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Make way traditional advertisers, influencers are no longer the new kids on the block. With a projected global valuation of $2.1 billion in 2023—with an exponential growth rate—influencer marketing has become a cornerstone in any fully integrated multi-channel marketing strategy. 

As the industry continues to evolve, so do the trends and best practices that underpin how brands engage and work with creators. No longer the wild west of the marketing and advertising space, influencer marketing has outgrown its formative years, settling into more regulated and established ways of working. Despite this, its integral connection to social media means that influencer marketing changes faster than any other creative or advertising vertical. The dos and don’ts of the initial years of influencer marketing are now persona non-grata—brands need to keep up with changing best practices in order to avoid ending up in a starring role on the FYPM* Instagram channel. 

To get the lowdown on what’s new in the space, our influencer marketing team hit the ground, participating in Platform Media’s Influencer Social before hopping across the pond to attend DMWF’s Influencer Marketing World in London. We’ve broken down three key themes from both conferences that brands should keep in mind when developing influencer marketing campaigns:

1) Diversity Matters

Diversity starts at the brief. Ensuring messaging and purpose built into campaigns are inclusive can  help avoid tokenism and organically integrate diversity into any given campaign. 

• In the words of Madelyn Chung (@representasianproject), “Diverse people exist 365 days a year, not just during historic months.” Brands should incorporate diverse voices year round, not just during significant days or months. 

• Diversity isn’t just a creator slate consideration; it matters at every level of your program, including the brand side. Representation in the global marketing industry is between 7-13%—differing drastically from your average consumer audience. Diversifying brand teams brings in thoughts and lived experiences beyond PR and marketing, allowing for more creative and, ultimately, inclusive ideas. It’s not just about working with diverse creators; it’s also about building more diverse teams, resulting in diverse strategies, leading back to a diverse selection of creative partners. It goes full circle. 

• Be bold. Don’t be afraid of backlash and change. It’s proven that brands don’t suffer long-term consequences when they stay committed to EDIA and sustainability. Even if you make a mistake and need to quiet your talk, don’t slow your walk.

2) Events 

• Events are back and better than ever. Influencers are being invited to more events now than pre-COVID. Brands are realizing it’s important to build relationships with creators outside of the digital space.

• Influencers don’t want another cut-and-paste brand event. Events should have a purpose and a clear narrative to encourage attendance and coverage. Go beyond simply hosting an event; create an atmosphere that tells the narrative your brand is trying to sell. 

• Don’t leave your influencers alone. Brand events exist to build bridges with creators in an intimate setting. Brands and agencies should take the time to connect with all creators in attendance to further nurture relationships.

• Remember, diversity is a consideration in every channel of creator marketing. When planning events, keep your guest list in mind. Who are the creators you’re inviting? How do they navigate public settings? Are there event plan accommodations that need to be made to ensure everyone can enjoy a fun and welcoming environment? From venue accessibility to the width of chairs, small details of your event can either make creators feel welcomed and cared for or negatively impact their experience—every detail counts. 

3) Campaign Tactics

• Briefs are a playground, not a prison. While brands and agencies are often used to approaching briefs as the be-all and end-all, it’s important to remember that creators are not the same as creative agencies. As their own independent talent, creators are uniquely positioned to understand what works best on their channels—rigid briefing can, and often, does limit campaign success. To get the best results, brands should give creators breathing room to avoid stifling creativity—if we wanted to control every aspect of the creative process, then a creative agency would be a better bet.

• Move away from focusing heavily on a product. Overly product-focused creator campaigns have run their course. Consumers are tired of the transactional. Instead, campaigns and briefs should look past products and promote an idea or concept—the goal should be to move culture forward, not just a product. Remember influence is an outcome, not a profession. 

• Impact is not just numbers based. It’s easy to get sucked into KPIs in a digital world. But impact often goes beyond numbers. Consider adding in more qualitative metrics to your campaign reporting to provide a more holistic view of  success. 

• Think long-term. After the campaign wrap report, creator campaigns are filed away, but the long game is key for many social platforms like YouTube, Pinterest and even TikTok. Content often picks up traction long after a campaign has wrapped but we tend to miss these wins. Consider adding holistic yearly check-ins to key creator programs to understand the longevity of your campaigns. 

That’s a wrap, for now. Be sure to check back and follow us on Instagram for more influencer must-knows!

Alexandra Raposo

Director of Digital Strategy

Tracy Ward

Influencer Marketing Specialist

Tyonna Shears


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