According to the 2019 State of Influencer Marketing, the influencer marketing industry has nearly quadrupled in the three years since 2016 to an estimated $6.5 billion dollars in 2019.

WhosOn1tstAs agencies and in-house marketing teams around the globe incorporate influencer marketing into their annual marketing plans, departments built upon a more traditional breakdown of teams like advertising, creative, public relations and social media are challenged to determine who should direct their influencer marketing campaigns.

Is it the advertising team’s responsibility as paid media? Is it creative’s role with branding and creative direction? Does Public Relations own it as an offshoot of traditional media? Does it fall to social media due to the platform?

Much like Abbott and Costello’s ‘Who’s on First,’ the question of influencer marketing project ownership is largely predicated on a misinterpretation of commonly understood concepts.

When companies have a granular focus in identifying the primary purpose of influencer marketing to determine who should lead efforts, do they miss out on the greatest benefit - integration?

Influencer marketing is one of the purest forms of integration marketers have in their arsenal. In order to best strategize influencer marketing efforts, skill sets from all traditional advertising disciplines should be utilized.

Advertising teams should evaluate the cost/value proposition compared to alternative paid media opportunities. Creative teams should analyze influencers to determine brand fit and communicate their creative vision. Public relations teams should foster relationships with influencers the same way they do with journalists and leverage the resulting content to garner additional earned media. Social media teams should research influencers’ followers to determine which audience best suits each project and provide qualitative and quantitative analysis to determine campaign success.

Don’t let influencer marketing leave your team asking who’s on first and what’s on second - focus less on who should “own it” and more on bringing all the talent in your company together to tackle influencer marketing by committee. Not only will your influencer campaigns be completed in an effective manner but this also provides valuable cross-training opportunities for your team!

How has your agency or company incorporated influencer marketing efforts into your overall strategy? Let us know by dropping a comment.