Katya is a passionate marketer who eats, sleeps and breathes Influencer Marketing. From Instagram to TikTok, she knows a solid Influencer strategy when she sees one.
In this episode, we talk about finding the right Influencers for your brand, how to reach out to them and the creative process. You don’t need to be using the Kylie Jenner’s of the Insta world to drive a high Return On Investment, trust us.
Don’t miss this episode if you want to find out how Katya found the perfect curling tongs for her, courtesy of the addiction we call TikTok. Oh, and by the way, this is a channel you don’t want to sleep on.
Katya Allison is the Director of Content at Grin, an Influencer Marketing software for D2C brands that want to scale. She is a passionate marketer who is obsessed with all things Influencer Marketing.
In this episode, we discuss what Influencer Marketing is and why eCommerce businesses need to be running these types of campaigns. Disclosure, it’s not just Kylie Jenner promoting toothpaste that we know she doesn’t use. It’s about working with creators who inspire and engage their community.
Find out how to match Influencers with your brand story by creating an influencer persona, how to reach out to them and which KPIs to measure to determine success. Katya discusses the importance of an in-depth brief, looking holistically with attribution and giving creative freedom.
If you are an eCommerce store, start building relationships with Influencers yesterday. The future of digital? Influencer marketing is at the heart of it. After all, people buy from people.
2:07 – How Katya found her passion for Influencer Marketing
3:50 – Why eCommerce businesses need to have an Influencer Marketing strategy
4:46 – How Influencer Marketing is just simply people talking to people
8:38 – Match the influencer with your brand story and create an influencer persona
12:25 – Reaching out to Influencers without using a tool
14:26 – Set your objective to determine which KPI equals success
17:50 – Use Influencers as brand storytellers
18:30 – Give guidance, send them inspiration and then let them run with it
25:00 – Look more holistically for attribution with Influencer marketing
26:08 – Gifting Influencers, yes or no?
29:01 – Make sure Influencers don’t go rogue with a thorough campaign brief and good relationship
32:45 – Who and what do you engage with on your feed?
35:15 – Future of Influencer Marketing
39:40 – Book recommendations
Hi there, I'm Richard Hill, the host of eCom@One. Welcome to our 83rd episode. In this episode, I speak with Katya Allison, Director of Content at Grin. Katya is an experienced content marketer with a wealth of hands on knowledge and now heads up the content at Grin. An influencer marketing platform, where with D to C brands, helping them manage influencer marketing programs at scale. They've just literally raised 110 million in series B funding. In this episode we talk, finding those influencers that resonate with your brand, and then starting to work with those that you feel are a fit. Metrics to look out for and how to make sure your campaigns work at scale. Working with your influencers and the creative process. If you enjoy this episode, please make sure you subscribe so you're always the first to know when a new episode is released. Now let's head over to this fantastic episode.
This episode is brought to you by eComOne, e-Commerce Marketing Agency. eComOne works purely with e-commerce stores, scaling their Google shopping, SEO, Google search, and Facebook ads through a proven performance driven approach. Go to ecomone.com/resources for a host of amazing resources to grow your paid and organic channels.
Hi, and welcome to another episode of eCom@One. Today's guest is Katya Allison, Director of Content at Grin. How are you doing Katya?
I'm doing fantastic, pretty much living the dream. I'm excited to jive into influencer marketing.
I'm looking forward to this one. It's not something I have to admit, and I am definitely not an influencer marketing expert. And we've had a few chats, we've had a couple of guests over the last, I think it's 18 months now and talked about a few bits. But I'm really looking forward to this one.
The guys, I've been talking about you guys in the office and your team and your sort of platform and whatnot. So I'm looking forward to diving in.
Let's do it.
Let's do it. Let's go.
Influencer marketing, there're obviously a lot of different areas in running an e-com store, whether it's SEO, PPC, we talk about a lot of these different areas, but influencer marketing particularly, now how did you find your passion for that? How did you get into that?
