Study: Brands Need to Choose the Right Influencers to Drive Engagement

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As more brands turn to influencer marketing to generate engagement, a new study has found that it may not always pay off. Specifically, brands may need to focus on the quality of their posts and their target audience more often to see better ROI.

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How can the right influencers drive engagement?

A report published by Markerly looked at influencers with less than 1,000 followers and compared them to those with between 1,000 and 10,000 followers. They discovered that influencers with audiences less than 1,000 had a “like” rate of 8 percent. In comparison, the group of influencers with larger audience had a “like” rate of 4 percent.

The publishers of the report claim that their findings highlight the need for brands to identify influencers who can bring them the most value. This involves finding those who are already working in their industry and targeting a similar audience.

“Brands that are interested in engagement over reach, and conversions over awareness are better suited to work with micro-influencers,” Sarah Ware, CEO and co-founder of Markerly, told Marketing Dive.

Ware went on to state that micro-influencers – those with smaller audiences – may even be better options for some brands. They tend to have more resonance with their niche audiences and excel at geo-targeting and content repurposing. However, the bottom line is that businesses need to take the time and effort to hone in on the right influencers for their specific marketing needs.

At Fullbottle, influencers are incentivized by having the option to choose which brands they want to work with for marketing purposes. This ensures that brands are only teaming up with influencers who have their target audience and industry in mind. Contact Fullbottle today to learn how you can find the right influencer to achieve your advertising goals.

Report: Programmatic Advertising is on the Rise among Brands and Influencers

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As marketers look to scale many of their advertising efforts, it’s no surprise that there has been a huge boom in programmatic advertising. Now, a new report from the Association of National Advertisers and Forrester has found that programmatic advertising adoption doubled between 2014 and 2016.

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Programmatic advertising is on the rise.

In 2014, just 35 percent of businesses said that they had made programmatic buys within the past year. This percentage leaped to 79 percent in 2016. Furthermore, 31 percent said that they have expanded their in-house capabilities to manage programmatic ad buying.

But why does programmatic advertising work?

Programmatic advertising revolves around the idea of automating the digital advertising process through technology, rather than manual processes. In turn, this boosts the efficiency of marketing teams and brands.

Programmatic and Influencer Marketing

There is no doubt that influencer marketing is on the rise. According to recent studies, businesses are making a larger than ever return on influencer marketing dollars spent, generating $6.50 in revenue for every $1 spent. With those kinds of returns, it is no surprise that 59% of marketers plan to increase influencer marketing budgets for 2016.

Influencer marketing can be an arduous and inefficient process for marketers looking to scale their efforts. In many cases, deals are negotiated directly with influencers, resulting in excessive time and money spent negotiating contracts, approving creatives, and managing inconsistencies in price and performance. Brands that are approaching the space in this way, need to rethink their process. Automating influencer efforts with a programmatic platform, like Fullbottle, allows advertisers to simplify the workflow and easily scale their efforts.

For more insight into how you can streamline your influencer marketing efforts to achieve scale, accountability and efficiency, contact Fullbottle today.

Report: 60% of Ad Budgets are Going to Brand Activation, Influencer Marketing

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As brands turn to methods, such as influencer advertising, to achieve their marketing goals, statistics now show that they are also dedicating more of their budgets to these initiatives. A report titled, “U.S. Brand Activation Marketing Forecast 2016,” from the Association of National Advertisers has found that brands spend 60 percent of their advertising budgets on brand activation.

Brand activation is defined by the ANA as using tactics, such as influencer marketing and promotional content, to reach marketing objectives. The brand activation market is expected to top $595 billion in 2016. By 2020, this amount is expected to reach $740 billion.

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Influencer marketing can help brands break through the noise.

Researchers estimate that media buyers now have more than 200 media outlet options to choose from when it comes to shopping. Technology and data are both impacting the media buying process in large ways, according to the report.

Because of the sheer number of media outlets, brands have an extensive amount of opportunity to reach out to their target audiences. However, the competition is stiff, and it can be difficult to break through the noise with the overwhelming number of companies vying for consumer attention.

Similarly, ad blocking has given more control to consumers on the Web, allowing them to select what they see while using the Internet. Ad blocking rose from 21 million users in 2010 to 144 million in 2014, according to Business Insider.

Today, the most successful brands are taking a savvier approach to marketing with influencer advertising. Working with trusted influencers who have established audiences is helping brands ensure that their messages are reaching their target market. Additionally, influencer marketing is helping more companies build their credibility in a crowded market.

Luckily, companies like Fullbottle are prepared to take on the volume of brands who are looking to team up with reputable influencers to achieve their marketing objectives. Similarly, Fullbottle works with influencers to help them find companies they’re passionate about promoting from a business perspective. Contact Fullbottle today for more information!

