We recently hosted a Digital Forum from our Shareablee offices in New York with a group of hardworking influencers from across the US, to hear from them about how they're finding the world of branded content.
Growing their blog and podcast audiences through social from states including Oregon, Florida, Michigan and New York they joined us via video conferencing so we could hear about their creator journey.
They included Chris @ParentNormal for whom comedy about the parenting experience makes podcasting and blogging a natural fit, and says he prefers using social media to reach his audience. Adanna from @rattlesandheels who has been blogging for the past 6 years and Jee the lifestyle blogger with @simplyeveryblog found social to be a great outlet for creativity and community building. We especially loved the handle of @susieqpons a blogger with a focus on lifestyle and pets in particular.
The truth is there is no rule book on how to connect with partners. Partnerships with macro and micro influencers are challenging to find for agencies and brands just as they are for creators - as well as ensuring they are both a brand match. For the group of influencers in our Forum, partnerships either came out of the blue, from attending events where they introduced themselves to brands face to face or via recommendations from other influencers.
Comparing someone that has 10,000 followers to someone with 2 million followers requires a normalized metric that measures performance. That is why we developed the Influencer Score, backed by our trusted metrics and made up of the key measures of performance. That is: efficiency, quality, scale, velocity (how are you growing) and consistency. Each of the creators in our Forum received their Influencer Score
, they were all in the 80's or high 70's and a great indication this group would be a safe pair of hands in a campaign.
Here at Shareablee, we worked on the Influencer Score for more than a year before its release earlier this year as part of the Verify search tool
and we live and breathe it every day. Hearing people learn about it for the first time and welcome it so candidly was a thrill for us. @parentnormal asked us the key question about when it would be used as an industry standard, and mirrored what we hear from advertising and data industry leaders - that a follower number remains the default for brands that are still learning what they should expect of a good partner.
For potential partners trying to understand how responsive an audience is, the number of followers can have little relation to how much engagement a post will get. Verify helps ensure good creators could be found, filtered and tracked by brands and agencies looking for the right fit for their campaign in a universe of 9+ million influencers. We wanted to present an influencers performance in a way brands could understand, break through the vanity metrics and find creators by genre, interests, previous partnerships, actions and even word search in your bio across platforms.
We have work to do to keep educating the industry and creators but it we were heartened by what we heard at the Forum and what we've seen in comments on social since (shoutout to @susieqpons and her highly engaged audience).
As engagement on influencer content continues to grow across platforms we need to keep this conversation going. If you're an influencer and you want to attend our next Digital Forum ping us @VerifyScore