If you’re perusing this post, you’ve probably already determined that finding an influencer marketing agency can take your brand to the next level. (If you’re still on the fence, check out this article to determine if influencer marketing is right for your business.)
When you decide that you’re ready to take your brand to the next level via influencer marketing, it’s time to define your needs and goals for the first campaign. Check out this article for some of the common goals of influencer marketing campaigns that you can consider.
OK, so you have your goals set or at least in mind for your brand’s influencer marketing campaign. A quick Google search results in all kinds of different agencies offering influencer marketing from software platforms to giant PR firms with pricing all over the map. This article will help you ask the right questions to determine the influencer marketing agency that’s right for your brand.
First determine if your influencer marketing strategy is more than your staff can manage. Also, do you have realistic expectations for your campaign? If you aren’t well-versed in the ever-changing science of influencer marketing, it’s best to select an influencer marketing agency who’s living it every day.
We’ll take a look at the 7 important points to consider when selecting an influencer marketing agency.
1. What Level of Influencer Marketing Experience Does Your Business Have?
Has your team run an influencer marketing campaign before? Does your staff have the time and expertise it takes to find, vet, negotiate with, sign on, and manage influencers who will be speaking on behalf of your brand?
A small campaign with a handful of influencers can usually be managed with your in-house marketing team, but if you plan to go bigger you will want to find some help. The right influencer marketing agency partner is one that provides your in-house team with the skills and experience needed to be successful.
2. Does Your Business Also Need Other Digital Marketing Services?
Are you also looking for your influencer agency to also help you with your organic and paid social or are you looking for an influencer agency that focuses specifically on the influencers?
You’ll find all different types of influencer marketing agencies out there. Some are giant PR firms that “also offer influencer marketing” as part of their packages because they know it’s the hot marketing service. For other agencies, like Get Hyped, influencer marketing is 100% of what we do all day, every day.
If a single point of contact for your brand’s outsourced marketing sounds appealing to you, then go with a large PR firm or digital agency that can offer you everything your business needs under one roof. The alternative is to hire specialist agencies that excel at each marketing service your business needs.
3. Can Your Business Work with a "Done-for-you" Influencer Service?
Most influencer platforms (Software as a Service, SaaS) offer a done-with-you model. They provide access to their network of influencers, data, and a platform to keep email communications organized.
What they don’t provide is influencer strategy, advice, industry best practices, and education that you get from an experienced influencer marketer. So plan to invest your time and resources in learning the nuances of influencer marketing and making mistakes as you go if you opt to go with a done-with-you platform service.
The big pro is that small brands can find influencer software platforms more affordable than “done-for-you” influencer agencies. You can find an influencer platforms from $100 per month to $10,000 per month and higher. You may find it difficult to compare the pros and cons of each platform as there are many on the market.
If you have strong influencer marketing experience in house that can help you choose and utilize a software platform, then you can absolutely have success using an influencer marketing platform. Many large brands with in-house influencer marketing teams choose to subscribe to software platforms.
If you decide to go this route, pick at least one team member and devote them to championing the learning curve that comes with a new platform. Compare the pros and cons of various platforms before signing a contract. Most brands who are new to influencer marketing switch between 2-3 influencer marketing platforms before they find one that works for their business, so try to avoid signing a multi-year contract.
4. Or Do You Prefer a “Done-for-you” Influencer Marketing Agency?
On the other hand, if your in-house team lacks influencer marketing experience or resources, you can go with a done-for-you influencer marketing agency who can execute your campaign successfully, the first time, with no long-term commitment.
A done-for-you influencer marketing agency offers many benefits over an influencer software platform. Done-for-you specialist agencies can help you build and adapt your influencer marketing strategy using the helpful insights of agency advisors experienced in influencer marketing.
They also provide advice when campaigns don’t go as planned. They’re a resource for industry best practices. Specialist agencies take the time to educate you and your team so you can continue to benefit from the power of influencer marketing long after your campaign ends.
When working with the right done-for-you influencer marketing agency, you should feel like they are an extension of your in-house team, seamlessly working in cooperation with you to accomplish your brand’s marketing goals.
Because these agencies are specialists, often providing you with a dedicated team of experts, you can expect to pay $2,500 to $15,000 each month or more for a campaign. You’ll find that agency pricing is a fraction of what it would cost you to set up an in-house influencer marketing team. For more on what costs to expect, check out this article on how much influencer marketing costs.
5. Does the Influencer Marketing Agency You are Considering Focus in a Niche?
Do they serve B2B? Or B2C? Have they shown proven success for a brand like yours? How many times?
What kind of data do they provide during and following a campaign? What expert analysis and market feedback do they provide from your social audience to help you grow your business?
These considerations are important to get your money’s worth from an influencer marketing agency.
When hiring an influencer marketing agency be certain to address the following questions:
- In what niche do they focus?
- What results have they driven in their case studies?
- What brands have provided reviews and testimonials about them?
- Do they include extensive data in their case studies?
- Or do the case studies only consist of pretty content?
- Who will be the team executing on your campaign?
- How and when will success be measured?
- What happens if things don’t go as planned?
6. What About Their Process? – How Do They Consider Your Input?
How long will it take the agency to develop a strategy. When will they provide you with an influencer list? How do they vet their influencer selections? How do they ensure influencers under consideration are a perfect fit for your brand? Do they get your approval?
How long will it take influencers to post? Do they quality review the influencer’s content before it goes live? How do they ensure that the content sounds authentic and not robotic? What kind of time commitment is involved for you as the brand in their done-for-you campaign model?
It’s critical to understand an agency partner’s process before you sign on and get started. The right agency should set crystal clear expectations of their process and projected results with you before asking you to sign a contract.
7. What do the Agency's Clients Have to Say?
Inquire about case studies and client reviews.
Just as influencers and product reviews provide information that’s more trusted than those offered by brands themselves, case studies and testimonials help you understand whether an influencer marketing agency has experience in meeting the needs of businesses like yours.
Effective influencer marketing agencies today focus on influencer marketing as their primary service. If you’re looking for help creating high-impact influencer campaign, contact us for a discovery call.
About the Author: Dan Coughlin
Dan is an influencer marketer with a focus on consumer brands. He’s the Growth Director Get Hyped, the leading influencer marketing agency connecting lifestyle brands with their target audience.