Why Brands Should Invest in Long-term Influencer Partnerships
Partnering with influencers is an effective way for brands to expand their existing customer base and grow their potential for more sales. Partnering short-term with influencers to promote one service or product can be effective, but creating a long-term campaign can be far more beneficial to brands and influencers. When a short-term campaign is over, both the influencer and the brand will move to find other partnerships, possibly leaving behind an amazing opportunity to expand and nurture an existing community into converting into a paying customer. If the creator matches the target audience of the brand and they have a great connection, there is evidence to suggest that a longer form partnership is more effective in influencer marketing, similar to email nurture campaigns which sometimes take 5-7 emails before a customer converts.
Often interchangeably called Ambassador programs, long-term influencer partnerships are campaigns between brands and influencers that are held for months, and in some cases, years. Below are a few key factors in creating and maintaining a long-term partnership with influencers.
A Strong Relationship
The established relationship between the brand and influencer is a main component of a great long-term partnership. As a brand, if you are great to work with, influencers will be more apt to continue to work with you. Engaging in long form partnerships will show that not only is a brand’s product or service worth promoting, but also the brand is able to foster great working relationships with the creators they employ. Additionally, if a creator feels strongly about working with a brand, they can refer other influencers to work with that brand as well.
The working relationship built will also create an authentic representation of the brand. A creator’s audience will feel the authenticity of the partnership and be more likely to feel that the brand is trustworthy. An audience can sense when a creator does a brand deal purely for profit, which is one of the negative sides of a short term or single video partnership. By having a long term relationship with a creator, the promotion can feel more honest and real.
By having the credibility of being consistently backed by a selected creator, the brand could see more loyalty and see more sales. The relationship that creators have with their audience is powerful and being promoted by an influencer repeatedly will show that the product or service is worth the purchase.
Opportunities for Feedback
If a brand is consistently working with an influencer, their audience can give feedback about the campaign or the product. The influencer will benefit by being able to find a more effective way to promote the brand. The brand will also benefit from hearing this feedback and being able to implement changes across other marketing channels.
By entering a long-term brand deal, creators can feel more secure knowing that they will be supported financially through a longer duration than a one off video. Being able to provide a steady stream of income for influencers they work with will also benefit how the brand is perceived, both by the public and creators alike and can have a compounding effect to bring more creators into your program to promote your brand. When a brand is seen as a major sponsor for creators, other creators will want to join your program, and thus, help a brand gain additional reach through these new communities.
Stand-alone, short term partnerships can be effective for a brand just starting off or trying something different out, similar to A/B testing in other marketing verticals. However, for established brands, long-term partnerships will yield more results and create an overall better brand image. Brands are shifting to a long-term partnership model more often because of the mutual benefits and positive outcomes from these campaigns.
If you’re interested in learning more about InfluenceLogic and how we provide brands the opportunity to grow a scalable influencer program, feel free to reach out to our Brand Partnerships team at firstname.lastname@example.org.