Social Media Influencer marketing is the newest wave of digital advertising. Recently the New Orleans Chapter of the American Marketing Association hosted a workshop with two well-known local influencers to break down when and how to begin an influencer campaign with your brand. 

“When it comes to paying an influencer, you’re not paying them for the one post, you are paying them to maintain a relationship with their audience so that way when they post a sponsored post with you, they are interested in it,” said family and fashion blogger Jennifer Palpallatoc Perrault @HauteOffTheRack. Jennifer began blogging in 2012 as it was becoming popular, to create an online portfolio to get a job in the fashion industry. This has since opened up enough paid promotional opportunities for her to pursue blogging full-time for the past two years.

Jennifer likens sponsored posts to advertisements on a show- the influencer is the show, and to make money from the commercials, you have to put on a good show. She shares lifestyle and styling tips and has a loyal following of over 240k on Instagram, and has collaborated with brands such as Popeyes, Dove, Nordstrom, and Nivea. She says the best time to begin incorporating influencers are for product launches, sales, and new brand awareness. 

New Orleans native Tracey Wiley @tracey_wiley, began her influencer journey three years ago and uses her platform of 11k Instagram followers to share dining, shopping, and beauty picks while advocating for public education and equality. Blogging is a creative outlet from her job in public education and a way for her to combat her anxieties.

She says when pitching to brands, she looks to what she already uses to keep partnerships authentic and literally “in-house.” She likes to first outline her deliverables to a brand, and then build a relationship through phone calls. Jennifer says another great way to reach out to influencers is by sending an email pitch including campaign details with a scope of work and timeline.

Both influencers insist creative control is important, and that using their own voice to stage photoshoots with props, photographers, clothing is key to creating a natural-looking sponsored post. Tracy explains it is key to not only deliver great content for a brand, but to also present metrics of engagement rates, likes, comments, shares and saves for each post following the campaign. 

There are two different ways to measure success on a collaboration, either return on investment or brand awareness. Jennifer stressed it’s important to be clear with influencers from the start on which goal you are hoping to reach with your posts. She suggested influencers are typically better for brand building than conversion, and that it’s best to begin a relationship with an influencer to build brand awareness, and once it has been integrated into their market, they can build the trust with their followers to launch more successful campaigns for sales or conversions.

To hear the full webinar join our AMA NOLA Chapter and you’ll receive an email with all of our 2020/2021 webinar recordings. AMA NOLA has so many wonderful membership benefits, learn more. (If you’re already a member—YAY! You should have received the webinar recordings via email—if not—email

By Olivia Morgan, Fund Development Coordinator at Culture Aid Nola.