Why Investing In Good Influencer Analytics Equals Health & Success in Your Affiliate Program
As I mentioned in previous blog posts, maintaining good influencer analytics is a big component in a successful affiliate program. Why? Imagine choosing influencers with a lot of followers thinking it’s a good fit but they don’t have the right audience to get you the sales. Let me explain in an example:
You're in a partnership with Influencer A that has 105,000 followers (because, well, it’s an impressive number.)
Your target audience and consumers are age group 27-35 with an interest in fishing.
Influencer A barely makes any sales but has a lot of likes in the post featured with your product.
What happened? Well If we dove into Influencer A’s analytics it would show you, only 60% of their following is real profiles and not robots. Out of 60% of those real followers, 55% of that are age groups 18-21 with the remainder being age group 25+ and within that 5% being that age group 95% of that 5% is mostly women not men, which would be more of your consumer target. So sales-wise? Slim chances that they'll actually have those vanity metrics convert into actual sales.
That is why detailed analytics on social profiles and investing into a good software to dive into these analytics is an important investment, not a waste of money as so many believe. There was a period of time where these influencers with big numbers didn’t come with analytical checks and it became more known who had more robots vs. other profiles. Due to that, influencers became smarter on how to pull a larger following to look good for brands and affiliate programs but not necessarily having the right audience for your products. That is where deep influencer analytics came into play and changed the game. Influencers who really want a shot at real products and brands actually have to work for their authenticity.
So how do we dissect influencer analytics and what do you have to look out for when assessing?
Let’s dive in!
Step 1: AUTHENTICITY OF FOLLOWING
You may want to do this step first before all the others so you don’t spend so much time analyzing the profile just to come to find out most of their following are fake or robots anyway. This defeats the purpose. Head over to the following portion of the analysis and there will be a section that will show authenticity of the following and engagement rate percentages. Quick tip: the higher the followers the lower the engagement percentage is. Does that mean that it’s bad or a no go? Not at all. It’s actually normal to see a million followers with a 6% engagement rate.
So what percentages are good and what are the ones to avoid?
Let’s take a look.
Quality percentage: A good quality of followers percentages should always be about at 65% the lowest in the wheel. That’s a good ratio to ensure your product and or brand will get quality views. Anything under, I’d assess carefully.
Engagement percentage: A good percentage for engagement is truly 3% for mega following and higher for the rest of count following. Anything under that may signal that the influencers audience doesn’t engage much with their posts and that’s not a good sign. That means that the influencer may not be posting quality content, may not have a strategic posting strategy or may not have an established know/like/trust factor so that their audience trusts them enough to actually buy any of the products they promote.
Questions I always get: Well the micro influencer has only 10k followers but an engagement rate of 1.5%. That’s normal right, since it’s a lower following? FALSE! The lower the following the higher the percentage should actually be. As you gain more followers it is more likely to have accounts that just aren’t active or some robots decreasing the engagement rates but for micro, you should be seeing a healthy 6% - 15% even within engagement rate percentages.
Here's an example of a good follower quality, follower count, and engagement percentage ratio.
Step 2: LOCATION
Focus on researching influencers with a majority of the audience being in the areas you’d like for them to be in, if you have any. Let’s say you sell physical products and they're sold more so in the California, Arizona areas. You’re going to want to search influencers whose audiences are in those states; NOT where the influencer is but their audience is. I have seen influencers based in Dallas with a following from New York. You want to focus on audience and following location more so than influencer location if your product is specific area based. And this goes for different countries as well.
So let’s say you’re viewing the influencers profile-- let’s review what that location section may look like in the program or platform you are using. Most analytical platforms will preview country percentages and top cities percentages within the analysis.
Step 3: AUDIENCE AGE GROUP
Trust me, narrowing down what audience age group you're inviting into your program means their customers are more likely to buy your products and services. It does make all the difference. You can sometimes have two audience age groups. Let’s say you’re ok with a range from 18-35 but the higher percentage will need to be in the younger age group. On top of age group you will need to analyze how much of those percentages need to be men or women, if it needs to be specific. Let’s see what it may look like in the analysis within the platform you are using.
In most platforms, the age group area will be accompanied by male vs. female ratio as well. If your products are female-focused products, you’ll be able to dissect if that influencer has the right female demographic within the right age group following them to get the visibility needed for your brand and or products.
In this example we see that 34-44 is the higher percentage within the following's age group and based on the colors, it looks like it’s an equal ratio between female and male. However collectively, their following is made up of mostly male, rather than female. You will need to make an assessment here: Even though the age groups seem equally split between female and male, collectively it is mostly males and they will not work well for my female-focused product?
Step 4: AUDIENCE INTEREST
Well, it wouldn’t be helpful if your product stems within the fishing category but the influencer audience is into other types of sports, right? Analyzing this portion is key and extremely helpful in determining if the influencer’s audience would be interested in your product and would buy it. So what does that section look like? Let’s break it down
Depending on the platforms you use, some will show percentage of interest categories AND even the brands that most of that audience likes!
Below is an example around the location part of the analysis, showing interest categories and showing some brands that the analysis picked up from the audience interests.
The more detailed you are in your analytics the higher chance you have of quality exposure for your products which result in quality sales and a higher chance of customer loyalty. It is a myth that these programs are a waste of investment or hiring an influencer campaign manager is not worth your money.
You want to build life-long affiliates and consumers. Within your affiliate programs, you'll need to focus on recruiting quality influencers with the right analytics for your brand.
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