Well, I have a passion for marketing just in general. A bit of my background is in just kind of business development, communications. Before I was at Grin I helped run a local marketing agency here in Sacramento. So we had multiple clients and we did anything and everything in between, like building a website and running digital programs, and that's very much so like what you guys do right, everything from digital paid ads to organic social, to SEO and all of that good stuff and in between. We happened to have one particular client who was a beauty client and they gave me a list of 50 influencers. Influencers, I'm going to say "influencers". And they said, "We don't know who's doing what." That is also how I found my way into Grin and then just have been immersed in influencer marketing absolutely ever since then.
So I think most of our ... that's great, that's great. I think, I think it sounds like you're similar to me and when you get into a topic it's like you obsess over it.
It is an obsession, it's an obsession.
I could see obviously doing the background on the interview and the episode, I think it's a great setup you've got there. But I think, some of the guys listening in, I know we've got a lot of advanced sort of marketers and whatnot, but I still think that influencer marketing, it's probably a newer topic for a lot of our listeners. So I think it'd be good to sort of, in its simplest forms, if you're an e-com store listing into this episode right now, what is influencer marketing? Why should they be doing it?
Oh, we're going to unpack so much from that simple question right there. Because I think it's interesting that you say that it is just kind of relatively new or maybe people are just kind of tuning into it. And when you really look back on the history of influencer marketing, it's been around a lot longer. I don't know that we've always called it influencer marketing. And I think that that's really, that's where people get stuck. I also think that sometimes there's this negative connotation to the word influencer marketing, right? God bless Kim Kardashian, but I think that most people think, "Oh, influencer marketing, I've got to get the big celebrities. I've got to get these macro influencers of people that have the big followers." But if we can start by ... I always like to start with the basics, let's define what it is. And then we can talk about really what it means to a brand and why it's effective as a marketing strategy.
So when it comes to who is an influencer before you decide ... before we talk about influencer marketing. An influencer is really anybody who has influence over community and that influence drives them to take some sort of action. And that can be to purchase, but it doesn't always have to be. It can be to learn more, to follow, to be inspired, for aspiration, inspiration, all of those things in between. So I always like to say, I'm an influencer at my dinner table. People listen to me at my dinner table. They may not listen to me on Instagram, but they'll listen to me there. So I have influence ... exactly you're going to eat this. So I have influence over my kitchen table. And if you broaden that scope out and you look at it from social media, an influencer's a person who has influence over their community of followers. And that's essentially what it is.
And the reason that it is so pivotal for brands, especially eCommerce brands, to really start engaging in influencer marketing is because at this stage you have to stand out as a brand, because there's so much that's going out there. And what really, what we ... the stage we're really at is that it's human to human interaction is what people buy into. Well, they don't even have to buy into it, they just authentically listen to it. They ... people follow people.
I am more likely to say yes to someone who is talking about, I don't know, their favorite mascara because they've used it and they're going to tell me about it. Versus a brand telling me, no, this is the best mascara. The person on the other line is going to tell me, no, this is, it truly is waterproof.
It's not going to hurt your eyes if you wear contacts, because I wear contacts. These are the important things for me. So I mean, long story longer, an influencer is so effective and the strategy is so effective because it's people talking to people versus brands talking to people.
Yeah. I think that was very clear. A long answer, but very clear.
I know. Well listen, you didn't sign me up for the short answers my friend.
Yeah yeah yeah. We got to stretch that.So, I think, yeah, there's some correct, cool stuff there, but I think ultimately if I'm right in thinking, people buy from people. And so if somebody is talking about a particular product, and you like the way they are, the way they act, they're honest, they appear honest. They your kind of people. They're maybe quirky or depend ... and obviously everyone's different, so everyone knows it makes different. And that's why it is how, as a brand, you've got to try and get people to stop the scrolling and look and listen. And you know I ... yesterday ... I'm a bit of lawn geek I have to say, it's quite well known on my podcast. I talk about lawns quite a lot, and then I ... most people then switch off to the episode and think, what the hell is he talking about again?
But this morning on the way in I found myself sat in traffic for 20 minutes, and I was scrolling through Facebook and there was somebody doing a review, of a lawn influence on a new mower. And I found myself watching this bloody review for 20 minutes.
