Safeguarding your message and having a clear contingency plan can save countless headaches and campaigns.
As in Part I, brands must evolve to have a conscious grasp on the content their consumers want to enjoy. Approaching a partnership from the perspective of the desired audience lends to the authenticity and relatability of the brand.
However, marketers must also keep the worst case scenario in mind, and have a clearly defined plan of action to protect your brand’s assets. Here are two more ways that marketers can avoid the dangers of influencer marketing.
3. Stay in Control of Your Message
Most important for marketers when dealing with celebrity influencers is to remember to maintain control whenever possible. Crises are always hard to accurately predict, but sometimes it may be wiser to turn down a partnership with a slam-dunk influencer that has the potential to rob your brand of its consumer credibility.
No matter how many precautions you take in selecting an influencer, there is always the possibility that a partnership could backfire should a scandal arise. In a scenario such as this, there are questions to be asked:
First, is the character of the influencer damaged enough to damage the brand immediately?
Second, would a continued association be a hindrance to the brand’s message?
Third, has the influencer alienated the desired demographics?
Ending a partnership in the right circumstances has the potential to place you in the good graces of society for taking action. Yet, it could also alienate your consumers should you detach at the wrong time.
Other marketers advocate for a neutral stance on an influencer’s actions and maintaining a partnership throughout a scandal, believing that they will always be valuable for their exposure. Effectively avoiding catastrophe requires a clear crisis management plan that values your brand message ahead of any other factor, and a proactive stance to take the appropriate action.
4. Beef Up Your Brand’s Personality
The amount of access afforded to brands by social media has created a culture of flashy postings like ‘Twitter wars‘ that come to define how a brand is perceived. Utilizing this resource can be a preemptive resource to protect your message from being harmed by an emergency situation.
By infusing comedy or compassion into your brand’s interactions with consumers, you can begin to construct your ideal position in popular culture. In the midst of a public relations crisis, having a brand personality reserves credibility in the minds of consumers and has the potential to alienate the influencer’s bad behavior from your brand values.
Marketers must be aware how much to push the envelope in the content they release, a topic for another day. Staying proactive is essential in the digital realm and will remove the ability for influencers to hijack your brands message should a crisis arise.
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