How important is Influencer Vetting?


With as many as 1 billion people using social media on a regular basis, it is becoming more difficult than ever for the brands to stand out from the crowd. Owing to this increasing competition, we see an emergence of many new marketing tactics coming
into the foreplay quite frequently. One such form of marketing is Influencer marketing that has been doing the rounds in the marketing world since over a decade now and has gained massive popularity in the last couple of years.

Rather, 2020 was expected to be the biggest in the history of influencer marketing. But amidst the global pandemic, we witnessed things coming to a grinding halt. However, now with things gradually gaining momentum again, brand activities are coming back
on track thereby keeping the marketer’s hope still intact.

Influencer marketing is again demonstrating unprecedented growth and creativity compelling the brands and the influencers to attempt new ways and formats of content. While some brands are tapping into organic advocates, others are scaling ambassador programs
to develop quality content for their social media channels. All this while, getting the content and the formats right is the key, which can further be streamlined with the use of data-driven approach. But before this, comes the process of identifying
the right influencer that suits your brand persona.

Though, the pandemic might have canceled the exotic influencer trips, store launch parties and photo shoots, but it has accentuated the importance of authentic influencer relationships and influencer-generated content.

Using Audience Insights to Enhance Influencer Vetting

As we know, with millions of creators available, it is important to screen out the influencers who are least likely to create impact for the brand. To streamline this, brands can clout data to eliminate the misaligned partners by reviewing the audience
demographics and audience quality for every candidate. Looking for answers to questions like ‘Is the influencer’s audience quality high?’ ‘Do their followers demonstrate brand affinity?’ ‘Do they reach the right audience in terms of age, gender and
location?’ and obviously, if the influencer meets these criteria; they are amongst the list of approved influencers by the brand.

However, every influencer that meets this criteria might still not be the best option for your brand. In order to select the most appropriate influencer, it is quintessential to scrutinize the influencers as per your brand requirements.

Below are some reasons that make the process of influencer vetting even more important.

Eliminating the idea of Fake Followers

It is a common scenario where we often see brands falling prey to the issue of fake followers. The concern is not only raised by the newcomers but rather the seriousness of the issue is also felt by big giants like Unilever who have taken steps against
fake influencers and such malpractices.

Therefore, to avoid the issue of fake influencers who buy fake followers and paint a false image, conducting brand checks becomes crucial.

Checking an influencer’s past collaborations with brands can be helpful to a great extent in this regard. After all, collaborating with legitimate influencers is the only way to reach a loyal audience.

Analyzing Niche Expertise

If reports are to be believed then about 43% brands have been a subject to bad ROI because they did not work with right set of influencers. Take the example of the Korean-American YouTuber cum blogger Chriselle Lim’s collaboration with the automobile
company, Volvo. Chriselle’s forte lies in the fashion and lifestyle domain and collaborating with a fashion and lifestyle influencer did not match with the brand image of Volvo and hence, did not sit in well with the audience. Clearly, partnering
with influencers who do not resonate the brand image well, leaves a poor impression on the audiences. Hence, brands need to be extra cautious while picking influencers for their campaigns.

Conducting brand checks on the influencers helps get a sense of their areas of expertise and thus allowing us to take the well-informed decision about the influencer to be recruited for the brand’s influencer marketing campaigns.

A test for Content Creation Skills

We all agree that a good content instantly catches the attention of the audience and drives engagement. Therefore looking for influencers whose past campaigns showcase their content creation skills is quite essential. Furthermore, since you invest huge
chunks of money in associating with the influencers, it is important to be double sure about their skills and whether those skills match your expectations.

The more skilled an influencer is, the more fruitful is the result. Not just this, it may also help you save up on the costs that would otherwise be incurred on buying and using content production tools.

Checking for Audience Engagement

Driving engagements is the ultimate goal of any campaign. Thus diving a little deep on an influencer’s past campaigns and data metrics is an important task before getting any influencer on board.

Therefore, pick up influencers who have the capability to generate high engagements for your campaigns. Needless to say, tying-up with such Influencers will help you make the most of your campaigns.

Observing all the above, it indicates the importance of identifying the right influencers for your brand campaigns. However, finding these ‘right influencers’ can be a daunting task. But by setting the right criteria for selection; you can make a wise
decision and a smart business collaboration that justify your time, money and efforts invested in the campaign.

For shortlisting the right influencer, one can always count on the practice of brand checks. Brand checks are often helpful in building authentic and fruitful partnerships with Influencers. Sticking to some simple practices like the ones mentioned below
can definitely deliver high success rates for your campaigns.

  • Checking on an influencer’s genuine followers
  • Analyzing the niche knowledge and expertise of an Influencer
  • Evaluating their content creation skills
  • Examining their audience engagement rates
  • And last but not the least, checking their brand collaboration history

Therefore, in this ever evolving digital age; ensure that you vet out the influencers and hand-pick the ones that best suit your brand image and drive success for your campaigns.

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