tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/blogger-outreach Latest Blogger outreach content from Econsultancy 2016-04-19T12:45:40+01:00 tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67756 2016-04-19T12:45:40+01:00 2016-04-19T12:45:40+01:00 Influencer Marketing: It’s all about the audience Chris Lee <p>The answer lies in understanding their audience, without whom there <em>is</em> no ‘influence’, and working back from there. </p> <p>The Google Trends data speaks for itself. Influencer marketing is going through the roof, probably due to Google’s focus on diverse and authoritative links, and the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67076-the-rise-and-rise-of-ad-blockers-stats/">rise of ad blocking</a>.</p> <p>What used to be one area of public relations – media and blogger outreach – has now forced its way onto the remit of content marketers keen to build links and attention.</p> <p><em>'Influencer Marketing' in the UK (Google Trends, April 2016)</em></p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/4071/Google_Trends_Influencer_Marketing.png" alt="" width="399" height="259"></p> <p>For all the positives for influencers – more press trips, freebies and paid gigs – there is also the inevitable rise in spam.</p> <p>If you are a content marketer finding yourself doing more and more influencer outreach, the below steps should help.</p> <p>And to find out more about this topic, download Econsultancy's <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">Rise of Influencers Study</a>.</p> <h3>Influencer marketing from both sides</h3> <p>Having been in UK tech PR and media since 1998, I've seen media relations evolve from press releases being faxed and posted to print, radio and TV, to modern social media pitches linking to rich, embeddable media to bloggers and vloggers. </p> <p>As a tech journalist, my audience was IT managers. I spoke with them regularly to understand their challenges, and what kept them awake at night: security breaches, down time, capacity etc.</p> <p>Without understanding my audience, I couldn’t talk to them effectively.</p> <p>As a <a href="http://www.outsidewrite.co.uk" target="_blank">football travel blogger</a>, I can tell immediately the pitch from a PR – whose chief objective is often ‘coverage’ and opportunities-to-see (OTS) – and an <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/seo-training/">SEO</a>, who wants a backlink to a target URL.</p> <p>It’s clear that I write about football travel from the ‘About us’ page, and yet that means I have ended up on a few generic ‘lifestyle blogger’ lists and been invited to the launch of new restaurants and cocktail bars.</p> <p>This breaks the first rule of influencer marketing: personalisation.</p> <p>If you don’t understand the blogger – their motivation for blogging, the way they work and their audience – then you cannot tailor the unique content you need to in order to gain traction.</p> <p>You’re aiming to build a long-term relationship with influencers. Today’s upstart with a few thousand hits per month might be tomorrow’s Zoella or Jim Chapman.</p> <p>Way before approaching them, follow them on social media. Get on their radar somehow (a Like, a relevant retweet). </p> <h3>How to pitch to influencers</h3> <p>After the homework stage, you’re ready to pitch. You already know the blogger is relevant and who their audience is. You’ve seen if they’ve covered your brand or competition before.</p> <p>You’re clear on what unique experience or content you are ready to offer. Don’t forget to check on social media to see that they’re actually around and not on a boating trip in the Adriatic or on their way to a photo shoot.</p> <p>You’ll be most likely pitching by email and they – or the people paid to filter out the bad emails - will receive potentially hundreds each day, so you really need to stand out. </p> <p>The key to successful pitching includes:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Subject line:</strong> Keep this to less than eight words. Get to the point, make it click-worthy, and don’t use caps, it looks like shouting. A <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64878-45-words-to-avoid-in-your-email-marketing-subject-lines/">catchy subject line</a> is the difference between earning a click and being deleted instantly.</li> <li> <strong>Personalise approach:</strong> Address the influencer by name. Never say ‘hi there’ or ‘Dear Blogger’, absolute no-nos! Also, is there a polite and relevant segue you can add, such as ‘I saw your recent piece on X and our recent research on Y could build to the story…’ </li> <li> <strong>Offer something unique</strong>: Is there something exclusive that you can offer to help that influencer stand out, like unique content, an experience, an interview? </li> <li> <strong>Keep it brief</strong>: The influencer has got plenty of other emails to check. Get to the point quickly and leave a call to action. Manage expectations.</li> </ul> <p>The key thing is not to hassle the influencer. If they’re not interested, so be it. One of journalists’ key complaints is the “did you get my email?” PR follow-up call.</p> <p>If they are interested in your pitch, follow up quickly and manage it all the way through, thank them when the piece appears and share on your social networks.</p> <p>Don’t ever ask them if you can proof their copy first! </p> <p>Always remember that both parties need to <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67645-google-s-got-it-right-instead-of-bribing-bloggers-sort-out-your-website/">disclose their interest</a> in online content and social media.</p> <p>Now you need to build a database with relevant information to capture all the data you need on your influencer outreach.</p> <p>This should include contact information (email, social feeds etc.) and influence markers, such as domain authority (DA), estimated traffic, community size etc., and a history of your contact with them.</p> <p>Capture other data that might help ease a conversation with them and show you’ve actually researched them – where do they live, which football team do they support etc. </p> <p>Nothing beats meeting influencers face-to-face, so try to do that when you can.</p> <p>Influencers and those organisations hoping to work with them can create successful, symbiotic relationships, but many approaches can go horribly wrong – with some irate bloggers and journalists taking to social media to ‘out’ bad agencies.</p> <p>If you’re new to influencer relations, aim to be helpful and put yourself in the influencer’s shoes. It could be the start of a beautiful relationship.</p> <p><em>For more on this topic, see:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66560-what-are-influencers-and-how-do-you-find-them/"><em>What are influencers and how do you find them?</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67443-eight-influencer-marketing-stats-for-fashion-beauty-brands/"><em>Eight influencer marketing stats for fashion &amp; beauty brands</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66092-six-ways-to-woo-influencers-to-support-your-cause/"><em>Six ways to woo influencers to support your cause</em></a></li> </ul> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67731 2016-04-11T14:27:17+01:00 2016-04-11T14:27:17+01:00 Think affiliate marketing doesn’t work for luxury brands? Think again Chris Bishop <p>But no longer. Affiliate marketing has truly come of age.</p> <h3>Isn’t affiliate just voucher codes?</h3> <p>This is not just about voucher codes, cashback and last-click for advertisers, this is part of a holistic approach to digital advertising that promises real and sustained ROI for high-end brands.</p> <p><img src="https://openmerchantaccount.com/img2/whoaretheaffiliates.jpg" alt=""></p> <p>The modern managed affiliate programmes use sophisticated groups of content publishers, including mainstream “offline” publishing houses such as Condé Nast.  </p> <p>This is performance marketing through deep partnership, levered via tenancy, editorial, blogging, email and (yes) incentives like voucher codes or cashback. </p> <p>Partnerships with high volume and niche sites that can deliver the kind of primed-to-buy, long tailed traffic available nowhere else.</p> <h3>Are you at risk of losing control of your message?</h3> <p>No, but…</p> <p>For years affiliate networks and technology companies used the size and scale of the channel as a key selling point, promising brands access to tens of thousands of affiliates.  </p> <p>Given that they worked on tracking fees based upon revenue generated by activity, who can blame them? </p> <p>However, this wasn’t what luxury or designer retailers, already nervous about losing control of their brand’s messages, wanted to hear. </p> <p>Only now, with dedicated, digital agencies selling these solutions as part of a wider media strategy, are brands being given the whole picture.</p> <p>When properly managed, affiliate marketing allows brands to deliver relevant messages to highly-targeted customer segments.  </p> <p>But it’s the size and scale of the networks that makes this targeting possible in the first place.</p> <h3>But isn’t luxury all about exclusivity?  </h3> <p>Why would luxury brands want their valuable name bandied about on affiliate channels with everyone else’s?</p> <p><img src="https://openmerchantaccount.com/img2/chriscarcollection.jpg" alt=""></p> <p>Success in the digital age requires a change in mind-set for luxury brands as customers’ buying cycles accelerate and competition stiffens in every part of the market place.  </p> <p>No longer can scarcity be the strongest value in a luxury brand's armoury, as the array of choice and quality available elsewhere can fill any sales vacuum.  </p> <p>Instead, luxury today is defined by desirability, product excellence, exemplary service and, fundamentally, a brand promise.</p> <p>And affiliate channels are exactly where a brand’s promise, desirability, service and excellence are defined for its target audience.  </p> <p>They are key to the continued success of luxury brands in the digital age and are proven to send ready-to-convert customers direct to online stores.   </p> <h3>Luxury is talked about and bought online more than ever</h3> <p>Deloitte says that 58% of UK millennial luxury consumers buy their luxury goods online. What’s more, 85% of luxury consumers regularly use social media.</p> <p>According to Google one in five luxury purchases happens on the web.</p> <p>And participating in high profile online retail events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday clearly doesn’t dim the lustre of a luxury brand or cannibalize their full-price sales.</p> <p>In 2015 our client NET-A-PORTER saw Black Friday was its highest day for sales that year, with one item sold every second on its website. </p> <p>What’s more, offering deals and vouchering is not regarded as damaging to luxury brands’ reputation by consumers.  </p> <p>In fact, these luxury customers were four times more likely to be searching for deals on Black Friday 2015 than non-luxury customers (Experian).</p> <h3>Do affiliate tactics really deliver incremental sales to luxury brands?</h3> <p>Yes, they do.</p> <p>One of our retailers had always assumed cashback websites would only reach customers already on its files and has little effect on overall profit. We helped them prove otherwise.  </p> <p>A tactical trial conducted with Quidco for the brand found that 86% of consumers that bought their products via the publisher during the trial were “new to file” and their average order value was much higher than the norm.</p> <p><img src="https://openmerchantaccount.com/img2/shopstylesolacelondon.jpg" alt=""></p> <p>For another fashion retailer, working with affiliates achieved over 300 pieces of content coverage in a three-month period which, in turn, contributed to content websites driving 50%+ of the brand's affiliate revenue.</p> <p>Affiliate channels have proved, time and time again, to bring new customers and incremental sales to the table for every kind of brand, particularly those at the very top end of their sector.</p> <h3>Who else is using affiliates?</h3> <p>The roll call of brands that are using the affiliate channel as part of the marketing mix is impressive – Agent Provocateur, Barneys New York, Burberry, Liberty London, NET-A-PORTER to name a few.</p> <p>But if the affiliate channel was just about vouchers and cashback, they wouldn’t be using it.</p> <p>These brands know the value of curated conversation and content-led buzz to their brand; they are finding new and exciting ways to engage through affiliate marketing.  </p> <p>Crucially, they are realising that careful planning, targeted partnership and innovative execution ensures the biggest ROI alongside an extension of digital PR.</p> <h3>The lessons of affiliate marketing</h3> <ul> <li>Luxury affiliate marketing is happening... if you’re not doing it, you’re already losing out.</li> <li>Luxury consumers are savvy, switched on and impulsive – take advantage of that.</li> <li>Be led by the data and use experts to help you execute the highest quality campaigns.</li> <li>Choose who manages your affiliates carefully – your brand’s success will live or die by their experience both within wider digital marketing, the specific affiliate channel and naturally their knowledge of your brand / sector.</li> </ul> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/67530 2016-02-17T11:44:00+00:00 2016-02-17T11:44:00+00:00 Five social media campaigns celebrating women across the globe Chloe McKenna <p>But how does the theme of women’s rights translate to campaigns globally?</p> <p>In this post I'll run through some of the most fascinating international campaigns focusing on female empowerment, and see how different cultures interpret the concept. </p> <h3>#touchthepickle</h3> <p>Whisper’s #touchthepickle campaign by P&amp;G India was created to debunk the taboos of things women supposedly shouldn’t do when they’re on their period.</p> <p>The undeniably hilarious hashtag #touchthepickle is in reference to the superstitious belief that if women touch a pickle jar when they’re on their period, the pickles inside will rot.</p> <p>The accompanying YouTube video achieved over 2m views and users were invited to share their #touchthepickle period-taboo busting moments on social media which added another dimension of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66739-how-user-generated-content-is-changing-content-marketing/">user-generated content</a> to the campaign. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/5s8SD83ILJY?wmode=transparent" width="615" height="346"></iframe></p> <h3>#autocompletetruth</h3> <p>Memac Ogilvy and Mather’s powerful campaign for UN women in Dubai exposed some of the horrifying auto-complete phrases seen in Google when searching for terms related to women.</p> <p>From ‘women shouldn’t have rights’ to ‘women shouldn’t work’, the widespread sexism of popular searches was truly shocking.</p> <p>The campaign ignited global conversations with over 24m Twitter mentions alone for the #autocompletetruth hashtag, and the campaign was discussed on social media by women from more than 100 different countries.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/2008/autocomplete.png" alt="" width="641" height="871"></p> <h3>BBC #100women</h3> <p>The annual BBC #100women campaign focuses on sharing the stories of women from around the world, which can be overlooked by mainstream media, with the aim of making news content more engaging for female audiences.</p> <p>It is truly international, with content being shared in eight languages across two international BBC social media channels (Twitter &amp; Facebook) <a href="https://www.facebook.com/BBC100women/?fref=ts">featuring women from across the globe.</a></p> <p>The 100 women representing the campaign are diverse, ranging from world leaders to local heroines coming from all walks of life. The multi-channel campaign has a hugely social focus.</p> <p>Nandita Patkar, head of paid media at Oban Digital, explains:</p> <blockquote> <p>For this year’s campaign, the BBC World Service wanted to improve online campaign traffic across Arabic, Hindi, Spanish and Afrique, Urdu and Swahili. Our expert teams researched which markets and channels would offer the most impact in terms of relevancy, reach and cost and planned accordingly.</p> <p>Our amplification of content throughout the live debates showed that there was a strong interest in the topic from Eastern Africa and India. Overall though, Spanish had the majority of reach and engagement.</p> </blockquote> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/2009/100_women.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="513"></p> <h3>#Ladyball</h3> <p>This recent spoof campaign from Lidl Ireland caused much controversy on social media.