How to Leverage Influencers to Drive Omnichannel Marketing

Sherri Langburt
CEO & Founder
Automatic Summary

Integrating Influencers into Your Omni-Channel Marketing Plan

Hello, and welcome! My name is Sherry, founder of Be Travel Box, and with more than a decade in the influencer marketing space, I'm here to talk about the importance of integrating influencers into your omni-channel marketing plan.

Understanding Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is an incredibly dynamic and fast-growing aspect of digital marketing. Importantly, it's highly versatile – you could work with influencers of various sizes, across multiple channels, and belonging to different categories. From TikTok and Instagram to YouTube shorts, Facebook, and Twitch, there is a platform and influencer for every need.

The Evolution of Influencer Marketing

Currently, many brands view influencer marketing as a push technology. They engage influencers, send them products or campaign briefs, and ask them to share across specified channels. However, brands can leverage influencers as more than just endorsers. They can also serve as content creators for your brand.

The Benefits of Working with Influencers

  • Authenticity: Influencers create original content and hold an authenticity that resonates with their followers.
  • Reach and Trust: Influencers have a loyal following that trusts their endorsements. This loyal following grants you access to demographics you may not have reached before.
  • Digital and Affordable: Influencer marketing is all digital, making it specific and trackable. Despite the increase in influencer pricing, it’s still more affordable than many traditional marketing mechanisms.
  • Versatility: Working with influencers can be incredibly flexible and scalable. You could work with one or multiple influencers based on your needs and budget.

An Integrated Approach to Influencer Marketing

In a cohesive marketing strategy, influencer marketing doesn't stand in isolation. Influencers can serve as content creators for your brand, and their content can be utilized across PR, social media, email marketing, websites, print catalogs, and more. This can save you time, money, and ensure a cohesive customer journey.

Leveraging Influencer Marketing in Unique Ways

Consider influencers for:

  • Social media: Brands can leverage influencer content, creating an engaging and quality refining look to their social media channels.
  • Digital advertising: Influencer-created assets can serve as authentic and relatable marketing materials across various channels.
  • Whitelisting: By boosting influencer content, you can reach a larger audience including look-alike audiences.
  • On-location marketing: Geo-specific campaigns can significantly benefit from using local influencers for targeted marketing efforts.
  • e-commerce ratings and reviews: Influencers can leave genuine ratings and reviews following guidelines and regulations, aiding potential customers in their decision-making process.

Remember, influencers can provide more than just social clout - they can contribute valuable content and insights for your brand. Thank you for joining this discussion. If you have further questions or want to chat more about influencer marketing, feel free to contact me at [email protected].

Video Transcription

Hi, everyone. Welcome. My name is Sherry. Um Thanks for tuning in. I am gonna wait a minute or two to make sure that people are joining and not having any uh glitches. Thank you for tuning in. Yes.So I know we're kind of um we have a very limited amount of time and I have a lot of material to go over again. My name is Sherry and I will say this at the end again. I am so pleased to be here. I have been in the influencer marketing space for more than a decade. I'm not gonna go beyond that. I am the founder of a company called Be Travel Box, um which I'm happy to talk to anyone about after this session. I am very passionate about integrating influencers into your omni channel marketing plan and I want to dive into that. So don't want to waste any minutes precious minutes because we only have 20. So I'm going to begin the session right away. So we're gonna take a little bit step back. I know that a lot of, you know, about influencer marketing and you know how, you know, the ins and outs of influencer marketing, but for all intents and purposes, you know, influencer marketing, there are influencers of every size that you could work with influencers on every channel.

