Influencers: how to choose and how to collaborate with them?

What is Influencer Marketing? When we talk about influencers, we indicate all those opinion leaders who are able to influence their target audience. People follow them because they appreciate their authenticity or consider them authoritative on specific topics.
Through the promotion of a brand on their channels, influencers are able to affect its visibility and guide the actions of their followers and their purchase choices. ONIM - Osservatorio Nazionale Influencer Marketing, estimates that in 2021 the 53.9% of Italian companies has activated campaigns with influencers and content creators. Influencer base the storytelling on spontaneity: they share their personal experience with the product or service, tested in everyday life and recommended just like a friend or acquaintance would. Brand awareness remains the main purpose of companies that invest in influencer marketing: according to ONIM data there are 78.3% of campaigns aimed at this goal. 63.9% of campaigns are oriented on conversion goals.
Influencers can be also divided into bloggers, instagrammers, youtubers, tiktokers and so on. Instagram is the most used social media for this kind of campaigns, followed by YouTube and the most recent ones like TikTok and Twitch. According to the width of the target audience, we can also distinguish mega, macro, micro and nano influencers. The number of followers is an important variable to establish the budget and the choice of a celebrity is not necessarily the best. For very specific sectors micro-influencers can be crucial to hit a market niche: they do not reach large numbers in terms of followers, but they have a strong influence on a truly interested and sometimes competent audience on the subjects treated, who manage to engage effectively transforming contacts into conversions.
The choice of right influencers for a campaign is therefore decisive and based on several aspects. We must evaluate the size and composition of the audience, the media on which the influencer operates, the type of involvement depending on the product or service to be promoted. In the selection phase it is very important to decipher the peculiar characteristics of the selected profiles: the way of communicating, the values, the way of relating to the fanbase must be in tune with those of the brand. These are basic aspects for an effective collaboration, which can only emerge with a long and careful observation of shared contents. It is fundamental to be supported by professionals in the sector: a project of influencer marketing structured by a specialized agency allows to reach the target audience and motivate it to purchase, bringing benefits to all, from the brand to the influencer - who communicate in a synergistic way - to the final consumer who is guided in the discovery of a novelty and can benefit of discounts or special experiences.
The monitoring of the results is also very important. Once specific KPIs have been defined, it is possible to evaluate whether the influencer marketing strategy is effective. Some examples? The number of accesses to the website or to a landing page through specific UTM links, the use of discount codes for ecommerce, the growth of the fanbase on social media over the campaign.