Consumer Communications: 3 Tips for Successful Influencer Marketing Programs

Influencers marketing programs have become an important part of many PR strategies, particularly in consumer PR , and especially when coupled with traditional media relations. When done well, influencer programs can create powerful brand advocates who spread awareness and drive conversions.

If executed poorly, you could end up with indifferent partners who are only concerned with getting paid and receiving free products. Fortunately, creating and managing successful influencer relationships is much easier than it sounds. Start with these three simple steps:

Do your research

Preparation is the foundation of successful influencer programs. Work to develop a clear and detailed outline of the types of people your brand wants to partner with; make sure the targets you propose check all the necessary boxes. This will avoid a ton of back and forth and ensure any decisions are made to achieve goals.

The second component of identifying influencer partners is to make sure their audiences align with your target audience. For instance, if your brand sells shoes, you’re probably won’t be working with niche food bloggers. Oftentimes, you will want to re-purpose influencer content on their own social channels so it’s incredibly important to ensure your partners are a brand-fit.

Provide influencers with a surplus of information and clear instructions

Share background materials, information on the brand, product descriptions, social media handles to tag, and hashtags to use. Share anything you can. That’s the great thing about working with influencers: we generally have more control over what they post than we do with journalists and reporters due to the nature of the relationship. This is especially true if you’re paying influencers additional compensation in additional to providing your product or services to them for free. The more information you give your influencer partners, the more likely they are to create a thoughtful, positive post or review for your client.

Set detailed expectations

As PR professionals, we’re trained to consider everything so we can prevent anything from going wrong. This is particularly important when working with influencers so that all parties involved have a clear understanding of what’s expected from them. If you agree on all aspects of your influencer programs beforehand (either via email or in a formalized contract), you’ll have something to reference in case things don’t turn out as planned.

Pay special consideration to these two major areas in your influencer programs:

Posting requirements

We could write a whole blog post on this alone, but you’ll want to be sure to set clear expectations of word count for blog posts, which links to include, the minimum number of photos to include or post, requirements for what the photos should look like, usage rights for photos, the specific number of social posts to publish, which social handles to tag, and which specific hashtags to include.


If an influencer will be posting an Instagram or Snapchat story, ask them to send you screenshots and the total number of viewers so you can report on and understand those metrics. Also use your own website analytics system ito see if your partners drove traffic and, if so, how much.

Use the results to inform your next round of planning and influencer marketing initiatives.

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