Now, Tik Tok is everyone's talking about tiktok, but there's tiktok and Instagram and youtube shorts and Facebook and Twitch and you name it. Um And there's influencers of um in every category so you could get super niche, you could go broad but all intents and purposes. It's a very dynamic community. It's a fast growing um kind of marketing, especially digital marketing function. Um But everyone's doing it the same way. So right now, we're all kind of thinking about it as a push technology, right? Whether you work with one influencer as we have highlighted here or many influencers, we're all kind of engaging and enlisting these influencers, we send them products or send them campaign briefs and then we ask them to go ahead and share across all their channels. I'm trying to see some. Thank you. So it's always a push technology and the influencers are then pushing across whatever channels we told them to do. So whether it's Tik Tok or Facebook or Instagram or youtube shorts or blogs, you name it and there's benefits to this, right?

So we know, and I'm sure you've heard this so many times if you've been in marketing and if you haven't, I'm gonna take one minute to just go over it. There's benefits to working with influencers, they're more authentic. I know right now, very relevant is that everyone's kind of asking, you know, is a, I gonna replace influencers? Well, influencers are original. So they're creating original content. Could it supplement and help them? Yes. But I don't think it could take away an influencer because it's still a human being and a person. Um, but it might be supportive but they, they, they are here to say they're not going away And I think why we love them is they're authentic. Um They're real and they're original. Um because of that, they have a loyal following, which is another benefit of working with them. They have people who listen to them and want to entrust the words that they're saying and trust the, you know, the endorsements that they're giving and they also have a reach. So another benefit of working with influencers is that you're able to reach their audience, which if you hadn't worked with that influencer before or those influencers before, you might not have access to the demographic that they're hitting.

And it might be audiences, new audiences or audiences um that you haven't been able to kind of break through before other benefits of working with influencers. It's all digital. So, you know, you could get very specific with targeting because you have all that analytic data and tracking as well. Um influencers while pricing can, you know, seems to be, you know, increasing as it should because, you know, they're kind of becoming more popular as a marketing mechanism.

They're still more affordable than if you wanted to do something else within the marketing realm. But two things that I wanted to point out that people don't really talk about is the flexibility of working with influencers, you're dealing with people. So you could be very um kind of commun and flexible with, you know, the scope of work and the terms of conditions of your working relationship. Um and also timing and, and, and how things are happening and super scalable, you could work with one influencer 10 influencers, 50 100 so very scalable, you could turn it on, you could turn it off. Um So these are just some quickly I wanted to kind of go into some of the benefits of working with influencers. So historically and I, I worked in corporate America and what I found is that the marketing department kind of sits in the middle and there's all these different functions and it's nice to see now that some companies do have a whole division for influencer marketing, but for all intents and purposes, everyone is really functioning in their own silo.

And you know, you always have like people kind of, you know, the best example I give is like the digital ad team. They're always like, oh, we need assets, we need a, we need the best video, we're gonna go buy a video where we're gonna go buy this amazing photo and then you have the pr team hiring a whole team of people because they have a photo shoot and they need to create some kind of amazing piece of collateral, but they're hiring other people, they're not talking to each other.

Um The content marketing team, you know, is working with maybe, you know, celebrities or spokespeople to create some content or they're churning out content on their own. Everything is inconsistent, the imagery. Um The messaging, how many times have you gotten an email from a brand?

And it's talking about a sale and then you go to their social and they're talking about a sweepstakes and then you go to their website and they're talking about a new collection. So what's happening here is because no one's talking to each other, we're disrupting the consumer journey.

Um The messaging is very disruptive. We're spending a lot of dollars and also frankly resources and time when we don't have to be. And so having worked in the influencer marketing field for so many years, I think it's really time to take a new approach and change the way we all see things. Now in my slide before it looks very much like the same slide, but I didn't wanna replace the marketing department. I did put influencer marketing in the, you know, the, the core of this diagram, but let's just pretend the marketing team is, you know, kind of sitting behind the scenes, the purpose here is to show that if we properly leverage influencers, they don't just have to be sharing content as you know, influencers, they could help be content creators for your brand, meaning that everything and anything that you do can be that the influencer does can be utilized and leveraged across pr across social media for your email marketing.

