TriMark HQ
410 N. Boylan Ave
Raleigh, NC 27603
TriMark Studios
401 N. West Street
Raleigh, NC 27603
Featured Projects
  • The Best Brands on TikTok
    TriMark office space

By Hali McKenzie Reese, Social Media Strategist

The app that swept the nation at the pandemic’s peak is now many consumers’ most beloved app and businesses’ most bewildering phenomenon. Trending dances, sounds, filters, and a mysterious algorithm have users scrolling for hours on end. 

So how can brands make sense of it all, and how can they organically promote their products without getting lost in a sea of content? It’s not an exact science, and some of it might be pure luck, but a few brands are riding the TikTok wave successfully. Let’s explore what some of the most popular brands on TikTok are doing and how you can make it work for your brand.

Influencer Partnerships

Dunkin’ was one of the first brands on TikTok to utilize influencer marketing when they partnered with TikTok superstar Charli D’Amelio. During this partnership, Dunkin’ launched several new menu items and collaborated on various videos. Dunkin’ saw a 57% increase in app downloads and a 20% boost in sales for all cold brew coffees after this partnership. 

Influencer marketing has many benefits, including more user-generated content that can be utilized on brand channels and creating a positive association of your brand with an influencer and their audience. However, you don’t have to partner with a TikTok megastar for this to work for you, as relevance is more important than reach. Micro-influencers often have the highest engagement rates with their audience compared to bigger influencers, giving you a better bang for your buck. Look into partnering with influencers who have a niche audience that aligns with your own. 

@dunkin

Song is straight 🔥. Show us your moves to ‘The Charli’ while you drink ‘The Charli’- using #CharliRunsOnDunkin @charlidamelio #dunkin

♬ The Charli – Dunkin’

The Consumer Approach

ESPN is already a popular brand across social media, so it comes as no surprise that they have gained a large following on TikTok. ESPN’s social media strategy ‌is specialized for each platform. If you want news and updates, follow them on Twitter. If you want highlights, check out their Instagram. For TikTok, however, they have discovered that people just want to be entertained, so their content features mostly user-generated content and memes, like this epic compilation of trick shots…

@espn

This trick shot compilation 👏 (via @Michael Shields) #trickshot

♬ 24K Magic x Wow x Havana x My Oh My – carneyval

Develop Your Own TikTok Presence

Determining how to showcase a different side of your brand in a way that relates to the content your target audience already consumes is a great first step in developing your presence on TikTok.

Try Trends   

TikTok videos flourish with music, and Milk Bar knows this well. The bakery chain does an extraordinary job of using trending audio in their videos. 

Viewers enjoy seeing brands join in or put their own spin on a TikTok trend. TikTok’s algorithm prioritizes content that participates in the current trends on the app, delivering those posts to users who are interested in those trends. Joining in on these trends can increase visibility and engagement with your brand. If you’re unsure where to find the latest trends on the platform, check out the TikTok Discover page for inspiration. 

@milkbarstore

A cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow ice cream sammie…literally gorgeous #icecream #foodtiktok #desserttiktok #cookies #fyp

♬ original sound – Jeremy Shane

Know your Niche

The Washington Post was one of the first brands to utilize TikTok, but it’s not the content you would expect from such a notable brand. The newspaper actually uses TikTok to post comedic skits about the latest breaking news. WaPo knew that its intellectual journalism would not be easily digestible on the platform, so this comedic approach helped them attract young readers who want to follow the news but struggle to digest their traditional long form written content. The Post was able to leverage its existing content in a way that was appealing to the app’s target audience. Even their bio is simple: “We are a newspaper.”

@washingtonpost

The Food and Drug Administration proposed banning menthol cigarettes and flavors in cigars. #sticktothestatusquo #hsm

♬ original sound – Jacob Sutherland

There’s no way to know for certain what will bring your brand to the top of the TikTok charts, but these four content-creating techniques are a great place for all brands to start.

See you on our For You page!

  • Introducing TriMark’s New Intern Program
    TriMark office space

By Caroline Watkins, Senior Content Writer

TriMark is proud to announce an exciting initiative for the summer of 2022—our new intern program! Developing marketers will participate in eight weeks of training designed to provide them with the knowledge and hands-on experience necessary to thrive in today’s digital marketing landscape. 

