Why An Influencer Agency Is Better Than An Influencer Platform
Like any booming industry, entrepreneurs have been pouring into the social influencer space to service all of the needs that this new industry embodies. Today, one can find dozens of both influencer marketing agencies that are working with brands to implement successful influencer campaigns as well as tech companies that have built platforms to try and remove the need for a third party agency.
While there are benefits to each, there are several important things that a tech platform alone simply cannot provide to a brand when building influencer campaign. In this blog, Hollywood Branded shares 4 reasons to choose an influencer agency versus influencer platform to build your brand's influencer marketing strategy and campaigns.
The relationships that an influencer agency can bring your brand versus any online discovery platform is unmatched. More often than not, a good influencer agency will already be in close contact with either the influencer themselves or their closest point of contact. In having these relationships, brand marketers are able to launch their campaign a lot quicker and more efficiently than if they were to go through an online tech platform.
In addition, influencers are getting hit up by brands quite frequently these days, making it even more difficult for your inquiry to not get lost amidst the other hundreds of unsolicited offers that an influencer receives on a daily basis. By leveraging that close relationship that an influencer agency has, a brand will be able to bypass several of those early brand-influencer communication barriers.
This where an influencer agency blows any tech platform out of the water. Simply put, there is no tech platform out there that can develop a creative strategy for your brand. In order for any campaign to be successful, there is a human element that must be acknowledged -- this level of consumer empathy is reflected in the creative strategy behind the campaign.
Unfortunately, no algorithm has figured this piece out. Influencer agencies have people on the team whose entire job is to develop awesomely creative campaigns that would work well for your brand. It is the agency that is able to put themselves into the shoes of your customer and create a strategy that will resonate with them most... far better than any tech platform ever could. At the end of the day, influencer marketing is about relationships -- and that includes the relationships built through the development of the campaign itself.
#3 FTC Compliance
You’ve heard about them, maybe you’ve even had nightmares about them. Whatever it is, one thing that we can all agree on is that the FTC is here and they’re not going anywhere anytime soon. In fact, the FTC has began cracking down more than ever before.
Check out our blogs that discuss important things brands must know about being compliant:
- 3 Things Brands Need To Understand About FTC Guidelines On Social Influencers
- The FTC Takes On Social Influencer Sponsored Posts
- The Kardashians Social Media Blunder And The FTC
- Native Advertising AKA Product Placement New FTC Rules
For a brand, navigating all of the rules and regulations that the FTC has put forth can be a difficult thing to accomplish, especially when using a tech platform where code needs to be constantly updated to reflect the FTC’s most recent updates. Because of this, influencers and brands alike are getting dinged left and right for not properly revealing the nature of their relationship to the consumer. By falling on the wrong side of compliance, a brand and its influencers both risk incurring ridiculous fines and other penalties from the FTC.
So, how can your brand avoid this? Simple. Work with an agency that understands the FTC’s guidelines clearly and always lives up to industry best practices. When dealing with the law, it’s always smarter to work with the experts.
#4 Saves Time
In today’s age, working with influencers is still kind of the ‘Wild West’ for many brands. The strategy is still so new and lacks many of the industry wide standards that other more solidified industries have, making it difficult for a brand to already have the personnel in-house to create, implement and maintain a successful influencer campaign. Yes, there are some online tools out there that help make this process a bit easier but... most of them still require the user to have at least a baseline knowledge of how an influencer campaign works.
If you don’t already have someone in-house that has that knowledge, your brand risks wasting a lot of time (and money) that could have easily been saved simply by working with someone that already has that expertise, like say, an influencer agency! An influencer agency is your one-stop-shop for all things ‘influencer’; let them do the dirty work while you sit back and reap the benefits of a killer influencer campaign.
The purpose of this piece wasn’t to discourage you from using an influencer tech platform for your campaign. Here at Hollywood Branded, we use tech platforms ourselves, and subscribe to numerous software applications that allow us to ensure we are able to streamline our client's programs. Tech platforms just are not magic, and they don't work well without having some solid understanding of the social influencer industry.
We just want to make sure that you are aware of the key differences between working with an agency and an online tech company so that when it comes time to put together an influencer campaign, you and your team are able to make the decision that benefits your company most. Sure, there are a lot of upsides to working with an influencer tech platform.
Some of these benefits include:
- one localized platform that can be accessed by personnel in-house,
- data analytic tools (most influencer agencies already use their own data tools to track and measure campaigns) and
- easier access to some of the smaller more micro level influencers.
The Perceived Benefits Versus The Real Benefits
But, as mentioned above, by working with an influencer tech platform, a brand risks losing out many of the key components that are necessary for a successful influencer campaign. Namely, relationship building and knowing how to leverage the influencer to provide the best partnership for the brand. Here at Hollywood Branded, we eat, sleep and breath influencer campaigns. A great example of an influencer campaign we recently did can be viewed in this post: Influencer Marketing Case Study: Hotel Resort Partnership.
In fact, check out our below e-book, The Only Guide You Need To Hire Social Influencers to learn more about how Hollywood Branded can help your brand achieve its influencer goals!