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How Marketers Can Conduct Influencer Marketing Attribution

May 11, 2023 | Audience Intelligence

Influencer marketing attribution allows marketers to measure the effectiveness of their influencer marketing campaigns and understand which influencers drove the best results. Attribution involves analyzing social behavior and purchase data to determine how much of an impact an influencer had on the campaign’s success.

Most marketers will implement some type of method to track influencer attributed sales, such as referral or affiliate links, unique promo codes, or implementing multi-touch attribution models. But what if there was a better, more comprehensive way to see the sales directly resulting from your campaign?

Secret to Influencer Attribution: Identifying Exposed Social Audiences

The ability to identify individuals who were exposed to a social media campaign and link it back to conversion data has long been a challenge for marketers. However, with the advent of social audience insight platforms, like Silhouette™, marketers can now easily identify the social audiences that have been exposed to a campaign allowing you to map that social audience to first or third-party sales data, the same way you would attribute value to paid media efforts.

How to Determine Influencer Marketing Attribution with Silhouette

With access to a social audience insights platform like Silhouette, you have the ability to identify the impact of your influencer marketing campaigns in just a few simple steps.

Step 1: Create two separate audiences in Silhouette:

  1. Individuals exposed to specific influencer content, and
  2. A control audience based on the general population or custom audience

Step 2: Overlay both audiences with first or third-party purchase data (e.g. sales, in-store visits, downloads) both pre and post-campaign.

Step 3: Compare purchase behavior between the exposed and control audiences to determine resulting sales lift from your influencer partnership.

Real example of how a marketing team measured sales impact with Silhouette

Companies of all sizes leverage Silhouette to measure the impact of their influencer campaigns. Recently, we worked with a multinational CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) company that had invested millions of dollars in a year-long influencer campaign to promote one of their iconic brands.

The CMO needed to understand the ROI on these influencer investments to decide if they should move forward with future partnerships or if they should allocate budget elsewhere. In short, their team needed a way to quantify the sales impact across a 6 month period.

To understand the impact their campaign had on sales, they partnered with StatSocial to identify the exposed social audiences that could be mapped back to their third-party purchase data. So here’s how they did it:

Within Silhouette, they built 2 exposed and 1 control audience:

Audience 1) Fans of the influencers
Audience 2) Fans of the video game the influencers played
Audience 3) A control group

Then they identified the number of customers within the exposed and control audiences. Within each audience, they identified the following KPIs during the 6 month period:

  • Average transactions per household
  • Number of days between the next purchase
  • Number of units sold

They discovered that those people in the social audience exposed to the influencer’s content spent significantly more compared to the control group. Key findings during that 6 month period included:

Ultimately, the influencer partnership did positively impact sales, resulting in a 8% lift in sales and a 8% lift in units sold compared to the control audience. As a result, the CMO decided to further invest in their influencer marketing program, as the ROI exceeded other digital marketing efforts.

Key Considerations for Measuring Success of Your Influencer Campaigns

When considering the case study above, this brand didn’t have the ability to implement promo codes or tracking links due to the nature of their business, selling through third-party grocers. However, even if they could leverage promo codes, they would have never been able to gain the amount of purchase behavior they did without the ability to identify those exposed to their campaign.

But what if you’re a direct-to-consumer brand and leverage promo codes for your influencer partner to promote? Promo codes are great purchase motivators. However, they can be easily abused and shared to third-party sites, giving you a murky understanding of impact. If leveraging promo codes, it’s important to also run a comprehensive attribution study to fully understand how many individuals were actually exposed to your campaign and made a resulting purchase during a set period of time with or without the promo code.

Influencer Marketing Attribution is the Future

Influencer marketing attribution is crucial for optimizing future influencer campaigns, identifying the most effective influencers, and ensuring that ROI is being maximized. When you know the exact impact your influencer campaign has on sales, it enables you to make data-driven decisions and justify a bigger budget.

If you’re ready to start reporting comprehensive and accurate influencer marketing impact without relying on promo codes and tracking links, let’s chat!

View our full influencer marketing offerings like influencer validation and discovery here.

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