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influencer marketing 101 - guide and statistics

Influencer marketing is now considered a mainstream digital marketing strategy. It is more than a buzzword, though. So before moving forward, we need to understand what influencer marketing is and what value it brings to a business or, more specifically, a brand.

INFLUENCER MARKETING 101

what is influencer marketing?

At its most basic, influencer marketing is a strategy that uses influencers or individuals with a dedicated following on social media sites. These influencers are the experts in their field or niche. Brands working with influencers capitalize on the amount of trust these influencers have built up over the years. 

Influencer marketing can be paid, although there are less tangible forms of influencer marketing. These brand collaborations work wherein the influencers are utilized to improve brand awareness in exchange for a product or service. Improving brand awareness, however, is just an application of influencer marketing.

Influencer marketing is an offshoot of celebrity endorsements. Celebrities come with a hefty price tag that brands cannot afford their representational services. When Internet stars have more followers than celebrities, it only makes sense to tap into their services instead. So you can think of influencer marketing as a hybrid of traditional and digital marketing.

what are the types of influencers?

There are many ways to categorize influencers. It can be based on the number of their followers, the types of content they produce, and their level of influence.

  1. Followers

    • Mega influencer

    • Macro influencer

    • Micro influencer

    • Nano influencer

  2. Content

    • Blogger

    • Vlogger (or YouTuber)

    • Podcaster

    • Social influencers

    • Photographers

  3. Influence

    • Celebrities

    • Industry leaders

    • Key opinion leaders

    • Professional advisors

what does an influencer do?

The critical term in influencer marketing is an influencer.

 

Now, you might be asking who an influencer is? An influencer can be anyone for as long as she has sizable followership. Influencers can have from 1,000 up to 1 million followers or more. In influencer marketing, more followers are always better. This is also the reason why influencers continuously build their community online. 

An influencer does what she does best: influence her followers to do or perform the desired action. Fundamentally, that action is centered on a brand and its product or service. In addition, it means influencing others to make a purchase. As such, the influencers need to push their followers down the sales funnel.

Influencers also:

  1. Create branded content

  2. Build personal brand

  3. Drive brand loyalty

  4. Become brand ambassadors

influencer marketing advantages and disadvantages

Digital marketing has an overall goal. Every strategy under this has its own purpose and intention. However, several things can go wrong.

INFLUENCER MARKETING ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES

advantages of influencer marketing

  1. Trust and credibility building
    Developing both trust and credibility takes time. Influencers with a great following have already built that trust and credibility. Since influencers can talk positively about your brand and your products and services, this process helps build the followers' confidence in your brand.

    However, as a brand, you need to partner or collaborate with influencers who have authentic followers. Therefore, they are deemed as authorities in their chosen niche.
     

  2. Relevant audience targeting
    Working with relevant influencers is crucial. You may effectively attract potential customers if you work with relevant influencers. These are the influencers who have a parallel target audience as yours. 

    As a guide, look for influencers who have worked on your niche. Better yet, consult with an influencer marketing agency. It can help you find the right influencers for your thumb pain while also cutting down on your budget, time, and effort.
     

  3. Broadened reach
    Regardless of which platform you currently have a presence on, your brand may reach thousands to millions of new audiences. These are technically the followers of your chosen influencers. These are the audiences you could not have reached on your own.

    What's more, these followers value the opinion of the influencers they follow. They have trust in the influencers, so they allow them to have an influence on their buying decisions.
     

  4. Reduced sales cycle
    There is a reason our emphasis is building the target audience as genuinely as possible. Notably, only the legit influencers have highly engaged audiences. So when an influencer becomes one of your brand ambassadors, it's like cutting the sales cycle in half.

    An influencer's endorsement is a vouch for product or service value. As such, the followers end up buying the product that the influencer endorses. Skipping a process or two in the sales funnel also cuts down marketing spend.
     

  5. Minimal budget requirement
    Speaking of the marketing budget, influencer marketing is comparatively less costly than acquiring new customers through other channels. Your job is to find influencers that can help you reach your target audience.

    Steer clear from influencers who buy followers to boost their followership. If you must, enlist the help of an agency to find influencers who charge less but bring in the desired results.

disadvantages of influencer marketing

  1. Mismatched in influencers
    Finding the right influencers remains a challenge. This is extra challenging because you need to discover influencers that align with the values of your brand.
     

