Posted | July 19th, 2019
What’s the best metric for influencer identification?
As one of the UK’s leading influencer agencies we have seen global clients massively increase their influencer marketing budgets and it is projected that the global figure for influencer marketing spend will grow to $8.08 billion by the end of 2020. Recent research has also shown that brands now dedicate around 20% of their total digital marketing budget to influencer marketing.
After years of relying on vanity metrics such as likes and following, it’s becoming clear that these are now outdated and do not deliver ROI. With fake followers continuing to be an issue in the industry, it is clear that this metric is no longer effective in identifying influencers that are going to deliver ROI. Last month, research found that almost every contestant on Love Island had boosted their numbers with fake followers. According to the research, 50% of their followers were fake.
As brands get more familiar with the concept of influencer marketing, they are looking beyond vanity metrics and digging deeper into what influencer reach really is by looking at geographies, engagement, and other performance indicators.
The currency and value of an influencer today should measured in their credibility, not their reach or their engagement rate. Credibility is the sum of transparency, authenticity and trust. This is what drives true consideration and influence in their communities (or your target audience). Do the branded partnerships that they are taking on feel authentic to their channels and previous content? Want to work with the right influencer for your brand? Measure them on their credibility, not their reach or engagement rate.
Although authenticity is currently a bit of a buzz-word in the world of influencer marketing, it is also the key to sourcing a credible influencer. It’s essential to look into their past work to see what kind of partnerships they have taken on in the past and ascertain whether they fit naturally or whether they feel gratuitous. If every post is sponsored by a different brand, this calls their credibility into question.
Look for influencers who respond to their followers and engage with their audience in the comments. This is a good indication of credibility as it shows that the influencer values their relationships and is invested in their community.
Although the most important thing on a brand’s mind is reach, it should be finding influencers who authentically align with the brand. A truly credible influencer will be need to be looking to move away from one-off partnerships for a product towards more long-term relationships to promote the brands that they love. These longer term partnerships will in turn help to build the brand. A good way to start is to look into people who are already fans of the brand and have previously posted about them without being paid. That way both the influencer and their following already care about the subject, and you’ll get the best results.