</p> <p>It seemingly promoted a dainty pink ‘Ladyball’, suitable for sports women, boasting ‘soft-touch for a woman’s grip’ and ‘eazi-play – for a woman’s ability’.</p> <p>While many correctly suspected that the ‘sexist’ campaign was nothing more than a marketing ploy, it still managed to spark debate and gain considerable news coverage.</p> <p>The campaign was indeed a tongue-in-cheek promotion tactic; in fact designed to raise awareness of Ladies Gaelic Football which is now sponsored by Lidl Ireland.</p> <p>Reaction to the humorous approach was positive in general, although some Twitter users took objection to the contrived nature of the advertisements, and questioned whether all PR is indeed good PR when it purports to support such dated views.</p> <p>However, the campaign was successful in igniting social media mentions and gaining media placements, reaching a large audience in the process.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">There's now ads in the paper for the lady ball.. This can't be real please say it ain't so <a href="https://t.co/1htC8BmGi2">pic.twitter.com/1htC8BmGi2</a></p> — Rachel (@ityagalrach) <a href="https://twitter.com/ityagalrach/status/687965104206393344">January 15, 2016</a> </blockquote> <h3>#VivaLaReconstruccion</h3> <p>Latin America’s mainstream culture places a high value on traditional female beauty ideals.</p> <p>So, when popular Mexican actress and director Patricia Reyes Spíndola posed topless revealing her reconstructed breasts in a series of striking photographs shared via social media, it caused quite a stir.</p> <p>The campaign, #VivaLaReconstruction, aimed to spread awareness of breast cancer while showcasing an alternative view of female beauty focused on the strength and resilience of a woman’s body.</p> <p>The images were widely shared and were generally well-received by the Latin American audience.</p> <p>Many people tweeted that they found the campaign concept and the accompanying visuals refreshing and inspiring. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0007/2010/vivalareconstruction.png" alt="" width="944" height="794"></p> <h3>In conclusion...</h3> <p>All of these campaigns were successful because they carefully considered the audiences they were targeting, and addressed issues which effect real women from those regions.</p> <p>From body image and gender norms through to female sport and women’s rights, the umbrella of female empowerment can encompass many topics.</p> <p>Undeniably, woman power has proved itself to be a forceful theme for igniting social media debate and conversation across the globe.</p> <p>But, for marketers hoping to cash-in on the theme, caution is advised as increasingly audiences are savvy to so-called ‘femvertising’.</p> <p>Campaigns channelling female power will only have legs if they manage to identify with real women and avoid alienating them by coming across as too contrived or patronising. </p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66915 2015-09-11T09:43:00+01:00 2015-09-11T09:43:00+01:00 How to create and manage brand advocates Tamara Littleton <p>Advocates are <a href="http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/5-tips-for-creating-powerful-brand-advocates-infographic/616445" target="_self">83% more likely</a> than others to share information about products with their network. </p> <p>But how does a brand get regular fans of its work to shift from a passive consumer of information, goods and services, into an active member of the brand community. Someone who takes the passion they have for the brand and tells other people about it?</p> <p>How can it call on these people when it needs them the most? Is there a way to do this while adhering to advertising regulations?</p> <h3>Creating brand advocates</h3> <p>You can’t buy advocates. Well, you can but it’s the equivalent of being a politician who rents a crowd of people for a rally, the support is superficial and will last only as long as the payments do. </p> <p>The best brand advocates are created organically and nurtured over a significant period of time. It takes time to build a real relationship with someone and for them to develop trust in the brand.</p> <p>Businesses need to release high quality, reliable products that people find useful, or provide a speedy and efficient service. They need to cherish loyal customers, and reward people who contribute high quality content to the community. </p> <p>Brands can also try to establish relationships with those who are influential with their target audience, although this is trickier to pull off.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/4291/Zoella___YouTube_homepage.png" alt="" width="637" height="479"></p> <p>The brand needs to know if its making a marketing deal to promote its brand (in which case the influencer’s loyalty may not be significant) or is it getting in touch with a well-known super-fan and giving them content and support as they continue to promote the brand to their own followers (such as YouTube gamers).</p> <p>Either way, communication is vital.</p> <p>Brands need to provide early access, exclusive content and behind-the-scenes experiences to their <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66560-what-are-influencers-and-how-do-you-find-them">advocates and influencers</a>, but also realise that the brand cannot pressure the person to post a specific opinion (at least not without facing the consequences).</p> <h3>What can advocates do?</h3> <p>Brand advocates generate and share content about the brand and may come out in support of the brand when it’s criticised or in the middle of a social media crisis.</p> <p>But only if it makes sense for them to, if their own audience is up in arms about important issues, they risk their own reputation by defending the brand too vigorously.</p> <p>Advocates share their passion about the brand with their own followers, and these people share the content themselves, bringing in their friends and followers and potentially increasing the fan and customer base of the brand.</p> <p>This is much more powerful than straightforward marketing and advertising because it’s consumer driven. </p> <p>Brands have successfully used advocates to change perceptions in the past. Dettol saw sales of its spray increase by <a href="http://www.digitalstrategyconsulting.com/intelligence/2014/10/digital_marketing_roi_five_fmcg_campaigns_that_prove_digital_works.php" target="_self">86%</a> in China in 2011, by convincing 4,000 mothers that the product could be used as a surface cleaner, rather than just used on floors.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0006/6969/social-media-china-dettol-case-study-blog-flyer.png" alt=""></p> <p>However the effect of brand advocacy is often subtle and more long-term.</p> <h3>Regulations</h3> <p>Advertising authorities in the UK and US have strict rules when it comes to working with influencers and advocates. The US Federal Trade Commission outlines the need for transparency in its <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/ftcs-revised-endorsement-guides-what-people-are-asking" target="_self">endorsement guidelines</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>If there’s a connection between an endorser and the marketer that consumers would not expect and it would affect how consumers evaluate the endorsement, that connection should be disclosed.</p> </blockquote> <p>The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority's <a href="https://www.cap.org.uk/Advertising-Codes/Non-Broadcast.aspx" target="_self">Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing</a> code covers a brand’s relationship with blogger advocates...</p> <p>Not only must the blogger tell his or her audience when a post is sponsored or paid for by a brand, but the brand must realise that such content falls under advertising regulations.</p> <p>Bloggers stop being a regular customer, posting their opinion online, if the brand has paid for their work (even if the brand sent a free item for reviewing purposes, it still needs to be disclosed.)</p> <h3>Allow advocates to be genuine</h3> <p>Advocates wield a great deal of power so it is crucial for brands to treat them as part of the inner circle when it comes to launching a new product or handling a crisis, but don’t cut them off if they share an opinion that doesn’t 100% support the brand.</p> <p>Brand advocacy can be a great way for a brand to build a long-lasting relationship with its audience.