Um You know, it can really subsidize your website, print catalogs. Um And I think that that's a big thing that people are not kind of connecting the dots here. Um It will save you time, it will save you a lot of headaches. In terms of coming up with original content, it will save you definitely dollars and most important. It's gonna make a cohesive customer journey so that they're not getting bombarded with different messaging different pictures, different videos, it's all can be cohesive. So without further ado, I'd like to kind of give some examples. So the first example here and how we could do this is social media. We work with a lot of brands and social media. When I talk about that, it's the brand owned channels, the channels that your brand owns. So your Instagram, your tiktok, your um youtube, your Facebook, you name it all these channels when we talk to brands that we work with where we might be creating all this amazing content with influencers. And then when we look at their corporate owned social channels, none of that content is being shared and we don't understand why it's not being shared. I was like, why aren't you resharing this content?

And for whatever reason, I'm here to tell you that you should be sharing that content you have, you're allowed to share that content as long as you tag the influencer. And the benefit is is that you're gonna get visuals, whether it's photos or videos that is a little bit leveled up. Um If you are a smaller company, you don't have the dollars to invest. If the influencer does a great job, there's the advantage that you're gonna get this amazing quality content that you could share on your social. If you tag the influencer and give them that love, they might give you an extra bit of love and kind of give you another push on their channel. So you might generate more awareness or eyeballs on your brand, you're gonna save your team a lot of time and money. So whoever is managing your social, you're gonna be saving them a lot of time and for coming up with like what do I post next? So again, so many brands are working with influencers, but then they're not taking that content and sharing it on their brand owned set social. So that's the first step here.

The next step is digital advertising or you know what, truthfully advertising in general, I know companies are taking or maybe you've tried this, taking the influencer content and turning it into an ad unit and that's great. But I think there's so many ways to think about it.

It doesn't just have to be like what I'm showing you here. You know, an image of what the influencer did. You could a sound bite and turn it into a commercial for a podcast. You could do a before and after, and turn it into a magazine, you know, um layout. So there's a lot of different ways to think about how you're gonna use the assets that the influencer creates um and leverage it across your digital or your marketing, you know, kind of channels. The third area where we could be benefiting by leveraging influencer content is whitelisting or sometimes called boosting. Now, I don't know um you know, if you're familiar with this, but this is when you go in, you get access to the influencers account and you're able to go in and boost the content that the specific piece of content that they created for your company or your brand. The benefit of doing this is that a because of the algorithms on whatever social channel you're able to allocate dollars to reach more of the influencers audience, you're also able to reach look alike audiences and you're also able to use um to kind of hit demos that are very niche and specific to your brand.

So why it works so power, why it's so powerful is because you're not, you're not taking an ad and sending it, it's not a brand push, you're actually going into the influencers account and reaching these people, these consumers, these online audiences with a piece of content.

And because the influencers is trusted and reliable and more authentic, it performs better. So here's just a quick example. Um really fast. Um This is for a restaurant, they wanted to get more engagement among a certain subset of on the go singles in Chicago. Um you can boost by the way for awareness so to get more impressions um for a engagement, so shares um comments, likes, clicks of shares, comments, likes um and you can boost for clicks, clicks, takes you further down the funnel, it's more expensive. But here's an example of how we boosted for clicks and you could see two influencers posted. The first is how they initially perform within the first half hour or 45 minutes. And then the second is the clicks after boosting. So you could see how you could, you know, kind of go into the influencers account and then boost to generate, you know, whatever goal you wanna reach. So on location marketing also could be known as shopper marketing, um field marketing. It's really the challenge we as companies have now. Um let's face it, it's very hard to get people away from their computers. Um Everyone is just, this is a restaurant example, but when you're talking about retail or shopping online, everyone's kind of doing everything at home, um, partly COVID, partly we've, you know, just gotten accustomed to more and more shop and doing things on at home in the comforts, um, of our homes.

