There’s little that’s more dazzling than the glamorous world of high-profile influencer marketing. When smartly executed, a simple instagram post from a celebrity can generate dizzying amounts of traffic and hype. But if there’s any sort of misstep, or the match feels inauthentic, a brand’s reputation can take a massive hit. It’s no wonder that these campaigns – for better or for worse- tend to grab all the headlines.
What if I told you that you could get the benefits of an influencer campaign, but with a fraction of both the cost and the risk? It turns out that many brands, in the rush for the glitziest influencers, have been overlooking their most cost-effective creators and influencers. Some of your most highly engaged consumers are right under your nose, all you need to do is find them. This might sound like a lot of work, but fortunately cutting-edge community technology is on hand to make this job a cinch.
Who are your potential content creators?
At first, it might be unclear as to why smaller influencers and enthusiastic individuals would willingly work with you to promote your brand for what seems like a small return. It’s easy to view influencers as people who are only willing to be seen with your brand if the price is right. The key to harnessing the power of micro influencers is in selecting the right influencers for you. If you can find people who already have an existing positive relationship with your brand you are more likely to inspire them into action and get an authentic response that will resonate with other customers. By engaging this particular type of micro influencer, it’s likely that you’ll find that they’ve been dying for you to reach out to them for a while. Indeed, research shows that more than 50% of consumers want a brand to tell them what type of content to create and share (Merkley & Partners). And if you hit the sweet spot, your most engaged creators will happily produce user-generated content for you organically, reviewing and showcasing your brand in an authentic way. Research from Nielsen shows that 92% of consumers trust earned media more than traditional media. So, what are you waiting for?
Once suitable content creators have been found, many brands have separate, integrated brand communities in which to engage them. Marketing trends indicate that brands using community marketing believe that this style of marketing is making a huge difference to their bottom line, with 80% of marketers indicating that building brand communities has increased traffic (Hubspot). What’s more, once a community of creators has been established, many marketers find that this kind of community flourishes with very little intervention. To hit this magic sweet spot, community technology is key.
How community technology works
Rather than relying on consumers finding and using third party apps e.g. Facebook, cutting edge community technology allows brands to tap into the rich pool of talent that is naturally occurring on their own hashtags and @mentions. Brands can use smart AI technology to identify micro influencers and enthusiastic creators by listening in and seeking out those who are posting positive sentiments and meaningful statements about your brand. Once found, the seamless interface allows brands to easily invite them into an exclusive community experience, where you can establish and nurture partnerships to get great content.
Through the interface of a quality community platform, you can speak to your members one-on-one or as a group, run surveys, invite to create campaign-relevant new content, and reward them for their hard work in ethical ways. You’ll also be able to manage content within the platform, publishing it directly from the community to brand websites, social media and more, to maximise authentic creator power and drive conversions.
Case study: Lego
Lego Ideas is a masterclass in capturing the magic of creator communities in order to both meet modern consumers’ brand needs, and create a resilient, self-powering campaign that directly feeds back into the business. This community website allows anyone to submit new builds using existing Lego bricks, which are then put up to a community vote. The winning designs are turned into commercially-available Lego sets, with the creator earning 1% of royalties. By recognising that Lego’s most enthusiastic fans are eager to have a platform to create and an opportunity to share in the success of Lego, the brand is rewarded with both huge amounts of loyalty and endless creativity.
As you can see, the benefits to recruiting content creators and influencers organically based on what they are already saying and creating are huge, with the potential to generate impressive ROI on a budget. By recruiting this way, you will get a better, more meaningful and collaborative relationship that lasts. In return, your creators feel valued and showcased, and enjoy the benefits of being in an exclusive club. And who wouldn’t want to join your club?
About Toby Britton, co-founder of Miappi
Toby is the co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer at Miappi. Toby has been involved in the creative and communications industries since mid-nineties when he started working for independent TV production companies in the production of documentary films. In 2001 he transferred his film making skills marketing and advertising before starting to focus on digital projects. It was these agency-side projects that led Toby to start the business that would evolve into Miappi. Today, Toby oversees the design, development and marketing of Miappi.
Miappi is SaaS marketing platform powered by consumer-generated content. Our technology helps brands to discover and harness these authentic stories in order to drive consumer engagement and increases conversions. https://miappi.com/miappi-community/