</p> <p>By ensuring the passionate fans are genuine, whether it is celebrating successes or giving constructive criticism, they can influence others, support sales and the longevity of a brand without looking like they have been ‘bought’.  </p> <p><em>You can learn even more about engaging customers on social at our two day <a href="http://ecly.co/1EmHi7L">Festival of Marketing</a> event in November. Book your ticket today and head to the Social stage to learn how to manage brand perception and reach new audiences.</em></p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66780 2015-08-04T15:48:00+01:00 2015-08-04T15:48:00+01:00 From CRM to IRM: the rise of social influence Nicolas Chabot <p>Taking its beginnings from the rationale and practice of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/64545-what-is-crm-and-why-do-you-need-it">Customer Relationship Marketing (CRM)</a>, IRM is also sometimes described as ‘CRM of the Marketer’.  </p> <p>Beyond the terminology it is important to understand how IRM and CRM fundamentally differ and pursue differing goals, objectives and outcomes.</p> <p>Also why it's critical that they work hand in hand, building a bridge between CRM, direct marketing, social media and marketing, while optimising the performance of each area respectively.</p> <p><img style="vertical-align: middle;" src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0006/5768/crm_v_irm-blog-flyer.jpg" alt="IRM vs CRM" width="470" height="332"></p> <h3>IRM vs CRM: targeting different audiences</h3> <p>CRM/PRM programs are built specifically around a brand’s existing customers and prospects. In the B2C world, CRM models are usually closely integrated to customer loyalty programs and can count well up into the millions in terms of account numbers as well as budgetary investment.</p> <p>IRM programs on the other hand <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66671-five-things-to-do-when-approaching-influencers/">target relevant brand influencers</a>.</p> <p>These are not necessarily the customers or prospects of the brand. They are the individuals who can sway the behaviour or shape the opinions of others through their online conversations and interactions to the benefit of a given brand.</p> <p>The premise being that on-boarding those few with a proactive discerning voice that is heard is by far of greater value.</p> <p>To be clear it is not a key objective of most influencer programs to turn influencers into customers. The reason is that the value of an influencer to a brand is not their wallet, it's their voice as the power of peer-to-peer influence and word-of-mouth is now recognised as one of the single most impactful means of customer on-boarding.</p> <h3>IRM vs CRM: a fundamentally different understanding of the user value</h3> <p>CRM programs mostly aim to increase customer value by looking at their buying performance. Customer value is calculated on the direct margin generated by a given customer through their purchases.</p> <p>For IRM programs, user value is based on their influence within relevant contexts, groups and scenarios. IRM programs aim to work with online influencers, that is those individuals that have an impact on social media through their voice. Their value lies in the influence they have on others.</p> <h3>Customers and influencers: different engagement objectives/models</h3> <p>CRM programs aim to increase custom for your product and most focus on hard line promotional mechanisms such as couponing and targeted offers that aim to trigger additional purchase (and also contribute to tracking consumer behaviours).</p> <p>IRM programs aim to increase the positive mentions of your brand among select opinion leaders, driving brand visibility and advocacy levels.</p> <p>Successful IRM programs aim to build collaborative relationships with key relevant influencers and facilitate the co-creation of content. It has to be a partnership in order to work.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/4291/Zoella___YouTube_homepage.png" alt="" width="637" height="479"></p> <p>A most fundamental point of divergence between IRM and CRM thinking is also the distribution of value.</p> <p>A major French retailer recently shared with me that their top 9% customers account for 50% of total revenues generated through their loyalty card customers and the equivalent to 25% of their total business. </p> <p>At the same time, research at Traackr shows that 3% of influencers generate 90% of conversations on the web. This means that the concentration of important voices is disproportionate to the concentration of your top customers.</p> <p>While CRM has built highly scaled automated engagement programs, IRM will focus resources on just a few selected individuals to maximize the ROI of social engagement.</p> <h3>IRM and CRM: specific KPIs and measurement</h3> <p>As one would expect, KPIs and other success indicators will differ widely between CRM and IRM. </p> <p>CRM managers will look at the total purchase value, the average basket value and the penetration rate. Because most KPIs are in £, CRM metrics have been referred to as being ROI driven.  </p> <p>However all CRM experts know that such a notion remains elusive, even here. The reality is that most brands struggle to even track customer purchases through their distribution network.</p> <p>IRM managers will consider the number of mentions, the share of voice, the generated traffic... indicators that would normally demonstrate how the program contributed the overall visibility and advocacy of the brand.</p> <p>IRM Programs are one element of the larger communication stack and it is critical that KPIs from IRM are integrated in the bigger projects brands are now undertaking to optimize their communication investments across channels.</p> <h3>The next stage of IRM and CRM is convergence</h3> <p>After all we have said above, why talk about convergence now?</p> <h3>One brand. One voice</h3> <p>Naturally the same individual can be a customer - part of the CRM program - and an Influencer - part of the IRM program. The reality for the biggest brands is that most influencers are also customers (but perhaps low value customers?)</p> <p>These customer-influencers don’t care about IRM and CRM, they expect to hear one voice only. It is the responsibility of the brand to build bridges in organisations that enable it to speak consistently across all touch points </p> <p>Aggregating social data to individual CRM profiles could also be a fantastic source of knowledge for CRM programs and open the door to new targeting and customisation capabilities.  </p> <p>The influencer marketer knows much more about its audience than the manager of CRM programs.</p> <p>Obviously such process raises a number of technical and privacy issues that need to be managed extremely carefully. </p> <h3>The challenge of influencer concentration</h3> <p>One issue for many CRM managers is to realise the impact of the hyper concentration of influence on scale.</p> <p>A Traackr customer trying to recruit influencers across their customer base received a response rate of 1% (that is 1% of customers interested to be identified on social media), of which not surprisingly only 5% were deemed sufficiently influential to be part of an IRM activation.</p> <p>This is overall a mere 0.05% of the initial number of customers. Take the example of a retailer with a strong 4m customers signed up on their loyalty card. A quick estimate is that only 2,000 people would accept to join an IRM program and have a meaningful impact on online conversations.</p> <p>CRM managers struggle to see the value of developing specific activities for such small numbers, because they live in a environment of mass engagement. Matching cultures between IRM managers and CRM managers is key to building efficient bridges between the two practices.</p> <h3>Influencing advocates: the Eldorado of brand engagement</h3> <p>Innovative brands have already started to build specific programs that sit across IRM and CRM, involving their most influential customers.</p> <p>The best example is ASOS advocacy program #AccessAllAsos involving fans and customers of the brand selected for their social activity and influence.</p> <p>Engaging with influential customers is a great opportunity because they already know and love the brand.