In the last couple of years, it is an increasing trend to use well-known influencers not only in ads but in PR campaigns, too. There are agencies who built their own departments for influencer management and tread the topic as a priority. But is it really worth using influencers in PR? Are influencers in PR useful only for supporting impulse buying or longer brand strategies? And after all: where is the border between PR and social media, if we talk about influencers? And how should we use them to achieve our goals? We summarised the topic in 5 useful tips.
1. We need a strategy
When communication professionals started to use influencers in their campaigns, there were no clear strategies in their head and influencer communication only supported clients’ short-term goals. As a result, campaigns seemed to be spectacular but the effect was lagging behind in a lot of cases. For now, the frameworks of using influencers are legally clear and we already have enough experience in the usage of them. So our task as an agency is to build strategies for long-term goals and implement influencer PR into these strategies.
2. Use influencers in an integrated way
The borders between PR, social media, and advertising are even thinner. Therefore the use of influencers doesn’t only mean solely a PR or a social media campaign anymore. We need to think integrated and find the ways to explore the possibilities and find the synergy with the different communication tools. This is the only way to be credible to our target groups and engage them in our campaigns.
3. Find a story: less about advertising and more about engagement
Working with influencers doesn’t mean having a well-known person posing with our product in videos or photos. We need to find a much more subtle approach, with fewer advertising messages and more interaction to improve engagement. That’s why clients need to understand the message: using less of the brand creates a bigger effect. We need to build campaigns with storytelling and find the golden middle in influencer PR.
4. Not only the numbers count
When choosing an influencer to cooperate with, we are inclined to look only at the numbers. But we shouldn’t forget to concentrate on the quality, too. We don’t always need to work with a huge dispersion. First, make difference between reach and engagement and choose the influencers depending on which one is more important.
5. Choose an influencer with a real bond with the service or product
Last but not least always choose the perfect influencer who has a real bond with your service or brand. As influencers are on an increasing demand, most of them can not limit the number of brands they work together with. But they should. In case an influencer has more than 10 brand cooperations per year, they can lose their credibility, becoming useless for us. We have to strive to find the fresh, not overused, and authentic faces.
Finally, our first question is still waiting to be answered: is it really worth using influencers in PR? Our answer is yes, but only if we have a strategy, a story, and a real bond between the influencers and our campaign. But remember: we always need to keep our long-term strategy in mind and only build influencer campaigns if it can support that.