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Mastering Influencer Collaborations and Brand Partnerships

Haley Durkee
June 4, 2020
Last Updated On

Remember last year when you couldn’t scroll through Instagram without seeing a Bachelor in Paradise contestant whitening their teeth? It seems like a lifetime ago — and that’s a good thing. Brand collaborations with influencers don’t have to stop at generic captions and selfies with strategic product placement anymore. In fact, today’s partnership content, when done creatively, is adding more value for followers than ever before.

The Evolution of Influencer Brand Partnerships

For brands and creators on social media, what was once a space for heavily edited product shots and selfies has given way to a new domain of imperfection. The veil is slowly being lifted to reveal the authentic voices underneath, and brands that don’t comply can say goodbye to engaged audiences. This is especially true when it comes to their partnerships—savvy users can spot an ad from a mile away, and they aren’t falling for it. Thankfully, many brands are paving the way for unique influencer content that both educates and entertains.

The Power of Influencer Collaborations

The power of influencer collaborations has emerged as a beacon for brands aiming to illuminate their presence and connect with audiences on a more personal and authentic level. Unlike traditional advertising, which often feels like a one-way conversation, influencer collaborations open up a dynamic dialogue between brands and consumers, facilitated by figures they trust and admire.

What Makes Influencer Collaborations So Significant?

At its core, influencer collaboration is about partnership and storytelling. It's a strategic alliance where brands and influencers come together to weave narratives that resonate with audiences, driving engagement through relatability and trust. This approach amplifies your reach and enhances the credibility of your message, as it comes from a voice that the audience already knows and values.

The Benefits Unpacked

  • Increased Reach & Visibility: Influencers bring their own loyal followers, offering brands a direct line to new, engaged audiences.
  • Enhanced Trust & Authenticity: Recommendations from influencers can feel more genuine than traditional ads, as they're seen as trusted peers by their followers.
  • Boosted Engagement: Content created in collaboration with influencers often sees higher levels of interaction, from likes and comments to shares and mentions.

Partnerships are a great opportunity to bring products to life through video demonstrations. Influencers with big personalities or exciting talents are the perfect subjects for live streams and draw more eyes to your profile. The best collaborations are with influencers that have a genuine love for your brand and come across as authentic to their audience. This love for the brand and product will be the foundation of a solid partnership.

Crafting Successful Influencer Brand Partnerships

The magic of influencer brand partnerships lies not just in the collaboration itself but in crafting a partnership that feels both authentic and aligned with your brand's ethos. It's about finding that sweet spot where brand objectives meet influencer creativity, resulting in content that captivates and converts.

Finding Your Perfect Match

  • Alignment is Key: The influencer's values, aesthetic, and audience should mirror your brand's. This congruence ensures that the partnership feels natural to the influencer's followers.
  • Authenticity Above All: Choose influencers who are genuine fans of your brand or could realistically become one. Their genuine enthusiasm for your products or services will shine through, making the partnership more believable.

Navigating the Partnership

  • Clear Communication: Set clear expectations and goals from the outset. Discuss content guidelines, key messages, and deliverables to ensure both parties are on the same page.
  • Creative Freedom: While it's important to align on goals, giving influencers creative freedom within those parameters can lead to more authentic and engaging content.
  • Measuring Success: Agree on how success will be measured from the start. Whether it's through engagement rates, conversion metrics, or brand sentiment, having clear KPIs is crucial.

Examples of Influencer Brand Partnerships Campaigns

Discover how authenticity, innovative content, and strategic alignment between brands and influencers can led to memorable campaigns that not only achieved their marketing goals but also leave a lasting impact on their audience. Prepare to be inspired by the creatively from these brand examples and hopefully elevate your own influencer marketing endeavors.

Innovative Product Demos

For businesses that offer physical products, demonstrations are vital to digital sales. When shoppers can’t try on a clothing item or test out a gadget in store, a video is the next best thing. Plus-size fashion retailer Eloquii deeply understands this. The brand partners with micro and macro influencers who create try-on hauls that show off entire clothing ranges on diverse body types. The result is a highly effective series of videos that put the spotlight on several looks in seconds—and drive customers to shop at the link in bio.

Who needs a traditionally shot advertisement when you have the power of TikTok behind you? PromGirl takes a similar try-on approach but mixes it with a little GenZ flavor. The snappy videos with catchy tracks garner the brand tens of thousands of views and it’s no wonder why — TikTok influencers are quickly eclipsing those on other channels in audience size and recognition.

@promgirlxo

Comment below your favorite, 1 or 2??💖 @laurennally09

♬ Gimme Love - Joji
@promgirlxo

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♬ Social Distance Prom - PromGirl

Educate, Entertain and Engage

Social media has become the first stop for virtual entertainment. Brands create and share content on Reels or Instagram Live to help keep followers engaged — and influencers are playing a huge role in their success. Fitness authority Bandier partners with influential fitness leaders to run workouts on IG Live, then publishes them to Reels for those who miss the stream. It’s a way to bring their community together through shared interest and demonstrate the durability of their gear — not to mention draw new eyes to their page from the influencers’ follower pools (and vice-versa). A win-win for all.


Missguided takes to Instagram Stories with tons of live and pre-recorded content from yoga sessions to concerts. They also expertly leverage static user-generated content (UGC) from influencers in-feed using the hashtag #babesofmissguided. It’s a simple, easy opportunity to find potential partners you might have missed from seeking them out directly.

A Different Kind of Influencer

While the way brands are working with influencers is evolving, the face of those influencers is evolving, too. Social media users want to see themselves reflected in the content they consume and, perhaps by happy accident, brands have been delivering. Limitations can sometimes spawn deeper innovation and creativity than limitless situations, and that’s exactly what we’ve seen in the period of COVID lockdowns. Fresh Beauty started the #PassTheSoy challenge to promote their much-loved cleanser, and the video that inspired it all starred their own team members. It proved fame isn’t everything (is it, Mr. Potter?) when it comes to engaging audiences. Genuine people with a passion for the product can generate as much of a response as big-name social stars.

The ROI of Influencers and Creators Partnerships

At the end of the day, the way you shape your brand’s influencer strategy is completely up to you. Some marketers choose to populate their content mix entirely through influencers, others don’t use them at all. Keep in mind that partners are an investment — whether you gift products or pay for promotion, you want to make sure you’re getting value in return. Consider your audience and goals, be thoughtful about who you’re working with, and do your due diligence to make sure they’re a good fit from the aesthetic of their feed to the demographic of their followers. If you have the right pieces, the content should naturally fall into place.

To maximize the impact of your influencer partnerships, consider leveraging Dash Hudson's Influencer and Creator ROI Measurement tool to track their progress and measure results effectively.

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