So, I think obviously ultimately everyone's different, everyone's got their own people that they're into. I'm sure what you stop and scroll for is very different to what I stop and scroll, sorry, stop and-
Yeah, I'm sure. So I think from an e-commerce store point of view then, when e-commerce store maybe selling, I don't know, let's just go with fashion, for example,what sort of things, obviously they've going to like the people, they've got to like what they stand and what will they represent and what they stand for, but what other things should an e-com store be looking at when they're deciding on what influencers to work with potentially, or to reach out to, what other things should they be looking at?
When they're, when an e-commerce store, or really, it's not just e-commerce I ... we can focus it just on e-commerce, but this would be the advice for really any brand that's looking to work with any type of influencer. You have to match the influencer with who your brand is.
If your brand's story is ... I'm an e-commerce brand that, this is one of my favorite examples, an e-commerce brand that sells sarcastic t-shirts. But these sarcastic t-shirts are made from recyclable products, and that is truly the message. That's what makes my t-shirt company really stand out. So I'm going to look for influencers who are more environmentally focused. So you have to really take a look at what brand story you want to tell and share, and find your influencers based on that. I think most people who are listening would be familiar with buyer personas.
We're all essentially creating a buyer persona. You have to create an influencer persona in the same way that you create a buyer persona. Because the influencer again has influence over their community of followers, in general. Well, you want to speak to their community, not necessarily the influencer themselves. It's great if that aligns as well too, but you have to first think about what your brand story is that you're trying to tell and then use that information to kind of essentially figure out the filters that you use to help you find the right influencer for your brand.
So it'd be good to do, obviously do some deep homework, not just on watching what they're doing. Obviously you're doing that, but you're looking at what the response is to what they're doing more so.
Absolutely. It's less about follower count and more about engagement. Because the engagement and the quality of engagement is what gets people to essentially make the purchase. But also kind of want to learn more about the brand in general. It's more than a transactional relationship with an influencer. This influencer is basically going to be your brand voice. They should be able to speak authentically and yeah, they should be able to speak authentically and as an authority on what your brand is. Really truly tell me, what is the fabric of this t-shirt. Tell me when you wear it, where you wear it. Is it a great t-shirt to wear under a sweater for the fall? Because you need to be able to layer it off. Is it one that's really soft? Is it one that you're going to want to wear to bed, that you're never going to want to peel off? Tell me the story of it. And then the beauty is then create the visual story branch behind as well too on your social networks as well.
Yeah. That's brilliant. I love it. So, okay. So we have identified people that we are sort of, that resonate, that have a brand story that resonates with our brand or, that the way that they respond and obviously we've done our home work. And we'll come back to that. There's obviously tools and softwares and things, and obviously that they can do that for you, but what maybe is some of the best ways to reach out to these people? So what would be ... so, okay we've identified somebody that is a good fit. God, these guys are brilliant. Oh, this lady, this woman, this brand, brilliant. They really represent what we represent and reaching out to them. I think this is where people get stuck, because they go, "Ah, that's, I love what they're doing, but what can we say? Are we dropping a DM to them? Or are we ... ?" What's some of the ways to get their attention to then, obviously then open a dialogue to potentially work with them?
I think that if you are starting out with influencer marketing and you don't have a creator management platform, like for example Grin, you would essentially DM someone, right?
Where it becomes problematic to reach out via DM is it's really hard to keep that organized. It's great if you've got five.
Five people you want to reach out to. I think that that's probably the max that you can do without it occupying your entire day and really creating an organization system for yourself. Aside from that, if it goes any larger than that, you're going to want to reach out to them via email and introduce you and introduce yourself as a brand. Now that doesn't mean be long-winded like myself, since that's what I tend to be. But you don't need to send an entire paragraph. The beauty about it is that you can send them to your social account.
They're going to want to take a look at what your feed looks like. Doesn't match with what I would be posting out? Does your message match? There are going to be influencers out there that are really looking for a much more transactional relationship. And you have to, again take a look at what is it that ultimately you are trying to get out of from your influencer marketing program? Is it something transactional? Then that's a totally different approach. It's more of a spray and pray. Let me reach out to 500 people, which you wouldn't want to do in DM because if you can imagine that, that would be a nightmare. But you can also certainly email them as well too.