Spearheading this initiative is TriMark’s Kelly Ebert, SVP of Marketing Strategy—hear from Kelly about her plans for the program and more in our Q&A!

Q: What was the impetus behind the program beyond additional support for our various departments?

Smart, hungry entry-level talent has been a difference-maker in our business over the years. Having a focused internship program is something we’ve always wanted to do, and this summer, we decided it was finally time.

Lots of things impacted our decision—like moving into our new office, which has ample space for training, collaboration and teamwork. We also think it’s an important way to support the local marketing community; when this first class of interns graduates, they’ll enter the workforce with a strong foundation and hands-on experience.

Q: What is your hope for the first group of interns participating in our program?

Our hope is that we can give our interns a well-rounded, top-to-bottom understanding of our business. We want them to learn new things about new areas of marketing, discover new interests and ultimately graduate with confidence in the direction they want to take their career—and we hope that’s at TriMark!

Q: How do you think the program benefits the broader TriMark community?

Some of our most seasoned veterans at TriMark started as interns or as entry-level talent. We know how valuable eager, hungry minds can be. We’re also pretty different from most other agencies, in both the work we do and how we do it, so we appreciate the opportunity to train employees our way.

Q: What does TriMark offer developing marketers that other agencies do not?

Our goal is to provide our interns with a real sampling of everyday agency life. In addition to their weekly formal training sessions, our interns will actually be working together as the main project team for a client account. They’ll be creating the strategy, executing deliverables, evaluating performance and communicating with the client—all of it.

They’ll be creating the strategy, executing deliverables, evaluating performance and communicating with the client—all of it.

Meet our 2022 Intern Class

We’re thrilled to welcome six bright and creative young professionals to the TriMark community. Get to know our interns below!

Bella Deatherage

Bella joins us from East Carolina University with a degree in Communications and Public Relations, prepared to support the Organic Social and Content teams. She loves the fast pace and ever-evolving landscape of digital marketing and is excited to learn more about TriMark’s diverse client base

Ashlyn Hirsh

A recent graduate of the North Carolina State University School of Business, Ashlyn also operates her own freelance business and provides content writing, graphic design, social media strategy, consulting services and more to a network of clients.

Felicity Hoppes

Another North Carolina State University School of Business graduate, Felicity completed both a digital marketing and integrated brand marketing practicum. Her previous agency experience in SEO and PR services and her interest in creative trends make her an exciting addition to the Content team.

Hannah Kim

Hannah joins us from the University of North Carolina School of Journalism, bringing experience in program management, email marketing and more. She is excited to grow her relationships with TriMarkers and client teams and will provide support for our Program Management team.

Mariel Harms

Mariel comes to us from the North Carolina State University School of Business, ready to be challenged and prepared to support our Paid Social team. She has experience in content creation and currently volunteers her marketing know-how to help Saving Grace Animals for Adoption.

Kam Hammack

Kam brings his degree from the North Carolina State University School of Business and marketing experience with NC State Athletics and Trophy Brewing to support the Paid Social team. He is excited to be part of a growing industry that emphasizes teamwork.

  • Measuring Influencer Marketing Campaigns? 12 KPIs You’re Missing Out On
    TriMark office space

By Hannah Freyaldenhoven, Senior Content Strategist, Team Lead

Influencer marketing is a long game. It is often one of many touchpoints that ultimately drives a lead or generates a purchase. This can make it a challenge to assess the impact of your content creators—especially when looking for a direct sales attribution. However, by building a strong community of influencers and content creators, you have brand ambassadors operating at every stage of the marketing funnel to keep your brand top of mind. 

Influencer marketing funnel: attract, capture, nurture, convert, advocate

In this post, you’ll find 12 key performance indicators (KPIs) from the attract stage to the advocate stage that will help you:

  • Clarify your marketing objectives
  • Evaluate the success of your creative assets 
  • Optimize your strategies
  • Show the value of your partnerships
  • Assess the impact of your campaign 

Let’s explore what you can measure at each stage of the funnel.

