You’ve probably already figured out that the influencer today is what the billboard was 15 years ago. If your brand didn’t have a presence in a prime location back then, it was nearly impossible to stand out and make an impact.
The same goes with the newest marketing channel: influencers. There is no doubt it’s important to find exposure for your brand in the right place with the right partnership, but how do you know it’s working? And how do you know if the juice is worth the squeeze? Meaning if the sales you’re seeing correlate to the level of effort and expenses you’re doling out?
These are important questions – and answering them requires an innovative approach. In this article, we’ll go over some ways to improve your current influencer marketing strategy and gain clarity on what’s working… and what’s not.
Influencer Marketing of the Past
Traditionally, influencer marketing has been set up to only allow for tracking through third-party attribution.
Here’s how that looks in real life…
You hire an influencer to promote a product for your e-commerce website. They post on their own social platforms and link to your website or product page using a custom tracking link assigned to them. Sometimes you also include a promo code for additional results tracking. You lean back, cross your fingers, and hope the sales roll in.
But what happens? Too many disconnected steps from point A to point B. Which means there are plenty of holes data can fall into, leading you to wonder: “Is any of this actually working?”
In the third-party attribution model, influencers are responsible for the data they collect and report on, so it’s very difficult for brands to know whether or not their collaboration is successful – in real time.
Human error is another issue when tracking sales through influencer marketing. If a customer needs to go off-platform to a website and add a code to link their purchase to a respective influencer, it adds one more obstacle to conversion. Commonly this causes followers to forget, get frustrated, or simply change their mind about the purchase entirely (we’re living in a very fast-paced world, after all!).
So How DO You Track Success Reliably? With First-party Attribution.
First-party attribution is the new model brands are using within the influencer marketing space. This offers accurate data to measure their efforts and calculate sales revenue in real time.
To do this requires changing where content originates and is tracked. For example, Creatable is the premier platform for first-party influencer marketing and metric measuring. In this model, Creatable hooks the influencer into the brand’s e-commerce platform. Influencers have their own custom webpage built natively into the brand’s e-commerce environment. They create content directly within the Creatable environment, then push it live to their connected social platforms from there. All data is tracked natively through the brand’s own e-commerce system. This is the opposite of third-party tracking, where campaigns reside outside of the e-commerce platform and data is pushed in.
This simple shift in content distribution methodology has been shown to increase conversion rates 3x for e-commerce. First-party attribution is the future of influencer marketing – and the good news is… it’s available right now.
First-party attribution is also a straightforward way to track the initial customer touchpoint and whether or not that interaction led to a sale. This helps marketers know where to allocate spend among designated influencers. They can see exactly which partners and campaigns are generating ROI and confidently make decisions to optimize their influencer efforts.
In addition, first-party attribution reduces the opportunity for data to be lost, such as tracking a purchase driven by any given influencer’s channel(s). With accurate, reliable metrics at your fingertips, you and your influencers can build a healthier relationship and work together to make the right shifts – at the right time – to generate more revenue for both of you.
How to Track Influencer Marketing ROI
There’s no better way to know if your influencer marketing strategy is working than to switch over to a first-party distribution model. It’s a one-stop-shop to facilitate the partnership between brands and influencers AND keep things simple for the customer.
You’ll get the most out of your marketing dollars when you know how your efforts are converting. You’ll have reliable data, direct integration with your own e-commerce and marketing platforms, and the ability to measure results in real time.
Creatable offers a variety of solutions for teams who want rock-solid proof their influencer marketing is working and a reliable, seamless means of measuring results. If you want to save time, market online more effectively, and boost your revenue using influencer marketing the right way, schedule a demo with us here. We’ll show you exactly how this will work for your company.