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5844/ASOS-Insider-Badge-250-x-250.png" alt="" width="250" height="250"></p> <p>By providing exclusive and exciting opportunities to generate unique content to the members of #AccessAllAsos, ASOS facilitated the publication on social of thousands of original pieces of content featuring the brand, and increased spontaneous brand mention by up to eight times. </p> <p>In summary its clear that influential clients are one of the most valuable and strategic assets that brands can and should now be looking to activate and capitalise upon in their social media strategies.</p> <h3>Impact on the technology stack</h3> <p>IRM integration is without a doubt the next stage of CRM. And because the CRM market is a highly structured and well-funded part of the marketing technology stack, IRM and CRM integration represents a huge opportunity for IRM vendors. </p> <p>Many of the most advanced companies are already starting to build user cases and workflows and are planning interaction projects, leveraging application and unique API capabilities.</p> <p>Qualitative authentic customer feedback and genuine engagement count by far as the most inspirational and sought after outcomes of any brand marketing activity and IRM is the exciting new avenue at the forefront of current marketing practice that can help brands to realise this.</p> <p>The overlaps with CRM are palpable and yet organisations must adjust their current structure and resource allocations in order to capitalise upon this opportunity properly. </p> <p>Stay tuned: it's just the beginning for IRM and its convergence with CRM.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66688 2015-07-14T09:53:00+01:00 2015-07-14T09:53:00+01:00 Wimbledon and brand marketing: serving up a match made in heaven Kasia Piekut <p dir="ltr">No matter if you watch it at home, at work or on the court, brands are there to celebrate tennis’s golden moments with you through the use of content, cutting-edge technology and agile social marketing. </p> <h2 dir="ltr">Jaguar tests technology for real-time sentiment discovery </h2> <p dir="ltr">To find Wimbledon’s hotspots, Jaguar Land Rover has introduced biometric trackers designed to track, measure and record the crowd’s emotions during Wimbledon 2015. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0C4ujBBlqFM?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p dir="ltr">To understand how real-time events influence audience, Jaguar, first time official car sponsor of Wimbledon, used a mixture of the latest technology and sociometric tracking.  </p> <p dir="ltr">Each day 20 fans were given biometric wristbands which monitored the wearer’s heart rate and excitement.</p> <p dir="ltr">Noise and crowd movement, ‘sociometric’ data generated from engagement on social media, were measured by atmospheric sensors. Those were placed around the venue with an aim to detect changes in relation to events happening on the court during tournaments.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5049/jaguar-wearable-tech-wimbledon.jpg" alt="" width="700" height="467"> </p> <p dir="ltr">The information provided by users, from pulse in real-time, mood and excitement level, mixed with various activities on social media, became part of live <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66131-17-visualisation-tools-to-make-your-data-beautiful">data visualisations</a> gathered on <a href="http://jaguar.wimbledon.com/en_GB/wrapper/jlr/index.html" target="_blank">Jaguar’s microsite</a>.</p> <p dir="ltr">The discovered sentiment and other insights were shared on Jaguar’s social media with the use of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FeelWimbledon?src=hash" target="_blank">#FeelWimbledon hashtag</a> which fans unable to attend the event were able to use to get involved in the Wimbledon’s spirit and join those in the stands. </p> <h2>Robinsons’s treasure hunt </h2> <p dir="ltr"> To draw attention of a wide range of younger tennis fans, Robinsons launched a multi-channel campaign '80 Years at Wimbledon'. </p> <p dir="ltr">Using the power of short video and animated GIFs the brand grew excitement to the launch of Wimbledon with '<a href="https://www.robinsonssquash.co.uk/HuntForWimbledon/default.aspx" target="_blank">The Great Robinsons Ball Hunt</a>'.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5042/great-robinsons-ball-hunt.png" alt="" width="586" height="342"></p> <p dir="ltr">Followers on Twitter were asked to discover locations of giant tennis balls hidden across the country for a chance to win prizes from tennis merchandise to VIP tickets to The Championships.</p> <p dir="ltr">Everyday, s series of clues and teasers were revealed on the company’s Twitter encouraging others to join in. The hunt was endorsed with the appearance of British number one tennis player, Tim Henman, who became the ‘face’ of the campaign and presented clues on Twitter while asking the public to find the balls and tweet a picture of them. </p> <p dir="ltr">This rather simple idea became a great way of building up anticipation for a major sporting event while the competitive angle encouraged fans to become more involved in the hunt.</p> <p dir="ltr">For some, it was also a chance to be closer to an experience they always dreamed about and swap the TV screen for the actual court. </p> <h2>Stella Artois virtual reality experience </h2> <p>This year Stella Artois brought again something rather new to Wimbledon by taking inspiration from legendary hawk Rufus, who helps keep pigeons away from Wimbledon’s grounds.</p> <p>To allow tennis fans to get a bird’s eye view of Wimbledon’s court, the brand introduced 'The Perfect Flight’' virtual reality (VR) app.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/GuZ2_rsv0VI?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> <p>With the use of Google Cardboard, Oculus Rift and 360° technology, Stella Artois created an immersive experience which gives tennis enthusiasts the chance to admire London’s Waterloo Station in a 360 degree video from above the courts.</p> <p>Using the app, available on iTunes, Google Play Store and cardboard googles, users can fly like Rufus from the comfort of their living room while admiring Wimbledon's iconic sights.  </p> <p>The VR kit which enables the app to work on smartphone was up for grabs on Stella Artois’s Twitter. In order to win it, the brand asked for retweets reaching in total 1,845.</p> <p>If you scroll over Stella Artois’s social media you will be able to discover <a href="http://tandcs.stellaartois.com/" target="_blank">other giveaways</a> from cider hampers, Cidre Le Poolwear, to Wimbledon accessory set giveaway’s. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5043/stella-artios-wimbledon-competition.png" alt="" width="580" height="473"></p> <h2>Evian’s celebrity content series aimed at raising emotions </h2> <p dir="ltr">To empower tennis enthusiasts’ to share their emotions from this year’s Wimbledon, Evian boosted these efforts with daily video series hosted by celebrities, bloggers and tennis fans which express their reactions to the events on Wimbledon’s court.</p> <p dir="ltr">Every morning a show recorded at the brand’s onsite ‘Live Young Suite’ is released on <a href="http://www.wimbledon.com/index.html" target="_blank">Wimbledon’s website</a> while mobile users can access them using Shazam’s new visual recognition feature available on Evian’s print adverts.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5044/evian-wimble-watch-social-media-campaign.png" alt="" width="581" height="396"></p> <p dir="ltr">Using the power of social media, Evian is encouraging fans to show their Wimbledon reactions on Twitter and Instagram with the use of <a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23wimbledonwatch&amp;src=typd" target="_blank">#wimbledonwatch hashtag</a> with a promise of making the most engaging ones into a video leading up to the finalists.</p> <p dir="ltr">By merging fan emotions with the potential of getting some of the Wimbledon limelight, the brand hopes to unite closer fans at home with those on the court while driving genuine examples of the sport’s excitement. </p> <p dir="ltr">Creating ‘Live Young Suite’ and filming celebrity comments from Wimbledon’s daily events allowed the brand to tap into the power of influencer endorsement while expanding the campaign's reach through celebrity recognition. </p> <h2>Paddy Power supports mischief at Wimbledon’s ups and downs  </h2> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/5045/paddy-power-wimbledon.png" alt="" width="585" height="542"></p> <p>In this crowded space where brands try to steal the limelight from Wimbledon’s fever, Paddy Power differentiated itself by bringing a mixture of humor and sarcasm. Starting with '<a href="http://blog.paddypower.com/2015/06/29/you-cant-be-serious-paddy-powers-creepy-wimbledon-quiz/" target="_blank">Paddy Power’s creepy Wimbledon quiz</a>', using Vine to have a laugh from from TV presenters, to posting updates on Facebook like this one:</p> <blockquote> <p>Nick Kyrgios, just like the rest of us, can't be arsed with work on a Monday morning’</p> </blockquote> <p>(This generated 268,651 views and 5,290 people likes).