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Ways to collaborate with influencers

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In 2023 we’ve seen once again the significant impact and effectiveness of influencer marketing in the current business landscape. According to the 2023 Influencer Marketing Hub survey, 90% of marketers recognize influencer marketing as an effective strategy, and 72% observe that it attracts higher quality customers. This effectiveness is attributed to the trust customers place in real people’s recommendations over traditional brand advertisements.

90% of marketers recognize influencer marketing as an effective strategy

Source: Influencer Marketing Hub

Influencers, who are trusted immensely by their followers, play a crucial role in converting people into loyal customers. Their authenticity and alignment with a brand’s values are essential for successful collaborations. The process of influencer marketing involves not just selecting the right influencers but also building a strong relationship with them. This relationship is key to nurturing genuine brand love.

This article has been prepared by Famesters experts to give you insights about various ways of creating content with influencers. We’re going to provide you with tips and guidelines on how brands can collaborate with influencers, taking into consideration the latest industry trends.

Effective ways to collaborate with influencers: where to start from?

Clear communication and expectations are essential for brands seeking success. It goes without saying that everything starts with determining the goals and setting the objectives. Additionally, tracking influencer performance through key performance indicators (KPIs) is crucial. This approach helps evaluate the effectiveness of campaigns and productive influencers, enabling brands to replicate success and discontinue collaborations with underperforming influencers.

When the goal and objectives are set, it’s time to identify the right influencers. Brands should look for social media influencers in their industry who would have a genuine interest in their products. Consider whether the influencer’s audience demographic would find value in the product. This alignment ensures that the product reaches a relevant and interested audience. Here at Famesters you can get assistance with this task (as well as many other tasks!). We’ve got our own smart influencer discovery tool so we can find the most relevant influencers for your brand – with an audience that matches your target demographic.

What’s next? Further you will find ways of how to collaborate with influencers, and tips to make your brand-influencer collaborations effective. You can choose the ones that align with your goals and marketing strategy. 

Influencer gifting

Influencer gifting is a strategic marketing approach best suited for companies with smaller budgets, aiming to establish authentic, long-term relationships with influencers. This technique involves providing products to influencers for free, without any obligatory commitments or in exchange for an honest product review. The primary objective of influencer gifting is to initiate influencer relationships based on the principle of generosity, rather than direct requests or demands.

A critical aspect of this strategy is its ability to filter out influencers who genuinely appreciate and endorse the product. Influencers who choose to post about the product without any financial incentive demonstrate a true affinity for the item, thereby lending credibility to their reviews. 

For example, Daniel Wellington often gifts their minimalist and elegant watches to influencers. This approach is intended to encourage these influencers to create and share social media posts featuring the watches.

Daniel Wellington

One of the most significant benefits of influencer gifting is the authenticity it brings to the influencer-brand partnership. Audiences are more likely to trust the influencer’s opinion, knowing that the review is not influenced by monetary compensation. This perceived authenticity can have a positive impact on the audience’s perception of the product and the brand.

If the initial gifting results in a successful post, brands should consider extending the partnership. This can be done by offering commissions, affiliate links, or a base fee to continue the collaboration, thereby building a longer-term relationship with the influencer.

Sponsored posts

Sponsored posts are a prevalent form of influencer collaboration, ideal for one-off deals, building social proof, and generating influencer content. These posts involve influencers promoting a brand in exchange for payment. The format can vary, including Instagram sponsored posts, reels, stories, podcast mentions, sponsored email content, or YouTube videos like product reviews, hauls, tutorials, day-in-the-life vlogs, and unboxing videos. TikTok and Twitch offer their own unique formats. So, there’s a great variety to choose from.

Influencer marketing has resulted in a notable increase in brand-sponsored influencer posts, showing a trend of rapid growth. This surge is attributed to the enhanced brand awareness generated by influencer marketing and more stringent requirements for advertising transparency. A significant example is seen on Instagram: in 2021, there were approximately 3.8 million posts tagged with #ad, a 27% increase from the three million sponsored posts in the previous year. The number of sponsored posts on Instagram was projected to continue its significant growth, reaching an estimated 6.12 million by the end of 2023.

