Give us the background of your company – what is it and who is it for?
Benique is an online fashion-forward jewelry boutique based in New York city, offers an affordable, versatile selection of both daily and classic jewelry that women everywhere can love everyday of every season.
By working closely with suppliers, and through constant communication, we are able to eliminate any middleman markup, and offer the same high-quality, luxury style that other brands offer for only a fraction of the price.
Tell us the background of the influencer marketing campaign?
Social media is changing the way we communicate with our target audience. Influencer marketing is a big thing in advertising now, simply because it’s powerful and much more effective than paid advertising.
It is totally practical and effective for small business which does not have a big budget. In this campaign, we only selected 10 bloggers and Instagramers, who perfectly fit. We went through the steps from identifying key influencers, evaluating the key influencers engagement, building relationship and discussing initiatives and implement, and finally measuring results.
What were the marketing goals of the campaign?
Our delicate jewelry is highly affordable and styles are perfect for any occasions. So instead of a series of steps from building following, brand awareness, and to eventually gaining conversions, we believe there should be a chance to get instant sales and valued customers. While many brands pay great attention to the number of followers.
We consider quality is more meaningful to quantity. And net sales is the goal of this influencer campaign. And we made it. We achieved 300% ROI!
How did you target influencers aka what metrics and information did you use?
Every business is different and thus the target audience is different. If you are not really sure. Do a little research. Find out what your direct competitors do. What kind of influencers they collaborate with. This is very easy to figure out. Simply google it for bloggers or visit their official social network accounts.
Find out if any posts are created by influencers. If yes, visit that influencers and see details. Once the target audience is defined. Use the relevant keywords to search on whatever the influencer management tool you use.
Did you provide anything to the influencers in return for their help?
Yes, we offer free samples in exchange of influencers’ honest review, or even cash compensation. But as a small business, we do not have a huge marketing budget. We explored practical and cost effective tactics to reach out to our market segment. Each influencer and their social network accounts are different.
Their personal preference, audiences, engagement are all different. What we offer highly depends on the feature of each account. Most importantly, we prefer to work with the ones who have passion to our jewelry and always get back to us promptly. When building relationships with them, we could have a sense to these.
How long did the campaign last?
Our most recent campaign lasted about two months, from reaching out to influencers to evaluate results. We literally spend some time to carefully identify key influencers. Many influencers collaborate with brands for their personal interest.
Besides this, they usually have a full time job. So make sure we allow them enough time to create valued content. Most of them need at least two weeks after receiving the samples.
What were the results of the campaign?
After a series of practices, we have recently achieved 300% ROI by collaborating with influencers on Instagram managed by our own team.
Did you use any tools to make your campaign easier?
Yes. We utilize both paid and free tools. Google Analytics (free) helps us to monitor our traffic and understand conversions. SimilarWeb (similarweb.com) (paid) lets us discover our competitors’ valuable referral traffic. Also, there are so many influencer marketing platform out there.
We have tried a few, we were charged a few hundreds of dollars per month, but nothing better than Ninja Outreach. It’s a great tool to find tons of influencers and improve efficiency. And the cost is much more affordable for small business. We do highly recommend to take the advantage of these tools.
What was the hardest part of running the campaign?
To identify key influencers are the hardest part of running the campaign. It is also highly time consuming. There are so many influencers out there who have massive following. However, we need to narrow our list to the ones who are the most active, relevant and influential in an area of interest to our target audience.
Before this, we need to have a clear understanding that who is our target audience. To find the ideal influencers are not easy. But it totally worths it in terms of ROI.
What was a major takeaway you learned about influencer marketing?
- Do not only pay attention to the number of followers/audiences and the engagement rates.
- Look further to their active followers, what they comment, if they are your targeted audiences?
- Collaborate with influencers who truly love your brand. Contests/giveaway is the most effective way to gain new followers.
- The post/review should highlight the product properly and obviously.
- If the product is relatively small, you should have close-up shot.