Attract

During the Attract phase, you are working with your influencers to increase awareness of your brand and generate demand for its products and services. Depending on the content creator you have partnered with, your first touchpoint could be through a variety of organic content shared on the creator’s social profiles. This original content might be shared on any combination of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, TikTok, or blog. Your marketing strategy, as well as the influencer’s stats, should direct which of these platforms your content appears on.

Influencer marketing funnel: attract stage is highlighted

KPIs to consider during the Attract phase:

  1. Engagement Rate: This can be calculated by the number of engagements (likes, comments, saves, shares) divided by the number of impressions multiplied by 100. The resulting percentage reflects how compelled followers were to engage with your content. This year, influencers outperformed brands, earning 3.5x the median engagement rates on Facebook and 2x the median engagement rate on Instagram. While the engagement rate for influencers varies from account to account, microinfluencers see some of the best engagement rates likely due to their emphasis on relationship building. Be sure to ask what the average engagement rate is for your influencer when setting goals at the start of your campaign. 
  2. New Followers: Benchmark your profiles’ follower counts before your partners publish content. You’ll want to note any upticks in follows that your social accounts receive after an influencer tags you in their content. 
  3. Consumer Sentiment: Use the conversations happening in the comment section of social posts and blog posts for social listening and insights. You’ll quickly be able to tell if the content your influencer created is resonating with their followers. Note any positive or negative sentiments that you observe. Utilize these insights to pivot your messaging or craft new content pillars. You’ll even notice FAQs that could indicate a gap in your current content strategy.
  4. Blog Performance: Ask your influencer to report on their blog posts, including information like page views, time spent on the page, and click-through rate to your brand site. You can also check for referral traffic from the influencer’s site through your own Google Analytics.

Capture

To capture the demand that you’ve generated through organic influencer content, consider amplifying the posts as branded content ads on Instagram and Facebook. This allows you to serve the post to a broader audience while maintaining the look and feel of organic content. You’ll also be able to see cost per impression (CPM) and cost per click (CPC) metrics.

Influencer marketing funnel: capture stage is highlighted

KPIs to consider during the Capture phase:

  1. CPM: We’ve seen branded content generate a low CPM, which makes it a strong top-of-funnel tactic for generating awareness.
  2. CPC: Monitor the CPC. It may be a bit higher than you see with your other paid social ad versions since it is geared toward generating awareness rather than conversion at this point in the customer journey. Note what creative works best to lower the CPC and use these learnings to shape lower-funnel messaging.

Nurture

From an organic perspective, it’s helpful to have long-term partnerships with your influencers to keep your product top of mind after the initial exposure your brand receives. Once the influencer introduces the product or service, they can continue to share at relevant times, which helps nurture those who might be interested in buying. Utilize the same KPIs from the attract phase on these follow-up posts.

Building your creative library is another key benefit of influencer marketing during the nurture phase. Not only does it save costs by reducing the number of styled photoshoots needed, but it also allows you to incorporate different types of lifestyle creative into your website, email, and paid and organic social content. A wide variety of creative can help you determine what selling points best resonate with your consumer. Test this creative as you remarket to your audiences and study what performs best.

Influencer marketing funnel: nurture stage is highlighted

KPIs to consider during the Nurture phase:

  1. Website and Email Performance: Note which pages on your site utilize influencer creative, from blog posts to product pages. Assess how this creative could affect time on page, email sign-up goals, and beyond. Consider running an A/B test with renderings or stock photos to see if influencer imagery is more effective and inspiring. Similarly, test using your influencer content in emails.
  2. A/B Test Imagery for CPM and CPC: If you are curious about how your influencer creative could improve your paid social and display ads, run an A/B test. Our clients have seen some of their lowest CPCs for display when swapping renderings for lifestyle shots provided by influencers.

Convert

The Convert stage is the most challenging stage for measuring the impact of influencer marketing. Remember, many of the top-of-funnel influencer strategies likely assist in converting a purchase that is ultimately attributed to a lower-funnel tactic like email. Still, there are ways to trace conversions, whether that is a lead or a sale. 

