In today’s world, nearly every brand has realized the potential of influencer marketing. If chosen and worked with correctly, influencers have the power to drive brand awareness and potentially boost sales. Many brands have the budget for comprehensive paid opportunities with influencers, with more content control and direction. However, many smaller brands may have limited budgets, only able to gift product in the hopes that they post. Gifted influencer strategies can be a highly effective way to get influencers engaged in your brand, reach new audiences and generate amazing content you can share on your channels. However, as an influencer marketing firm, we see brands make common mistakes in their gifting strategies that cost them success. Here’s a few of the most common reasons why your gifting strategy isn’t working, and how you can correct it.
You’re Being Too Demanding
When it comes to a gifting strategy, it’s important to remember what it is: a gift. Many brands expect influencers to post in exchange for a free product, but if there is no contract in place and no payment exchanged, it’s in poor taste to demand a post in return. Most influencers are more than willing to receive products for free without strings attached, and many will post if they genuinely enjoy the products and think their audience would care.
How To Correct: Next time you reach out to an influencer, ensure that you let them know that it is a gift in the hopes that if they enjoy the products, they share with their audience.
Your Outreach is Too Robotic
Does your initial pitch seem like a marketing newsletter? Are you just copy + pasting the same outreach information for every influencer? Are you pulling copy straight off of product descriptions and your website bio? You may be coming off too robotic or salesy. Influencers are people too. Therefore, taking the time to look at their content and write a personalized, friendly email will work much better than sending a generic intro pitch.
How To Correct: Tailor your outreach email to the influencer, and acknowledge what made you reach out to them in particular. Then, be sure to introduce yourself, the brand and the gift opportunity in an authentic and conversational way.
You’re Targeting The Wrong People
So many brands struggle with influencer identification, namely because it is a time consuming process. While there are programs out there that identify influencers based on their common keywords and interests, not all of them may be the best fit for your brand. For example, an influencer in the “skincare” category may sound like a good fit for your new salicylic acid cleanser. However, maybe she has posted in the past about being sensitive to acidic products, or struggles with dry skin. Ensuring that you know who you’re reaching out to beyond just surface-level data will ensure you’re targeting people that will authentically love your products.
How to Correct: Comb through your influencer lists and look at things like content style, tone of voice, frequency of posting, what they post and who their audience is. If any of these items are not aligned with your brand and vision, it’s probably not a fit.
Your Mailer Is Lacking
As an influencer marketing firm, the most common content we see shared are the famous “unboxing videos.” It may not seem important, but the brand experience from delivery of the package to actually using the product is crucial in a gifting strategy. Cutting costs by using unbranded packaging and including no other goodies will end up costing you in the long run.
How To Correct: Invest in ordering some beautiful, on-brand packaging and collateral that is special for your influencer gifts. Some extra goodies, samples, and a personalized note are also nice touches to impress and encourage a post.
There you have it – tips from our influencer marketing firm to optimize and fix your gifting strategy. To learn more about influencer relations, click here.