</p> <p>is the best proof that some brands don't need high tech solutions or fancy campaigns in order to engage its audience. What works for them is staying original to their branded personality with cheekiness and reactivity in messaging. </p> <h2>Expanding the reach of real-time campaigns  </h2> <p>Every year, to enhance Wimbledon’s spectator experience, brands work on their real-time marketing proposition to deliver campaigns which can help them own this unforgettable moment.</p> <p>But in order to make it work, they have to earn tennis enthusiasts’ attention with useful, relevant and entertaining experience. </p> <p>There’s going to be a lot of pressure to succeed at Wimbledon 2016 with real-time campaigns and solutions that can hit people with the right emotions and energy while reflecting the mood of the game.</p> <p>By getting it right, brands are able to gain some significant benefits but achieving them will be only possible by merging together technology, content and social media.</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66295 2015-04-10T09:08:00+01:00 2015-04-10T09:08:00+01:00 Many marketers still don’t understand the role of bloggers Chris Lee <p>Bloggers matter. While many brands and agencies have grasped this concept, not everyone is engaging bloggers in a mutually constructive way. Even though blogging has matured, blogger relations is still a massive area for improvement.</p> <p>Let me tell you a personal story, and if you’re a blogger I hope you’ll nod along to this. I run two blogs in my spare time: <a href="http://www.theguestale.com/"><em>The Guest Ale</em></a> is a beer reviews site with 2,000-4,000 unique visits a month, many from search engines, while <a href="http://www.outsidewrite.co.uk/"><em>Outside Write</em></a> is a nascent “thinking fan’s football blog”.</p> <p>As part of a recent internal training session I ran on how bloggers work I showed my colleagues some of the approaches I receive from PRs, having made my way onto various distribution lists over the years for <em>The Guest Ale.</em></p> <p>Despite a clear <em>Notes for PRs</em> section, 75% of the emails I receive are not beer-related. These include invitations to visit new Greek restaurants, warnings on the dangers of fad diets, new toy launches, a property expo invitation, cocktail recipes and wine events.</p> <p>Few of them were personalised and many were certainly not well researched. Worse still, some were addressed ‘Dear Blogger’. #Fail.</p> <h2><strong>Ignore bloggers at your peril</strong></h2> <p>We’ve covered the ‘proactive’ element – reaching out to bloggers. Then there’s the ‘reactive’ element. As a blogger, irrespective of the size of your following, there is nothing worse than being ignored if you’ve written about their product bought out of your own pocket, especially if positive.</p> <p>A great number of my beer reviews citing a brand go unshared or unfavourited by those companies on Twitter, this includes supermarkets and brewers who have <em>sent</em> me samples in the first place as part of <em>their</em> blogger relations!</p> <p>This isn’t just bad manners, it shows a lack of good Twittership from those brands in understanding that these people are advocates with spheres of influence.</p> <p>Bloggers will also think twice about reviewing your products going forward.</p> <h2><strong>How to run a successful <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65495-five-lessons-for-effective-blogger-outreach">blogger relations programme</a></strong></h2> <p>Rather than viewing bloggers as a bolt-on set of low-tier media, brands need to understand where those influencers fit into the decision making journey of their target audiences.</p> <p>For example, I mentioned most of <em>The Guest Ale</em>’s traffic comes from search, and I know from Google Analytics, which brands in particular are benefiting, even when reviews are sometimes four years old; my positive reviews fit into the ‘Consideration’ stage of that journey, as those people already entered a branded search to learn more about that product.</p> <p>Many of those reviews will also form part of the ‘Discovery’ stage as I unveil new beers to my small but engaged community on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and RSS.</p> <p>As well as being potential advocates in the decision making journey, bloggers can help provide those diverse and authoritative inbound links that Google loves so much, so should form an integral part of a SEO PR strategy.</p> <p>To summarise, follow this checklist with bloggers:</p> <ul> <li>Read the blog</li> <li>Search for your brand, industry space and competitors. Have they written about you/your competitors before? Is there a new angle you can offer?</li> <li>Personalise your approach</li> <li>Understand how the blogger works</li> <li>Be clear on what you want out of the relationship</li> <li>Build database on relevant information and update regularly so you don’t miss-target</li> <li>Research blogger on all social media: that’s a sure way to understand their interests and segue intros</li> <li>Be helpful</li> <li>Offer exclusive content: bloggers want unique content that no other blogs have. How can you help?</li> <li>Share coverage on your social networks</li> </ul> <p>Blogger relations is a long-term programme. Some bloggers will grow and grow, while others disappear. Some may even take up media careers and become even more influential.</p> <p>They will always remember which brands treated them well, and those who ignored them. Which one will you be?</p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66162 2015-03-05T11:25:24+00:00 2015-03-05T11:25:24+00:00 What a brand learned from becoming a blogger Heledd Jones <p>As a brand, we have dabbled in blogger outreach in the past, so I thought it would be a great use of my maternity leave to enter what I thought was the ‘murky world’ of mummy blogging.</p> <p>Here are some of the key things I learned about blogging...</p> <h3><strong>Blogging generates sales</strong></h3> <p>In nine short months, I quickly learnt how to blog, how to grow my followers and traffic but most importantly I learnt:</p> <ul> <li>Blogs operate in communities.</li> <li>I actually bought things based on blogger recommendations.</li> </ul> <p>These might seem like obvious points to you – but previously when we were working with bloggers, I have to be honest I only thought of them as one person, one post supporting our campaign, one link.</p> <p>I thought of their traffic stats as numbers, not as people.</p> <p>I have learned that you can only grow your blog through interacting with other bloggers. In doing so, I found myself in a community of like-minded new mums – we would share tips on everything from getting our babies to sleep through the nights, to which highchairs to buy.</p> <p>Blog posts I wrote reviewing products that I’d bought with my own money generated sales of those products.</p> <p>Again, this shouldn’t be a surprise – the power of word-of-mouth – but it was the first time I’d partaken in it.</p> <h3><strong>Blogging takes time, and time = money</strong></h3> <ul> <li>Writing a blog post can take a lot of time</li> <li>Many bloggers will only work with brands who pay them</li> </ul> <p>As a brand, I never paid a blogger to write about us. I always thought it was cheeky that they requested payment in exchange for what I thought was useful (often exclusive/embargoed) content for their blog. Now I know how much time can go into writing and promoting a blog post, I can <em>sort of</em> see where they’re coming from.</p> <p>I say ‘sort of’ because all of the above has led me to wonder what will happen to the brand and blogger relationship in 2015…..</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0006/0556/venn_chart_about_blogging.jpg" alt="" width="640" height="480"></p> <h3><strong>Brands, blogs and SEO links: what we know </strong></h3> <ul> <li>Links from blogs have <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66104-22-tips-to-help-you-become-a-brilliant-guest-contributor">decreased in SEO value</a> over time.