Taylor Lagace, partner and co-founder of Kynship, talks to Lucas and Pitstop about starting your journey with influencers off on the right road to success.
Working with influencers can be an incredibly financially reward experience for some brands, and a frustrating nightmare for others. A great brand-influencer relationship can thrust your business into the international spotlight and near overnight success for pennies on the dollar of what a traditional promotional campaign would cost. Meanwhile a mismanaged or ill-planned promotional campaign can devour promotional budgets, distance already invested customers and leave you picking up the pieces of your brands identity.
How do you avoid making rookie mistakes and get the most out of your influencers? Taylor Lagace, co-founder of Kynship, shows you what brands need to have to enjoy a happy and successful business-influencer relationship.
Put your best foot forward
Some inexperienced brands will presume that dealing with influencers is entirely transactional; you hire them to promote your product, they mention it X amount of times, they get content, free merch and/or money, thus completing the contract.
This is the number one major mistake you can make, says Lagace.
These promoters get flooded with such requests constantly, and are often in a position to pick and choose who they want to work with. if you don't grab their attention, make your brand engaging for them personally, and get them invested in your brand culture, you'll never land a major personality.
- Get to know them a little better. Don't just contact influencers because you've heard of them and they're available, look for those who share your outlook, or have an interest in what you can offer. Show that you bothered to get to know them, and can offer something they would actually enjoy.
- Cast a wide net. There are untold thousands of influencers across the world, and in every field. Even with a super-specific product, you may be looking at potentially hundreds of would partners, of which you can expect a 20-30% response rate. The more you snare, the better your product will do in the market, so try to entice as many as you can while retaining strict quality and content control.
- Treat them as your best customer. You want your influencers to be as excited about your products are your customers, so everything you have them promote must first appeal to them before they can make it appealing to others. Give them the best unboxing experience, send them surprise items, and get them to identify with your company as a personal choice, not a business decision. Sell yourself, sell your brand, sell your product, and they'll amplify your message to the world.
- Let them get hands on. Involve them in product roll-outs and give-aways for items they're not even promoting but would likely enjoy. Allow their natural curiosity and showmanship to do the rest, and enjoy the essentially free positive press.
- No restrictions, just suggestions. Don't tell an influencer what you specifically don't want them to post, this can create a sense of negativity and suspicion about the quality of your product. Instead, focus on the messages you do want them to pass along, and listen to how they respond.
- Always follow up. Your relationship doesn't have to end after they've posted your promotional content. Let them know how happy you are they enjoyed the product and shared it with their audience, and request if you can have usage rights to the content involved for future publishing, with additional residuals for the influencer. This will incentivize them to continue promoting your brand even if you no longer send them any products to post about.
Start your relationship off on the right foot, and influencers will carry your brand far.
Give A Little To Get A Lot
Co-founder and managing partner of Kynship, Taylor Lagace, returns to Pitstop to explain why giving your product away to influencers is your best money-saving move.
It doesn't matter how good the sales figures are, when store owners are told their best bet for a positive influencer-relationship is to simply give some of their product away, they start having second thoughts.
"Shouldn't I get something in return?"
When you work in the world of e-commerce, so much of your life revolves around transactions, and it can seem very strange to offer costly items in return for no guaranteed promotional content.
The secret, explains Lagace, is to trust your influencers and trust your product.
- A properly curated and chosen list of essential influencers, chosen for their potential interest in your product and approached in a friendly, non-transactional manner, will return positive responses and posts from at least 30% of recipients, many of who will make at least two pieces of content
If that's just 100 items sent to 100 influencers, you've generated between 30 and 60+ promotional spots. Most influencers who see positive responses to a product will also agree to share the usage rights to any created content, with the understanding that continuing the relationship would be mutually profitable and beneficial.
Now it's time to get transactional.
Once you've purchased the usage rights to a dozen or so of the best performing responses from the most reliable influencers, establishing the explicit transactional nature of the relationship, offer to take it to the next level with exclusive contracts.
This is where you'll be able to set clear terms and openly state your expectations, while paying your content creators drastically less than if you hadn't invested in winning them over with some low-cost gifted product and a small investment in their earlier promotional content.
Never stop seeding for new influencers.
Always be on the lookout for the next big name and face to push your product and spread brand awareness, while keeping your best and brightest curious and interested. Repeat this process constantly to ensure a steady flow of cost-effective, engaging and genuine promotional content.
Quality, In Great Quantity
Taylor Lagace, partner and co-founder of Kynship, returns to Pitstop to explain how smaller influencers will lead you to bigger profits
You have to know how to walk before you can try to run, and the same goes for dealing with influencers.
These content creator's audiences come in all shapes and sizes, from the very small and niche to the extremely broad and mainstream, and can generally be separated into two types: the Micro Influencers and the Macro Influencers.
Macro influencers are often celebrities with impressive personal brands themselves, and while they have vast reach, they are incredibly expensive to do business with, let alone repeatedly.
Micro influencers, by contrast, have very focused and specific audiences, smaller in scope but more likely to be interested in products related to shared interests.
There are two key reasons to avoid the allure of the big name Macro Influencer, and invest in dozens, if not hundreds, of Micro Influencers:
- Save More Money. Micro Influencers are much cheaper and more likely to cooperate with any creative demands you may have.
- Make More Money. They're a more effective means of repeatedly targeting dedicated, interest-driven potential buyers, producing many times more content than a single advertisement, on a personal/community level, with much higher engagement & conversion rates.
This means many more consumers who are already likely to buy your product will see it, and for a far lower cost than hiring a known Macro Influencer.
That more personal touch also goes both ways, as working with Micro-Influencers is a far more collaborative experience than the typical stiff business of contracting a big name, often through their agent.
You'll be more satisfied that the content best reflects the high standards of your brand, in whatever form and medium you want, for future advertising use however and whenever you need it.
- Tags: ecommerce, influencers, kynship, marketing, pitstop, podcast, promotional content, shopify, spotify