Influencer marketing has taken off in the last few years, and the industry keeps growing. As more and more brands find influencers to promote them on social media, the influencer marketing industry is projected to value $15 billion by 2022.
But how do brands find influencers to collaborate with? There are three primary ways: searching on social media, hiring an agency, and using an influencer marketing platform. Today we’re going to examine the third option, and why you should consider using one.
What is an influencer marketing platform?
An influencer marketing platform is a subscription-based, AI-powered software that helps you find influencers relevant to your brand’s marketing campaigns. They generally offer search filters to help you narrow down your search, like influencer location or number of followers.
Keep in mind that if you were searching directly on social media, you wouldn’t be able to run an influencer search query. For example, you can’t tell Instagram to show you all the “beauty influencers in Seoul who have between 15K-50K followers.”
An influencer marketing platform also provides analytics, so you can evaluate the influencer’s profile and performance-driven statistics. Want to know the influencer’s engagement rate? Curious to see how they’ve grown their following over time? The software lets you see that data and more, whereas social media only shows core metrics like follower count and number of posts.
Let’s look at an example of an influencer marketing platform
One example of an influencer marketing platform is Heepsy. This platform allows you to find over 11 million Instagram and Youtube influencers from around the world.
To search on Heepsy, you can use the following filters:
- Category – fashion, beauty, sports, food, etc.
- Location – country, state or city
- Followers – number of followers a profile has
- Engagement – the level of interaction between an influencer and their followers
- Contact – influencers who have public contact or presence on other social networks
- Audience – demographics of the followers
- Authenticity – the percentage of followers estimated to be real people
- Advanced Metrics – cost estimate, branded content and posts per week
Let’s take our search query from before: beauty influencers in Seoul with 15-50K followers. This is how it would look on Heepsy.
When you click on an influencer’s profile, you see their biography, a visual preview of their feed, and analytics related to all those search filters. Examine their followers and growth, engagement rate, audience authenticity, and more.
For example, in the chart below, we can see the audience location demographics for one of those Seoul-based beauty influencers. In reality, only 13.75% of her audience is located in South Korea, with other significant portions located in the USA, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
Finally, Heepsy lets you organize influencers in editable lists. You can create lists for different campaigns, locations, follower ranges or whatever helps you stay organized. Lists not only let you compare the influencers you add, but they also let you include your own ratings, notes and statuses. Further, you can download lists as spreadsheets to help automate your influencer outreach.
Heepsy requires a paid subscription to use, and there are three plans available at various price points. If you’re interested in seeing the platform in action, or would like to review the different plans with a specialist, you can book a free, personalized demo with the Sales team.
Why you should use an influencer marketing platform
So why should you use an influencer marketing platform anyway? The short answer is to find influencers who align with your brand and are the right fit for your campaigns. Your campaign can only be as successful as your influencer discovery.
It’s critical to evaluate influencer profiles before choosing who to collaborate with. If you search for influencers on social media, you’ll have to either calculate metrics like growth and engagement rate manually, or ask each influencer for their media kit. This can get tedious fast, especially if you’re looking to work with a few influencers.
On the other hand, you could hire an agency to handle your campaign. They’ll find influencers, vet their stats, and make sure they’re the right match for your brand’s mission and personality. However, agencies are expensive; they sometimes charge hundreds or thousands of dollars per month.
Therefore, when it comes to price versus effort, an influencer marketing agency is the middle ground. Cheaper than an agency, and much less laborious than searching on social networks. You still have to find influencers, but the software gives you the search engine and analytics info to do so.