</li> <li>However, there are still big UK brands who are paying bloggers for undisclosed links (clearly violating Google guidelines).</li> <li>A brand mention from a blogger can generate traffic and sales for the brand.</li> <li>There are an ever-increasing amount of bloggers who want to make money from blogging.</li> </ul> <h3><strong style="text-align: center;">Blurred lines: is blogger outreach PR, affiliate or SEO activity?</strong></h3> <p>If bloggers can generate sales, should they be treated as affiliate channels? Arguably they should be treated as part of the PR function – but you would never pay a journalist to write about your brand, so why should you pay a blogger?</p> <p>You might take a journalist out for lunch… or send them a gift… and this is where the lines can become blurred, as bloggers DO accept payment (but they need to disclose this)!</p> <p>Perhaps it depends on the brand’s objective – like I said, there are still plenty of brands that are paying for links for their SEO benefit.</p> <p>Will we see more of these budgets moving into PR and brand budgets, with brand awareness or traffic objectives? I spoke to one brand for whom this is the case:</p> <h3><strong>A brand that invests in blogger outreach </strong></h3> <p>Sarah Walters from<a href="http://www.bluestonewales.com/"> Bluestone</a> National Park Resort in Pembrokeshire, said: </p> <blockquote> <p>We operate a blogger outreach programme which provides bloggers with a review opportunity.</p> <p>The aim is to increase our online coverage through online and social mentions through independent reviews. Although it’s hard to directly attribute actual sales from this activity, we can see coverage gained through social reach and then any resulting uplift in our followers, enquiries, etc and we know that we’ve reached people that would have harder to reach via traditional channels.</p> <p>The outreach programme sits within the PR and marketing functions, so it works well across the marcoms channels, with PR seeking bloggers that are appropriate and fit with what we’re attempting to promote while the other marketing elements use the collateral produced for further insights and promotional activity.</p> <p>This has been working so well for us that we’ve reduced our budgets in conventional print and radio in favour of online channels. We don’t pay bloggers for their time or travel expenses. They still have to make a small contribution towards the break, perhaps through activities, meals, etc, but we hope this leads to a more honest, genuine review and we would never veto their content.</p> </blockquote> <h3><strong>Summary: the future of blogger outreach?</strong></h3> <p>As well as an upsurge in marketers becoming bloggers after reading this (go on, it really is easy and useful for your day job!) I also predict that we will see that budget shift from SEO budgets to brand budgets.</p> <p>With that, we can expect brands to seek a higher quality of blogger than those based on SEO metrics. So some bloggers will need to up their game – a brand is less likely to work with a blogger who just does continually sponsored posts and/or reviews for other brands.</p> <p>They’re more likely to want to work with someone who produces engaging, unique content and demonstrates some shared brand values.</p> <p>I wanted to give the last word on this to an expert in this area, Andrew Girdwood from <a href="http://www.digitaslbi.com/uk/">Digitas LBi</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>I’m a blogger as well an agency geek. Sometimes the outreach efforts from brands and agencies to my blogs make me shudder but sometimes they fill me with hope.</p> <p>What we’ll see, I think, is the quality bar for success being pushed ever higher. This will necessitate channels like SEO, PR and social overlapping even more than they already do. Brands and agencies will both just have to get over their hang-ups about that and get on with it. </p> <p> If we treat bloggers well, stop trying to hoodwink them into undisclosed advertorials, and strike the balance between quality editorial pitches and fairly priced commercial work then outreach gets a lot less murky.  That clarity will help those bloggers producing great, legal content and attracting audiences from outside the echo chamber to succeed and win more work.</p> </blockquote> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/66092 2015-02-20T10:49:33+00:00 2015-02-20T10:49:33+00:00 Six ways to woo influencers to support your cause Gina Roughan <p>There’s no question that this is the age of the influencer.</p> <p>But is that spike caused by Stephen Fry’s single tweet more valuable to Prostate Cancer than an ongoing series of tweets, blogs and digital advocacy from a passionate, credible health blogger with just 1% of Fry’s following (which would still be an impressive 87,000)?</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>I’ve signed up to <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MenUnited?src=hash">#MenUnited</a> because friends are <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WorthFightingFor?src=hash">#WorthFightingFor</a>. Join me: <a href="http://t.co/44Sk9OCd0r">http://t.co/44Sk9OCd0r</a></p> — Stephen Fry (@stephenfry) <a href="https://twitter.com/stephenfry/status/563117352317775873">February 4, 2015</a> </blockquote> <p>To answer that, you need to decide what you’re looking to get out of this relationship. </p> <p>Clearly, with massive scale, there’s the potential for a one-off mass awareness hit for your charity or campaign (and a welcome increase in donations).</p> <p>And if that’s what you’re after, then Fry’s your man – or perhaps Zoella for a younger demographic (By the way, nice move by the BBC to sign her up for Red Nose Bake Off). Agree a tweet, hand over £5,000... job done. </p> <p>However that might not go down well with your supporters, as Barnardos found out when it paid someone from <a href="http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/binky-felstead-childrens-charity-barnardos-admits-paying-made-in-chelsea-star-3000-to-front-campaign-10049234.html">Made In Chelsea £3,000 to front its latest campaign</a>.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/9937/Screen_Shot_2015-02-20_at_10.25.27.png" alt="" width="1848" height="1100"></p> <p>Might you be better served by seeking credibility and authenticity around a topic or passion point?</p> <p>By this logic, a top UK baking blogger and cookbook author such as Sarah Trivuncic (aka ‘Maison Cupcake’) is the right person to engage around a Macmillan Cancer Coffee Morning campaign.</p> <p>She offers access to her large, highly engaged following, has an audience that trusts her recommendations and opinions implicitly, and – of more importance – offers an opportunity to engage them multiple times, thus nurturing genuine charity advocates (and more regular donations). </p> <p>This option can be more effective in the long run, but needs careful preparation in terms of influencer selection, outreach and handling.</p> <p>To achieve maximum effectiveness, keep these six key points in mind...</p> <h3>1. Research</h3> <p>Finding the right influencers, with the right passion points and audience interests, is crucial if you are to drive engagement with their audience.</p> <p>Thrifty food blogger Jack Monroe’s followers would raise an eyebrow (rather than money) if she started to make a song and dance about declining biodiversity on behalf of WWF.</p> <p>But Oxfam and Live Below the Line speaks to her personally – and thus her partnership with them has hit the right note with her followers. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/9938/Screen_Shot_2015-02-20_at_10.29.55.png" alt="" width="1380" height="818"></p> <h3>2. Relevance</h3> <p>You wouldn’t tell eBay how to auction goods. So don’t stipulate the blogger’s output – co-create.</p> <p>They’ve nurtured an engaged following through their own personal observations and content, so why mess with that?</p> <p>Give them the information or assets they need, then leave them to do what they do best – after all, there’s a reason you approached them. </p> <h3>3. Respect</h3> <p>If you’ve done your research and matched the right blogger with the right charity, they will want to shout about you from the rooftops.