How a Retail Brand used Influencer Marketing to generate 150K+ leads from Instagram

And why brands should jump on that train.

Back in the 16th century, when printing was a new technology in the communication space, Martin Luther used pamphlets, ballads & woodcuts — the media of that time — to spread his message on religious reform. Within 14 days of hanging a pamphlet “95 Theses” — a proposition to discuss religion in an open debate in university quickly spread throughout Germany and outside, propelling Martin Luther towards tremendous influence on common man’s thoughts. In recent times, we can associate this anecdote to Martin Luther ‘making a post that went viral’.

Martin Luther’s media environment was not too different from the current one. “It was a decentralised system whose participants took care of distribution, deciding collectively which messages to amplify through sharing and recommendation” -says The Economist. Ring a bell, folks?

There is no doubt that humans of our era love social media. Social media is the current state of the internet, where information is abundant and attention is scarce, and social will do nothing but keep on rising. So amidst all these cacophony how do you even figure out what’s right for your business? How do you use the current state of media — just like print, radio and television — to get your brand out there?

One thing that’s for sure is that, humans love stories!

But humans also love people with great personalities and emotional intelligence who keep on adding value to the online ecosystem using their skills and talents. These are the people who come to amass a huge following on Social, and these are the people we call influencers on social media.

I will soon be posting on how to find the right Influencers for your brand. Right now though, influencer marketing is on a rise and a trend that is going to stay.

And it follows a very simple formula of why it works, really. Consumers are people, and they are more likely to buy stuff recommended by other people they trust, not from just another business among thousands trying to steal their attention and sell them shit. Brands can go on about how “cool” and “game-changing” their product is, but that doesn’t mean anyone is listening. Customers want to hear about the experience of a product from an objective user, not a company blowing their own horn. It looks fake, and customers don’t a brand that looks fake.

So , how do you use influencers to market your product, all the while increasing your brand awareness and brand trust among customers?

Below is a small podcast from Hootsuite, a platform for managing social media accounts. It is an interview of a digital artist working for a retail brand in Canada called Roots Canada. They share with us how they used Instagram and 5 social influencers in their community to drive sales, expand their email list and gain new leads — 150K+ to be exact. For those with no time to listen to the whole podcast at this moment, I have written down key takeaways from the podcast below and what you should be keeping on your mind for your brand, and feel free to add in your own creative insights into your campaign.

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Roots Canada had the below business goals in mind while creating their campaign. This campaign was executed during Christmas holiday season last year in collaborating with influencers and other like-minded brands.

  1. Increase brand awareness.
  2. Increase sales of products through their website by having users visiting a landing page they created for this purpose. The landing page had previews of products available that customers can purchase.
  3. Increase their email list through subscriptions, purchases and have customers participate in a competition of winning a one-in-a-lifetime trip to a specific destination(this is where the collaboration with influencers and like-minded brands come in) during the Christmas holiday season.

To achieve their clear cut goals, they went into partnership with a travel and tourism board in Canada. They took models and shot beautiful videos and pictures of places to see around Canada, and offered 5 social influencers in their space a holiday trip of a lifetime to see what the locations had to offer and share their experiences on their social channels.

When these influencers shared their stories with their followers, that is what allowed Roots Canada to draw in sales and 150K+ leads only through Instagram. So naturally, they selected social influencers who were big on Instagram.

How to Influencer Marketing?

  1. Define your business goals.
  2. Find like-minded companies to partner with who are willing to think out-of-the-box
  3. Find like-minded social influencers who will integrate their experience of your product in their social channels. Give them creative freedom over the content.
  4. Figure out the right metrics you should be tracking.

Bottom line is, you’ve got to be smart about it and you’ve got to be human about it. The more you try to trick your customers into clicking that link and watching that add that they’re trying to avoid every second of the day, the more you’re going to lose. The more you add value to the ecosystem, the more you’ll gain.

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