Yeah. So DMs, email, but obviously then if we're looking at scale. And I know normally we don't talk about sort of get thing started on this podcast, but if obviously you are, then there's sort of a DM situation. And obviously at scale you can obviously work with a platform like yourself and we'll touch on that more at the end I think. So, okay, we've reached out to these guys, and they're a good fit. They're working on a potential campaign with us. What sort of, what are the metrics that you guys would sort of hammer home to our listeners that would define success with a campaign?
I would say actually, there's not the one metric. I really wish that there was, I know that all marketers want that one metric, but I mean, we're not fools. There is never a silver bullet metric that's going to say we're successful unless you're just looking at ultimate sales. But also if you're just looking at, did this person get me a sale? It's very myopic thinking and you're not looking holistically of the return on investment of influencer marketing as a whole. So I would say in order to determine what your KPIs are, what your metrics are going to be when you evaluate, this was successful or it wasn't, was setting up what your objective is beforehand. So if I am running an influencer marketing program and I say, my goal behind this program, or this particular campaign, is I want content. I content because I need to be able to repurpose it on my website, on my email campaigns, on my social. And on my paid social as well too.
So now this one influencer is helping support four other marketing strategies that we have. If that's what my goal is, then the metric that I'm going to want to look at is, how many impressions did the content provide. How much content did I actually get back? How much content did I then repurpose? There's several metrics that you can kind of take a look at to evaluate the success. Revenue is always the easiest one. Did I get sales? Did I get sales? Okay, did I get sales in the first week, in the first day, in the first week, in the first month? What does that window, that attribution window look like?
Because as you know, and I'm sure most e-commerce brands that are listening, there are ... you do not gain a customer based on one time that they see you. They have to have an omnichannel experience with you all the way around. Influencers are really great at doing that because it's brand awareness as well too. So I would say identify what your objective is, and your objective determines what your metrics are. In that way you can determine this was successful. There's nothing that I hate worse than feeling like it wasn't successful. If you can tell me that it wasn't successful, show me the number. How do you know it wasn't unless you had set your objective and said, based on this objective, this is what my metric is.
So maybe give us a ... let's dive in there a bit more I think, because I think as an agency we are very pounds and pence, or dollars and cents.
So, obviously it's so important to get that brief right at the client end, at our end, that you guys listening in getting that brief right at the front end. Right, we want to drive X amount of eyeballs to content, sales are not important, or obviously eventually sell. So obviously getting the brief right is absolutely key. But would you say then sort of giving influencers a bit more of a free reign as well or, because you can sort of stifle an influencer if you're saying, right we just want to do that with that, with that, and sort of this really finite thing that you want them to do. Whereas ... it's a tricky question and ... but do you think that sort of giving them a broad brief so they can be more creative, but then a very specific brief within the brief around the results that you want. That's a really poor question...
I'm picking up what you're putting down. I think what you're asking me is basically how much leeway do you give an influencer in order to help you achieve your goals.
But correct me if I'm wrong.
Yep. No, that's it.
All right. Perfect. So when I'm talking about metrics, I'm talking about, as a marketer this is how I'm going to evaluate the campaign's success. That is certainly information that you can provide to an influencer themselves. But in order to get the type of content that you want, to help achieve those metrics as well, they don't need all of those details. You're essentially reaching out to the influencer because they would be potentially good brand storytellers for you. You have taken a look at their aesthetic and you've seen how engaged they are with their community. If you've seen all of those, there is a balance of how much direction you give them.
People want to be able to please. So an influencer appreciates some sort of guidance with you letting go a little bit. So in that situation, a great campaign brief is inspiration images. Hey, these are images that have worked for us in the past. This is kind of what we're looking for. Now, how you execute that, we'd love to see just kind of the creativity and send me all of the outtakes. So then we can select which ones are right.
Because I just finished doing a webinar with one of our customers who, she had some just kind of great advice when it came to that. She's like, "I ask for all of the images", because you know that the image that someone sends you, and think about like when you even take a picture or you have someone take a picture of you, you always ask for more than one picture and out of the 10 pictures, there's one you're like, "Okay, this is the one I'm going to post out." Influencers are, do the same thing. So I would say, give them inspiration, show them what has worked in the past and then let them go.
Yeah. And at end of the day they are an influencer for the fact that they're good at creating.
