In the world of digital marketing, you can’t go far before running into influencers. Promoting everything from makeup sets, food subscription services, apps and software, to home lifestyles, influencers are trusted by marketers and consumers alike. With 38% of marketing agencies investing 10-20% of their budget into influencer marketing, this trend has become an essential part of marketing for businesses of all sizes.
Determining the success of your influencer marketing campaigns, however, can be difficult to quantify. With so many factors to take into consideration, and various measures of success, it can be easy to miss what your influencers are doing right, or what isn’t working well. This can limit the impact of your marketing campaigns; not being able to determine areas to improve or maintain. But using influencer marketing KPIs can help measure its effectiveness and success.
What Is Influencer Marketing for Small Businesses?
Influencers are social media personalities paid to endorse, support, and represent different products and services to their following. For influencers with a following of around 100,000, this can be worth $2,700 per brand sponsored post. Alternatively, micro-influencers tend to have much smaller, but typically more loyal and engaged, followers. These posts, videos, and streams generate new leads and more conversions for the partner business.
Small businesses looking into influencer marketing can reap these same benefits. But, they have to consider their budget, the type of influencer, and the content they’re looking for. This all should align with your business values and brand image, also integrating well with your existing marketing strategies or campaigns, such as remarketing emails or personalized ads. How successful this is can be tracked through influencer marketing KPIs.
Key KPIs for Influencer Marketing
Having planned and put into action your influencer campaigns, key performance indicators are crucial in assessing the extent that they are benefitting your business. These tend to measure the growth of your brand reach, increase in profits, and engagement throughout the customer journey. Some of the most important KPIs to track in these areas include:
- Overall ROI – The revenue gained from influencers, once you remove the cost of investment.
- Conversion rates – The number of viewers or followers of your influencer content that make a purchase after.
- Engagement metrics – The number of viewers or followers who engage with the content through likes, comments, and shares. Alternatively, the number of users who engage with your ecommerce web pages after viewing influencer content.
- Referral rates – The number of followers and viewers who follow influencer links to your ecommerce web pages.
- Content Reach – The amount of existing or new followers that your influencer content reaches to make an impression on.
Conversion rates and overall ROI are metrics used to measure the financial input and output of your influencer marketing, highlighting the number of sales made. Other metrics like engagement rates, referral rates, or reach show the impact of influencers on your online audiences. These provide evidence that your influencer affiliate program management supports your business well, leading to growth in customer base and revenue.
6 Tips for Measuring Influencer Marketing KPIs
Tracking KPIs can be harder than it seems. Knowing which metrics to be tracking and how this should impact your influencer marketing is gauged better with practice. You need to work out which parts are most important to your business. However, these six tips give you a foundation to start measuring your influencer marketing KPIs from, providing some direction and method to the metrics you look at and how.
1. Set a Goal
If you don’t know what you’re aiming at, it becomes difficult to see whether your influencer marketing is a success or not. Setting initial goals gives your influencer content a purpose and helps when integrating it with other marketing strategies. Your goals also define what a key performance indicator can be. For example, if your goal is to increase purchases by an amount, KPIs like conversion rates or total sales are going to be important.
With influencer marketing, it’s useful to set achievable business goals concerning customer impressions, increasing customer base, and return on investments. Depending on your marketing strategies, you may prioritize different outcomes of influencer involvement that can be included in your goals. This gives you a vision of what you want your business to gain through investing in influencers, giving you an idea of which KPIs are relevant.
2. Use Industry Benchmarks
Within your overall goals include specific targets. This involves allocating a time frame to see results within and identifying the exact numbers of followers or conversions you want to gain. However, be wary of unrealistic targets that can contribute to employee unproductivity and lack of motivation, as KPIs show your influencer campaigns aren’t enough. Looking at small businesses around you can help set challenging, but reachable targets.
Base your specific targets on industry benchmarks. Note key metrics from your competitors such as their engagement rates on different social media platforms and influencer marketing budget size. These will vary depending on the content type and platform used, meaning your reasonable targets for your influencer content need to be specific to each marketing channel. This also shapes the type of KPIs that can be used to measure performance.
3. Track Audience Growth
Influencer marketing is largely about growing your exposure and drawing in new audiences. Tracking your audience growth shows how successful your influencer content is in this and highlights overlaps in your influencer’s follower interests with your business. If there isn’t much overlap, your influencer’s followers are unlikely to be interested in your field or purchase your services or products. This won’t help your business or sales and needs to be rectified.
Using KPIs, such as referral rates, new visitors, and total impressions, give you a rounded picture of your audience growth. From looking at your social media content reactions, comments, and clicks, you can gather data needed for these metrics. This easily tracks the impact of using influencers throughout the entire campaign and through individual posts, showing your marketing campaign reach.
4. Communicate With Your Influencer
Tracking KPIs doesn’t have to be a solo endeavor. When booking an influencer to promote your business, open up a communication channel about your aims and indicators of success. This helps influencers know what you expect from their content and ensures you share the targets to be met. Particularly with limited contracts, explicitly discussing the purpose of this marketing upfront means you can make the best possible content from the get-go.
Similarly, ask influencers for data they have from their social media analytics, such as their impressions per post and sales of your products. These additional KPIs can be useful to have, as customers acquired through influencer marketing may make their impressions and engage more with the influencer’s accounts. Nonetheless, for customer retention purposes, having the data from the influencer will help inform your business profiles and marketing strategy.
5. Gather Analytics and Metrics
There are plenty of online analytic tools that track and quantify the impressions and engagement your ecommerce website receives as a result of influencer campaigns. Making use of these as part of your enterprise digital transformation shows how your social media engagement translates to views, clicks, and purchases of your products. By providing real-time analytic information, these tools make measuring your KPIs far easier.
In particular, look out for time spent on pages, referral sources, and page views. This shows where your influencer audience is being directed to, where they spend the most time, and the products or services that most interest them. These can be used to inform page design, site layout, and products to promote. Making improvements in these areas adds to the customer experience and informs your marketing.
6. Review Regularly
Marketing trends are constantly changing and influencer marketing is no exception. Stay aware of what content is most successful and which influencer marketing KPIs you should be looking into. Adjusting your targets and KPIs where necessary helps you to keep your marketing strategies relevant and benefit your business. However, your more general aims should stay the same, even if you change how your marketing will achieve these.
You should also be tracking your KPIs regularly, to see the change over time. This helps you notice negative changes sooner, meaning you can make the appropriate adjustments or try a new strategy. It also highlights the immediate impact of each piece of content, showing which content is most successful. This information can inform marketing process improvements, leading to more engaging influencer content and conversions.
Start Measuring KPIs With Your Influencer Marketing
Key performance indicators are essential in knowing your influencer marketing is doing what it’s supposed to. It uses the business analytic data available to provide useful metrics concerning customer reach, growth, and revenue, showing the impact that influencer marketing has on your enterprise. This helps to evaluate and improve your influencer content to optimize it for customer acquisition and retention.
With these tips, KPI measuring becomes simple, making it clear what the goal is and therefore which KPIs will be most useful. Also, by gathering data from your influencer and website analytic tools, there’s less effort required to collate detailed information on what your customers and website visitors engage with and purchase. Through evaluation and improvements based on your KPIs, your influencer marketing can become the best it can be.
About the Author
Jenna Bunnell is the Senior Manager for Content Marketing at Dialpad, an AI-incorporated cloud-hosted unified communications system and cloud PBX solutions that provides valuable call details for business owners and sales representatives. She is driven and passionate about communicating a brand’s design sensibility and visualizing how content can be presented in creative and comprehensive ways. Here is her LinkedIn.