Brand and influencer partnerships are key drivers when it comes to driving conversion and engaging consumers to become aware of and loyal to your brand. In this case study, Robin Ward, Head of Sales at LTK Europe, discussed how the shopping discovery platform and retailer MATCHESFASHION have driven success through long-term influencer partnerships.
What is LTK and what role does it play in helping brands discover the right influencers to work with?
Since its launch in 2011, LTK has been focused on making creators as economically successful as possible. Our technology helps scale influencer marketing for the world’s biggest and up-and-coming brands and creators. This includes content monetisation tools, brand collaborations, consumer amplification via the LTK shopping channels, and bespoke strategic growth consultancy provided by our in-house team of dedicated influencer account consultants.
The company has grown from its original function as a blogger and influencer marketing platform. While creators are still at the heart of our business, underpinning everything we do, LTK has evolved into a pioneer in creator commerce.
Moving into its 11th year, it has transitioned into a three-sided marketplace, serving creators, brands, and shoppers. We’ve undergone remarkable growth, seeing a 100%+ increase year-on-year in the number of creators joining LTK and a 95% growth in sales in the UK over the last year.
When it comes to brand investment in LTK influencer collaborations, we’ve seen 110% YoY growth, revealing that more of our new and existing partners are looking to maximise the benefits of ongoing creator partnerships.
Innovation remains a top priority for us and, over the last decade, we have built and refined our insights and proprietary technology for brands. It’s because of this that creators and leading brands across the globe can drive $3 billion in annual sales through LTK. We’ve also achieved double tech unicorn status, following a recent $2 billion valuation and $300 million investment from SoftBank, which has supercharged our international growth plans.
But how do you find the right influencer? LTK’s unparalleled data and a decade of insights are crucial in the process. Using existing performance data, we can identify the best creator for a campaign based on how a creator has previously performed against a specific content style, category offer, or price point.
Taking these steps makes all the difference. They ensure that brands are working with creators that align with their aesthetic and audience preferences, which allows them to create a more authentic interaction for shoppers. This ultimately helps to drive greater brand affinity and conversion with consumers.
Our recent work with MATCHESFASHION provides a great example of this.
Why did MATCHESFASHION opt to use influencer marketing and what was it looking to achieve through the campaign with LTK?
Due to pausing creator partnerships, MATCHESFASHION saw a drop in sales during mid-2021. Recognising the critical role that influencers play in driving performance through authentic interactions with consumers, the brand turned to LTK to action a creator-led campaign.
We identified 10+ brand ambassadors to create bespoke, inspirational content that would resonate with their actively engaged and trusted audiences, raising brand awareness and driving conversion. The creators and the content they produced had to align with MATCHESFASHION’s luxury aesthetic, encouraging shoppers to engage with the brand.
We were able to pinpoint these creators through a bespoke creator screening process actioned by our expert campaign team.
How did influencer marketing benefit the brand – what was the outcome?
Because the campaign needed to reach a largely US-based audience, a first for MATCHESFASHION, the LTK team was required to utilise its Brand Platform, LTK profiles, in new ways. They extracted insights and built tailored recommendations to ensure the campaign engaged with authentic lovers of the brand, while also driving conversions among those who held awareness yet had not previously engaged with the brand.
This approach delivered highly successful results for MATCHESFASHION.
The campaign resonated extremely well with the brand’s intended audience and led to an increase in total clicks during period by 22%. This meant that the use of influencer partnerships delivered against the campaign’s objective of driving brand awareness. It also helped to deliver sales, which improved by 32% within two weeks of the campaign alone. By the end of the campaign, the brand’s target sales were exceeded by 57%.
MATCHESFASHION’s market share also grew to 40% as a direct result of the campaign, with LTK platform sales increasing by 47% YoY.
As a result of the success achieved, the brand is executing a follow-up creator campaign in the US, using the insights and learnings from this collaboration.
With influencer marketing continuing to grow in popularity, what are LTK’s goals for the future?
We’ve expanded our growth plans off the back of the recent SoftBank investment, which opens new opportunities for us to further strengthen LTK’s three-sided technology platform.
We have our sights set on creator commerce 2.0 and accelerating growth initiatives. This means placing a greater focus on the development of new products that will strengthen the services we provide to brands, shoppers, and creators. It also means we’ll be hiring across the organisation and scaling LTK’s the UK and international presence.
One offering that we’ll continue to update is the LTK app, developing the capabilities of the Creator Shops on LTK to further streamline the shopping experience for a growing number of consumers. This will also level up the capabilities we provide for brands and creators.
We’ve seen a huge growth in the popularity of these creator-powered flagship storefronts, which will continue in 2022, as will brands’ desire to scale their use of ongoing influencer marketing.
Following the 110% growth in investment that we’ve seen from brands YoY, we will continue to support our partners, executing data-led, strategic influencer campaigns to unlock the full potential of creator partners and meet their objectives.
The team at LTK has gained over a year of experience in driving hugely successful influencer campaigns, and this case study with MATCHESFASHION is a great example of how an always-on partnership could work for your brand too.