So that's brilliant. And I think ... so just to clarify then, so when you're working with an influencer, you can obviously ... it's obviously a discussion, a one on one discussion, but ultimately you are, I believe, you can work with them to create content for your channels. Or, and you can work with them for them to create content for their channels. And obviously that's probably different costs, would that be fair to say? Some content creators will create content that they will give you and you use it on your channels.
Then they will, if they're going to then put that out there to their millions of people or hundreds of thousands of people, obviously there would be a different potential cost or a different arrangement for that. Would that be a fair assumption?
I definitely think that is a fair assumption. It depends on the type of influencer you're working with. How much experience they have? Is this a side hustle or is this their full-time job? That really helps determine that as well too.
How many other campaigns are they running as well? How many other brand partnerships do they have? I think that what's really, really important when it comes to influencer marketing in general, is having that relationship. Because if you can have that relationship with someone, that means it's a conversation, not a back and forth ... I mean, it is a back and forth negotiation, but the negotiation is a conversation. Because depending on what stage of their business they are, whether it's a side hustle or their full-time job, they may be asking for more or less. But this is also why you have to find someone that would be a good match for your brand. Because I am more willing to represent a brand that I already use, that I already love. And I probably just want free product for it. There are instances where that is the case.
And then there are instances where like, okay, I'm an e-commerce brand and I'm launching a new product and I want eyeballs. I want eyeballs on this new product, which means I'm going to look at follower account, but I know because I want more eyeballs on it. I may pay more, but I'm looking at impressions for success as well, too. You have to ... it's less of a, "Hey, rates are this", and that's what they are and move forward. It's more of, find the right influencer, develop the relationship and then have the conversation. Because essentially you want to be able to re-use the same influencer, not reuse, that sounds very callous. I mean yeah, you want to develop a partnership so that it can continue.
Yeah. Like anything in ... ultimately if you're building a business and they're maybe starting out as an influencer or are on that journey, you obviously, it's a relatively, it's not like they might be five years in what they might be but if you are working with somebody you want to, obviously ... obviously they're a fit, but then you want to work with them again and again and again, ideally or so many times.
So I think that partnership, they're a friend and a sort of a ... what would we call it here? Well, a friend of the business. Quite often we refer to our partners or friend or a trusted advisor is something we call quite a lot of our... depending on what they're doing for us, whether that's a web agent, we work with a lot of web agencies in our agency.
Ultimately if we like them, and they're good at what they do, we work with them and we end up, we may even go out for a beer with them or whatever.
Absolutely. But it is absolutely true. I mean, I know that ... you just mentioned that as well too, advocates are your influencers. We have influencers for Grin. I like to call them our Grinfluencers, that are people that just absolutely love Grin. And we love it and they're ready to be partners with us. They're like, "What else can we do? How else can we partner up?" Those are the people that you want because that enthusiasm is what's so infectious. I mean, and every business has them, we just don't call them all influencers.
Yeah. It's interesting. We had our anniversary yesterday for both of our agencies, one three years and 12 years. And just seeing some of their ... it's just really nice last night ... I got, I had a really busy day yesterday. I sort of off social, got home, sat on my settee and it's like, "Whoa", a lot of people saying, "Oh, it's ama ...", sort of talking about some of the people that we've just met over the years, that we've obviously had a bit of an impact on, either we've helped them with something or they're a client, or not a client, with even better sort of thing. They're not a client, but we've influenced and help them either through maybe some free training or whatever. It's just like, "Wow, they're our people", sort of thing. Our advocates, our sort of super fans. It's just great, isn't it? And I think you're working with whether that's paid or unpaid. Obviously I even better if it's unpaid.
Even better, and sometimes it's a trade. I think that B2B businesses, service based businesses, it can be a trade. If I get this service, then I'll gladly post, I'll gladly share it. And you have to think beyond the post too. And I think that that's ... I mean, when push comes to shove as marketers, we're always chasing attribution. Influencer marketing is no different. Whether you're running a paid ad or SEO, you're looking, who gets credit for this sale? What's my ROAS. Give me that number because that's how we live and breathe. But if you take a step back and look holistically at the halo effect of influencer marketing, you are lowering your cost per click. You're driving people to your website. So your direct traffic should increase as well too. And while it's affected by influencer marketing, it's hard to be like, "This influencer gave me this much traffic." So you have to look at holistically at that halo effect for your overall marketing strategy.
