What to Look for in an Influencer Marketplace

Are you trying to figure out which influencer marketplace is the best for you?

Don’t worry, we get it – it’s far from an easy choice. In fact, with dozens of different platforms currently live on the market, making a choice is difficult.

With customers growing ever-wiser to old-school sales tactics and putting up barriers when you market to them, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that influencer marketing is quickly gaining popularity. Why? Because it’s a great way to tap into the trust of another brand and let them show their audience that your product or service is worth their time.

It’s social proof on steroids, but it’s not much good unless you’re able to separate the wheat from the chaff and to accurately track your results.

That’s where influencer marketing platforms come in. If you’re in the middle of trying to make a decision, check out the tips below. They highlight the key features that any platform worth its salt will have and they’ll help you to make the best call for you. Read on to find out more.

5 Key Features Your Influencer Marketplace Needs

Work through the points below and you’ll figure out which platforms are worth your time – and which are best avoided.

1) A Simple-to-Use Interface

When moving to a new platform, there’s going to be a period of adjustment whilst you get used to how everything works. If that platform isn’t user-friendly, that time period is much longer.

If you want to get the most out of your influencer marketing platform, the user experience needs to be seamless. You can launch a campaign from any platform, but the one you’re going to get real, continuous value from will be the one that makes using it feel effortless. You’re going to be spending a lot of time on it, so set your sights on finding a platform that doesn’t just have the features you need, but also makes them easy to find and use.

The best influencer marketplaces employ smart, AI-powered optimizations to maximize the return on your investment. Selecting the optimal mix of influencers for each campaign in a way that maximizes audience efficiency is complex because of the huge number of variables involved. The simple solution is to use a platform that allows you to define your campaign objectives and then automatically optimizes according to those goals.

2) How Easy is it to Find Relevant Influencers?

A list of thousands of different influencers around the world is great, but if you’re selling footballs and they’re all focused on baseball, it’s not going to do you much good. Some platforms simply scrape publicly available information from social networks, leaving you at the mercy of inflated or even fraudulent metrics. Even worse, reaching out to these influencers is hit-or-miss because they have not been onboarded to the platform. Not much better than cold-calling.

No, your influencer marketplace needs to make sourcing relevant, high-quality influencers a breeze. Otherwise, you might as well keep doing it manually.

Your influencer marketing platform should have search and filtering features that help you to home in on influencers that are relevant to your campaign. On top of this, your chosen platform should also give you a heads-up view of the metrics that are most important to you. If you do find a football-crazy influencer but they end up having rock-bottom engagement, chances are they’re not going to care about what you have to say, either.

Any platform can say they track “millions” of influencers. What you’re looking for is relevant people who are ready to work for your brand. Make sure the platform or marketplace you go with features only on-boarded and vetted influencers.

3) Influencer Tracking Capabilities

When you’ve got one or two influencers, you can probably keep on top of them via email and instant messengers. However, once that number hits triple (or even quadruple) digits, you’re going to run into problems.

A decent influencer marketing platform shouldn’t just make it easy to identify relevant influencers – it should also make keeping track of them a breeze. If you’re an agency or are running multiple campaigns for different products, you need to have a broken-down list of which influencers are doing what, as well as how well they’re performing. This is information that should be given to you at a glance without you having to delve too deep.

Only an end-to-end marketplace that integrates all these functions will truly enable you to scale up your influencer marketing with the confidence that nothing that needs to be tracked is falling through the cracks.

4) Campaign Costs Should be Clear

You’ve found an influencer with sky-high engagement who’s incredibly relevant to your brand – great. They want $1,000 more per post than you’re willing to pay – not so great.

Not having a clear understanding of the charges influencers will require is a setback, as it’s going to cost you money and more importantly, time.

Although there’s no sure-fire way of knowing how much an influencer will cost (unless they work on a fixed rate with predefined deals or you’ve run campaigns with them before), your influencer marketing platform should be able to rely on historical data to provide an accurate ballpark prediction. With this, you’ll be able to factor costs into your budget before your campaign launches, instead of moving your margins later on.

Even better is an influencer marketplace that requires all influencers to log-in to their social accounts via the platform. The benefits are enormous. By accurately tracking metrics down to the follower level, rather than just the influencer level like simple scraping services do, the marketplace has full transparency into the performance of each post. That gives marketers complete insight into the actual ROI.

5) A One-Stop Communication Shop

If your platform lets you identify influencers and commission them for your campaigns, but still requires you to fall back on email for communication, how much time is it really saving you?

Sure, the monthly bill for a simple influencer search-and-hire platform may well be less, but you should try to think outside of the concept of cost and focus instead on ROI. If you’re hiring influencers from one platform but still having to be juggling correspondence from multiple others, how much time are you really going to be saving?

And that’s just the communications. Add to that the need to verify FCC compliance, grab screenshots and compile reports, send out payments and track budgets and it quickly spirals out of control. If you want to maximise the benefits you see from an influencer marketing platform, you should focus on finding one that’s all-inclusive and allows you to handle everything. From identifying influencers and launching campaigns to payments and shipping product samples, look for all ongoing communication to happen from within the application.

Research is Key to Making the Right Choice

Influencer marketing is hot right now, and that trend isn’t looking to slow down any time soon. However, you shouldn’t rush the process of finding the best influencer marketing platform for you.

Instead, take your time and do your research. Follow through the features we’ve listed in this article and you’ll find the marketplace that’s best suited to your needs.

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