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Marketing

Published July 4th 2022

11 Things to Look for in an Influencer Marketing Platform

Influencer marketing platforms are brilliant for growing your brand. Here are 11 things to factor in before choosing a platform for your business.

Influencer marketing platforms are vital for managing influencer activations. From measuring results to monitoring campaign performance, these platforms house all the data and tools you need in one convenient place. This helps to provide a seamless experience for your influencers, while also ensuring the success of your campaigns.

With hundreds of influencer marketing platforms out there, how can you be sure you’ll choose the right one for your business? Read on for our guide on what to look out for to ensure influencer marketing success.

Key takeaways

  • Influencer marketing software should streamline your entire workflow, from finding influencers to tracking posts and generating reports.
  • Using an influencer marketing platform is more budget-friendly than hiring an agency and much faster and more efficient than manually managing campaigns yourself.
  • Every influencer marketing platform is different, including what social platforms are supported.

What is an influencer marketing platform?

An influencer marketing platform is the ideal way to manage your brand’s influencer strategy. From researching creators to reviewing ROI, a dedicated platform is the best way to see results from your collaborations.

It’s reported that businesses are making up to $20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing. With this in mind, a dedicated platform should be an important part of your marketing strategy. This way, you no longer have to manually crawl the internet for the data you need to define your influencer marketing.

How to choose an influencer marketing platform

Choosing a platform for your influencer marketing initiatives depends on your business needs and goals. Here are some essential elements to consider.

1. Ease of use

You're going to be using your influencer marketing platform every day, so it’s vital that you like how it works. Otherwise, you run the risk of spending more time understanding the platform than seeing results.

There are several ways to identify if an influencer marketing platform is easy to use. Consider these questions:

  • Do you find the user interface simple to navigate?
  • What have other users said about the platform in their reviews?
  • Are there any training materials available?
  • What’s the onboarding process like?

You want to ensure that the influencer marketing platform you choose has a team of experts ready to help you. When you run into issues or experience a technical error, you want to receive quick support so your campaigns can run smoothly.

2. Free trials or demos

The best way to know if an influencer marketing platform matches your company’s needs is to try it out. If a platform doesn’t offer a free demo or trial period, then there’s a chance you’ll decide it’s not right for you too late. There are plenty of quality influencer platforms that will let you get used to how the platform works before you make an investment.

Free demos offer a show-and-tell format where an expert walks you through the platform to explain how it works. Free trials let you use a platform for a short time so you can evaluate the software for yourself. A high-quality influencer marketing platform will let you do both.

You can book your free trial of Brandwatch Influence here.

3. A focus on your marketing goals

Not all influencer marketing software is equal, so it’s important to focus on your brand’s marketing goals.

Begin your search by first understanding your company’s needs. For example, what type of influencers do you want to work with? Which platforms are most important to reach your target audience? How will you measure the ROI of your influencer initiatives?

Next, identify software that is compatible with those needs. And be sure to consider how your needs may evolve in the future. You may, for example, initially prioritize working with influencers on Instagram but later decide to expand onto TikTok. If this is a possibility, you want to plan for it upfront in order to avoid having to migrate all your data to a new influencer marketing platform down the road.

4. Intuitive influencer search features

There are up to 37.8 million influencers in the world. Naturally, not all of these creators are relevant to your brand or target audience. That’s why an influencer marketing platform with an intuitive search tool is critical. This can save you hours of time by identifying the best influencers based on your defined search criteria.

By opting for a platform that can suggest relevant influencers for your campaigns, you save both time and money for your business.

5. Valuable marketing analytics

The influencer marketing platform you choose is more than just a way to connect with influencers. It should also provide essential insights into the effectiveness of your influencer marketing campaigns. Plus, it’s worth understanding if it’s an approved API partner of the various social platforms, or if it can only surface publicly available metrics.

Businesses who use data-driven strategies drive five to eight times as much ROI as businesses who don’t. Some of the key metrics your influencer marketing platform should offer includes:

  • Audience demographics
  • Influencer follower counts
  • Content reach, impressions, and views
  • Total engagements and engagement rate
  • Return on investment

It's essential to track these metrics in total, as well as for each influencer and social platform. You also want your influencer marketing platform to provide actionable insights based on the campaign results, so you know how to construct future campaigns better.

6. Multiple social media platform capabilities

Some influencer marketing platforms only focus on one or two social platforms. Yet, you’ll probably want to work with several influencers across multiple social media platforms. For your campaigns to be successful, you need an influencer marketing platform which supports multiple social platforms and simultaneous campaign management.

Before choosing a solution, be sure to check what limitations or campaign restrictions are imposed to make sure your expected usage is aligned with the software’s capabilities.

7. Available features which work for your brand

Your influencer marketing platform needs to meet all of your business’s needs. From finding influencers to tracking sponsored posts, make sure all the features you need are included.

Here are a few features that your influencer marketing software should include:

  • Influencer search and discovery
  • Influencer messaging
  • Campaign management
  • Performance tracking
  • Real-time reporting

Spend some time understanding which capabilities you’ll need for your campaigns over the next year, and ensure your chosen platform offers them.

8. A budget that suits you

Most influencer marketing platforms will charge a monthly or annual subscription fee. Be sure to compare the cost of each platform with which features are offered. You can then decide whether those features are worth the price.

For example, manually searching for influencers will cost you hours of time and may only offer limited results. In this case, investing in an influencer marketing platform can not only save you time, but also match you with the best possible influencers to deliver significant ROI – making it a worthwhile investment.

9. High ratings from multiple customers

A company’s website will highlight key product features, but customer reviews tell you the full story. Want to find out how reliable and accurate the platform is based on real users’ experience? You can easily track down product reviews by searching for “company X platform reviews.”

Google reviews and reviews on the company’s website are usually the most reliable, so try there for a good place to start.

10. Notable customers in your industry

Many software companies will list some of their most notable customers on their website. These customer references are a brilliant way to evaluate their reputation.

You can use an influencer marketing platform’s customer list to evaluate if they’re a good fit for a company of your size or in your particular industry. For example, an influencer marketing agency looking for a platform that supports multiple clients will have vastly different needs than a large brand managing its influencer marketing efforts in-house.

11. Campaign management and communication

One of the primary tasks of an influencer marketing platform is to create and manage influencer campaigns. Creating a new campaign should be as easy as a few clicks.

Campaign dashboards help you view real-time performance so you can fine-tune campaigns on the fly. They are also helpful for viewing posts from individual influencers, so you know what type of coverage you're getting.

Many influencer marketing platforms offer their own in-app communication and collaboration tools. This makes it super easy to get in touch with your influencers. Some platforms also offer email integrations to track messaging history with your influencer contacts.

If this is something which is important to your business, it’s worth checking to see if it’s available within your chosen platform.

Get in touch with our Customer Success team to book your free trial of Brandwatch Influence here.

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New: Brandwatch Influence

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Discover influencers, handle relationships, and manage campaigns — all in one end-to-end solution.

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