Um, and what's nice about and, and so it's the first challenge we face is, you know, getting people away from their desks and into a storefront. But also once you're in a location, what has become hard is that the inventory in that location might be different and who's carrying what is different? So what store struggling with that if you have very specific geo needs the beauty of is there is an influencer in every part of the country. So we are able or within, you know, proximity that we could have influencers going in and showcasing within a location, products down to the aisle down to the zip code. So I think one great area where we could be kind of leveraging influence is when campaign, when products are hyper local. Um And the benefit here is that you're showing exactly where the product is available, what's available, who carries the merchandise, et cetera? Here's a great example.

Um It's, you know, this is a really small subset of a larger campaign that we were running. But it's for a supermarket chain that has, you know, three new stores opening in a specific part of California, there's other stores opening throughout the country, but this is for three and we had influencers going in. So what was great was that not only did they announce that these new stores were opening in this small, these small towns, but they also had to go in and showcase what the the different merchandise that these stores had in comparison to other areas of the country. And so even though it was a very small campaign with not the biggest influencers, smaller micro nano size influencers. When you look at the total saves and the read shares, it says something really interesting total saves shows that these three influencers really hit people at the local level because it resonated with them so much that they saved it or they re shared it with people who were local.

And so that's really an example to show that bringing influencers, you know, kind of that shopper marketing or in store marketing can really move the needle when it comes to challenges that brands face with um shopper marketing or on location marketing. So another challenge we're gonna kind of go now into the ecommerce world of shopping. And um, you know, I was with colleagues a few months ago and I was saying how, oh, we have influencers do ratings and reviews and everyone's like, wait a minute, what do you mean influencers can do ratings and reviews? And yes, you know, technically they can, as long as they follow the guidelines and the regulations that they have to, that they were received the product or they're being compensated for the product consumers right now, you know, they're doing so much research on their own that ratings and reviews online are very critical to success.

And the challenge that so many companies have is that they have no ratings or reviews when they're launching a product. And this is an example that I'm gonna show you. Um, we see here so we work with this major food brand called Agra and every June, they come up with all new skews. Um and there's thousands and you know, all these new products and they have no ratings and reviews because they're not in the stores yet. And so they came to us saying, how do we get these ratings and reviews? We said great. We could ship the products in advance to influencers. They don't have to be in the store. Now, this is a perfect example of how you could kind of stretch how far you could take influencers because again, the brand came to us with the idea that they need ratings and reviews. And we said, but wait a minute, there's more. Once we're sending out hundreds of these food kits to influencers to create these ratings and reviews, to populate your database, why not have them also do an awareness piece, why not have them all share across, you know, Instagram or tiktok or youtube shorts. They chose Instagram as their primary channel. And so we convinced, and we worked with the influencers to do this. So it went from just ratings and reviews now all the way to, um you know, the next section of, you know, kind of creating that content awareness play.

And then we took it a step further where we said, you know, what, why don't we ask the influencers if the brand, since these products are new, the brand managers can have access to some of the assets so that now they could leverage those assets for the website, for their own.

Each brand had its own social channels. So you could see how we went from ratings and reviews to creating an awareness play on social and then all the way to collecting those assets from the influencers and then having the brand managers have access to those that content. And um you could see here, you know, the total results, the campaign obviously generated a lot of impressions. It was um 1200 pieces of content, 900 close to 1000 ratings and reviews, a lot of likes, a lot of comments, but moreover, it went way beyond just a ratings and review and a social credibility um campaign all the way to um an awareness play and a branding exercise. So I do have more, but I think we're running out of time. So um I thank everyone again for joining and I'm sorry, this was rushed. But if you want to reach me, I'd be delighted to take the conversation offline. You could always reach out to me, Sherri that's Sherri at babble box dot com and it's babble box with two S and it's Sherri sh er R I at babble box dot com. Thank you so much, everyone for tuning in and I hope to hear from you soon and I hope this was helpful.