Influencer marketing funnel: convert stage is highlighted

KPIs to consider during the Convert phase:

  1. Goal Completions: Whether you have your influencers send traffic to custom landing pages or your main website, be sure to create clear goals in Google Analytics. From there, you can measure goal completion rate for influencer-driven traffic compared to goal completions for general traffic. We have seen that influencers drive highly qualified traffic that is more likely to complete a goal on a brand’s website. While you may not be able to show a purchase, this gives evidence of purchase intent.
  2. Sales Increase: If possible for your product or service, provide influencers with promo codes to use at checkout or when completing a form. This allows you to attribute those leads or sales dollars directly to your influencer.

Advocate

One of the most compelling reasons for creating an influencer program is to build a community around your brand. As brand advocates, your influencers serve as ambassadors for your products and services. They can play a key role in creating loyal fans of your brand. 

Influencer marketing funnel: advocate stage is highlighted

KPIs to consider during the Advocate phase:

  1. Number of Reviews: A glowing review on your brand’s site or retailer sites builds trust with potential customers. Benchmark the number of reviews you receive from your partners and ask them to leave reviews on all possible platforms.
  2. A/B Test Messaging for CPM and CPC: Once you’ve received these reviews, it’s time to amplify them. Consider adding reviews to your paid social and display ad creative. Then A/B test against other messaging, comparing CPM and CPC metrics to versions that do not feature a review.

As influencer marketing becomes a more common piece of integrated marketing plans, we expect to see our measurement tactics evolve. We hope this has sparked new ideas for illustrating the value of your influencer marketing programs at every stage of the funnel! 

For more information on setting goals and building your influencer marketing program from the ground up, read our previous post.

  • Tales From the New Office
    TriMark office space

By Jael Rodriguez, Community Manager

Welcome to our new office, 410 N. Boylan Avenue, only steps away from our previous headquarters! The building is full of unicorns, hobbits, lucky charms, and everything in between.

We are kidding, of course. It is simply a building, but getting to work there every day can be pretty magical.

About Our New Digs

Our new space has a modern open floor plan and is three times bigger than the former office. Gone are the days of worrying about talking too loudly, disrupting meetings, or interrupting someone’s lunch. Now there is plenty of room to be creative, productive, and move throughout the day.

Different Floats for Different Folks

Employees have room to sit or “float” wherever they like and work however they want. There are many open working areas for those who want collaboration, including lounge areas where team members can work while sitting on the sofa. There are private offices for individuals who like privacy, enjoy the quiet, and need to take meetings without interruptions. There are also standing desks for the health-conscious and active, who are not fans of sitting all day long and want to keep the blood flowing.

Need some solo time? We have single-person pods—modular soundproof closed spaces, where you can pop in for a quick call, virtual meeting, or some productive alone time to “get in the zone.” Believe us; you won’t be able to hear a thing.

A man and a woman sitting with laptops in a conference room

Let’s Get Down to Business

Our new building has five conference rooms. The conference rooms are outfitted with whiteboards, TVs, or projectors, allowing teams to meet, work on projects, have brainstorm sessions, give presentations, and enjoy that face-to-face interaction that we all have been missing for over two years. Our favorite room is the Boylan conference room, which can fit up to 20 people. It is ideal for pitch meetings, interviews, training sessions, board meetings, and yes, you guessed it, conference calls.

It’s been incredible to have creative brainstorms in this room and have different teams collaborate to create fresh ideas and strategies. From video scripting to holiday campaign planning, our brainstorms, or Co-Ops, as we call them, allow us to think outside the box, challenge ourselves, and innovate.

TriMark employees talking and filming

A Brewtiful Kitchen

If you were ever in our previous office, you would know that at TriMark Digital, we love having a happy hour at the end of the workday, which is why we are obsessed with our new keg area. We have two beers and one kombucha on draft, so interested team members can get a glass or two and bond with one another. Snacks? You’ve got it. We have two snack stations with an assortment of savory and sweet snacks to get refueled during or after the workday. (Yes, we have Goldfish for the kids at heart.)

