Influencers have carved a unique niche in the world of PR and brand marketing. Their reach and impact can be undeniable. However, successfully navigating the influencer landscape requires more than just a basic understanding.
Pinzur Communications reached out to three top influencers to glean insights from their experiences and get their tips for brands seeking collaboration.
1. Think Creatively and Personalize
Gio Gutierrez of @chatchowtv emphasizes the impact of a thoughtful, creative pitch. He recalls a memorable gesture by a new restaurant, Pastis, where a simple gift of absinthe, lavender, and French bread helped transport him to the South of France. The lesson here? Personalization can make all the difference. By showing genuine knowledge and appreciation of the influencer, you not only get their attention but also their enthusiasm.
2. Value Authentic Relationships Over Numbers
Ginger Harris of @GingerHarris has a golden piece of advice for brands, especially those just starting out. Instead of just focusing on influencers with massive followers, find those who truly resonate with your brand. Look for influencers who have shown genuine interest in your product or service even before monetary collaboration was on the table. Their authentic love for your brand can translate into more meaningful and impactful content.
3. Build Genuine Connections
Dana Rozansky of @MiamiFoodPorn believes in the value of authentic experiences. For smaller businesses, like a mom-and-pop restaurant, Dana suggests prioritizing the creation of unforgettable experiences for influencers over immediately allocating funds for sponsored posts – unless the budget comfortably allows. Genuine connections and memorable experiences can lead to organic, authentic content, which often resonates more deeply with audiences.
4. Avoid The Generic
Another piece of wisdom from Dana, she reminds brands to be wary of pitches that are too transactional. A carbon-copy message can come across as insincere and can be off-putting for many influencers. A genuine offer without overburdening deliverables can be a refreshing change. For example, an invitation with no mandatory requirements but a simple request to tag the brand if the influencer chooses to post is often appreciated.
5. Respect and Recognize Their Efforts
Ginger advises brands to understand and respect the costs influencers incur, from hair and makeup to photography. Offering just product collaborations might not always cut it. Brands should aim for a balance of product and monetary compensation, depending on the influencer’s rate and the collaboration’s depth.
6. Collaboration Over Control
Gio Gutierrez warns brands against being too controlling or having a very specific creative vision that doesn’t align with the influencer’s brand or audience. The synergy comes from a mutual understanding and appreciation of each other’s creativity. Let the influencer’s voice shine through; after all, that’s why you’re collaborating with them in the first place.
Smart influencer collaborations can offer brands a great opportunity to expand their reach and share their story. But, as our influencer insiders point out, the secret to success lies in genuine connections, creativity, and mutual respect.