The Rise in Paid Media Influencer Strategies
While there are still those out there that rely on traditional influencer marketing methods, it's becoming more and more common for influencer marketing strategies to incorporate paid media. The only difference from campaign to campaign is how you're doing this, since there are a plethora of ways to "boost" influencer posts.
At Carusele, we develop a unique media buying strategy for each campaign, and weave that strategy into the influencer program by running ads directly from influencer social accounts. This approach not only allows us more control over the ads, but the targeting and optimization capabilities across the different social platforms.
As a result, we've been able to help many brands reach highly targeted audiences, even regional audiences, with influencer marketing. This includes a recent campaign we developed for Sabra, that aimed to reach a new audience of young, on-the-go urbanites in the New York City and New Jersey markets. Our hyper-local digital targeting helped this campaign not only reach the right audience, but earn the audience honor for best mid-range media buying strategy for the 2019 Shorty Awards.
How the Sabra Campaign Worked
Before we get into targeting, let's start with how we identified the influencers as it was crucial to the success of this campaign. The team was careful to hand-select influencers who were not only located in or around the NYC area (and showed a consistent track record of being able to produce visually stunning, locally-relevant, compelling content), but we also analyzed the geography and interests of the influencers' followers.
While our influencers were known for their busy, on-the-go lifestyle, the select micro-influencers we chose could each lend a unique story or point-of-view to the campaign theme. Then, the content the influencers produced was primarily published across Instagram (including Instagram Stories) along with supplemental posts on Facebook and Twitter.
Our analysis of the influencers' audiences showed roughly 30% of them lived in the NYC metro. This well over-indexes, as NYC is only about 6% of the US population. But to ensure nearly 100% of the exposures of our influencer's content reached the right audience in New York City, we had to get creative.
This is where our paid media strategy comes in. As with every Carusele program, we used our Content Performance Index™(cStack) to monitor each piece of content in real time and identify posts that were organically garnering the best and most relevant engagement. Our team then amplified top performing posts from the original influencers' own social feeds. Ad units were optimized daily, shifting budgets to top performing targets while creative and ad formats were refreshed regularly to keep results going strong.
As the campaign progressed and more data was collected, we were able to not only target traditional interest/demo-based audiences but through a proprietary technology that allows us to collect anonymized audience data and map users to custom audiences, we created look-a-like audiences based on our engaged audience to expand our reach with high value targets.
The Results Speak for Themselves
The Sabra Snackers campaign proved successful across multiple levels:
- Impressions delivered 87.5% above goal. If Sabra had bought premium digital display ads, it would have cost 1.4x more to reach an equivalent number of impressions.
- Campaign engagements also exceeded expectations by 113%, and we could track that those engagements came from the right target audience.
- Using our Audience Attention Algorithm, we calculated that the audience spent over 98,800 minutes consuming our content.
- Content produced by influencers would have cost the brand an estimate $10,000 to produce otherwise, and came with an unlimited license for the brand to use in the future.
The most important result of this campaign however, was that Sabra successfully reached their target audience within their desired location. Using data from our Engaged Audience Profiles, we were able to confirm that 75% of all link clicks came from users ages 18-34 within the New York DMA.
If you haven't evolved your influencer marketing strategy to incorporate a solid media buying strategy, it's time to start. Contact us using the form below to get the conversation started for launching your next campaign.