5 Tips for Running a Successful Influencer Marketing Partnership

Once you’ve selected the right influencer partner for your wine or spirits brand, and developed goals, then you’ll dive into executing your campaign. Here are some suggestions.

Choose your Campaign Type

What will you ask the influencer to do? Here are some options (not mutually exclusive):

  • Sponsored social media posts: they post about your brand on their social channels
  • Sponsored blog posts: they blog about your brand on their site
  • Sponsored giveaways: they run a consumer contest or promotion sponsored by your brand
  • Social media takeovers: they create all content for your social channels for a day or more
  • Hosted events: they create an event with other bloggers that features your brand
  • Guest blogging: they write blog posts for your website

Your campaign goals and budget will influence the type of campaign. Here are some general guidelines:

  • Want more fans and engagement? A longer-term partnership with a series of social media posts will work better than just a few posts. So think two months and not one week.
  • Want to educate new, prospective consumers? Then a sponsored blog post will reach their followers.
  • Want to increase your digital footprint? A hosted event can reach your partners as well as other bloggers who attend (because they will also post about it).
  • Want to freshen up your social content? A guest blogger or takeover can really jazz up photos and text.

And don’t forget that influencer marketing partnerships can creatively address business opportunities using outside-the-box ideas. Here are two initiatives we conducted last year with clients:

Outline a Campaign Brief

After you’ve chosen an influencer whose work aligns with your brand, it is vital to provide a written campaign brief that includes content guidelines. Don’t assume they know your brand! Provide clear direction and expectations, such as:

  • Campaign timeline
  • Number of content pieces
  • When the content will be submitted for approval
  • Approval turnaround timeframes
  • When and where the content will be published
  • Campaign goals
  • Metrics to be reported during and after the campaign

Pro Tip: Sometimes we include a report template – such as an excel chart with all relevant KPIs and spaces for them to fill in actual figures – so that we can more easily measure results against goals without having to translate their reporting. 

Create a Contract

Is your partner contractually obligated to meet or exceed your key KPIs? They should be. Create a written “scope of work” or “memo of understanding” that covers the campaign obligations and make sure both parties sign a copy before the campaign begins. Include a requirement that all influencer-created content is a “work made for hire” and you own the IP, whether it is used in posts or not.

Review, Approve, and Watch the Content Go Live

It’s your brand, so protect it!  Your influencer will submit content for your final approval – review it carefully and provide timely, clear and constructive feedback so you both are aligned. As we discuss in our blog “8 Tips for Selecting a Wine Influencer Partner”, your brand may be held responsible for any content published through your partnership. Ensure your partner’s content follows industry guidelines and legal regulations.

Once the content goes live, interact with it! Share it. Comment on it. Like it. When your brand engages with the influencer partner’s content, it further strengthens your association.

Gather Data, Analyze, and Adjust

Once your campaign is live, dive into the metrics early in the campaign. If you are not hitting your KPIs, you can make mid-course corrections. Look at engagement numbers and types of engagements – do they make sense? Is the tone and voice supporting your brand identity?  Read some comments and see if those people fit your target demographic group(s).

At the end of the campaign, document a post mortem.  What worked? What didn’t? What will you do differently next time? Use the results to refine future campaign strategies and follow our recommendations for making the most of the post-campaign benefits.

Hopefully, we’ve provided some practical tips for executing a campaign. In our fourth and final post in this series, we will address how to really spike your results with post-campaign actions!