Yeah. Love it. So you touched on sort of gifts, obviously sending products. That's something we've done a lot with in terms of what we would refer to as sort of traditional outreach over the years. We've just recently done a piece where we got a company that sells some gardening products, which so we get nice coverage for our lawn fans. Because we have lawn clients and I'm obviously quite obsessed with my lawn.
Yes. I'm going to send you something from the states over there, that's just going to make it magical.
But with influencer marketing, how would you say sort of gifting or exchanging product for content, how important is that? Or how, is that, it's quite prevalent I guess? Or what would you say?
I think it's incredibly prevalent. It depends on how well they know your brand. Because essentially you're going to be successful as an e-commerce brand if someone is representing your brand appropriately, and that they genuinely like it. Because you're looking for authenticity when it comes to who it is that you partner with. So what we ... ideally the workflow that we have seen successful time and time again is, "Let me introduce you to my brand. Here is my product. Here is my product, no strings attached. Tell me what you think."
Because most of the time, if they love the products, they're going to say something about it anyways. You've developed a new fan and they're going to post, regardless of whether you've asked them to or not. You've already gotten something and introduced somebody to your brand story as well. Now, if they like it, that second step is, All right, you love it. Would you like to participate in our next campaign? This is what we're doing, X, Y, Z." So it takes a little bit longer to do that. And it's not always an option for all brands, because I also recognize that there are brands that have a higher valued item.
If there's a, I don't know, a fitness system, that's like $3,000 it's a lot harder to gift that if you don't have the guarantee that you're looking for. That's where you would want to probably engage with a macro or celebrity influencer. And then you have to gauge, wait a second, was it worth it? Or could I have given it to 10 smaller influencers and have been out ... now I can't do the math. What 3000, yeah. No, no, no, no, $30,000, or do I pay the macro influencer $30,000 and give them one kind of product.
So you have to really take a look at what your overall marketing strategy is and what your influencer marketing strategy feeds into the overall marketing strategy.
Does that make sense? I feel like I need a whiteboard.
I get it. I get it. I get it. I've got a variation of that question then. Little bit further. Let's say you're working with an influencer, and they're about to review your product, or do great content. But they're also doing almost like a, potentially a comparison of your product against another product against another product. Or they're best segment or the content that they're creating, they're talking about two or three products. But maybe they are competitors ultimately. So what would you say to the brand that's maybe saying, "Oh, I don't want my product to be associated with that product." Or, "I don't want my product to be talked about in the same piece of content as that other product." Because I've come across that. And I just wonder what your thoughts would be. Because I have quite a strong opinion on it, that ... well, what do you think? So it's few type piece and there's two or three pieces.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, absolutely. I think that you probably have to have a stronger handle on who it is that you want also attached to your brand. So I would be very conscious of who you're having ... who you're signing up. If this is something they consistently do, then you're probably going to want to avoid that. The other thing is you're not going to want to gift someone something like that, if that's the type of content that they put out without them providing you that information beforehand. But again, regardless of that situation, what makes a difference of knowing who's going to do that and who is not, is that relationship. "Let me introduce you to this brand. Let me tell you, give me your genuine feedback. I'd just like to hear, what do you like, what do you not like?"
I also think that, let's say it's not a gifting situation and you have an influencer who for some reason wants to do that. Or again, you would have to really rely on this relationship. This is why relationships are so clutch. You don't want influencers to go rogue. You can't control influencers going rogue if you don't have a relationship with them. If you do, and they do go rogue, it's usually just a conversation of like, "Hey, we would rather not have that content out. Can you take it down?" I mean, that's a way that you can approach it as well too. But oftentimes you would approach it at the campaign brief. Within the campaign brief, not only are you giving them an overview of what the particular campaign is, the expectations of what the campaign is, how they're going to be compensated, whether it's gifting, commission or a flat rate, but what you also have as a contract.