Four employees smiling drinking a beer in the kitchen

Here’s to Making Memories

Our new site brings endless opportunities for team bonding and family fun experiences. Last Christmas, Santa visited TriMark’s new headquarters for “Storytime with Santa,” and we are still mopping up the tears of joy and love from his visit. Even those who were not sure about Santa could not help but believe. Storytime with Santa is only the beginning of all the memories we want to create in our new space. We already have a full calendar of activities planned for the year, so stay tuned!

Santa Claus pointing to a child sitting on the floor

Calling Downtown Raleigh Home

You get it. We love our office at Boylan—how can we not? We are ‌in the heart of downtown, next to Glenwood Avenue, in proximity to fantastic coffee shops, delicious food, nail salons, bars, and so much more.

We are also ​​just a short walking distance from our TriMark production studio, facilitating filming, photography, and editing. There is nothing better than getting to go “behind the scenes” and witness the killer videos that our video team produces.

This is Just the Beginning.

The best is yet to come! We are still making changes to improve the building and design spaces that favor engagement, creativity, and collaboration. We want our employees to thrive, be motivated, create happily, work comfortably, and feel at home. After all, what makes TriMark Digital a great place to work is its people.

What are you waiting for? Come see where the magic happens, meet our teams, and witness the beginning of a new chapter in TriMark Digital’s story.

The TriMark office at night with a neon sign illuminated that says TriMark Digital

  • The Value of “Bad” Ideas in a Brainstorm
    TriMark office space

By Caroline Watkins, Digital Content Writer

Every creative has been there: tapped out, burned out or just plain out of ideas. Getting back into a creative groove can be difficult, especially when too much emphasis is placed on good, fully formed ideas that could be executed. Seeking perfection in a brainstorm can actually just reinforce that stunted, worn-out feeling.

So, how do we break out of a creative slump and cycle of brainstorm burnout? Try throwing out some bad ideas! That’s right, bring all your worst ideas to the table—the half-baked, the potentially implausible, the downright silly—we want them all! And we aren’t the only ones: even creative teams at Google X employ this practice to shake things up and eliminate the fear of producing something “bad.”

Ready to get started? Here are some helpful tips for breaking out of your brainstorm comfort zone:

1. Provide Small Prompts To Jumpstart Thinking

Sometimes, blank space and unlimited opportunity can actually be intimidating, especially for those unfamiliar with a “bad idea brainstorm.” Providing small, thought-provoking prompts can help participants ease into the session with direction for their ideas. Try suggesting a brainstorm that focuses solely on eye-catching CTAs, different from the traditional “Learn More.” Or limit the topic to email subject lines with a specific character count. By providing some parameters, you’re actually creating more space for a free flow of ideas.

By providing some parameters, you’re actually creating more space for a free flow of ideas.

2. Emphasize Quantity Over Quality

In a bad idea brainstorm, any idea can trigger the next, potentially more actionable idea, and inspiration can come from exposure to others’ thoughts. That’s why it’s important to focus less on high-quality suggestions and instead encourage as many schemes and dreams as possible. Moreover, when quantity is emphasized, members of your team are more likely to say their “bad” ideas out loud rather than resist sharing. Ultimately, you’re more likely to uncover a workable idea—or build on another—when there are more ideas to sift through and consider as a team.

3. Keep Criticism to a Minimum

Again, the purpose of a bad idea brainstorm is to loosen any restraints on creativity. A necessary part of this is minimizing the amount of criticism provided during the brainstorming session. Negativity has no place in a meeting meant to inspire, so it’s important to focus on feedback that builds on an idea rather than stunts it. Participants are likely not used to delivering imperfect ideas, so make it easier on them by encouraging them to go further with their off-the-wall plans, rather than potentially stopping any thinking.

 4. Collaborate and Relocate

Brainstorming is most effective when it happens in a safe, collaborative environment. Consider teaming up with a coworker to toss around some unusual ideas, or gather a small group of team members that may not typically work together for a brainstorm. Putting your head together with someone else can help stimulate the conversation and creative thinking that may be difficult to do in isolation. Shake things up even more by changing your brainstorm location; hold a session outside, at a local coffee shop or even a meeting room you don’t typically use. New surroundings can prompt new thoughts—plus, this can provide a nice opportunity for coworkers to have some fun together in a productive way!

The next time you and your team are feeling creatively stuck, try being a little bit… bad. You never know how your worst idea may evolve!

