Why Do So Many Social Media Influencer Programs Suck? Hint: Look in the mirror…
Social media and influencers. They go together like green eggs and ham or oysters on the half shell. Another wards, a perfect fit! As I analyze the last three months of calls I have been on with very well intentioned, dedicated professionals trying to squeeze success from a flawed system, it got me thinking. It was time for someone to put together the Social Media Influencer GPS program.
There is just too much gray matter out there. Too many snake oil salesman. Too few people that understand how to build a program and not just aggregate influencer’s followers as a victory when in fact they have accomplished nothing but spending money with no shot of an ROI. It is time we start telling each other the truth because there are millions of dollars being wasted by big brands and start-ups lying to themselves about being on the right path. In fact, they couldn’t be more lost! A Social Media GPS is what is actually needed. My goal isn’t to be rude or obnoxious to anyone doing their job, it is to show there are always many ways to be more effective. So here we go, the Social Media Influencer GPS program!
Coordinate #1: How are you choosing the Social Media Influencer? What are your criterion? Truth is, most of the PR and brand people I have worked with recently do the Social Media 2-step:
Step 1: Does the social media influencer “look” like my customer?
Step 2: How many followers do they have?
People, these are not good enough reasons to hire someone! What happened to research, due diligence and common sense Everyone is in such a hurry, they have lost their minds. Stop being lazy just so you can move on to the next call with an influencer with gaudy numbers and virtually no chance of helping you accomplish what you set out to achieve.
Coordinate #2: What are your plans if you actually find the right influencer? Seems simple, but it isn’t. Too many digital managers and agency people are executing the most basic of programs to create a smoke screen because candidly, they don’t have a clue on what they are doing. Not even a good idea. No idea. It’s truly pathetic. I sit on endless calls with “experts” who are so clueless. They have never sold a thing in their 26 years of life, branding is something they can discuss but have no essence of what being a brand means. It would be funny if it wasn’t so absolutely disgusting to hear. A social media influencer program without adequate content, plans and a way to start the conversation is like starting a fire without a match. What is the ignition? It is not just a post on Instagram, Vine, Snap, Facebook or Periscope. Spontaneous combustion is how things go viral!
Most programs don’t utilize just one social media influencer. Which is fine. I like the idea of multiple social media influencers to flatten out the urgency of one millennial, as an example, to carry the entire responsibility since we know 20 year olds suck at that. But here is the biggest issue, very few influencer campaigns utilize the opportunity for collaboration. When was the last time you had several social media influencers speaking with each other via social media or creating content together? Why not? If you are trying to build a community around your product, brand or company, collaboration amongst your influencers is imperative! What a missed opportunity to amplify the volume on your messaging. What an incredible way to build voices in your community. Try it and I promise you, the engagement numbers will be sky high!