You have a contract in there that says, "Hey, for X amount of months, because of this partnership we will not be ... you will not post with these different five brands." Because you want it to be authentic. I mean, I think probably the best example I can give, and I don't know why I keep leaning into mascara, maybe I just feel strongly about it, I would want an influencer that represents one mascara brand, not a different one each time. That's very inauthentic. But you have to vet them, you have to have a good relationship, and all of it hinges really kind of on that. And then make sure that you set up your contract so that you can remove any competition from their posts. And it is usually within a given time period. And that's not out of the question at all.
So it comes back to the brief, comes back to specifics, obviously what financial, some sort of financial agreement then obviously then it's more likely going to be more about you maybe the end of the day or more about the brand.
But yeah, great. So we are flying through this aren't we? This is great.
Do you want me to talk longer? Because I can always over talk longer.
I gathered that. So lots of campaigns, lots of experience with a lot of different brands. Give me one standout campaign that the guys that are listing go, "Oh actually, maybe we ..." something that's maybe quite realistic if you are ... you're not a 500 million pound brand, you're a 5 million, 10 million a year type brand. A campaign that you've ran with influencers that's gone well. Maybe it's some insight into ... maybe some of the guys that are listening, how they could maybe get some takeaways from it and do a few things that you've maybe done.
Yeah. Well, so we are actually a software. So Grin doesn't do the service for actually running the campaigns. I have run campaigns before in the past as well too. And there's not necessarily one that really stands out. I also want to protect our customers as well too. So I don't necessarily want to speak to them. But what I can tell you is as a consumer, I would say any eCommerce brand that's listening, go to your primary social network that you're on. It could be TikTok, it could be Instagram, it could be Facebook. You are going to be served an ad and you're going to take a look at who on your feed is talking. Who is actually selling something. Take a look at the comments. What is it that you naturally gravitate towards? I know that on TikTok, because I'm obsessed with TikTok, it's like the way that I decompress at the end of the night.
But there are some influencers that I follow just because they're great storytellers and they're funny and they're amusing. And I ran across one of them who is a super inspirational gal. She's super funny. She's got a lot of friends just on TikTok and you just kind of see that as well too. She also has gorgeous long hair. And her sponsored ad was for a curling iron. And she was in her car and she's like, "Hey, I have one in my car, I have one in my purse and this is how I do it." And she showed me how quick it was. She showed me in like three curls and then gave me the last bit, and I clicked on it. That's what you want.
There's not the ... there are the obvious ones. I think naturally you think of celebrities, but I would encourage people to start taking a look at their social networks. Look at your feeds. Who is standing out? Who do you find that you stop to scroll for? And why do you stop to scroll for them? Those are the influencer campaigns to me that stand out.
The ones that resonate with you, the ones that make you stop and think, potentially then spend two hours on their website looking at all their, the brands.
Exactly. Exactly. Can I ask for this for Christmas?
That's my key. That's what I'm looking for right now.
You were buying hair, curling tongs, I was buying a mower this morning, yeah.
Exactly. We all have our thing. We all have our thing.
Yeah. Yeah. So crystal ball time then.
I sat here in ... we won't go too far in the future.
I hope not.
We'll go 18 months. I've got you back on the podcast. We're talking about what's happened in the last 18 months in influencer marketing space. What would you be saying? What's the future of influencer marketing in the next 18 months?
I think if you're just looking at influencers specifically, I mean, we're living in the beginning of, I would say the beginning of, even though it's been happening for a while, the creator economy. So influencers are ... influencer marketing is a business.
Influencers are a business. So I think that moving forward, that's what we're going to see. We're going to see it really explode and have people start recognizing that influencers and influencer marketing is a business for the people on the other end of it.
Yeah. I agree.
That means that the approach for people who are managing the programs has to be different. And there's a lot of room for education on this space because it's just exploded I feel like. And especially since the pandemic. It's like we've advanced five years.
Whether we had wanted to, or not. Because so many things shut down. All of a sudden we're all on our phones and we're longing to connect with people. So that's another reason that it's going to be even more pivotal in general. So I see all brands implementing influencer marketing into their programs.
Yeah. No, I think that's a great, I think I agree. I totally agree. I'm getting hooked in personally obviously and I'm obviously very aware of clients doing various things.