  • How To Create A Strategic Influencer Program That Supports Your Marketing Goals
    TriMark office space

By Hannah Freyaldenhoven, Senior Content Strategist, Team Lead

In 2022, new privacy updates are forcing brands to think outside the box and look to influencers to reach their target audience. Social platforms are evolving, too. In-app shopping features on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok mean new opportunities for prospects to convert via influencer marketing.

Curious how you could create an influencer program that supports your marketing goals? We’ll start with the basics of influencer marketing and outline how it can expand your current strategies at every stage of the funnel.

What is influencer marketing?

Influencer marketing uses key leaders and content creators—known as “influencers”—to share your brand’s message. By collaborating with an influencer, you can speak directly to their unique audience of followers. 

Influencers connect with their followers across many platforms in a variety of ways, serving as a subject matter expert for an interest group, geography, or life stage. When chosen intentionally, influencers share products and services that will fit into their followers’ lifestyles. They can “influence” their followers to consider your brand because it will actually resonate with their needs and interests.

This allows for a less transactional and more transformational conversation around your brand.

Microinfluencers: A great starting point

While your first instinct may be to partner with someone with as many followers as possible, we’ve found that micro- to mid-tier influencers are a great place to start – especially when creating an influencer marketing strategy for the first time.

Many micro- and mid-tier influencers would not consider themselves famous in an offline setting. Instead, they’ve gained the power to affect purchasing decisions of others because of their niche knowledge and relationship with their audience. Microinfluencers boast some of the strongest engagement rates per post because of this strong rapport they’ve built with their followers.

By partnering with influencers in the 10-70K followers range, you’ll reach highly qualified consumers without breaking the bank, allowing for a chance to test and learn. Microinfluencers tend to give us the best deal for the money invested, typically charging less than $500 per post. Plus, microinfluencers are often willing to negotiate in-kind trades, which can help stretch tight marketing budgets.

Why do we recommend influencer strategies?

Here are our top six reasons why influencer marketing could benefit your business and build on your current marketing strategies. Along the way, we’ll share examples from our client Closets by Liberty™, who launched their new closet organization systems using influencer marketing.

1. IMPROVE TRUST

When it comes to millennials, only 1% of them trust advertisements. And that makes sense—advertisements are self-promoting, the tone is often transactional, and the message is sales-y. The result? 42% of consumers use ad-blocking technology according to the Digital Marketing Institute

Influencer marketing can help fill this gap as a way to gather third-party reviews, which are considered more trustworthy than ads. Consumers are able to witness an influencer’s positive, real-world product experience and build enough trust to complete a purchase.

Consider these numbers:

  • 82% of customers surveyed by ExpertVoice said they would be very likely to follow a recommendation from a microinfluencer.
  • Around 40% of people surveyed by Annalect said that they purchased a product online after seeing it used by an influencer on YouTube, Instagram, or Twitter.
  • Forbes reports 33% of millennials trust blog reviews for their purchases.

When Closets by Liberty™ started its influencer program amidst its brand launch, the goal was to build reviews on both retailer sites and a new microsite. Influencer content directed highly qualified traffic to the microsite, helping the brand break into the crowded storage and organization market.

2. CREATE AUTHENTIC CONVERSATIONS

A common myth is that influencers aren’t seen as genuine. In reality, microinfluencers work to nurture their relationships with followers rather than simply posting a picture and caption. 71% of influencers believe that it’s an honest and authentic voice that keeps their audience engaged.

Choose influencers who are strict about representing products that truly fit their lifestyle and will resonate with their audience. It’s a good sign if they ask lots of questions about your product or service! You should also ask for their media kit and investigate past sponsored content to ensure the influencer is engaged and on-brand.

Closets by Liberty™ influencers answered questions and concerns from potential customers on behalf of the brand. You’ll see them respond in the comments and create an authentic conversation around the product. Because they were briefed on our marketing goals, they were able to follow up with more information and promote key selling points.

3. APPEAL TO DIVERSE AUDIENCES

Ensure your brand is relatable and inclusive by partnering with influencers that are diverse in location, age, race, style, and budget.

