Influencer marketing is the act of getting someone who has a large following and is an influence on their audience to raise awareness of your products, services or brand by mentioning it to them. A musician can use an influencer to raise awareness to their new music, tour, merchandise or just to grow their fanbase.
Although it is a new buzzword, influencer marketing is not new. A few decades ago, big brands like Nike, Adidas, and Reebok collaborated with celebrities like Michael Jordan and Run DMC to market their brands to their fans.
Social media has opened the gates for anyone who has a big following to become an influencer and collaborate with big and small brands.
Today, an influencer can be anyone who regularly tweets relationship advice, makes comedy skits on Instagram, makes travel vlogs on YouTube or blogs about fashion tips on their website.
Influencers can be labelled into three different types based on the size of their audience. Mega influencers have over one million followers. Macro influencers have between 10,000 and 1 million followers. Micro influencers have between 1 thousand and 10,000 followers.
Influence means being able to convince people to take action. Just because someone has a million followers on Instagram doesn’t make them an influencer. Engagement rate is used to measure how much influence someone has on their followers. The higher the engagement rate, the more influence they have.
The goal of influencer marketing is to convince people to take some form of action. A good influencer marketing campaign has one main goal that offers a clear value to a specific audience. The audience is asked to take one specific action to get one specific benefit.
For instance, a musicians can run an influencer marketing campaign that is sorely designed to drive more streams to their brand new single by targeting a young female audience who follow beauty vloggers.
Here’s the 7 step guide to influencer marketing for musicians and bands.
Define your project and goals
First of all, you need to clarify what is it that you’re promoting and what goal you’re aiming to achieve. You must answer the following questions:
What is that you want to market? Is it a new single, album, tour or merchandise?
How many streams, sales are you targeting to get and in what time scale?
What is the message and value that you’re offering to your target audience.
Define your target audience
Then you have to decide which audience demographics you want to reach. Are you targeting young or old people, males or females? And are you targeting a specific country or city?
To make your campaign even more effective, you must research your target audience psychographics. The psychographics tell your target audience’s personalities, interests, values and beliefs. This information will help you create a message or content that sells the value that your audience will be interested in.
It’s a good idea to always have a fan persona that describes your ideal target audience. Make sure you tailor each campaign to a specific audience for a stronger impact and better results.
Pick the right influencer
You must research each influencer to check if their audience demographics matches the description of your target audience. You can ask them to send you a break-down of their audience information from their analytics dashboard or use digital tools like traackr. If you goal is to reach a young audience, make sure the majority of the influencer’s audience is young.
When you have clarified the message and value of what you want to promote, you can now find an influencer who produces content with a topic that is relevant to what you want to promote. For instance, if you’re promoting a song about a bad relationship, you can collaborate with a relationship blogger.
And check if they are actually influential by checking their engagement rate, using phlanx.com. An engagement rate from 2% is a good starting point.
Don’t ask influencers to give you a shout out that say something like “Go listen to this new single”. While this may work, it is not really authentic, unless if the influencer is known for promoting new music.
The best approach is to get the influencer to create organic content that is very similar to their existing content and somehow make references to whatever you’re marketing. If you contact us, we can help you design and implement an authentic influencer campaign.
Ideally, the content should entertain, educate and most importantly invoke some emotions from your target audience. Good content has a long lifespan because people will engage with it, bookmark it, share it to their peers and watch it multiple times.
Influencers need to protect their brand and reputation, so if they start producing content that is inauthentic, it’s likely to turn away they followers and reduce their engagement rate. When the influencer marketing campaigns are authentic, it’s a win-win for both the influencer and the artist.
Set KPI and track them
You MUST track and measure Key Performance Indicators (KPI) of each and every campaign you run.
Every campaign must have a specific goal and you must employ tracking tools to monitor all the important metrics. Depending on the campaign, you can monitor audience reach, impressions, new followers, newsletter subscribers, sales and conversion rate.
If your end goal is to make money, sales and conversion rate should be your primary metrics. Other metric are nice to have but they don’t pay bills.
There are many digital tools and analytics platforms available for tracking marketing campaign performances. Examples include Google Analytics, Social Sprout, Bitly, Hootsuite and Survey Monkey. Many social media platforms have built-in analytics dashboard that enable you to use to gather data which you can use to measure the performance of your campaigns.
Write down your strategy
Creating authentic content with the right influencer is not enough to get your the desired goals. You should create a campaign strategy that anyone who’s not part of the campaign can join in at any time and understand the whole project.
The strategy should clarify the expected results the campaign, what action need to be taken and by whom, deadlines and how much is needed.
Contact us if you need help to create your own influencer marketing strategy.
Sign agreements with influencers
Before making any payments or developing your campaign, make sure to sign agreements with the influencer to ensure everyone is clear on what they are supposed to do. This will help to diffuse any disputes that may arise.
Follow the advertising and marketing regulations
When running paid influencer marketing campaigns, you must disclose it by using #sponsored, #ad or clearly stating that it’s a paid/sponsored post.
All advertising and marketing must be honest, truthful, legal, socially responsible and accurately describe the product or service.
Every country has its own advertising and marketing regulations that every marketer needs to follow to advertise legally. In the UK its ASA and in the US its FTC.
Any misleading advertising or marketing practices can result in fines or even jail sentences. You need to protect yourself from any unlawful practices. Also, all online platforms also have their own terms and conditions that guide you on what you should and shouldn’t do. If you break those terms you can potentially get banned from using the platforms forever.
Influencer marketing is one of the most effective marketing strategies. Collaborating with influencers can help musicians promote their music to bigger audiences and grow their fan base.
However, music marketers need to employ a smart approach detailed above to make sure that their influencer marketing campaigns generate their desire results. The secret source to a successful campaign is authenticity, relevance and creativity.