So to help sort of with that adoption and to help our clients, sorry our listeners, is what tools would you say, the things they should be looking at? And obviously tell us a bit more about Grin. That I think ultimately what are some of the tools, resources that people could be looking at that can help them?
Yeah. I would definitely say go to Grin, go to grin.co. We're always pushing out just kind of a ton of resources so that you can stay up to speed on all of the changes, how they affect things.
And we have a lot of really great toolkits that can really help people when they're getting started or even they're midway. But as far as the technology stack, I'd say that you're going to need an influencer relationship management tool. Grin is a creator management platform. And what it basically is, is it's more than just finding influencers. It is truly, and I hate this verbiage and I'm sure that I'm going to crush it, but it's all in one. So not only do you reach out to your influencers, you find your influencers through there, you manage your relationships through there. And we have various integrations that help you do that efficiently and effectively. Because the focus is on relationships, there's a lot of busy work when it comes to managing a program, so you have to be conscious of where you're spending your time.
Your time should be spent communicating with those people that you want to partner with, that are going to share your brand story, not like fulfilling orders. So Shopify brands, Magento brands. We have WooCommerce and Salesforce Commerce Cloud. We have these eCommerce integrations to help you quickly fulfill products over to your influencer without having to spend your time putting together the order, or boxing it up, or zeroing out an invoice and all of that stuff. So you definitely need a technology tool to scale your program.
The other thing that you need is you need a body to manage this.
You just do. You need someone to be obsessive over it. You need someone to be obsessive over it. And while your greater marketing team can all have like a little bit of a handle on it as well too, to really make it successful for any brand, you need a dedicated person. You need a dedicated person because if you get that dedicated person, your program is going to grow and you're going to find that you're actually going to have to build out an influencer marketing team. Because it's going to get to the point where you're ... you have so many people and that's a lot of relationships that you have to manage. So technology and people are the two things that you need.
Yeah. I love that. And I stand by that and I think that's 100%. Thinking about our agencies with outreach on the SEO side, it's exactly, exactly like that. Got a tech stack there, we've got a team and some of our clients obviously have that or they use us, or they, in your instance then they'll work with somebody like yourselves for influencer marketing.
I know as an agency, we'll be having a chat after this as well. Obviously agencies and obviously progressive brands will be very much the ones that are sort of, not first but obviously there's a lot of people doing it already, but just adopting and getting in there now, because there's a lot of influencers out there, obviously that, like you said right in the beginning, if people still think maybe, oh's Kim Kardashian, that's a million pound for a bit of this, that and the other. Whereas obviously there's thousands of influencers out there now that you can work with on a very realistic level, depending on who's listening right now. Whether you're doing 2 million or 200 million, there's influencers out there that will fit your budgets, fit your brands that you can be working with. And I think it's super, super exciting. Well, thank you so much for being on the eCom@One show.
Thank you for having me.
I always like to end every episode with a book recommendation. Do you have a book Katya that you would recommend to our listeners?
Do I have a book? I actually have three books for you.
Okay. So I have from the brand perspective, oh, look I even got it here. The Age Of Influence by Neil Schaffer. This is super great read, easy read. Neil Schaffer is also amazing. The only other one that I don't have is a book by Brittany Hennessy. She wrote Influencer, Building Your Personal Brand In The Age of Social Media. That's from the influencer perspective. And then the last book I have, The Experience Maker, this is by Dan Ginges. And this is from the customer perspective. I think that these three books are like the trifecta to help you understand influencer marketing from three different perspectives. The Experience Maker, while not specifically about influencer marketing, gives you some insight onto how to really create a great customer experience.
So those are my book recommendations.
Yeah. Not just one but three. Yeah.
Yes. I know I'm obsessive. I told you, I told you.
Well, I thank you so much. It's been an absolute pleasure. So for the guys that listening, we want to find out more about you, more about Grin. What's the best way to do that?
Best way is to look me up on LinkedIn. Also, if you want to find out more about Grin, go to grin.co. You can definitely fill out the form or you can send me a message on LinkedIn and I'd be happy to connect you with a team member.
Brilliant. Well, thank you so much for being a guest on eCom@One. I'll speak to you again soon.
Excellent. Thank you so much.
Thank you. Bye bye.
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