  2. Uncertainty of results
    Not because an influencer has contributed successfully to a particular campaign doesn't mean the same for your brand. Results are not guaranteed if the audience won't engage, then returns will not be realized.
     

  3. Measuring results difficulty 
    Even when you find the right influencers and the campaign is launched, you still need to analyze the campaign results. If you fail to set metrics and KPIs, you won't know what to monitor and track. Even where there are metrics, but you don't know how to measure them correctly, you won't be able to determine if it is successful or not.
     

  4. Highly risky
    Influencer marketing done wrong can damage your reputation. It may even cause the very brand that you have built so hard through the years. 

influencer marketing statistics

If you're not convinced enough, we will let these figures do the talking.

instagram influencer marketing statistics

  1. Instagram has 1.074 billion monthly active users

  2. Instagram is the most competitive social networking site with 4.2 billion posts daily; 95 million of these are photos and videos

  3. Instagram photo posts are the most popular at 64.4%; carousel posts at 18.8% and video posts at 16.8%

  4. The most popular niches in Instagram are fashion, beauty, lifestyle, and music

  5. Instagram influencers who have fewer followers have higher engagement rates than influencers with more followers

  6. About 22% of Instagram users buy products through the platform

youtube influencer marketing statistics

  1. YouTube is the second most popular influencer channel at 63%, following Instagram

  2. About 51% of YouTube creators’ #1 goal is to express creativity

  3. Approximately 23% of YouTubers consider inadequate time as their top challenge

  4. YouTube influencers are four times more effective than celebrities, especially when it comes to increasing brand awareness

  5. YouTube micro influencers have better engagement rates than mega influencers at 1.64%

  6. Teenagers consider YouTube influencers as more relatable than celebrities

facebook influencer marketing statistics

  1. Facebook has 2 billion monthly active users

  2. Facebook is the fifth most visited website

  3. About 9% of Facebook users buy through influencer posts

twitter influencer marketing statistics

  1. Twitter is the fourth most important influencer marketing channel, following Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube

  2. About 40% of Twitter users purchase a product or avail a service based on an influencer’s recommendation

  3. Twitter has the biggest impact on purchase decision-making compared with other channels creating a 5.2x increase in purchase intent

  4. About 49% of peter users would listen to an influencer than their friends when it comes to making a purchase

linkedin influencer marketing statistics

  1. LinkedIn is the leading platform for professional influencers

  2. LinkedIn has 90 million senior-level influencers

  3. LinkedIn processes 9 billion content impressions

  4. LinkedIn content increased by 60% in 2020

frequently asked questions (FAQs)

  1. What value influencer marketing brings to a business?
    Influencer marketing helps in building a positive brand image. The process also helps in getting more customers to try your products and services. If you are a small business with a tight budget, influencer marketing enables scaling up the business operation to get more visibility online. Increased brand awareness drives more traffic to your website, which, in turn, also drives profitability.
     

  2. Is influencer marketing still relevant this 2022?
    Influencer marketing is always thought of as a fleeting trend, a fad. Some even said that influencer marketing is already dead. However, while influencer marketing activities are declining on specific platforms such as Facebook, it is still relevant this 2022.

    Marketers are planning to increase their budgets by 63%. For them, influencer marketing remains a viable part of the overall digital marketing strategy. Also, about 80% of marketers vouch for the effectiveness of influencer marketing. Influencer marketing, therefore, will continue to thrive because the quality of traffic that it brings to any brand is better than other channels or sources.
     

  3. Where can I find influencers?
    Finding influencers is easy. However, finding relevant influencers that resonate with your target audience can be tricky. You may use influencer marketing platforms for discovery, but you have a problem if you cannot differentiate a genuine influencer from those influencers' followers. Therefore, it would be wise to tap the services of an influencer marketing agency like Gushcloud in finding the right influencers for your brand.
     

  4. Why should I hire influencers instead of celebrities?
    Certain things make influencers more appealing than celebrities. Influencers are invested in their followers and interact with them, respond to their messages and give them honest opinions about products. This is also the reason why influencers tend to be more reliable than celebrities. Celebrities rarely know the products they are endorsing in every sense of the word. Influencers are also more affordable than celebrities who attach hefty talent fees with their names.
     