Rethinking Instagram Advertising: Instagram Ads vs. Sponsored Influencer Posts

Instagram Business

Just because your followers see your paid Instagram advertisements doesn’t mean they’re engaging with them. Furthermore, it doesn’t indicate that you’re converting any new prospects into customers.

Instagram advertising may help you achieve your goal of raising brand awareness. However, it takes influencer advertising to ensure that your posts are in front of the right audiences. Working with influencers also ensures that your advertisements are viewed as reputable sources of information, coming from individuals your target audience trusts.

On average, businesses are making $6.50 for every $1.00 spent on influencer marketing. The top 13 percent of influencer marketers are gaining $20 for every $1.00, highlighting the extensive potential of this form of advertising. Here are three key reasons why you should be turning to influencer marketing rather than standard Instagram ads.

Influencer marketing may be the key to more ROI.

Influencer marketing may be the key to more ROI.

Influencer Marketing Drives Positive Results
In many cases, Instagram users are following influencers because they pertain to a specific interest or passion. This means that they are already seeking out posts from these individuals beforehand, rather than skipping past them, as they would with advertising posts. Followers generally have a positive association with posts they see from influencers they track — they are posting content that they know their audience wants to see.

Instagram Users Trust Influencers
Influencers have large followings for a reason — they know their niche, whether it’s fashion, food or parenting. This means that their audiences likely trust their posts and thought leadership. When a brand chooses to work with an influencer, it positions itself to gain more authority and trustworthiness. The influencer’s followers trust what he or she is posting, which can boost a brand’s reputation in the eyes of its target audience.

Word-of-Mouth Goes a Long Way
Aside from immediate exposure, influencer marketing can result in the establishment of a positive reputation for a brand, which is long-lasting and profitable. Nielsen reports that 84 percent of people take word-of-mouth recommendations into account from trusted sources, such as friends and family. This highlights the large impact an influencer can have on his or her audience.

Incentivized Influencers Can Save Money
Working with incentivized influencers — those who are posting about a brand because they truly support its products or services — can eventually save money. Rather than wasting their marketing budget on an influencer who may not consistently represent their brand, they are getting the most bang for their buck by working with an influencer who shares a similar passion or interest.

Of course, it helps to have the right resources on hand to connect with reputable influencers as you begin this type of marketing initiative. Contact Fullbottle today to ensure that your brand only works with influencers who aspire to drive engagement through their work.

How Ad Blockers and Crowdcultures Shape Today’s Brand Advertisers

Ad Culture

Ad blockers have become a modern-day convenience for Web surfers, but a nightmare for marketing professionals who want to make sure their advertisements are seen. In 2015, ad blocking cost publishers nearly $22 billion. Furthermore, there are more than 198 active ad blocker users around the world.

This doesn’t mean that advertisers need to panic – it simply means that there needs to be a change in direction.

Social media

Crowdcultures now reign supreme in advertising.

The Rise of Social Media
The eruption of social media has forged a connection between communities of all types, ranging from fringe groups to artistic circles. Crowdcultures, as they’re being called, now encompass a wide range of ideologies and practices. The Harvard Business Review defines a crowdculture as a digital crowd that serves as an effective, prolific innovator of culture; a result of several sub-cultures often coming together online.

Typically, you can find them on social networks, such as Instagram. This has opened the doors for new marketing opportunities. Coca-Cola, for example, announced a new marketing strategy in 2011 that shifted from “creative excellence” to “content excellence,” promising the “world’s most compelling content” from here on out.

Coca-Cola, being an early-adopter, recognized the value of content branding ahead of many marketers. With the arrival of ad blockers, how can brands make an impact when audiences now have the ability to choose what they see?

The Call for Targeted Advertising
Today, ad blockers are creating an uphill battle, but it’s one that can be won through influencer marketing. Brands that churn out advertisements without considering their audiences are wasting money. Furthermore, they are making themselves vulnerable to ad blockers, which are specifically designed to eliminate spam and clutter on the Internet.

The key to any successful marketing campaign in the era of the ad blocker is creating advertisements that people want to see. Rather than trying to be trendy, brands can benefit from targeting these crowdcultures and what they specifically want to see on the Web. Weaving in storytelling – telling a branded story that resonates with a crowdculture – can also make a marketing strategy stronger.

Finally, working with influencers who already have a strong, engaged audience on a social network can give any advertising initiative a boost. Contact Fullbottle today to learn how you can create an influencer marketing campaign that grabs the attention of your target audience.

