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10 Mistakes which Can Bury Your Relationships with Influencers
Opinion shapers in a specific social or professional group can become your long-term investment, being lawyers or ambassadors of your brand. Funds spent on promotion with the help of thought leaders in the industry will help you obtain amazing effects. And it would be regrettable to lose the favorable attitude of these people and stop doing business with them because of a certain kind of mistakes made by you through carelessness. In this case, to establish mutually profitable cooperation with opinion shapers is more than a doable task.

Once The Huffington Post published an article in which the marketers themselves listed and commented on the mistakes they made when working with thought leaders. Taking into account the valuable ideas expressed by them, NinjaPromo compiled a complete list of everything that needs to be known about building close touch with agents of influence.

Mistake #1: you do not offer cross-use cooperation

Opinion shapers can make a lot of exciting and profitable suggestions for your brand. But they will expect something in return for their assistance. Companies often underestimate their work and offer the lowest possible reward for their work.

But with the increased popularity and usefulness of marketing, the thought leaders are spoiled for choice. If your offer considers only your interests and is beneficial only to you, they won't be in account with you.

Only 25% of micro-leaders believe that brands have an idea of the real value of a quality influence marketing program.

How to avoid that

  • make a study of the opinion shapers and the results of his previous works before making a proposal;
  • after the evaluation, offer him/her a decent reward for the job;
  • ask to tell about his/her expectations of working with you, and if he/she can really help you achieve your goals, offer equally beneficial cooperation.
        Mistake #2: you are continually changing your marketing plan

        This topic is thread-bare for marketers. There are times when your marketing plan changes suddenly, and because of this, you may lose the interest of some people.

        Opinion leaders who work with you should be aware of your marketing agenda to be able to create an effective content plan: images, blog posts, videos or comments.

        If you continue changing your marketing plan this way, in the long run, it could jeopardize your relationship with them.

        How to avoid that

        Influents need to be aware of your marketing program:

        • facilitating the launch of a new product;
        • promoting an event;
        • promoting a contest or offering a discount;
        • raising brand awareness;
        • increasing the number of conversions or traffic.

        Whatever goal you set, you'd better know that in advance; before you begin negotiations with thought leaders.
        Mistake #3: you underestimate their creativity

        Thought leaders can create high-quality content that can significantly increase your traffic and improve SEO performance. They are well aware of what their audiences like and dislike, and this helps them plan and create content more effectively.

        Of course, you can ask them to adapt the content to the needs and characteristics of your company, but of course, you should not suppress all their creative potential.

        Keep in mind that agents of influence will not publish content that may damage their reputation, or that is unpleasant to their audience.

        Forcing them to do this will ruin the relationship with them.

        How to avoid that

        • look at what the agent of influence is currently doing, and figure out how you can fit your brand into the process;
        • watch how other companies use the content of their agents;
        • give creative freedom to the agent of influence and see what they can create.

        Mistake #4: lack of incentives

        Marketing of influence is a permanent process. As long as the thought leader benefits you, you will want to work with him/her again and again. However, the key to effective marketing is active communication as well.

        According to a Linqia survey, only 50% of marketers spend more than 25 hours on influencer marketing programs.

        Having enough time for your agent of influence is the first step in the development of relations with him.

        How to avoid that

        • add influence agents to your mailing list. Notify them about new products, company events, etc. If you can send them a personal letter, it will be even better;
        • give them discount coupons or provide free samples when you launch new products. They will feel privileged and involved in your company.
        Mistake # 5: you ask inexperienced employees to keep terms with them

        It is not uncommon for marketers to be engaged simultaneously in several projects at once. And it is quite possible that they will delegate responsibilities for working with one or another opinion shaper to some young employee who does not yet have enough experience. He/she can treat the thought leader without due respect and attention.

        How to avoid that

        • tell staff to inform you about all aspects of the negotiations with the agent of influence so that you are well informed;
        • from time to time get in touch with the agent of influence;
        • ask your team to provide agents with clear instructions and all materials that may be useful to them in the process of creating content.

        Mistake #6: you set unrealistic goals and expect quick results

        Sounds familiar? Inspired by the ideas of our campaign, we tend to set unrealistic goals and then expect immediate results. Due to the difficulty of measuring the return on investment in marketing influence, you can be impatient and begin to put pressure on your thought leaders.

        Metrics to estimate the success of opinion shaper marketing campaigns: reach, involvement, audience mood, traffic volume, number of conversions, number of sales, other.

        How to avoid that

        Decide in advance how you will measure the profitability of a campaign of influence marketing. This includes how you will track leads from your influence agent. You can:

        • assign each agent a unique code;
        • launch newly branded hashtags for the campaign;
        • give each opinion shaper a unique, trackable link.
        Mistake #7: payment delay or breach of contract

        Unfortunately, agents tend to write raving reviews on certain companies that refuse to pay the agent full bill after the end of the deal. Similar reports about working with your company will not bring you any good.

        How to avoid that

        • specify in the contract what results you expect, and what points will be changed if something goes according to another scenario.

        Mistake #8: you use the content of the opinion shaper, but do not credit the author

        Using someone else's content without naming the author is a pretty serious mistake, even if it was made due to inattention.

        Wherever you use the materials of your agents (email-list, blog, social media), you merely must specify their authorship.

        How to avoid that

        • if you share textual publications, videos or images of your influence agents, be sure to post a link to their website or profile in social media;
        • thank them for agreeing to share their content.
        Mistake #9: you consider cooperation with the agent as a one-time

        It will be a big mistake on your part not to continue working with the thought leader after one contract. Agree: since you have spent so much time to find the right agent for you, take the time to maintain a relationship with him.

        How to avoid that

        • discuss with them your long-term marketing plan and their growth prospects;
        • invite them to celebrations and other events, making them part of your company.

        Mistake #10: you do not trust them

        Of course, you cannot blindly believe all new opinion shapers, but this does not mean that you need to question every step of theirs. Trust must be mutual.

        They must believe in your brand, you — in their influence and their content.

        How to avoid that

        • keep your promises
        • do not treat people biased. Allow them to prove their usefulness.


        Influence Marketing is gaining momentum, and the rules mentioned above will allow you to derive all the benefits of this strategy. The foundation of your relationship with agents of influence should be honesty and respect. We consider that only this way can you establish win-win cooperation that will help your business grow.
        Thank you for reading this article! Please, share it if you'd enjoyed it and tell us what you think about Influencer Marketing. Also, you might like our other stories:

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