Provide value five times before making an ask.
The Content Marketing Institute called out this principle during the annual Content Marketing World Conference and Expo, and we couldn’t agree more.
Influencer marketing campaigns are great for building awareness and brand affinity. They can even move customers down your sales funnel – but that takes time and smart content.
Influencers are great assets because they feel like friends. We don’t like when our friends try to sell us things we don’t need (everyone’s been invited to an awkward multi-level marketing party). So why would we have our influencers take that approach?
Introduce your brand in a relatable, helpful way through a series of 4-5 value-add posts (think: Instagram Stories, Reels, carousels, TikToks, blogs, Substacks – the list goes on). It is vital in today’s landscape to stay on top of trending moments, participate in community conversations and really understand what’s impacting your audience. Keep a pulse on what matters to your audience so you can create content that resonates. Providing value means showing up in micro moments – without an agenda but with a perspective that informs, engages or entertains. See how influencers can help you do that in this blog post.
You should only start “selling” your products once your audience is primed and understands your brand’s value. Check out how we built brand affinity through value-add content in a recent Nationwide Insurance campaign.
One of the most effective ways to provide your audience value is through edutainment.
Edutainment content combines education + entertainment. It’s often rooted in storytelling – not a branded script or hard sell.
What do these posts look like in practice?
- For beauty brands, maybe it’s… Equipping your audience with a new skincare routine on TikTok. #SkinCycling was a hot topic last year and has continued into 2023.
- For CPG brands, maybe it’s… Creating a video that teaches your audience how to master a recipe with cooking hacks sprinkled throughout. Hellman’s went as far as creating a hub to feature viral TikTok recipes that use it as a staple ingredient.
- For insurance brands, maybe it’s… Providing parents with financial literacy tips for kids. Take a look at this example from our Nationwide campaign.
Use edutainment content to launch community conversations about your brand.
Interactions with our friends are not a one-way street, so your influencer content shouldn’t be either.
Influencers are the quintessential word-of-mouth marketing tactic. Leverage them to kickstart conversations around your brand + extend the campaign’s life.
When identifying campaign partners, choose influencers who engage with their followers and spark meaningful conversations.
Then, think through your campaign’s content and how it might resonate with your audience. Consider the ideal audience reaction when outlining the content and determining the CTA. What is a home-run response to your campaign’s content?
You can often measure a campaign’s success by the sentiment and content of your audience’s comments. Are they sharing their own stories and noting how they can relate? Are they letting you know how helpful this post was? Are you seeing significant shares and saves on the post? If so, you’re winning.
Don’t forget to equip your influencers with what they need after posting so they can facilitate those meaningful conversations. Provide them with an FAQ doc should they get brand-specific questions on their posts.
You should also monitor an influencer’s post and plan to engage yourself! If people are showing your brand love, show them love back. When brands engage in the conversations, they humanize the company, extend the post’s reach and provide extra value. It’s a win, win, win.