To make the optimisations that matter, your influencer campaign needs accurate, detailed and flexible reporting.
It’s no secret that data helps us make more informed decisions. The very ‘best’ data can help us make the most informed decisions. But how can you know when you’ve found good data, and why is it so elusive?
When measuring the performance of your influencer marketing campaign, you’ll want to know if it’s been successful. Success is determined by hitting your campaign objectives.
If your campaign is successful, you’ll want to know why, so you can learn, iterate and optimise your future campaigns. Even better would be real-time performance metrics across all of your talent, content and channels so you can optimise the campaign as it’s running, maximising returns for your brand or your client.
But very few businesses have access to this level of data. One of Edge’s close allies and one of the biggest media and advertising groups in the world put it like this:
Marketing is a data-driven industry. We know how to use data to drive the outcomes that we want on paid social, television, etc. We know how to measure it and what success looks like. When it comes to influencer marketing, we can’t apply those theories or methodologies.
Influencer marketing is a new marketing channel. Brands and agencies cannot apply their traditional performance marketing methods. They don’t have the capacity to track hundreds of influencers, thousands of channels and millions of posts in one place and apply consistent metrics.
And when they do get data, it often isn’t accurate enough to be reliable. The tools they use estimates the data and calculates it through an equation to give a ‘should be’ number. They can’t dig into the numbers or break them down in a meaningful way to see how they got to them; it’s ‘Total engagement’ for this campaign Approx X,000.
Whereas it should be: Xcomments, Xpositive likes, XDislikes, Xshares leading to X engagement and an engagement rate of X% automatically generated for each post, influencer and social channel that you then can easily select and pull into any dashboard.
Accuracy is essential; you need to be able to trust the data. One challenge that repeatedly comes up in conversation with our customers is the lack of transparency when it comes to an influencer’s data.
Deciding which data to use is vital. The first essential question – is the data real? Put another way, is it data captured from the social platform and influencer’s account, or is it estimated based on an agency or software platforms’ algorithm?
True data is the key to accuracy. Accuracy is key to understanding if a campaign worked or not. If you are using poor data for your reporting, you are never going to be able to make real predictions on future campaign performance.
The second thing to keep in mind is whether the data is captured over time, or is it just a snapshot at the end of a campaign? You should be able to see the growth and decline of social performance daily, which allows you to pinpoint the events, time, and posts that caused growth; this is your why. A good question to ask yourself is: did you get all the data, or just the data your agency or platform provider allows you to see? You need to be able to interrogate the data to ensure it is authentic and view the data to make sense to your reporting. Headline statistics don’t provide many insights.
The devil is in the details. We work with our customers on helping them get under the hood of their campaign to see how their talent, content, and channels are performing. Many campaigns will consist of multiples of these variables. Manually measuring the metrics for all of them every day is an impossible task. Still, you need to be able to pull up any post from your campaign instantly to see its performance in the time range that’s important for you and visualise the data over time. For example, you might need to see daily ‘views’ during your campaign for every post and every influencer, but you want the engagement rates to be cumulative. This level of granularity and scale of data goes beyond most of the tools in the market today.
It’s frustrating for a platform or agency to dictate your campaign report, what metrics are included, and over what period. You need to be able to decide what metric to report on, in what format, i.e. line graph over time, number report, bar charts etc., which influencer to measure, which one of their post or posts, on which social platform, over a specific period – and then be able to compare any of these conditions across your talent and content portfolio. Having this flexibility allows you to create truthful and accurate reports that ultimately show you, based on real-time and historical performance, which talent, which type of content, on which social platforms drive the desired outcomes.
To drive home the point, you need accuracy to make the data reliable, detail to draw meaningful insights and flexibility to report on the campaign in the most effective way. It’s for these reasons that we built Edge.