FOMO: Is Your Influencer Marketing Strategy On Par with Competitors?

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One of the most effective ways to get the word out about your brand, products, and services is to use influencer marketing. Teaming up with an influencer in your industry can put you in a position to reach out to a wider audience. However, your competitors might have been using influencer advertising for quite some time – how do you measure up? Here are four influencer marketing tactics you can start using today to ensure you aren’t missing out.

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Are you paying for views or actual engagement?

1. Make Sure Your Money is Well-Spent
Time is money, and you can’t afford to waste your budget on an influencer advertising strategy that isn’t paying off. That being said, it may be worth reaching out to a company that offers a pay-per-engagement model. This means that you aren’t just paying to publish ads that may or may not be clicked – you’re only paying for posts that your audiences sees and engages with online.

2. Connect with Invested Influencers
The influencers you work with should be incentivized to help your brand, whether it’s through general interest or passion for your particular industry. In the event that you bring in influencers who aren’t invested in your company, you may not get the amount of exposure or brand recognition that you desire. Influencers may fall off the map in terms of promoting your company over time.

3. Keep Your Influencer Marketing Strategy Targeted
Ideally, your brand should value impact over reach. This means you’re constantly working to create engaging, click-worthy posts, rather than posts that may be overlooked by wide audiences. Trust your influencers when you choose to work with them – they understand what types of posts resonate with their audiences. In turn, they can guide you as you generate engagement-worthy content of your own.

4. Don’t Forget to Strengthen Influencer Relationships
Influencers want to feel appreciated, and doing so can provide them with even more incentive to promote your brand. However, it’s critical to strengthen relationships with influencers to better understand the direction of your marketing campaign as well. Maintaining strong communication with your influencers can ensure that you’re keeping tabs on their audiences, as well as how they are engaging with your promoted content.

To make sure you aren’t missing out on all of the influencer marketing trends your competitors are taking advantage of, contact Fullbottle today. You’ll receive everything you need to launch an influencer advertising campaign that blows away the competition. Additionally, you’ll be able to take advantage of a pay-per-engagement model that ensures your marketing budget is going to good use.

Instagram Responds to Uproar over News Feed Changes, But is Change All Bad?

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On March 15, Instagram announced that it would be adding an algorithm to display news feed posts according to what users “care about most,” rather than streaming posts in chronological order. After receiving a negative response from some Instagram influencers and brands, the social network has replied to the uproar.

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Instagram news feed changes are on their way.

“We’re listening and we assure you nothing is changing with your feed right now,” Instagram stated on March 28. “We promise to let you know when changes roll out broadly.”

However, the development of the algorithm hasn’t stopped users from protesting. In fact, a petition has been created on Change.org, titled “Keep Instagram Chronological.” It has a growing list of more than 333,000 supporters, and it encourages users to voice their opposition, assuming Instagram is listening to their feedback.

“After what happened when Facebook switched to algorithm-based feeds, it’s certainly not something that small business’ will want!” writes Sarah Heard, petition creator. “At the very least, shouldn’t the community be able to opt-in, rather than having it mandated that this is how we will now see our feed?”

The algorithm has not been officially recalled, which means that Instagram marketing professionals will need to work a bit harder to ensure that their audience stays engaged. That being said, this is no easy task, but influencer advertising can help.

The Instagram algorithm is making brands rethink the type of content they are putting out — is it engaging? What makes followers want to click and comment? Through influencer advertising, brands can work with individuals who are always creating content catered to their audiences. This inevitably drives engagement, and makes the investment worth it for brands.

In the end, the algorithm change may not negatively impact brands, assuming they adjust their marketing strategies accordingly. Brands also need to take a hard look at how they pay influencers. Performance-based pay models become more important because it incentivizes influencers to maximize creativity and create quality content their followers love.

To learn how you can team up with influencers to create a winning marketing strategy, contact Fullbottle for more information today!

4 Signs that You Need to Tap into the Benefits of Influencer Marketing

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Whether you promote a big brand or a small business, influencer marketing can benefit you in many ways. That being said, not everyone is familiar with the advantages associated with this type of marketing. Here are four signs that influencer advertising could be perfect for your brand or business.

…You Want to Reduce the Length of Your Sales Cycle.
If you’re bringing in prospects but the majority of them fail to convert, your sales cycle might be lengthy and ineffective. Working with influencers can ensure that you’re bringing in prospects mid-funnel (or lower) who are more likely to convert. In turn, you’ll shorten your sales cycle.

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Working with influencers gives you a wider audience.

…You Want to Authenticate Your Brand.
Ever want to be in a thought leadership position in your industry? Teaming up with well-known influencers can improve your reputation and help you exhibit the knowledge you have of the business world.