  5. How can I compensate influencers?
    There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to influencer pricing. Nonetheless, brands are paying one cent per follower or about a hundred dollars per 10,000 followers. If not for monetary benefits, there are creative ways to compensate influencers, such as giving them free products, inviting them to events, offering attractive deals, giving them exclusive access, sending them on all-expense paid trips abroad, and many more.
     

  6. How to set up an influencer marketing campaign program?
    Getting started with influencer marketing requires certain steps. First, you need to determine your main goal for the influencer campaign. Second, you need to define a suitable influencer profile so that you will only hire the most relevant influencers for the said campaign. Social platforms and goals and performance metrics are also defined at this stage. Third is discovering potential influencers. Reach out to us, so that we may help you with this process. With Gushcloud at the helm, fourth, we can create a compensation package for the chosen influencers together. We will provide inputs, but will not impose. Finally, we will measure the results of the campaign.
     

  7. How to measure the success of an influencer marketing program?
    The success of the influencer marketing campaign will depend on the performance metrics and goals initially set for this particular campaign. The number of engagement and the sales generated by the said campaign is monitored and measured.
     

  8. How can my brand do collaborations with Gushcloud?
    Get in touch with your country’s Gushcloud accounts representative to help you flesh out the best influencer marketing strategy for your brand. At Gushcloud, our service does not start and end with a list of influencers you can work with. Instead, we make sure that you are fully-equipped to complement your content marketing efforts. Expect a well-thought out influencer strategy across the most pertinent social channels, a data-driven approach to talent sourcing, an audience-based take on proposed executions, and a strong account management service to guide you at every step of the collaboration.

ABOUT INFLUENCER MARKETING

ABOUT

Gushcloud offers turnkey influencer marketing services

Influencer marketing is growing exponentially. In 2027, brands and marketers are expected to spend $370 million. As such, reliance on influencers is not going away anytime soon. It boils down to the established trust between the influencers and their target audiences, making selling products and services easier than using traditional marketing strategies. It is that tacit awareness that makes influencer marketing a more engaging approach.

As an influencer marketing services expert, Gushcloud bridges the brands and influencers on a global scale. First, we help engage distinct target audiences by shaping a branded strategy then, we connect you with influencers and digital content creators. We’ve seen hundreds of influencer marketing services gone wrong, so we promise to do influencer marketing as efficiently as possible, bringing in the desired results.

what is influencer marketing?

Today, influencer marketing is considered under the umbrella term digital marketing. Influencer marketing is a form of marketing that focuses on influential people or people with a sizable following on social media and other relevant sites. Since these people have tons of followers and, to an extent, can exert influence on them, they can facilitate product and service endorsements through their platforms.

 

The multi-billion industry is composed of influencers, the influencer marketing agencies such as Gushcoud, and influencer marketing platforms, which are usually social media and video-sharing sites. Instagram, YouTube, Tiktok, and Facebook are four of the most popular platforms today.

our influencer marketing services

Gushcloud understands how influencer marketing services work and the importance of improving the services portfolio and adding service layers whenever the need arises. While we already provide brand assistance in sourcing influencers, managing campaigns, and developing creatives, our influencer marketing services are dynamic.

OUR INFLUENCER MARKETING SERVICES
  • influencer strategy development

When developing a campaign from scratch, influencer marketing services providers need to distinguish the fit between brands and influencers. The strategy revolves around a particular influencer or influencers and what impact they create for their target audience and the demographics of that target audience. In developing a campaign strategy, we look into the value the chosen influencers can bring to the brand.

  • influencer search and discovery

Finding influencers can be difficult. Essentially, you need to create a set of criteria with which you will base your search. The most important factors to look at are the influence and the audience. Other campaign inclusion criteria allow searching by platform active, follower count, and demographic info for the influencer and audience.  The key is establishing the strategic fit between your brand and the chosen influencer, and we will do that for you.

  • content creation strategy

A critical part of any influencer marketing service is content creation. Developing creative concepts can be very challenging. What more when it comes to executing those concepts. Our advocacy, however, is not merely creating marketing collateral. Instead, we focus on storytelling, and we give our influencers the creative freedom to create content that is as effective as possible to be published on the platforms where it will have the biggest impact. 

