Chris: G'day world. Chris Hogan and Andrew Groat coming to you live from ME Media studios here in Burleigh Heads, where we're produced Get Fact Up. Our new way of producing our Get Fact Up series is via Vodcasting in this studio, which is available for hire for you as well.
How you going Andrew?
Andrew: Yeah good, how are you Chris?
Chris: Awesome. So today we're going to be talking about influencer marketing. We actually alluded to that last week, we said we needed a whole new show for that. Firstly, let's dive into it, what is influencer marketing?
Andrew: So influencer marketing, for me, I think leverage. So, you've got your own circle of followers and things like that and you can slowly expand that but when you're working with influencers, you're talking to someone who's got much larger reach, they've got higher indorsement with all their fans, they've got all the content out there already, you're just playing in bigger circles and there's specific metrics that you need to look for, which you've detailed here.
Chris: Yeah, so exactly what you've just said, breaking out of your existing circle and into other people's circles. Influencers can be anything from social influencers, be it Facebook, YouTube, Twitter-
Chris: ... Instagram. But also bloggers. Let's not forget the bloggers, okay. Where to from there?
Andrew: Content producers.
Chris: Content producers.
Andrew: More of less, yeah.
Chris: Exactly, yeah. SO they're creating original content.
Andrew: And they've been doing it for long enough that they've gained trust and all that sort of thing. They've got momentum, they've got inertia with what they're doing and they're doing it for the love of the people, so they've really got that connection there and that's what you want to tap into. Because as a brand, as a business, that's hard to do. There's always that distrust so it's associating yourself with these people that have the ears of everyone else, you know?
Chris: Absolutely. So these people have essentially, like you just said, alluded to, they have been doing it for the love of it for a long time before they've actually been able to monetize it. Not all of them even are monetizing.
Andrew: I think most people, they have to do it about 2 years before they really see a proper return on investment.
Andrew: So it has to be a hobby for the longest time and that's the only way to really get that sort of trust and momentum with the endorsement.
Chris: So we've got two different ways to utilise ... use, influences to help your brand run a campaign, boost the reach of your brand or product or increase sales etc. So there's two ways to do that, we can either attract or engage them.
Andrew: By attracting we're creating something that they need or we're delivering something that they need. And then we're reaching out to them, we're basically just directly contacting and finding these people and being like, "Hey, I've got something for you or I want to pay you to interact with my brand" or something along those lines.
Chris: Yeah for example. Research companies do that all of the time. They put out these beautiful slide decks and infographics and what not on ... what are the statistics in certain countries around certain stats, and if they make it even more beautiful then other people, other bloggers, other news corporations actually go and use those stats and cite them in their blog and link back to them.
Andrew: Yeah exactly. So using bloggers as an example, they need to get their content from somewhere, they can't just make it up out of thin air. They're people like you and I, they'll search for these facts and when they find it, they're going to use it in their content and if you're presenting it to them in a way that's really, really helpful for them, then they're definitely going to choose you over something else.
Chris: So that's the attraction method that we're going in to so we'll keep going down that road for a second. So have we got some example that ...
Andrew: Yeah, okay. So I had a think about this, because we were talking about this recently. Obviously, it requires a bit of work, you have to really think, you have to really research your influences, you have to find these people first and you have to look at what they're creating. So, these people are creating this stuff, what do they need to create this stuff? They need facts and figures and juicy content, they need videos and images, they don't know how to do all this stuff. So you make this for them and basically present it, you can just present it in a way, you can just have it out there and they'll find it or you can contact them.
Chris: That's the engaging way, yeah.
Andrew: Example is, so you look at your niche, let's say, because we were talking about this today, a local attraction. So you look at the influence in that niche, it's going to be something like travel bloggers. If we're saying Australia or even Gold Coast, it'll be like a travel blogger or local guide or something along those lines. What type of content do they create? They're going to create lists, like Top 10 things to do in the Gold Coast. Let's use as an example, Top Ten Things to Do Outdoors. They need to get their info from somewhere about things to do around the Gold Coast, they're not literally going to go and search, go to all these places and figure this stuff out, they'll search this on Google. So you need to be ready for that, and you create something and ...
Something that we do a lot of here at ME Media is we create Go-to guide articles, where it's like, we're creating the best guide for a particular topic to attract influences. And this guide will have everything someone would possibly need if they wanted to spread the word about something. So using the local attraction as an example, you would create an article that's basically like, "This is why this attraction is the perfect outdoor experience." Videos, images, tonnes of facts and all sort of juicy stuff that someone could quote, cite, link to or something like that as an influencer, like a travel blogger. And you could even go one step further and contact them and say, "Hey, love what you do. I've written something that perfectly fits in with what you do, would love to see it on your list" or something like that.
