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As with anything, but especially with influencers, internal alignment is key to success. Know how to optimize your partnership for results by developing long-term brand ambassador partnerships
Stacey Kehoe, the renowned digital marketing influencer once said, “Activate your followers, don’t just collect them like stamps.”
We can’t agree more with this quote.
Honestly, negotiating with influencers is a tricky business. But after spending a year and a half in lockdown, people are now adept at spending most of their time on various social media platforms. Thus, it is not at all surprising to know that almost 63% of businesses are now enhancing their influencer marketing budget to a new high.
As social distancing is the new normal, the younger generation is now looking up to social media influencers more to get the feel of a personal connection. As per a recent survey in the US, around 46-51% of adults claimed that they are now addicted to social media more than ever before since the pandemic broke out.
Going by the present rate, it is imperative to mention that the influencer marketing industry is growing to become a $15 billion industry by as early as 2022. Now is the time to follow up on the influencers. But getting them to sign the contract is critical. They would want to know whether you are offering them fair compensation for the job. At the same time, you would want to ensure that you are getting what you are expecting them to do at a fixed budget.
So how can you find the right balance in between?
It's simple. You need to be a master of negotiation. With a little bit of research and some planning, you can extend a deal that is mutually beneficial for both.
To help you with the process, here are some fine tips on how to effectively negotiate with influencers for your brand and make them work for you.
Top 5 top tips to negotiate with the influencers for your brand
You must start with a clear business objective for the influencer marketing campaign. Unless you have a proper plan to go with, it will be difficult for you to understand what terms are negotiable and what is not negotiable. Have your marketing goals ready for your brand. Some of the top marketing goals that influencers can help you in reaching include
- Creating brand awareness among the mass,
- Maximizing your brand’s reach to new potential customers,
- Generating sales and earning revenue, and
- And lead generation for your brand.
Once you have your goals set, next comes the negotiation with the influencers.
1. Do your research
You need to do your research to identify the influencers that are perfect for your brand. Not all influencers will make the right impact with your audience nor will they all be of genuine help to you.
So invest some of your time in researching for the right influencer for your brand and thoroughly check their content on all the social media platforms. There are certain factors that you must keep in mind while searching for that perfect person for your brand. Those factors are:
- How they are a fitting with your brand
- What is their follower count?
- What is their engagement rate?
- What is their content quality?
- What is the kind of audience that they cater to?
Most marketers agree that it is rather challenging to find the most suitable influencers for a brand campaign. But making a wrong choice can set your brand up for failure in this domain right from the beginning.
Would you risk it? If you have a transparent understanding of the influencer and their brand, their demographics, and their followers, it will be easier for you to negotiate the influencer contracts.
Certain influencer marketing platforms can help you with this research. These platforms can provide you with a detailed report on whether your chosen influencer is meeting all the above criteria or not. Of course, it makes your job much easier.
2. Influencer compensation and contract
When it comes to offering compensation for the influencer, let’s be honest, you cannot just offer a random amount. What can you do about it? There are rate cards available for the influencers. Depending on your marketing campaigns and the deliverables expected from the influencer, you must draw a contract.
There are two types of compensation that you can choose from. Either opt for a fixed pay per post or choose the affiliate-based commission. Draw a contract depending on whichever works best for you and the influencer. There is a good influencer contract template available online like Bonsai’s influencer contract. It’s a readymade template that comes with all possible legal bindings with clear terms of a working relationship between a brand and an influencer. You can use such a contract to save yourself the time and effort for creating one.
You can also choose to offer just perks to the influencers instead of any fixed pay or commission. For that to happen, put in your best effort to find out what motivates your chosen influencer. If you offer them a deal with something that motivates them, they are more likely to strike the deal with your brand at a nominal price.
Offer them free samples of your products or maybe free access to live events. Several such influencers choose free food or free flight tickets or even free subscriptions and free hotel stays over money to promote a brand.
3. List down the deliverables from the influencer
When you are making a deal with the influencer, you have to enlist all your deliverables in the proposal in clear terms. You must also put on paper the volume of content that you are expecting from the influencer every week or every month.
While negotiating with the influencer, it is also important to address how you plan to handle any sudden contingencies that may arise during the contractual period. You might want to make the deal a transparent one by adding a non-disclosure agreement and an exit clause too.
Don’t forget to also mention the metrics that you would use in the future to measure the effect of the influencer on your market campaigns. If you want to use the influencer contacts exclusively, add a clause of exclusivity to your contract.
All these little things will set the right tone for the relationship that you enter with your influencer. It will also help both of you to set your expectations to a certain standard.
4. Keep the doors of collaboration open
The best influencer marketing campaigns are the ones that last you longer. It is not a wise idea to use influencer marketing for one-and-done campaigns. Instead, invest time and effort in this newfound relationship between your brand and the influencer to reach out to a larger audience and build consistency.
Creating a brand ambassador that the public accepts can give your brand an edge over your rivals. When an influencer is endorsing your brand on their social media pages, their followers are trusting your brand. Now that’s a huge responsibility on the influencers too.
But the good thing is that this immense trust from a large audience can help your brand drive more conversions and sales. It can also boost loyalty amongst your existing customers.
Develop long-term partnerships with your influencers and enjoy the long-term affinity from their followers. The influencers can help you in leveraging their audience in growing your brand value.
5. Give your influencers their creative freedom
While making a deal with the influencer, it is important to set certain content creation guidelines. But at the same time, it is also necessary to let them use their creative juice for developing the content. Do not let your brand cover up or limit their creativity and content presentation style.
Trust your influencers since they know their audience rather well. They know what their audience likes and dislikes. They know how to reach out to the maximum audience to build that trust in your brand. They can drive better engagement with the promotional content that they create instead of sharing brand-designed content.
You can give your influencers certain best practices to follow as they should always follow the FTC endorsement guidelines and should not associate any vulgar comment or content with your brand.
A good marketing campaign costs next to nothing but gives higher ROI. Influencing is also a job and that too is not an easy one.
Social media influencers are now a part of the digital lives of several people. A great influencer can help you in meeting your campaign objectives and give your brand a higher exposure. The key to making a successful negotiation with the social media influencers is to find the right ones who will align with your brand and its values and style.
Your social media promotional campaign with the influencers is a collaboration. So begin your influencer relationship on a positive note and allow them to shine on with your brand.
The influencer marketing domain is on an all-time high as various brands are putting in more effort in influencer partnerships. You need to enhance your negotiation power to stand out in the crowd. But be assured that with time and experience, your ROI in influencer negotiation skills will also increase.
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