What influences the influencers?

Right. Elephant in the room time. You know those influencers you're getting to plug your products? It's not your brand they're attracted to - it's your wallets.

Your big, bulging wallets, as it turns out. Now that influencer marketing is the fastest-growing method of customer acquisition, it's become a big-money game. Twenty-five percent of brands are spending over half a million dollars on it every year. Five percent are spending over $5m. That translates to about 200 bucks for every half-arsed "Hey, guys - check out this amazing thing I've discovered" and ten grand for every "I just spent a day testing the latest doo-dah from thingumabob."

And here's the thing: it's not their fault. Bloggers gotta eat, tweeters gotta tweet. The problem isn't so much that those all-important influencers have finally woken up to the value of their influence (given that 3% of influential individuals generate 90% of impact online, did you really think they wouldn't charge for that?), the problem is that the tools you've given them - and their audiences - are woefully unfit for purpose.

I'll explain. Like any fun thing worth talking about, there's three people involved when it comes to influencer marketing. There's you,


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Time to cure your brand's Discount Code addiction

coupons<em>and</em>vouchers

How to wean your customers (and your marketing team) off vouchers and discount codes…

Seeing how 2015 has started with announcement after retailer announcement that excessive discounting severely dented margins in Q4, it's a good moment to consider another type of rampant discounting: ‘Discount Codes’.

Vouchers as Class A Drugs?

Indiscriminate scatter-gunning of discount codes cheapens your brand by creating a class of customer that always expects discounts.

This problem has been particularly pronounced in the casual dining industry where vouchers have been compared to Class A drugs and research from Mintel (1) found a third of British diners regularly use vouchers and a huge percentage say they will only visit chains if there is an offer.

It's just too easy for marketers to turn to the ‘quick fix’ to boost sales, but the fear that customer numbers will drop the minute the discounts disappear means it’s hard to quit. What we get is a real ‘tragedy of the commons’ where competitors discount away their margins chasing price sensitive switchers.

I am sure we all see evidence of this. How many of us have a wallet stuffed with a couple of ‘30% off’ coupons alongside some


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What Brands and Retailers can learn from World of Warcraft

Battle

What World of Warcraft Can Teach Brands and Retailers

Given that the term 'gamification', first coined by Nick Pelling in 2002, originated from online gaming, it is apt to consider what brands and retailers can learn from Massively Multiplayer Online Games (‘MMOGs’) like World of Warcraft. 

At first blush you might not see much in common between World of Warcraft and filling your supermarket trolley on the weekend, signing up for magazine subscriptions or even buying cosmetics online. But there is a lot to be learned from how MMOGs keep users engaged, build in ‘switching costs’ and prevent customers going to competitors.

In particular, for a brand or retailer looking to engage with potential purchasers to get them to buy and then refer friends and family, there are interesting parallels how MMOGs work with the psychological user profiles to incorporate elements appropriate for each personality type.

The MMOG Business Model 

 Firstly we need to consider that MMOGs' business models are either:

  • A low monthly fee topped up by in-game purchases; or
  • No fee but entirely financed by in-game purchases

In either case, the entire economic viability of MMOGs is based on engaging users to keep them coming back


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The end of lazy social media marketing

sleep_image

 

When a Great Blog Article Inspires You To Post!

We were inspired to write this blog post by Matt Owen’s excellent recent article in eConsultancy entitled: How can brands make money from social media if they aren’t allowed to join

While that article was mostly targeted at social and content marketing, there are clear parallels with Social Commerce and the offers that brands and retailers can make to their fans and followers via social. Basically, like great content, great offers will get shared, particularly when there is an incentive for the person sharing the offer, and the sharing task is made both easy and natural.

Making Money on Social

On the subject of making money from social, Matt commented:

Businesses still don’t appreciate social or content.……I have regular bouts of apoplectic rage when I hear from people who not only don’t believe that social makes money, but are so pig-headed about the whole thing that they refuse to believe that there are better ways of measuring how and why it’s performing.’

While perhaps not reaching the heights of apoplexy Matt describes (but then we do assume he is tending towards hyperbole here :) ) we share


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by Peter

When we shop together we've got the right stuff

Teamwork: make useful by Buyapowa

My little boy is obsessed with 'Wonder Pets'. Okay, that's a lie. I'm obsessed with 'Wonder Pets', Nickelodeon's animated masterpiece where a bunch of opera-singing kindergarten pets save imperilled animals via the medium of teamwork. The kid just joins me on the couch.

That's how I spend my evenings, but teamwork's also pretty much what I do for my day-job. I help customers team together to make amazing things happen, and I help brands galvanise the power of that teamwork to turn business goals into business realities. Here's how...

Since we set up Buyapowa three years ago, we've studied, experimented and developed amazing technologies to harness the power of teamwork and use it to drive and magnify sales. The latest addition to our platform is a brand new social selling component called 'Kickstart it' - more on that later - but, first, let's look back to our first ever component (and still one of our most popular ones): the 'Price steps'.

'Price steps' - where prices continually improve as more and more people shop - work because there's a simple but powerful built-in communal incentive for every customer to share. If I take part and the price of a pair


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