Industry Trend: Why brands are moving towards long term influencer partnerships
30 Aug 2021 · 1 min read
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Over the past year, brands have been investing more in long-term influencer partnerships. A long term partnership can be defined as multiple campaigns over a period of 3+ months.
So why are we seeing this new trend in the influencer marketing industry? It comes down to increased ROI.
Over the past decade, the social media marketing industry has matured considerably. Just a few years ago, it was considered common practice to hire many influencers for just one or two sponsored posts. One-off campaigns still might happen around a special event or product launch, but the data shows that one-off campaigns don’t drive the same level of engagement.
Now brands are finding that they’re having more success in their social media marketing strategies by developing long-term partnerships with fewer, high-value influencers.
Finding high-value influencers often takes more in depth analysis of behind the scenes social data than manual research can provide. Having access to the right technology that can filter influencers not just by their own demographics and affinities, but by the demographics and affinities of their audience has become a key indicator of influencer marketing success.
By using technology, marketers can anticipate whether an influencer’s audience has a high affinity for their brand or product.
Then, they can form a valuable long term alliance with that influencer, gaining repeat access to their dialed-in audience; an audience that is much more likely to engage with and trust their brand.
These long-term partnerships can be a much better investment for brands. When looking for content creators to hire, ask whether you can see that influencer delivering value again and again over a long period of time. If the answer is yes, consider offering them a long-term contract that spans 6 months rather than just offering to pay them for a handful of posts.
Want to know how Tagger helps marketers discover influencers with the highest value audiences and affinities?Request a demoand we'll show you how it works.
One of the most natural ways to monetize an NIL for student-athletes is to work as an influencer. The big question is, how will this translate into real earnings? This case study explores the answer.
How much could college athletes who monetize their NIL stand to earn? Case Study: Arizona Division I Athletes
_The following is a guest post from Kristen Klepac, a Content Marketing Specialist with Green Flag Digital._
In the United States, college sports are a big deal. The industry generates billions in revenue through ticket sales, merchandise, and television deals, and more. As of July 1, 2021, the NCAA finally announced they are opening the opportunity to tap into this revenue to the stars of the show. Now, [student-athletes can monetize their NIL](https://www.taggermedia.com/blog/college-athletes-become-influencers-NIL-ruling) in order to carve out their own earnings.
**Current college students are primarily of the Gen Z generation, a digital-savvy group that hardly understands a world where social media didn’t exist.** So, one of the most natural ways to monetize an NIL for today’s student-athletes is to work as an influencer or utilize social accounts to generate a following. The real question is, how will this translate into real earnings for those who’d like to tap into this revenue stream?
Whether students partner with big brands (like [Dr. Pepper](https://www.si.com/college/2021/08/11/clemsons-dj-uiagalelei-to-profit-from-nil-in-dr-pepper-ad-campaign)) or become micro-influencers, the potential to earn is real. It can be difficult to estimate exactly how much money will actually end up in the hands of the student-athlete. One way to predicting which student-athletes may stand to gain the most may start with a simple look at their existing social accounts.
Taking this method, the team at BetArizona has put together a [comprehensive case study](https://www.betarizona.com/news/top-25-arizona-college-athletes-by-sponsorship-earnings-potential) to uncover which of Arizona’s Division 1 athletes may benefit the most from monetizing their NIL. First, they added up Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok followings of every player across a total of 23 sports for the four Arizona Division 1 schools. To estimate earning potential, a formula of $0.80 per follower per year was used to predict potential revenue.
# Which Arizona Universities and Sports Offer the Best Earning Opportunity for Student-Athletes?
According to the study from BetArizona, Men’s Basketball offers by far the optimal earning opportunity. Whereas student-athletes attending Arizona State University in Tempe have higher average earnings per player than any of the other Division 1 schools.
Women sports on the other hand offer more fair and consistent earning opportunities across the board. In fact, the study makes a special effort to emphasize that even though women often receive less coverage on traditional media, socials tell a different story.
On average, women have 30% fewer social media followers than men. However, a large part of men’s followers are dedicated to basketball and there are more men athletes than women.
On the other hand, women’s followings are more evenly distributed. Plus, if you look closely at a subsection such as softball/baseball, the Arizona women’s softball teams average nearly 6,000 followers per player while men’s baseball players have an average of only 2,200 followers.
# Top 25 Potential Earners in Arizona College Athletics
It may come as no surprise to see men’s basketball players land in the top 4 spots for top potential earners. Defying this is female soccer player Nicole Soto snatching the number 5 spot.
It becomes even more interesting when you actually look at the individual profiles of these student-athletes. For example, #1 Marcus Bagley’s annual earning potential far supersedes the rest with an estimated $287,536. Influencers who are Instastars will be shocked at this: This ASU basketball star has a total of 5 posts on his [Instagram](https://www.instagram.com/marcus/?hl=en) account and well over 300K followers. Imagine the potential to earn if he simply started posting regularly on this account!
