Effective Ways to Measure Influencer Marketing Success
As influencer marketing becomes a more common piece of social media content strategy, it’s clear that we are in need of performance measurement that proves its value. Many of the more traditional content marketing measurement techniques have quick and often built-in ways to gauge success, but influencer marketing may require a more creative method.
To better understand possible ROI, we’ve compiled a list of what your marketing team should be doing to measure influencer marketing campaigns.
KPIs to Measure Influencer Marketing
Though likes, comments, and shares aren’t the only way to measure the success of an influencer marketing campaign, they do provide a good place to start for a basic understanding of performance and overall effectiveness.
Analysis of Channel-Based Metrics
Tracking the performance of an influencer marketing campaign will require cross-channel analysis. We recommend creating a grid or Google Sheet that outlines the channels an influencer shared content on (i.e. Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Pinterest, their blog) and listing success metrics from each one.
Make sure to include:
- Web traffic by source/medium/UTM code tracking
- Customized promo code usage
- Increases in traffic or leads on dates the content was published or posted
Any metric your team can use that attributes traffic, leads, or sales directly to an influencer’s campaign is worth keeping track of.
Digging Deeper: Evaluating the Response of Influencer Campaigns
An aspect of influencer marketing that may differ from other tactics your team is used to is the evaluation of the tone of campaign responses. If you have chosen an influencer whose following is a natural fit for your brand’s products or services, then the sentiment from an influencer’s followers should generally be positive. If the tone is anything but positive, this is a metric that demonstrates an opportunity for finding a content creator that is a better fit for future campaigns.
How to Gauge Influencer Campaign Audience Sentiment
1. Questions about the brand
It’s common to see followers leave additional requests for information about products, services, and experiences they recommend in brand partnership campaigns. Because followers innately trust influencers’ recommendations when they have been following them for some time, it’s natural for them to skip “should I buy this” and move directly to “if I buy this will it do X for me.”
This is why content that focuses more on education than selling tactics performs so much better in influencer campaigns. If the content is receiving follow-up questions, this is an opportunity for your partnership to continue–the influencer can directly address questions and create follow-up content that provides additional clarity.
The more a consumer knows about a brand, the more likely they are to make a purchase decision, so many questions are a good response!
2. Comparisons to other brands
“How does this product compare to X?” Comparison questions allow you to see what steps a consumer might take before making a purchase decision. A bonus of influencer marketing is getting this market research-like insight and competitive analysis that you may not have otherwise had.
Here are some smart ways to respond (or coach the influencer you’re partnering with to respond with):
- I haven’t tried ____, but I love this product because ____.
- This product is slightly more expensive than ____, but it’s really great for ____.
- This is the first of these types of products that I’ve used, but I honestly wouldn’t trade it for anything!
Remember, comparisons to other products or brands (even if they are your rivals!) don’t have to be perceived as negative. Rather, they can be a metric for brand recognition, and an opportunity to educate future customers with better messaging.
2 Fool-Proof Methods of Tracking Influencer Campaign Results
Now that we’ve covered the nitty-gritty of influencer marketing reporting, here are two tactics you can implement in future campaigns that will make tracking the ROI much easier. These ways to measure influencer marketing are reliable, easy to implement, and provide objective data to build performance reports.
Custom Link Tracking
Creating custom link tracking (or UTM tracking) will give you direct visibility in Google Analytics for website visitor traffic from specific influencer marketing campaigns. You may have seen these types of links before, and though they look like nonsense to the untrained eye, there is vital information within them for marketers.
Here’s an example:
Breaking it down, the link reveals:
What the campaign is: influencer.blog.june.2022
The referring source: utm_source=instagram
How the user got there: utm_medium=organic-social
Voila! You can now see exactly how traffic was directed to your website and will be able to break it down further based on different UTM tracking codes for each channel your campaign was delivered through. Need more help? Check out Google’s free campaign URL builder, plug in your utm values, and a link will be auto-created just the way you need it!
Coupon codes are one of the most common tracking methods to measure influencer marketing. They are so widely used, in fact, that memes have been created joking that if you attempt any common name + 20 (i.e. JESSICA20) in a coupon code section of a web checkout, you’re likely to get a discount.
While that may or may not be true, personalized coupon codes are easy for influencers to disseminate when they are promoting a brand and incentivize consumers to make their first purchase based on the discount. Customize the codes by providing the influencer with one for each of their channels for further channel-based insight. For example, JESSICA20IG, JESSICA20TT, and JESSICA20BLOG would delineate which conversions came from Instagram, TikTok, and Jessica’s blog.
Coupon codes for influencer marketing campaigns also provide a clickless tracking method (does not require a scrolling social media user to click on the post’s link or Instagram story sticker).
Planning for Long-Term Success With Influencer Marketing Campaigns
Putting the effort into creating in-depth reports that track and measure influencer marketing campaign ROI is well worth it. Each time your marketing team evaluates the results of a campaign, you will learn even more valuable insights about your influencer partnerships.
Keep in mind that each influencer you partner with will have different outcomes, but by partnering with multiple influencers simultaneously, you will be increasing reach and brand awareness without relying on a sole content creator.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a good influencer engagement rate?
Influencer campaign engagement rates vary by the size of each influencer’s following and the goals of your campaign. The average engagement rate for micro-influencers is about 5%.
How do you track influencer exposure?
Use custom link tracking or personalized coupon codes to track exposure created by influencer marketing campaigns.
How effective is influencer marketing?
The global value of influencer marketing has more than doubled in recent years, proving its effectiveness as a campaign strategy for brands.