…You Want to Increase Awareness.
The biggest benefit of influencer marketing is having the opportunity to raise brand awareness. Because influencers have large audiences, you can increase your business’ notoriety through these individuals and their social networks. Think of influencers as ambassadors who are spreading the good word about your brand.

…You Want a More Focused Marketing Plan.
Instead of beginning marketing initiatives in multiple areas, honing in your efforts on influencer marketing can help you save time and money. Because you’ll be working with influencers who already have an established audience, you can ensure that you’re reaching out to as many prospects as possible. Just be mindful of your target audience prior to choosing an influencer for your marketing efforts. Ideally, you want to work with influencers who are established in your specific industry.

Research has shown that 81 percent of marketers who have executed an influencer marketing campaign believe that they’ve been effective. For more information on how you can launch an own influencer marketing strategy, contact Fullbottle today!

3 Secrets for Strengthening Your Influencer Marketing Strategy

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With Easter just around the corner, brands are gearing up to celebrate the spring holiday. Each year, $14.6 billion is spent on Easter-related goods, and $2.1 billion goes toward candy alone. This means a whole lot of Instagram marketing, Facebook posting, and Twitter updating is necessary for brands to get in on the opportunity to profit from the holiday.

However, influencer marketing is one tactic that many brands overlook as they rush to get timely posts in front of customers and prospects. Here are three tips for strengthening your relationship with influencers as you look to give your marketing strategy an edge this spring.

influencer, influencer marketing, influencer advertising1. Show Appreciation.
Whether you choose to use Instagram or your company blog to praise your influencers, do it sooner rather than later. Influencers love knowing that they’re getting a little in return for their efforts to prop up your brand. Let your customers know that there are some hard-working influencers behind the scenes.

2. Host a Special Event.
If possible, make an effort to connect with your influencers in person. Hosting a cocktail hour or a networking event can help you strengthen your relationships with influencers. If there is too much distance between you, think about hosting an online event, such as a webinar. Introduce interested customers to your influencers to exhibit your working relationship.

3. Ask for Feedback.
While your existing influencer relationships may already be strong, there’s always room for improvement. To keep your influencers happy, take the time to ask for feedback – what could you be doing to make their job a little easier? Together, you can brainstorm new ways to enhance your influencer marketing strategy.

Last year, Americans spent an average of $141 on Easter alone. To make sure that you and your influencers are getting your brand in front of consumers this season, it’s critical to work in tandem. There’s no better time than spring to strengthen your investment in influencer marketing.

How can influencer advertising enhance your existing marketing strategy? Learn more by contacting Fullbottle today!

How Can Your Brand Benefit from Influencer Marketing?

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Brands constantly need to work toward raising awareness of their products and services, and reaching out to a large audience can help. For this reason, social media has become a critical component of many companies’ advertising strategies. However, creating a profile on a network like Facebook or Twitter doesn’t guarantee success. To enhance their efforts, more brands are turning to influencer marketing, and for good reason.

Influencer marketing and advertising can extend a brand’s reach. Because influencers have massive audiences, companies can immediately benefit from the wide exposure. Here is what you need to know about teaming up with an influencer for marketing purposes.

Influencer Marketing Can Increase Engagement.
If you’re struggling with engagement, influencer marketing can help. After a prospect sees your content marketed by an influencer, he or she may be encouraged to go the extra step and engage with one of your posts. Additionally, an existing customer might be influenced to comment or like your posts after seeing you advertised by an influencer. This gives you more opportunities to market your products and services.

It’s an Ideal Way to Break into Your Industry.
By teaming up with an influencer who works within your specific industry, you can access his or her audience, which may subsequently be your own target market.

instagram, influencer marketing, influencer advertisingYou Can Test Your Brand Messaging.
If you want to gauge how responsive a large crowd may be to a new brand message, you can execute it through your influencer marketing strategy.

Influencer Marketing Can Enhance Lead Generation.
Because you can communicate your products and services through influencer advertising, you’ll have new opportunities to generate leads. You may also gain more targeted leads, assuming your influencer’s audience consists of your ideal prospects and customers.

You Can Gain More Credibility in Your Industry.
When you work with an influencer, he or she is vouching for your products, services, and brand messages. This can not only raise awareness of your company, but improve your reputation in the eyes of prospects who already know your business.

Influencer Marketing Can Help You with the Top of the Funnel.
If you’ve been stuck in terms of marketing to the top of your sales funnel, influencer marketing can help. By working with an influencer, you can reach out to prospects through channels they trust most, whether it’s a social network or email.

To learn how influencer marketing can benefit your brand, contact Fullbottle today for more information!