Influencer Marketing : What to measure?

influencer-marketing-lifetelecastWhat is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer Marketing involves marketing one’s products, services or brand communication via a set of people who have influence in their field. It helps the marketers not to mass target and rather inspire/pay influencers to spread your message. These influencers talk about your brand and services on their respective social channels and build credibility for your products among their followers.

There are many aspects on which we can debate on choosing right set of influencers but this post is more about the post mortem of the influencer activity which one does for its brand.

In this post, I am only covering Twitter as I see most of the marketers choosing this social medium over others to create immediate noise for their brands.

What we MEASURE today?

Total number of tweets: I have seen most of the agencies only representing the buzz volume they created for the brand via influencers. Maximum, they will share the Organic and Paid tweets number. But the case shouldn’t rest there.

Potential impressions: This is represented as {sum total of (no. of tweets done by each person * no. of followers the person has)}. This number is just again an eye catchy figure to create an illusion that the campaign generated ‘X’ mn impressions. We all know that our tweets are not seen by each one of our followers. My last 10 tweets show only 50% tweet impressions out of my total follower base that too because one of my tweets has got a lot of engagement, else my average impressions rate has come out to be only 20%.

What we SHOULD measure?

Unique Contributors: I have seen people measuring only no. of tweets done during the campaign but have you ever gone through how many Unique Contributors were there. It is a very important metric to judge how many unique people talked about you. Usually in an influencer campaign, a person keeps tweeting umpteen no. of times which doesn’t make sense to measure. You should know if you invested in 100 influencers, how much more people contributed to your campaign over and above those influencer number. That will be a true measure of your Influencers’ influence.

Engagement: You also need to measure the clicks/likes/retweets your influencer has got on his/her tweets. If you do not have a tool to measure that then ask for the same from your influencer, the same is available in his twitter analytics.

Reach: How many people have actually viewed the content from your influencers’ feed? The same is also available in Twitter analytics. It is pretty important to know to cross check if the influencer has yielded the results you expected from him. You should ask your influencers to share the average Reach which their tweets usually generate/generated for the campaign.

Follower Growth: Last but not the least, also check if this influencer activity has actually increased your follower’s growth. You should know if the influencers have been able to create enough excitement about your brand among their followers and whether it helped you gain some follower base.


Set Benchmarks: Once you keep monitoring and measuring your influencers’ performance, you would know who are worth empaneling with again. You would also know the benchmarks w.r.t Reach/Unique Contributors, etc.

Comparison with other Twitter Paid Media: You can also differentiate whether an influencer campaign is better or the other paid media offerings from Twitter basis your campaign objectives. Twitter gives you an option of Top Trending Topic/ Top Trending Account / Top Trending Tweet.

I myself have seen a lot of brands working on Influencer campaigns and it really pains me to see how some of these influencer campaigns are used just as a gimmick to create one-time trend for a couple of hours rather than thinking it through. To sum up, here is my two pence to marketers and agencies running influencer campaigns:

  • Choose your influencers wisely
  • Make it not just one-time activity but think on an influencer advocacy program
  • Measure not just the cream but go deep dive into each layer
  • Measure on a continuous basis to set benchmarks and understand the ROI of such campaigns vs other paid media

Let me know your thoughts as well.

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A digital soul in an offline world whose battery recharges in company of friends and family. ;) Note: Views expressed are personal.

4 thoughts on “Influencer Marketing : What to measure?”

  1. Very well written, Charu.

    I wish more brands would learn the right metrics and focus on creating a compelling campaign, instead of paying money to self-elected pimps of the trade.

    Speaking of them, every other person (and their dogs) is a food critique, a fashion blogger, a pro photographer, or an Internet celebrity. It’s difficult for brands to trust agencies to bring right people on the board (honestly, there are very few true influencers), as many folks are in just for the kicks, and think it’s an easy escape from their otherwise mundane lives. Oh wait!

    The other stupid thing is – influencer marketing hasn’t evolved much in the last 8 years. It’s rare that I see a brand / agency pulling off an influencer campaign that impresses me. Once popular Kingfisher BeerUp died because they couldn’t innovate over the years. (Well, they now have more reasons to die than just that!)

    Here’s what I’ve always felt : the fact that I am a foodie doesn’t make me an influencer in the food category; if I know a thing or two about phones and gadgets (even if that’s just because I follow international news / media / bloggers), I don’t qualify as a tech influencer, and if I can copy / immitate someone who understands fashion, I don’t become a fashion advice maestro. Unfortunately, most agencies bring such people on board for brands to spend money on. And that’s sad.

    Given the way things are moving, I don’t see any of these self proclaimed influencers making a living out of it. Just 2 weeks back, one of the popular Twitter celebs / influencers who was known to be pampered by brands and was doing just this full time reached out to me asking for a job opportunity.

    Another couple of years and this might just disappear like a passing fad.

    P.S. Typed on a mobile phone. Please excuse for brevity & typos.

    1. Thanks for taking out time to read and share your views Praval. Agree with each of your point. Brands and agencies fail to do ‘influencer marketing’ activities right and this gives me another topic to write on!

    1. Thanks Nikhil. True that! It’s time agencies start acting responsibly and brand managers also start asking the right questions!

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