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A guide to help get your influencer marketing right from the start

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Influencer marketing

Digital Influence is one of the hottest trends in social media, yet is largely misunderstood. The Rise of Digital Influence, the new report (March 2012) by Altimeter Group Principal Analyst Brian Solis is a ‘how-to’ guide for businesses to spark desirable effects and outcomes through social media influence.

The report helps companies understand how influence spreads, and it includes case studies in which brands partnered with vendors to recruit connected consumers for digital influence campaigns. Brian evaluates the offerings of 14 Influence vendors, organizing them by Reach, Resonance, and Relevance: the Three Pillars that make up the foundation for Digital Influence as defined in the report.

How do brands handle the power of key influencers?

Also included are an Influence Framework and an Influence Action Plan to help brands identify connected consumers and define and measure strategic digital influence initiatives.

Thinslicing The Hunger Games

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Plenty has been written about the significant role played by a carefully organised and orchestrated social campaign for The Hunger Games. So I’ll simply jump to my ‘thinslice,’ namely how the movie marketers used fan response to tweak as they went along. First of all though consider that this process is much like gaming company wooga carefully monitors user response to tweak aspects of its online games to help boost engagement and thus ROI.

Secondly, to get back to The Hunger Games, and to illustrate what this means – the value of feedback from fans – to be able to optimise your campaign here’s a key quote from Lionsgate’s senior vice president for digital marketing Danielle DePalma:

“What seemed to work the best, too, was fan-created content. I mean, the Peeta memes were always the top performers. That’s how we were really learning about what our audience liked most, through those Facebook results.” This character-focused social media strategy is also backed up by Crimson Hexagon’s analysis of the factors impacting on the success of Julian Fellowes, creator of the popular period drama ‘Downton Abbey’, with the US version, ‘The Gilded Age’ soon to be launched:

“Our analysis indicates that in order for Fellowes to recreate “Downton Abbey” with “The Gilded Age,” he must develop compelling, witty characters with strong moral convictions.”

In other words (ref: my previous post on the value of thinslicing), joining together how your audience behaves (qualitative) with what the data tells you (quantitative), gives you the intelligence to optimise your campaign as you go along – providing you possess the level of organisation and flexibility to allow that to happen (context) effectively. That’s what we’ve been doing at Sony EU in Q3 to good effect too, on the back of the colossal success of ‘Skyfall’.

What this means is that social media marketeers have to think and act on fan data much more like online gaming companies if they are going to both engage their customer base, and deliver real returns.