Ever wondered exactly how influencer posts come together? These business owners share their approach – and the secrets to influencer marketing success.
Influencers. If the term makes you think of the Kardashians, it may be time to think again.
In the past six years, there has been a 50 percent rise, year over year, in the global influencer industry, according to the Influencer Marketing Benchmark Report, and today, more than 50 million people consider themselves content creators.
In other words, it’s a gigantic industry, wide open to almost everyone – including those without their own reality TV program or Kardashian-level fame.
Taryn Williams, founder and CEO of The Right Fit, a model, talent and influencer agency, believes influencers have democratized marketing because brands can now reach audiences in a fast and affordable way.
“If you find the right influencer in the right niche or geographic area, with targeted audience of interest, [and] who has already built trust with their followers, it’s a highly effective way for brands to market; [it’s also] suitable for all points of the marketing funnel – from brand awareness to conversion,” she says.
"It's not something that is limited to those with big budgets.”
“It's also fantastic because it's not something that is limited to those with big budgets or those with large agencies on retainer.”
But just how does it work? Below, we detail four successful partnerships between brands and influencers.
GlowDry beauty has found success with paid partnerships and a gifting strategy
Fiona Dunne, the founder of finishing fake tan powder GlowDry, started partnering with influencers soon after launching in 2018 and has since made influencer marketing an integral part of her strategy.
As part of this influencer strategy, Dunne frequently gifts products to influencers in the hopes that they will post about GlowDry, which is designed to be brushed on to prevent stickiness and staining from a spray tan. Gifting, she explains, is a low-risk way to see if her product and an influencer click.
Last year she sent GlowDry’s fake-tan drying powder to Isabel Alysa (@isabelalysa), a U.S. celebrity spray-tan artist with 124,000 followers who works with the Kardashians, Channing Tatum, Olivia Culpo and Katy Perry, among many stars.
“We were shocked and delighted when she shared a story featuring our product,” says Dunne, and that day GlowDry saw a 141 percent spike in sales.
“She’s since shared a few times and we always see a spike,” Dunne continues. "So, we’re now talking to her about a paid collaboration as her endorsement has been so powerful for us.”
When it comes to paid influencer partnerships, Dunne’s numberone criteria when selecting influencers is that they love her product. She also values reliability – and of course results.
"A great influencer is one who commits to to your product, [adheres to] a posting schedule, and is honest with their followers,” she says, adding that she measures success by checking website traffic, sales using a discount code, email signups, direct sales and social-follower growth."
“A great influencer is one that commits to your product."
Teeth-whitening brand Advanced Whitening has worked with mid-tier influencers and mega influencers
When it comes to influencer partnerships, teeth-whitening brand Advanced Whitening has tried a range of tactics and types of influencers.
However, their most successful influencer campaigns share several key characteristics, says social media manager Emma Vosti.
First and foremost, the influencer must have an authentic connection to the brand. “When we find influencers that genuinely love and use our products you can see it through their content – it just comes more naturally.”
One particularly successful influencer partnership has been with influencer and dental hygienist Ashley Gunner, (@miss_gunner), with whom the brand worked over a three-month period. In that time, Gunner shared a post per month, plus stories.
“That’s been a particularly successful relationship given her career as a dental hygienist,” says Vosti. “She is so knowledgeable and passionate about our products and speaks with such authority.”
“With Ashley we regularly see consistent sales through her content. However, the objective here is slightly different – we love how educational her content is and we include ad usage [the ability to use the content in paid social media advertisements in her contract] as we find it works very well for social media promotions.”
The brand has also worked with mega influencers such as Sarah Rav, who has 1.1 million followers. Much like the partnership with Gunner, Advanced Whitening worked with Rav several times.
“With Sarah Rav we partnered with her to promote our Advanced Whitening Kit and saw great results, so we worked with her again six months later for the launch of our Sonic Electric Toothbrush and Charcoal Toothpaste. We felt her audience already understood our brand and they'd been receptive, so it was a natural progression.”
When Advanced Whitening works with influencers, the brand supplies discount codes for their followers so all conversions are easily tracked.
“We consistently see great results when we offer discount codes."
“We consistently see results when we offer this; we recently saw a seven-times return on investment with a midsize influencer, which is really strong."
No1. Bra London worked with two very different influencers to build brand awareness
When Jeanette Misseldine launched No1. Bra London in 2021, she’d already racked up 30 years’ experience in the lingerie industry.
Although Misseldine had spent decades designing and manufacturing lingerie, she knew very little about marketing – and was unsure where to start when it came to promoting her new brand, which offered bras that were uniquely designed to be more comfortable.
“The biggest challenge is getting the word out there,” she says. “We knew that once it got out into the market it would sell well.”
“The biggest challenge is getting the word out there."
That’s where influencers came in. In March 2021, Misseldine partnered with Loose Women star Nadia Sawalha, who posted an Instagram video of herself wearing No1. Bra Lingerie and talking about the brand’s uniquely designed underwire.
That post resulted in a wave of media coverage after it was picked up by several major news outlets, including Daily Mail, Hello magazine and The Sun. No1. Bra London also used the video in paid Facebook ads. Within three months, the brand had virtually sold out.
Next, No1. Bra partnered with Casey Stoney MBE, former manager of Manchester United women’s soccer team, to promote a patented "no-bounce" sports bra via a series of Instagram posts. A single post resulted in nearly 1,000 likes and an uptick in sales.
Misseldine says that Stoney lends authority to the brand. “Casey wants to help girls and over the years she’s seen many girls leave soccer due to a growing bust and ill-fitting bras. Partnering with influencers is all about selecting the best person to represent your brand.”
Olay’s partnership with The Influencer Agency aimed to engage a broader audience
Skincare brand Olay is traditionally known for targeting women with mature skin but wanted to expand their product awareness and reach Millennial and Gen Z customers.
The marketing team approached The Influencer Agency, which brought together 18 Millennial and Gen Z beauty, health, fashion and travel influencers to promote Olay’s new range of Super Serums.
Influencers, who each allowed Olay to reach a new, young audience, were encouraged to explain what they loved about the Olay Super Serum and asked to include a swipe-up link to the products in their Instagram stories.
One of those influencers, author and television presenter Sarah Davidson (@spoonful_of_sarah), who has a reach of 86.2K followers, elected to post a tutorial to her grid and copied it to her stories. Olay then used their official Australian Instagram account (8,000 followers) to organically reshare and repost some of the content.
The results? The campaign drove high engagement, receiving 722 comments, 5350 likes and 97,141 impressions, while overall, engagement rose by 25 per cent.
Ready to start working with influencers? Here’s how to find the best talent for your brand and budget.
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