Dalen Terry of UA has recently announced a deal to [partner with a local chicken and waffle chain](https://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe/arizona-guard-dalen-terry-enters-nil-arrangement-with-chicken-and-waffle-chain/article_55848194-fc99-11eb-9ff8-232d6c56d7af.html) in Arizona. Coming in 2nd in this ranking with an estimated annual earning potential of $82,068, it looks like Dalen is geared up to take advantage of the new NIL opportunity.
Other’s landing in the top ten include basketball stars such as Luther Muhammed (ASU), Aidan Igiehon (GCU), and Holland Woods (GCU). Football players such as Jayden Daniels (ASU), Jaden Mitchell (UA), and Johnny Wilson (ASU) show up in the bottom half of the top ten.
It’s worth noting that across the list of the top 25 the primary source of followers comes from combinations of Twitter and Instagram, but Jaden Mitchell is one of the few whose [TikTok account](https://www.tiktok.com/@jadenmitch_) following launches him up to the #8 spot.
Of the 5 total women in the list, 2 land in the top 10 list at number five (Nicole Soto) and six, Aari McDonald of the UA women’s basketball team.
_Guest Author Kristen Klepac is a Content Marketing Specialist with Green Flag Digital; she loves brainstorming creative and data-focused content and has an affinity for uncovering the best publishers for client projects, you can see some of these projects_ [_here_](https://www.greenflagdigital.com/portfolio/)_. She’s based in France where she’s finally getting the hang of la langue française._
**_Want to see how Tagger helps marketers discover high-value influencers who are perfect for their campaigns?_** [**_Schedule a demo of our platform here._**](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo/)
Social media followers carry a lot of power, and their loyalty (or lack thereof) could directly affect influencers' paychecks.
The Great Unfollowing: What "Bachelor in Paradise’s" Recent Scandal Tells Us About Influencer Marketing
Bachelor Nation is no stranger to scandal as the last year has proven- between Chris Harrison’s clumsy exit and scrutiny surrounding the show’s lack of diversity, this year’s season of _Bachelor in Paradise_ was off to a pretty calm start. That calm was short-lived, as this week’s double feature episodes caught scandal on camera that saw ripples on social media. Accidentally revealed on-air, contestants [Brendan Morais](https://www.instagram.com/brendanmorais/?hl=en) (@brendanmorais) and [Pieper James](https://www.instagram.com/pieper_james/?hl=en) (@pieper_james) indicated they were already a couple and were only on the show to gain followers on social media.
Though Bachelor Nation fans watched in shock as the lie unraveled, Brendan and Pieper’s shock was likely more as their plan had the opposite effect. Since the episodes aired on September 6th and 7th, **Morais has lost almost 23.5% of his followers.**
With Morais losing nearly a quarter of his followers, **James was not far behind at a loss of almost 10%.** These percentages will likely increase as Bachelor Nation fans tweet and post on all platforms, encouraging others to unfollow.
Brendan was one of the first contestants on the show, as well as an early "fan favorite", and it wasn’t too difficult for him to stay on for three weeks until Pieper joined. In the meantime, Brendan coupled up with [Natasha Parker](https://www.instagram.com/natashaparker/?hl=en) (@natashaparker), a relationship that by his own admission turned out to be a ploy to ensure Brendan remained on the beach until Pieper arrived. **As the story went viral on social media, fans of the show began unfollowing the disgraced couple and instead flocked to Natasha’s social platforms.**
**Natasha has seen a whopping 203% growth rate, up from 173.9k on September 5th to 430.6k by the 13th**. If Natasha continues to be a fan favorite, this growth will undoubtedly continue.
Dubbed by social media as “The Great Unfollowing,” this scandal tells us more about influencer marketing than meets the eye. As followers continue to turn away from Brendan and Pieper in favor of Natasha, it’s a reminder that being an influencer is not just about getting followers- you have to be able to keep them as well. Authenticity and honesty go a long way, and followers who might suspect an influencer as being dishonest will likely unfollow.
Dave Neal (@dnealz), podcaster and host of the viral Youtube show “Bachelor Nation News,” has already covered the topic in over five videos with as many as 69k views.
“The faster you grow an audience, the quicker it can be taken away. Just be as genuine as possible on your platforms and don’t take anyone who ‘believes in you’ for granted,” Neal said. The lesson to be learned here for influencers is that **social media followers carry a lot of power, and their loyalty (or lack thereof) could directly affect your paycheck.**
Although follower counts shouldn’t be the only metric brands look at when hiring influencers, a drastic downward spike in followers might be indicative of something more concerning. It’s worth making sure your influencers are authentic with their followers to avoid partnering with someone receiving negative backlash. Using a platform could help ensure your influencers’ followers are authentic, engaged, and loyal over time.