The scope of sponsored posts extends beyond social media, encompassing podcasts, newsletters, and videos. They can be part of a regular, long-term collaboration or a single post arrangement.

Tips by Famesters professionals

When choosing sponsored posts, it’s a good idea to collaborate with a variety of relevant influencers simultaneously, especially during product launches, to amplify brand presence and increase the likelihood of sales.

You should provide influencers with a basic framework of expectations, including content guidelines and a call-to-action, while allowing enough creative freedom for influencers to engage their audience effectively, as they best understand their followers’ preferences.

Don’t forget about brand or campaign-specific hashtags that are an effective promotional tool, easily shareable and capable of generating excitement. Influencers, skilled in using hashtags, can significantly aid in promoting these across various channels. These branded hashtags not only engage and entertain brand fans but also help in sustaining long-term momentum for marketing campaigns.

Giveaway events and contests

Giveaways, conducted by influencers, are effective for driving specific customer actions, boosting conversions, and fostering high-touch influencer marketing campaigns. They involve influencers asking their followers to perform certain actions—like signing up for an email list, following the brand’s account, or tagging friends—to enter a contest and win free merchandise from the brand. 

The effectiveness of giveaways is highlighted by a Tailwind study, which found that Instagram contests can increase follower growth significantly. However, brands might see a decrease in leads after the giveaway ends, as some participants follow brands solely for free products.

Instagram contests can increase follower growth

Famesters tips on how to maximize the success of giveaways

  • Set clear goals and KPIs to measure the results of your giveaway event or contest.
  • Ensure influencers clearly communicate the giveaway details, including eligibility, prizes, entry process, timelines, and winner selection.
  • Get permission to reuse user-generated content.
  • Offer compelling, audience-relevant prizes to encourage participation.

Giveaways not only generate a significant amount of user-generated content but also amplify social media word-of-mouth marketing, increasing brand visibility with each post and participant contribution.

Content collaboration: sponsored blog posts and guest blogging

Content collaboration is an effective strategy for brand promotion, especially when you want to use your own words and seek valuable backlinks to your website. It involves creating content for someone else’s blog or giving interviews on podcasts. This approach offers more control over how your brand is presented compared to other ways of collaboration with influencers. However, it requires significant time and resources to find relevant influencers, pitch ideas, and create high-quality content.

The benefits include direct communication with consumers and gaining backlinks from influential platforms. To achieve this, brands should actively engage with the audience through comments and discussions. This approach requires upfront effort but can be highly rewarding in terms of brand visibility and direct customer engagement.

There are two types of sponsored blog posts:

  • Dedicated post: focuses entirely on a brand’s products or services, possibly including exclusive discounts or giveaways.
  • Roundup post: features the brand among several others in a broader product or service review.

Compensation for these posts may be fixed, with possible additional incentives like a free service trial. Look, for example, how a luggage brand Away partnered with the fashion blog Man Repeller

Fashion giveaway

Guest blogging

Guest blogging is also an effective method for brand promotion through collaboration with influencers. The process involves identifying influencers with high domain authority, having blogs or websites relevant to your niche. After reaching out to see if they accept guest posts, you can pitch topic ideas. Once agreed, you write informative blog posts for their sites, including a non-spammy (not too promotional) link to your own website. This exposes your brand to their audience and can drive traffic to your site. Bryan Harris of VideoFruit exemplified the success of this strategy: his guest post for  Noah Kagan and OkDork resulted in 215 new subscribers, a 12% conversion rate, and a 523% traffic increase to his site, achieved by actively engaging with comments on the guest post.

Account takeovers 

Account takeovers are a low-commitment way of collaborating with influencers, where they post content directly from your brand’s social media account. This is beneficial as influencers can announce their takeover in advance, attracting their audience to your brand. It also gives your social media team a break from content creation.

An example is the collaboration between photographer Aliza Eliazarov and My Pet Chicken, where Aliza posted chicken portraits and promoted her book, attracting new, relevant followers to My Pet Chicken.

