Content marketing has gotten more creative over the decades. The onset of influencer marketing proved to be a gamechanger for the way brands interacted with their target audience. But there's always the question of compensating the influencers for their work; for making sure they receive a deal they are happy to work for, and that they continue endorsing and not vilifying your brand. Monetary compensation is one way, but not all brands or campaigns can afford or wish to pay money at all times. And you know what? You really do not have to take the money route to compensate influencers every time.
But then, how all do you engage with your influencers? What deals can you strike to convince them to promote your brand without monetary incentives?
- Influencers know first
Launching a new lipstick range? Releasing a new trekking package to the Andamans? Just released a unique men’s grooming product? Let your influencers know first! Make them a part of the brand inner circle and give them some bragging rights as well. This is also a great way to build brand loyalty.
- Grow your influencer’s following
Crossposting is a great way to announce collaboration with influencers and works as an incentive for them, too. Mentioning and tagging influencer's accounts when you use their photos or adding a good word if you retweet or repost them is a great incentive. Growing their channels grows yours in a wonderful loop that is not vicious at all.
- Level up with influencer goodie bags
Is your product aromatic oils? Give them an entire 12-flavour pack. Better yet, accompany it with a trip to a spa that uses your oils. The idea is go big with the gifting, more so than you would with giveaway winners or other guests. And make sure the goodies you give them are valuable and worth it. If you give well enough, it could be something that your influencers post about on social media out of sheer love for the product.
- Send influencers to the stars
Give your influencers the celebrity treatment they deserve by giving them extraordinary experiences. If you are an alcohol brand, you could gift your influencers backstage passes to their favourite concert. If you are a travel company, gift them a luxurious weekend with the stay paid for. As a company, it always matter how you make your influencers feel - and this will leave them feeling pretty darn good.
- Give your influencers the top discounts
Another place where knowing your influencer comes in handy. Note the products and services used commonly by your influencers and get them offers and discounts on the same. Such incentives helps influencers automatically build and retain brand loyalty.
- Work in collaboration with influencers
Your social media influencers are most often than not creative and intelligent people, so you can work with them instead of making them work for you. A great incentive used by fashion brands especially are products that feature the influencer, or co-planned and co-designed shoots, or other artistic campaigns that showcases the skills of the influencer with the product or services of the brand.
- Give visibility to influencers
Take this point to quite literally mean ‘visibility’. Many influencers would jump at the idea of being a part of events, or of product placements shoots done creatively. Allow them to be seen openly associating with your brand.
If you are working with social media influencers, play the long term game. Work out arrangements that can retain your influencers and give them enough to want to say every single time you wish to work with them!