Chris: And some of them will obviously be so into it, doing it for the love of it, that they see the benefit of improving their content, that they'll actually ... no problems, just do it.
Andrew: Because the thing is they have to create this stuff, and if you're giving it to them exactly as they need it or they're finding you on the web exactly how they need it, then they're going to use you, you're making their life easier. This is kind of a business for them so if you're giving it to them on a platter-
Chris: They're journalist right?
Andrew: ... they're going to choose you over-
Chris: They need stats.
Andrew: ...yeah they're journalists, they're going to choose you over someone that's making it difficult. Or the less research they have to do, the better.
Chris: So these people, when we're attracting them and you're engaging them, it's a blurred line in this particular case, where you're actually calling them up or emailing them, they're not an influencer yet, maybe they're still growing their channel and growing their audience. Yeah, we're getting into the potential engagement-
Andrew: It's always give and take. I mean, they're using you to basically look good. If they look like an expert because of you then you're giving them something, if you get a whole bunch of traffic because they've endorsed you, then you get something. It's kind of a joint venture, the influencer model. And the thing is, when someone is going to create this sort of content, they think ... We talk about it, influencer strategy, the objection's always, we should be creating content for our potential customers and this is where we need to look at the circle of reach. Your potential customers are only this big but-
Chris: Because you're playing in your existing circle right now.
Andrew: ... your existing circle. But if you think outside the box just a little bit and say, "Okay, my potential customers only go this far and they don't necessarily trust me" then you look at the people that can influence that and you're like, "Wow, their reach is huge" and everyone trusts them. So if you can attract them, that little bit of work that you've done to connect with them, it's just exposing you to a bigger, more trusting audience.
Chris: So I want to get into the engagement side of things because then that reveals the metrics. So obviously you can actually go out and find these particular influences and engage them and yes, pay them to actually-
Andrew: Yeah you just have to have something for them because it's a business for them.
Chris: ...pay them to do brand mention, do a custom piece of content and so on and so forth. So when we're doing this, influencer marketing is a real deal. We've spoke about the demise of broadcast and the rise of online media. Like I said, we've got Instagrammers, we've got Facebookers, we've got YouTubers and we've got bloggers, but the metrics aren't all the same. If you're engaging people on these social channels or in their channel of choice then we have to be really-
Chris: ... honest with ourselves that we're not going to always get increased sales, increased conversions, increased traffic. So let's dive into Instagram just for a second. Instagram is very popular for influencers, there's heaps of them there. Yes, there's fake one too, but there's still a lot of legit ones there. And they've been doing this for quite a few years now.
Andrew: Most of them since the start of Instagram, the ones that are doing well, yeah.
Chris: Instagram's all about engagement, clearly, one word. That's what sums up Instagram when you're looking at metrics. So likes, comments, re-grams, brand mentions, so re-grams being like a share, and hashtags. So you can look at trends for hashtags.
Andrew: Mm-hmm (affirmative). But the thing you won't get from Instagram is traffic and probably not sales either. So you have to be smart about this. If you're going to engage an Instagram influencer, you don't want to be getting traffic and sales, you don't want to be thinking like that, it's brand exposure exclusively.
Chris: You might grow your Instagram channel, yeah, that's fine but then you can leverage off that to increase sales.
Andrew: In some other way, yeah.
Chris: But directly, we're talking about direct metrics from these influencer campaigns. So let's talk about Facebook metrics. So obviously the content that gets released, you'll get likes, comments, shares, brand mentions, page likes could increase on your own channel. Remember they're not actually on your channel creating the content and sharing the content. They're created it and sharing it through their own channel because that's where their audience is. But they can help boost your page likes as one of the metrics.
Andrew: Yeah, there's more of a connection than Instagram. And you know, there is the website traffic but you're still in a tight knit social platform and people don't want to leave. People that are on Facebook don't necessarily want to leave Facebook unless they're looking for something. So you still have to remember it's better for just increasing your Facebook reach, increasing your branding. It's still the same, but you can get traffic from it.
Chris: You can do website traffic, you can increase conversions and you can increase sales. So it's possible but even though we say it's possible, we've gotta have a really honest conversation with these influencers before we start. What have you done before, what have you actually done for other brands before? Have you increased sales? Have you increased conversions? Ah, no. Okay, well I'm still fine with going ahead with you but if we can't increase sales and that, let's look at what we can increase, let's look at the metrics we can measure and can improve on and then have a conversation around that. Let's not assume that everyone's going to increase sales and conversions.