As you vet influencers for your brand, consider the way your product or experience works for different types of consumers:

  • What does this makeup look like on different skin tones?
  • What do these clothes look like on different heights and body types?
  • How does this couch look in different homes?
  • How does this resort cater to different family or group sizes?

A diverse program of influencers allows us to cast the widest net, appealing to everyone that fits within our target audience. This will also show the versatility of products as everyone will use the product in slightly different ways.

For Closets by Liberty™ we intentionally sought out different home types and design styles, from bohemian to traditional to contemporary. We also diversified by customer age, need, and use case, including a young business owner sprucing up her office, a busy mom making her closet a special sanctuary, a young child growing into his first closet, a design enthusiast in the middle of a home makeover, and more.

Photo credit: @brownskinbeautiful, @thecreativemom, @casawatkinslivingblog, @eyeinthedetail

4. GAIN NEW INSIGHTS

Because you will send your influencers product, they will gain practical, hands-on experience with your brand. Living with your product in their day-to-day life means they will likely get to know your product even better than you!

Similarly, if you are marketing an experience or service, these influencers will have a chance to critique your brand with fresh eyes and through a new perspective.

Use this as an opportunity to:

  • Get feedback on product improvements
  • Establish pro tips based on how they use the product
  • Send and test new items before they hit the shelf 
  • Create co-branded products that help shape the future of the brand

When Closets by Liberty™ released its new shoe storage accessory for its closet systems, we sent the product to our influencers before it was publicly available for purchase. This was important for two reasons. Our influencers already had the closet systems installed in their homes and could easily add the new accessory. They also could share their reviews and give us honest feedback on the function of the product. From there, we established key messages around the new accessory based on real experiences. Consider this a mini focus group and gather as many reviews as possible.

5. BUILD YOUR CREATIVE LIBRARY

Influencer content offers a distinct benefit from traditional user-generated content. Unlike UGC, you’ll have a hand in the overall look, setting the project up for success with brand guidelines and even mood boards. As a result, you get high-quality, styled creative that you can count on for future assets. 

Top benefits:

  • Save on production time and effort—you don’t have to execute a photoshoot, they do it!
  • Avoid set propping. Your influencer uses their own home and personal items.
  • Create more looks for less. Each influencer offers a new location.

Pro tip: You’ll negotiate rights to the content so that you can repurpose photography, video, and content in fresh ways across different platforms, amplifying their original message and supporting your content strategy.

Working with influencers is also a great way to test new platforms, like TikTok, that are more difficult to create organically in-house. You get their in-app video experience, plus the fact that they’ve already built a following on these new channels.

We tested influencer imagery in our Closets by Liberty™ display ads, which resulted in some of our top-performing creative yet.

6. TAILOR TO FIT YOUR MARKETING GOALS + BUSINESS OBJECTIVES.

Influencer marketing can fit seamlessly into your overall strategy and provide new opportunities at each stage of the funnel. While it is a powerful way to create awareness among key audiences, it can ultimately drive leads and sales.

From blogs to reviews, installation videos, social posts, Pinterest pins, and TikTok, the amount and type of content that you can create to support any stage of the funnel is endless. You’ll test and learn what converts best based on the purchase process and decision-making lifecycle of your product.

Social platforms are evolving, too. New in-app shopping features on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok mean new opportunities for prospects to convert and, in turn, new monetized touchpoints for your influencers to utilize.

Influencers will also have valuable insight on what marketing strategies perform best for their audience. For example, perhaps their followers are very responsive to Instagram stories with links.

One tactic that Closets by Liberty™ implemented in the “capture” phase was a design quiz. It featured influencer photography that matched a respondent’s design preferences, creating personalized assets.

How can I get started?

While influencer marketing is very popular for beauty and fashion e-commerce brands, it’s also an effective strategy for less tangible “products” like travel, experiences, and services. No matter your industry, there is someone representing your target audience and speaking directly to them. 

To get started you’ll need to set clear objectives for your program, whether that’s to build your creative library, grow product awareness through backlinks and social media impressions, create demand with product reviews, or drive sales with unique promo codes.

Stay tuned for more discussion on how to seek out high-quality partners, negotiate agreements, and track insights.