My Pet Chicken

Famesters tips on how to make your account takeover successful

  • First and foremost, choose an influencer you trust and whose voice matches your brand. You can either give them access to your account or ask them to provide content for you to post.
  • Decide on the format, duration, and content of the takeover in advance. This includes the type of content (images or videos), the number of posts, and the duration of the takeover.
  • Actively promote the takeover to create excitement and attract more followers. Use a unique hashtag combining the influencer’s name and your brand to enhance discoverability and hype.
  • Allow the influencer to add their unique voice to your brand’s page, providing general guidelines but allowing some freedom to maintain authenticity.

This strategy can result in a mutually beneficial partnership, driving relevant traffic to your social media and offering fresh content for your followers.

Brand ambassadorship

A brand ambassador program is ideal for establishing long-term relationships with creators, converting influencers into brand advocates, and ensuring their deeper commitment. Unlike regular influencers, brand ambassadors are long-term partners paid to consistently promote a brand on social media, embody its values, and act as spokespersons without partnering with competitors. 

When establishing such relationships, it’s important to:

  • Select trusted influencers for a “test run” before committing to long-term partnerships. Propose ambassador roles to influencers only after successful collaborations. 
  • Ensure influencers’ beliefs match the brand’s values and aesthetics for ongoing collaboration.
  • Develop clear guidelines and expectations.
  • Plan for both online and offline promotions, and maintain regular communication.
  • Utilize popular events for brand promotion.
  • Provide custom discount codes for use on your brand ambassador’s social media platforms.
  • Provide product updates and support to ambassadors, making them a feedback channel and event promoters, extending beyond social media.

Hosting offline and virtual events

One more way to collaborate with an influencer is inviting your brand ambassadors or other highly-trusted influencers to host your offline (conferences, product launches and so on) or online events. Influencers can represent brands during live streams, showcasing products to a large audience. Live shopping events are also becoming more and more popular, being one of the latest marketing trends. The key advantages of virtual events include the ability for a wide audience to join live streams at any time and the opportunity for influencers to host events on the brand’s own page. This approach allows followers and customers to see influencers’ real-life reactions to products, potentially leading to increased followers and engagement for both the brands and influencers.

The final word: how to choose the right way to collaborate with influencers?

The right influencer collaboration way depends on your  brand’s marketing goals, budget, and resources. Different methods may suit a brand at various times, depending on specific marketing objectives. The key is to align the chosen method with the current goals, find the right influencers, measure progress, and focus on what is most effective.

The latest trends in influencer marketing suggest opting for longer, performance-based relationships with influencers. In 2024, there will be a shift towards long-term partnerships between brands and influencers, moving away from one-off sponsored posts.This tendency is driven by the understanding that sales take time to materialize, thus single sponsored posts are less effective in achieving significant impact. Initiating relationships with one-off strategies like sponsored posts or gifting can be effective. If successful, these can evolve into deeper partnerships like ambassador programs or commission-based models. Long-term campaigns with influencers are proving to be more effective than short-term ones. Therefore, brands are increasingly interested in building stronger, ambassador-like relationships with influencers.

Another trend is about producing more user-generated content. This shift might be influenced by the growing relevance of TikTok in the realm of influencer marketing. TikTok, known for its UGC, has become a popular platform where brands collaborate with influencers to initiate activities from regular followers. Statistically, the emphasis on sales and brand awareness as campaign objectives has decreased, with sales now at 29% and brand awareness at 26%, while the primary motivation for influencer marketing campaigns has shifted significantly towards generating UGC, accounting for 45% of the reason for these campaigns.

Times change, but the only thing remains the same: influencer marketing continues to gain momentum. The ROI from influencer marketing is 11 times greater than from any other form of digital advertising. On average, businesses are earning a return on investment of $5.20 for every $1 spent on influencer marketing.The most successful businesses, which make up the top 13%, are seeing even higher returns, earning $20 or more for every $1 spent on influencer marketing.

What does that mean for your brand? As influencer marketing experts, we suggest each brand to decide on its own way to collaborate with influencers, be creative and open to new opportunities. Whether you want to test waters in the influencer marketing industry for the first time, or you’re ready to launch a full-scale influencer marketing campaign, you can contact Famesters via [email protected] for advice and assistance. We know how to make your brand stand out from the competition!


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