Cody started his Influencer Marketing journey brand-side at QALO (the creators of the silicone wedding ring) spending 3 years growing it from nothing to work with a wide range of influencers–both in size, and interest niche. He then took everything he learned there to co-found influencer marketing agency Kynship – which focuses on building a community of influencers for their clients–not just the transactions.
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Cody started out working for QALO, where he was part of the marketing team and where he learned about relationship-building and the power of getting products out to the right people of influence.
After some time, Cody looked for a career outside of QALO, and shifted to running an agency with his business partner. The thought of doing influencer marketing himself for a lot of brands was what attracted him, instead of becoming just another employee in a new company.
Building A Community vs. Transactional Influencer Marketing
What Cody learned while working at QALO that has become their philosophy is to build relationships on giving and not asking.
What’s common practice within influencer marketing is very transactional, where a brand gives an influencer their product or pays the influencer, and the relationship ends there. The brand moves on to the next influencer and repeats the transaction and this doesn’t lead to building a community.
For Cody, the best way to start and scale an influencer marketing program is by letting the product speak for itself. Start by thinking of how you can provide value to your potential influencer and giving first, rather than just looking at them as objects with followers you can gain from.
What Is Seeding?
Seeding is sending out products for free.
When it comes to building relationships, start and scale by seeding. Get your product out there, taking into consideration how much you can afford in doing so.
But with all the rewards that come with seeding, it’s worth looking at and getting into.
Current Trends In Influencer Marketing
Cody mentions 2 trends that can scale your influencing marketing program:
- Whitelisting – serving ads through the influencer’s handle
- Dark posting – boosting an influencer’s post on their feed
These two strategies constitute spending on ads and making them look like they’re from the influencer.
Additionally, 2 more trends Cody discusses are doing the community approach and working with micro or nano influencers.
TikTok is where it’s at today for short form content. Invest in being on the platform and working with influencers who are there.
For long form, go with YouTube. This is a great platform to have where product reviews can live for a long time
If we’ve inspired someone to take their first step with influencer marketing – what do they need to know to give themselves the best chance of success?
In addition to seeding, Cody says identifying the right influencers for your brand is a great first step towards a successful influencer marketing strategy.
Three different platforms where you can go to find the right influencers for you are Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.
Once you’ve started of course you’ve got to ‘keep optimising’! So what’s your favourite way to improve influencer marketing performance?
In your Facebook Ads account and when you already have user-generated content from influencers, you can do dynamic creative testing or DCT to improve your ad performance.
You can run 10 ads within one DCT and with that you’ll be able to see quickly what content is performing and who is working best.
If someone listening wants to learn more about influencer marketing is there one cheap/free resource you’d recommend?
Kynship has a Shopify app that can help brands seed products to influencers efficiently.
Additionally, Cody mentions Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram as 3 free resources you can check out for identifying influencers.
Crystal ball time – what’s coming up in the next 6-12 months that we should be getting ready for in influencer marketing?
For Cody, its follower count disappearing.
He says this would greatly benefit brands and influencers because it will put more focus on the content itself.
Cody on Social media:
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