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Brands need to set goals for influencer campaigns, says Red Bull marketer

Red BullBrands working in the influencer marketing space need to establish goals before diving in, Red Bull field marketing manager Travis Watanabe has said.

Speaking at the Klick Konnect conference in Honolulu, Watanabe said judging the success of an influencer-led campaign can be difficult as there are “lots of immeasurables” such as authenticity and influence.

“We are a brand that spent hundreds of millions of dollars sending someone into space to skydive, and it’s like, ‘how many cans did you sell after that?’ But it depends if your goal was to increase sales or build awareness and engagement,” he said.

Watanabe emphasised how important it is for brands to properly research influencers to establish their audience, however also acknowledged that authenticity is equally as important.

He said: “You look at the audience but you also look at how natural the partnership can be. If it seems like it’s paid, people will see through that. We try to look for influencers we can help or enable so we’re a natural part of their story.”

Danielle Lewis, CEO and co-founder of influencer measurement website, scrunch.com, suggested that brands should treat influencers who refuse to share their data with the same caution they would any other publisher who does not verify their audience.

She said: “If a brand is investing money into an influencer it is an advertising engagement. There will come a time when brands won’t invest unless influencers can be held accountable to metrics.”

Lewis added while some influencers are happy to share their data, those that don’t are best avoided.

“There are some that do hold back their analytics and if someone is not willing to share the numbers they’re getting or the location of their followers, that’s a red flag. Influencer marketing has become like the wild west.

“The barriers to entry are low, making it difficult for brands to identify the right influencers. The industry of fake followers and fake engagement has muddied the waters even further.”

She said marketers should use data to identify their audience and where it lives online, then use that knowledge to find the right influencers and platforms for their brand.

Martin Lane is a guest of Klick Communications at Klick Konnect in Honolulu

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