While measuring for branding campaigns is relatively easy, post-testing and reinforcement is recommended for advertisers looking to increase sales.
This is a question that all professionals ask: is influence marketing profitable and profitable, even for campaigns whose goal is to sell or transform? “Influencer marketing can generate traffic and sell or convert it, provided you view it as a global medium that also has a significant impact on developing brand awareness and consideration,” replies Stéphane Bouillet, co-founder and CEO of Influence4You, influencer marketing agency and technology.
Several key performance criteria (KPIs) are used to evaluate the success of an influencer marketing operation, particularly for campaigns aimed at developing awareness and generating brand viewing. Among the best known are the cut (actual) communities, the number ofprints and from viewsthat Scope (unique impressions) of the campaign that obligations (likes, comments, shares) etc.
For branding campaigns, we are particularly interested in the engagement rate and weight it with the branding rate of the comments to avoid a biased analysis. “Engagement is the key KPI of influencer marketing, but you have to be careful that it is the product and not the influencer’s image that generates likes and shares: automated comment analysis allows the presence of the brand in the influencer’s mind to be measured verify followers who engage,” explains Guillaume Doki-Thonon, co-founder and CEO of Reech, an influencer marketing agency and technology.
“You have to make sure that the product and not the image of the influencer generates likes and shares”
In addition to the actual size of the communities, the “reach” provides information about how many followers actually saw the campaign. Finally, the number of views weighted by the percentage of the influencer’s audiences that are of interest to the brand allows for a more accurate knowledge of the audiences actually exposed. “Influencer marketing is a very precise and powerful contextual medium because it allows us to target the desired target much more massively,” specifies Stéphane Bouillet.
For campaigns that aim to generate traffic, leads, or sales, the whole difficulty of measurement lies in the virtual absence of campaign tracking, with the exception of stories. “In order to keep people there, social networks prevent us from linking to influencers’ creations,” recalls Guillaume Doki-Thonon. This rules out any possibility of directly attributing a sale to exposure to the influencer’s content. “However, we must not conclude that influencer marketing is not efficient,” he insists, arguing that as much as 11% of sales attributed to brands’ social posts alone, according to a 2017 study in the United States are made by clicking on the link or promotion code, 44% later online and 21% at the physical point of sale. “Influencer marketing works, but it’s difficult to track performance in terms of transformation and purchase. The problem is the same for TV and radio,” he adds.
“Post-test studies are becoming cheaper and not necessary every time”
So how do you measure the performance of campaigns that meet traffic generation or even sales goals? By conducting post-test campaign studies that measure the impact of a campaign based on questionnaires sent to panels of exposed and unexposed people. “This is the only measure that can be applied to all communication levers. In addition, these studies are becoming cheaper and they are not always necessary, since a certain number of lessons can be drawn from them.” applicable to future campaigns of the same nature and objective”, defends Guillaume Doki-Thonon.
Guillaume Doki-Thonon and Stéphane Bouillet also warn marketers against any direct comparison between the returns of influencer marketing and those achieved through social advertising and search. “You have to compare what is comparable, starting with the content creation costs included in the price of an influencer campaign,” specifies Stéphane Bouillet. According to him, for every 100 euros invested in a campaign with performance targets, 30 is used to create content, 30 to develop awareness and 40 to generate traffic to the website.
“The nature of influencer marketing is branding”
We also need to consider the nature of each lever: while a Google ad is placed at the precise moment we are searching for a product or service, influencer marketing serves to draw the consumer’s attention to a brand, without him thinking about it. “The nature of influencer marketing is branding, which does not prevent it from having strong performances in sales or in generating traffic for impulse products, but provided that these already have a good reputation”, specifies Guillaume Doki- Thonon.
In order to further exploit the potential of an influencer campaign to generate commercial performance, agencies offer so-called amplification mechanisms: The content created and posted by the influencer is then broadcast in the social networks in paid media and is usually rated according to cost per action (CPA ) billed ) to the advertiser. In this case, only the actually converted impressions will be billed.