Since launching our influencer marketing agency four years ago, it’s become clear to me that some marketers have often disregarded the need to focus on local territories in their global cross-border influencer marketing campaigns.
Activating your cross-border influencer campaign without any local consideration can be fine when the campaign is of a certain scale. But if your campaign is not of the scale where it is reaching small communities multiple times in your target countries, you can miss out on the added benefits of word of mouth among consumers – both online and offline.
Messages always carry more impact when they are spread by multiple people you’re connected to. In fact, a recent report found that 50% of people would choose word-of-mouth if they had only one source of information.
Yes, focusing on your most-engaged markets without targeting the cities in these markets can still enable you to achieve your set targets. But, brands approaching their global influencer marketing campaigns with a global mindset and a local focus can see a lot more benefits.
The real impact of cross-border influencer marketing campaigns
Although it seems like we’re living in a digital world most of the time, most conversations happen in reality. Wider conversations are happening offline at homes, in gyms, workplaces, restaurants, pubs, universities, and schools. If marketers can drive global conversations on a local level, we can encourage communities to drive brand messages in a more targeted fashion that is more personalised to these communities.
Unless the size of your global influencer campaign is large enough to reach and impact the entire country, placing more focus on pockets of your audience in these countries through influencers can be a more effective strategy.
Cultural differences – apply location-based marketing with influencers
Like any global marketing campaign, your cross-border influencer marketing campaigns will also benefit from a touch of personalisation. Applying location-based marketing techniques in your influencer marketing campaigns will be recognised in the results post-campaign.
Different communities require different content messaging and themes. By customising each message to your target locations, you can drive higher engagement among your audience.
For example, your content messaging in London may not be as effective in Newcastle because of the cultural differences. Your influencers could resonate more with a particular audience from a particular region. By amplifying these messages from these influencers appropriately, you can optimise your budget a lot more.
The power of focusing locally
Scaling city by city in cross-border influencer marketing campaigns can be a lot more impactful. A great example of how a company grew globally through local targeting comes from none other than the story of Facebook. Facebook began as a small project in a small community at Harvard University. It scaled to other colleges in the Boston area, gradually into most universities in the United States and Canada before reaching anyone with a valid email address.
They expanded from community to community before transforming into a global leader in tech and social media. The same concept should be applied to cross-border influencer marketing campaigns that are up-scaled.
Localised campaign alignment in global campaigns
When influencer marketing first came about, many brands approached it without considering the need to align their influencer strategy with their existing marketing campaigns. It was often seen as a separate entity that could be used to drive awareness and quick sales. However, as we all know, it’s become a major part of a marketer’s toolkit and it needs to align with your other existing advertising channels.
PMYB recently conducted an influencer campaign for Groupon that targeted specific cities, including Turin and Milan. Groupon set us the task of driving high levels of awareness to their target audience in three key regions (the UK, Italy and Spain). Instead of sporadically targeting the countries, we specifically targeted various cities in these regions to make a bigger impact.
For example, the audience demographics of the Italian Chromo-Influencers™ were made up of many residents in the cities we were targeting. The company then produced content that captured their experiences on Groupon-branded ‘beauty’ trams in both Turin and Milan. The content was then amplified to residents of the area.
What types of influencers should you use?
Yes, with influencer marketing, you may be hitting other territories with your organic reach, however, that is the beauty of social media – users are able to follow anyone from anywhere. Despite this, you can focus on utilising influencers who have fairly large portions of their audiences based in specific areas. Identify influencers with condensed audiences in particular target cities.
However, the most important question you need to ask yourself before you collaborate with any influencer is: “Is this influencer genuinely going to help me to achieve my KPI’s?” A deep analysis of their ability to convert and lift your brand’s equity should always be the priority.
Utilising platform features
One more simple thing you can do to impact your target audience in cross-border influencer campaigns on local levels is to utilise the platform features are your disposal. Use the geo-tagging features on Instagram and integrate paid social targeting so you can further amplify your influencer’s content. Social platforms like Instagram will reward you for utilising their features.
Make your message travel faster
Undoubtedly, a message travels faster when more interconnected people hear about it. This happens in the real world as well as online because of social media algorithms. By adopting the global mindset and approaching your campaigns on a local level, you can further drive your campaign’s success.