable yet.
Who else is talking about your product? Our influencers use and encourage followers to use campaign hashtags, so we can find out what people are saying about our clients’ products. These hashtags also open up the campaigns to participation from enthusiasts who follow the influencers.
As a part of our metrics tracking, we follow campaign hashtags, and use conversations about the product as a part of our ROI Report.