</p> <p>They might even do it for free – bloggers tend to see it as the equivalent of volunteering.</p> <p>But don’t presume. Their influence is their income, so some sort of value exchange is only polite – from a campaign-branded T-shirt to a trip abroad. </p> <h3>4. Relationship-building</h3> <p>Sport Relief getting David Walliams to swim the Thames is spot on: that’s months of training, meaning months of newsworthy content.</p> <p>It’s now a long-term relationship that’s seen him return to, and mention, the cause again and again. </p> <p>If you’ll looking to build advocates, tailor your approach to stimulate a sustainable partnership – it will yield extra earned media long past your initial outreach date.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>The real hero of my channel swim was <a href="https://twitter.com/gpwhyte">@gpwhyte</a> OBE who gave up his time to train me. He has been behind every <a href="https://twitter.com/sportrelief">@sportrelief</a> challenge since.</p> — David Walliams (@davidwalliams) <a href="https://twitter.com/davidwalliams/status/485057496479182849">July 4, 2014</a> </blockquote> <h3>5. Real-time reaction</h3> <p>An influential blogger tweets about your campaign, and you send an excited email about it round the office.</p> <p>Engage with them during your campaign, retweet them, favourite them... make them feel like an extension of you and your organisation.</p> <p>It’s also an idea to monitor the blogosphere between campaigns, as influencers tend to come up with their own campaigns and you could get lucky (see ‘<a href="http://teamhonk.org/">Team Honk</a>’ – an organic blogger campaign that proactively approached Sports Relief). </p> <h3>6. Rules</h3> <p>...the recently-released <a href="http://asa.org.uk/News-resources/Media-Centre/2014/Making-ads-Clear-The-challenge-for-advertisers-and-vloggers.aspx#.VOcQN4Bd1iY">ASA rules</a>, in fact.</p> <p>Always, always encourage your bloggers to declare the ‘sponsored’ nature of commissioned content.</p> <p>Of course, a long-term relationship can yield non-paid for, organic content that equates to free earned media without the ‘sponsored’ tag... the charity sweet spot.</p> <p><em><strong>For more on this topic read our posts on <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65495-five-lessons-for-effective-blogger-outreach/">five lessons for effective blogger outreach</a> and the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/63755-the-10-most-common-mistakes-of-blogger-outreach/">10 most common mistakes of blogger outreach</a>.</strong></em></p> tag:www.econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/65924 2014-12-23T11:29:00+00:00 2014-12-23T11:29:00+00:00 What were the biggest SEO trends from 2014? David Moth <p>Following on from our posts looking at <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65899-seo-trends-for-2015-what-does-the-future-hold/">search predictions for next year</a> and the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65908-the-seo-s-2015-wishlist-what-would-you-like-to-see-happen-in-search/">SEO’s 2015 wishlist</a>, it’s time to take a look back at the major trends from the past 12 months.</p> <p>Here’s what our panel of experts came up with, and while we’re at it I also asked what they think Google might begin clamping down on in 2015.</p> <p>And to learn more on this topic, download Econsultancy’s <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/seo-best-practice-guide/">SEO Best Practice Guide</a>...</p> <h3>What were the most significant developments in SEO in 2014?</h3> <p><em><strong>Will Critchlow, founder and CEO of Distilled</strong></em></p> <p>There are arguments to be made for the dropping of authorship or for the Pigeon local search update, but my vote would go to the increasing use of general answer boxes (i.e. not those that come directly from the knowledge graph).</p> <p>Google's ability to interpret natural language is continuing faster than we might think - and its confidence in the results is clearly high if it is prepared to have these automatic summaries appear even in regulated industries like finance.</p> <p>I think history will show this to be the most significant development as it presages so many fundamentally new possibilities about how we search and how we find.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/7556/Screen_Shot_2014-12-15_at_12.33.12.png" alt="" width="1740" height="1108"></p> <p><em><strong>Andrew Girdwood, media innovations director at DigitasLBi</strong></em></p> <p>There have been a few. The fact that concerns around negative SEO inched higher rather than lower is significant. </p> <p>It suggests focus and attention on the area and that means continued budgets and developments in the area. </p> <p>We’ve lost some key points of contact between the SEO community and the search engines. </p> <p>Duane Forrester did a great job at Bing but is no longer there. Equally, Matt Cutts stepped back and away from Google. He has already extended his leave into 2015. Will he come back?</p> <p>There’s on-going and building drama around disclosure. </p> <p>Too many agencies (SEO, PR, other) are happy for bloggers to forget, omit or just not to know about the requirement to properly disclose when incentives have been used. </p> <p>We saw this make primetime TV news when it came to vloggers.</p> <h3>What is Google likely to clamp down on in 2015?</h3> <p><em><strong>Andrew Girdwood, DigitasLBi</strong></em></p> <p>I think Google will tighten even further on content quality assessment. This may well extend to the likes of infographics or PR campaigns. </p> <p>It’s ‘unnatural’ (to use Google’s lingo) if a bunch of blogs, over the course of a day or so, all happen to carry an unremarkable and template based infographic/creative first seen on a brand’s blog that the rest of the world is ignoring. </p> <p>It’s equally unnatural if a bunch of review bloggers all pick the same week to rave about, link to, and photograph a cosmetic set that’s been available for months.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0005/7576/panda_penguin.jpg" alt="" width="300" height="169"></p> <p>I think link reclamation is seriously in jeopardy. </p> <p>This is the soul destroying and bothersome technique of emailing bloggers and journalists to say: “I see you mentioned Brand X in an article this month. It’ll be great if you change that to a link to Brand X!”</p> <p>I suggest it’s in jeopardy because it’s become popular (it’s a process) and because it’s trivial for Google to decide, “links that appear in articles an hour after the content first appeared don’t count as quality signals.” </p> <p>It’s just as trivial for Google to decide that, “links that appear in articles a day after the content first appeared are an example of algorithm manipulation.”</p> <p><em><strong>Will Critchlow, Distilled</strong></em></p> <p>Websites that don't work well on mobile. Those little "mobile friendly" badges are just the start.</p> <p>Poor UX in general is likely to get increasingly negative feedback loops I suspect.</p> <p><strong><em>Nick Fettiplace, SEO director of Jellyfish</em></strong></p> <p>There is so much talk and concern around negative SEO - blackhat linking tactics maliciously undertaken by your competitors to get your website penalised or knocked-off the top spots of Google. </p> <p>It’s definitely something we’ve seen an increase in during 2014 and this seems like an area that Google needs to clamp down on. </p> <p>I think two things will happen here, and it will be a bit of a combination between Google and Webmasters:</p> <ol> <li>Google will devise better means of detecting and preventing against this, therefore protecting healthy sites against attack.</li> <li>Webmasters will need to ‘build-in’ to their monthly SEO activity an element of on-going backlink monitoring and health-checking to ensure that negative SEO attacks are picked up quickly and can be rapidly remedied. This will involve iterative updates of disavow files and manual link removal processes.</li> </ol> <p>Social signals might also get more attention from Google.</p> <p>With social signals playing an increasing role within your site's ranking/performance I’m sure Google will begin devising tighter means of detecting unnatural/manipulated social engagement, in a similar way that it did with backlinks after introducing <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65621-penguin-3-0-what-s-it-all-about/">Penguin</a>. It makes sense.</p>