Andrew: And partly, you need to be smart about this. You can't approach a Facebook influencer and expect them to increase traffic to your website. So you need to remember that on your side as a business approaching an influencer. But then yeah, they need to be clear about that, because they may not be able to deliver that. So it's just about getting that agreement in place, the right agreement. And then just making sure, yes I believe you can deliver that because that's what this channel does, and then them just delivering on what they've said. So if you don't have that in place then it can be tricky, it can be muddy waters with influencers.
Chris: Yeah. And then we've got bloggers. Obviously, from bloggers we can increase traffic, we can potentially increase our SEO, so our keyword ranking, referrals from that particular source, we can track that, conversions and sales. So bloggers are pretty straight forward.
Andrew: I personally think that, influencers, bloggers are the best influencers. You can use that in a lot of different directions. And anyone that's a blogger also has ... they're across all their social channels. Because I mean, they're a personality, they need to make sure all this is right, they know how to share on social and thing like that.
Chris: Bloggers are also meant to divulge that the content that they're producing has been paid for. Just a hot tip there. So even though ... because Google's watching, Google's always watching, and if they see a link from your site and they come to understand that, hang on a minute, you're creating content that's paid content, so advertorial like content, and you're not divulging that, all of a sudden all of that effort and money that the brand actually paid that blogger to create just went down the tube because Google just found out that, oh no, they're being paid for that content so disregard it, it's not organic.
Andrew: Because Google's a business. They don't want to be delivering something that's dishonest.
Chris: Well you shouldn't be able to pay for SEO, that's what Google's all about. SEO is earned.
So YouTube metrics. So brand, channel subscriptions. So brand engagement, brand awareness and channel subscriptions can be metrics. Traffic to your website because you can actually put links in the descriptions. Referrals, so we can see where the referrals are coming from, they're coming form YouTube. There will actually be, potentially some difficultly around tracking those referrals, so be careful about that. Conversions, so we could potentially increase conversions, maybe the content they've produced gets embedded, you imbed that content on your product pages, potentially, hey that's boosting trust right? Someone else created a piece of content about the product that I'm trying to sell, beautiful. And they're authentic, they're trustworthy.
Andrew: Yeah YouTube can be a really good one because YouTube gets really loyal followers. So if you find someone that's got loyal following and they create a video about your brand, what you do, a product, something along those lines, it can be really, really good and they can send a lot of really loyal traffic there. It's just ... been around for a long time and people are very fierce about their loyalty on YouTube. So it can go both ways, it can also go badly if you're approaching the wrong type of YouTube influencer because it's very strong. That strong loyalty, yeah, you have to make sure you're getting the right type of thing to the right type of person on there.
It's kind of like Reddit. You don't want to go on there with something that's obviously a branded message, people don't ... they'll be very clear if they don't respect it.
Chris: Authenticity. All about authenticity, being true, being trustworthy. These influencers, they're taking a risk when they're taking on your brand and most of them aren't going to actually do it if they feel that it's too risky. They're actually going to say, "Well, no. I need to know that I believe in your product, your brand before I actually do it" and if it's coming from a place of trust and authenticity than their audience is going to love it and it's going to be forever. Don't forget that the content they create is forever. So if they sell out on one person, their audience might die and not engage as much on the next person and they know that.
So look, I think we should wrap that up in the interest of time. That's been influencer marketing, I hope everybody's got some education around that. I think it's a great conversation Andrew. I hope you're enjoying this new format of Get Fact Up, I know I am, in and out. And, look, more to come. I'm not sure what next week's going to be about.
Andrew: We could even continue with this, but maybe we'll do something different next week.
Chris: Predictions, predictions. So one of the predictions is that influencer marketing is on the rise, it's huge and it's going to be tried and tested a lot more over the next ... now, year. It's happening right now, more and more people are signing up for it. So I think that advertising budgets are going to be seriously affected. I'm saying that a minimum of 10%, maybe 25% of marketing budgets are going to shift to influencer marketing. Can't measure that, I doubt we can measure that, sorry. Prediction that you can't measure.
Andrew: I forgot that we were doing the predictions so you kind of sprung this one me. But for me, I think it's the influencers that are doing live video that are going to be the ones to watch. No one really knows how to track live video, the metrics are all weird because you don't see it until after ... it's historical metrics on live video, it's weird to figure out exactly how it works at this stage. But the influencers that are doing live video well, they're going to be the ones, I think, to watch in the future and that's going to be the format to watch in the future.
Chris: Yep. Well, thanks very much to Rogue microphones for our beautiful microphones, they are sexy microphones. And thanks very much to ME Media, our agency, our content marketing agency and also thanks very much to Beach City, who is also an influencer marketer in their own space as well, doing plenty of live videos. Thanks very much guys and keep watching.