Everybody knows there’s fierce competition out there to get users, and to win, it’s necessary to seek out and test new channels. That was our motivation when we decided to try influencer marketing for apps back in 2016, and we were rewarded with a cost-effective new source of users.
What is Influencer Marketing?
It’s a new form of marketing focused on the people who have influence over other individuals. “Influence” here means that they have the ability to persuade someone to take a specific action. If Influencer Marketing is used correctly, your app can be known by thousands of users across many different channels.
You may have already heard of the concept, as Influencer Marketing has grown significantly in popularity in the last few years. There are a number of companies that have been created recently as a direct consequence of Influencer Marketing campaigns. The number of agencies and service providing companies related to the young industry increases with each passing day.
What sort of agreements can you sign with influencers?
There is a basic classification of 3 different kinds of agreements:
- Shoutouts: the influencer just mentions your product, brand or service with a brief description. This option is cheaper, but the followers won’t understand all the features of your product or be given important details.
- Gameplay or app review: The Influencer will spend as much time as he or she needs to explain the advantages and all relevant features of your product. It comes at a higher cost, but the user receives all the information needed to make a decision. They are the best performing content types from a user quality point of view.
- Visibility: Refers to content that focuses more on brand awareness. This is typical for large channels with a broad audience, and the prices reflect that.
Ways of working with influencers
There are 3 main ways to approach influencers:
- Working directly with an influencer is probably the best way to form close partnerships, but it can be tedious, so most of the time, using the right influencer tools and platforms can save you time and make your campaigns more successful. Working directly with influencers is usually the cheapest option, but the one that costs the most in terms of time investment.
- Marketplaces of influencers like Famebit.com, Mathmade.tv or Socialbakers.com are another place to approach influencers. They can be great options to start with, especially for beginners.
- Working with agencies is the third option, and it will definitely save you many headaches if you can afford it. They are quick and usually grant access to big portfolios of influencers, but this option is likely the most expensive.
What is the influencer business model?
There are many options out there but I will focus on the 3 most common:
- Fixed price: This is the preferred option by most influencers, but often it’s too risky for advertisers. It allows the influencer to charge a fixed price, no matter how the campaign performs.
- Cost per view or engagement: This could be argued to be a fairer way of working with an influencer, as they are more involved with the performance of the action.
- Cost per install or action: This should be the preferred option for advertisers as it implies the benefits of performance marketing. However, the difficulty of attributing installs in influencer marketing means that few influencers will accept this choice.
Why is influencer marketing for apps becoming so popular?
Let’s recap some of the main advantages of this form of marketing:
- Lower CPIs compared to other channels. Although not all of these campaigns are going to be successful (something common to all the UA channels), the ones that are good can be extremely successful, especially in terms of CPI.
- High-quality users with higher than average retention rates. Reason being that users who decide to download the app already know what it’s about and they trust the influencer’s recommendation that it is a good app.
- You don’t need to have big budgets to know if it could work for you. With most UA channels, you need to spend at least $10K just to optimize. In this case, $500 would be enough to cover a testing budget.
- As you are generating content talking about your product, this will help the app’s visibility.
- And finally, unlike other sorts of UA campaigns, it continues to generate downloads over time, not just the day of the release of the post. That also means that the CPI is continuously dropping over time (but that does not apply to some Influencer Marketing channels such as IG stories or Snapchat).
What are the disadvantages of Influencer Marketing for apps?
Unfortunately, not all that glitters is gold, and there are some important drawbacks.
- Agreements usually take a lot of time. It is not the same as switching on a campaign on Facebook Ads where you upload a creative, set a budget, choose an audience and click Play. In this case, you have to deal with people and this slows down the process.
- The industry is somewhat immature, and that means that there are no standard prices or agreed processes when negotiating with influencers.
- Finding the right influencer for your product is a time-consuming process, and, once you’ve found one, negotiating with them takes time, so it is not easy to scale.
- It is difficult to predict results. Performance largely depends on how well the audience of the influencer fits with your product, how engaging the post in which he talks about your product is, etc.
- Since many users will download the app without using the link provided by the influencer, it is not easy to know how many installs you get from the campaign.
Here are a few recommendations if you are thinking of starting to work with influencers:
- Follower count is irrelevant. When choosing the right influencer, be focused on how engaged the audience is, not how big it is. That means the average number of views by the number of subscribers.
- Try to agree on a minimum number of views, likes or another benchmark. Not all posts by an influencer perform the same, but your goal is to be mentioned in a post that performs at least as well as the influencers average posts.
- Be creative! Audiences are getting used to this kind of advertising, so you need to find the best way to, as English people say, “sell without selling”. It is key to let your influencers have creative freedom.
- Find the right influencer. To do that, analyze not only the common topics of their posts, but also the relationship they have with their audience. This takes place in the comments section and it should help you get a better idea of the credibility of the influencer. I also analyze how their audience reacts to branded content.
- Always negotiate the price. Most influencers are open to proposing you a better offer.
- Prepare a detailed and clear briefing explaining your expectations and what shouldn’t be missed about your product.
- Choose the right social media channel. If you want to explain your product in detail, you should go for YouTube. If on the other hand, you are looking for something more visual, maybe Instagram is the best place for you. Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook or Twitch are also other great options.
- And last but not least, measure your results!
Read our interview with David Cremades and get to know the author behind the insight. Read the interview.