While Brendan and Pieper may still have some influencer campaigns down their social media pipeline, those opportunities have likely dwindled since these episodes. In contrast, Natasha’s influence has undoubtedly risen, leading to a greater likelihood of influencer opportunities. Featuring active partnerships with Risata Wines, Sweaty Betty, and Amazon, Parker’s new batch of dedicated followers makes her platform look a whole lot more enticing for interested brands.
**If you'd like to see how Tagger's platform quickly and efficiently finds the perfect influencers and analyzes social media data for every need and category, _**[**_schedule a live demo_**](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo)**_; we're happy to show you how we do it!_**
Data-based insights for how brands can use social media to optimize their marketing strategy for the 2021 Holiday Season.
Maximize your 2021 Holiday marketing ROI with data based insights and influencer marketing
Planning for the 2021 holiday shopping season has many marketers looking to social media data for insights. After the pandemic, one thing is certain: **the way people shop has changed forever with more and more business being done exclusively online.**
There are many things to consider about these new consumer habits including seeking vs. browsing, generational differences, and allowing time for exchanges and delivery challenges.
Truly smart marketers will take into account both changes in customer behavior as well as overall industry trends. **Here are some data-based insights for how brands can optimize their marketing strategy for the 2021 Holiday Season.**
### **Changes in consumer behavior; past data informs future projections**
Perhaps the biggest overall change in how we shop in a post-pandemic world isn’t just the increased share of online purchases versus in-person shopping, but also the thought process of how we make a purchase decision in the first place.
Whenever people want to make a decision about anything these days, they go to the web to do research first, and holiday gift giving is no exception. **Because of the emphasis on research, consumers have largely adopted a “seeking” versus “browsing” shopping strategy.**
Before the pandemic, it was about a 50-50 split of people making holiday purchases online and going into brick and mortar stores to browse for gifts. Now, most, if not all, consumers are actively doing research online to look for a specific item or product that meets their needs instead of browsing at a store and making an impulse purchase.
### **So how does this affect marketers in 2021? Adjust your strategy to reach your ideal customers through influencers whose opinions they already trust**.
Influencer partnerships are one of the best ways to make reaching your target audience feel personal. The consumer has already actively chosen to follow that account, and therefore trusts what that creator has to say. If an influencer gives your product a good review or does a demonstration that appeals to the customer, it feels like organic research rather than targeted advertising.
### **Generational differences that affect the likelihood of purchase**
An often overlooked aspect of influencer marketing is the fact that you’re not just trying to reach the person your product appeals to, but rather, you need to consider who’s actually doing the purchasing. For example, you might want to sell a t-shirt to an 18-year-old Gen Z’er who cares about eco friendly fashion, but if their mom is the one buying the shirt as a holiday gift, different types of content and different purchasing experiences will appeal to her versus to her child.
**To make this insight work for you, make sure you work with influencers to talk about both the product _and_ the purchasing experience.** Offer a unique discount or free shipping code (this helps with tracking ROI as well!), and explain the return policy. When it comes to holiday shopping, ease of returns and exchanges is a major factor in whether or not a consumer will actually hit “buy now” or just abandon their cart.
### **It’s all in the timing**
Over the past decade, holiday marketing campaigns have started easier and earlier with each passing year. This is because with each year that goes by, more people are shopping online versus in store, and when you shop online you need to account for estimated delivery dates delays.
**Because consumers want that buffer time to receive, evaluate, and potentially return or exchange items, it’s always a good idea to start your holiday marketing as soon as October with the hardest push coming in November.** Those weeks are the perfect window of time to maximize your share of voice in the marketplace and secure early bird purchases.
To capitalize on this insight, use a technology tool like Tagger to hone in on influencers who are currently reaching your target audiences and partner with them now. If you want even more bang for your buck, consider offering them a long term partnership! Brands that work with influencers on a long-term basis show higher ROI than one-off creator campaigns. This is due in large part to an increased feeling of “know, like, trust”; repetition is recognition, and recognition leads to familiarity and trust!
### **People are looking for deals and discounts on social media, now more than ever**
Another reason people like to shop online versus IRL is because of coupons and deals. People are more likely to spend more than they originally intended in order to get free shipping or choose your product over another because of a discount code. One of the first places consumers look for discount codes? Their favorite influencers.
Someone interested in cookware will know they can get discount codes from their favorite food blogger because they’ve followed her for a long time and have seen her talking about cookware brands in the past. Someone looking for a specific fashion item will go to their trusted fashion influencers to watch their try-ons and reviews. Whatever the vertical, people know influencers are offering deals and are likely to seek them out.
### Influencers are the key to holiday 2021 success
If you'd like to learn more about how Tagger helps global brands and agencies identify which influencers will drive the highest ROI for their campaigns, be sure to check out [our product page](http://www.taggermedia.com/product) and [schedule a demo](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo)!