  • campaign content production

We give directions whenever necessary to ensure that these influencers' content is both on-brand and on schedule. Technical support is important, particularly for starting influencers. This could be in terms of equipment and additional manpower to produce the content they need to produce.

  • campaign content management

Influencer marketing campaigns are simplistic or complex, more so when they involve multiple brands, platforms, influencers, and campaign sets or sub-campaigns. Handling all the campaign features, including creatives, technicals, logistics, and communication, is not without difficulties. We guide the content strategy development and content creation process.

  • content promotion and amplification

Reinforcing an impact through influencer marketing is fundamental to influencer marketing services. But, some brands have no idea how to promote content via paid advertising on social media networking sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, even when they already have the content.

  • influencers compensation administration

Handling the payment process can also be challenging, especially when handling multiple brands and multiple influencers. Influencer compensation includes escrowing payments, complying with taxes requirements, and transacting via electronic payments such as PayPal and Swipe. Therefore, we will build a compensation package that is unique to the company’s strategies and goals.

  • social media advertising

A brand cannot be on all social media channels there is一relevance matters when choosing an appropriate advertising channel. Since Gushcloud has a multi-platform social approach, we also vet the most appropriate social sites to use for paid advertising. Paid support is important in ensuring maximized campaign results.

  • analytics and reporting

Analyzing the impact of the influencer campaign is also critical in determining whether the campaign is successful or not. Reports are necessary, and these should contain key metrics and insights such as views, reach, engagement, and returns. The value of real-time analytics cannot be emphasized enough, so how the campaign’s metrics will be tracked and by who from the get-go should be determined.

  • contract and legal compliance

When hiring influencers, you are hiring them for a particular campaign. However, before it pushes through, a contract must be drafted first. Other legal compliances must be accomplished as well. We will bridge legal gaps by drafting the contract, negotiating payments with influencers, and handling other regulatory matters. In this way, you can focus on the actual campaign and not the mundane processes.

  • influencer marketing consultation

Authenticity and relevance are important in influencer marketing campaigns so are executional guidelines. This also allows streamlining the activities across platforms. Gushcloud’s expertise and experience allow us to create an influencer marketing campaign playbook that any brand seeking our services can utilize for their campaign.

our influencer marketing services inclusions

Our influencer marketing services objectives are simple: to handle it all and do everything properly. Therefore, we streamline the influencer marketing processes with these fundamentals.

  • Bespoke influencer strategy

    • The majority of influencer marketing campaigns are done globally. The focus is on the verticals such as beauty and fashion, travel and lifestyle, entertainment and celebrity, and health and fitness. Nonetheless some agencies also offer local influencer campaigns involving micro-influencers.

      Whichever your brand chooses, Gushcloud can create a customized influencer strategy for you. This includes the payment model for every influencer marketing campaign. To contextualize, the current model is based on cost per mille (CPM) or paying a certain amount to the influencer for every 1000 views of the advertisement. Such is also why you need to look into the influencer's actual reach before including them in the campaign. 

      Gushcloud can do these nitty-gritty parts of the campaign for you. A part of the process is determining which social platform the campaign must run and the justification for each platform. For one, we will give you insights on your choice of a platform and guidance on which to run your ads instead. 

  • Dedicated influencer marketing specialist

    • Gushcloud has a dedicated team of campaign managers. As a result, we can offer more hands-on support from the conceptualization to the execution of your influencer marketing campaign.

      With the help of the marketing specialists, we can set the right goals and KPIs before any campaign starts. This is how we guarantee influencer marketing success. Our services also include providing you with tangible insights that we can work on and improve along the way.

  • Transparent and accurate reporting

    • We understand that every influencer marketing service provided to our clients requires a working budget. Gushcloud strives to work with brands, providing relevant services based on their real and felt needs. With this, we endeavor to be as transparent and accurate as possible, including cost. Influencer marketing is an investment that should be monitored every step of the way.

      Furthermore, we keep our clients hosted with the progress of the campaign. Our team endeavors to help you understand where we are at in the campaign, whether your goal is to generate brand awareness or drive sales and profits through the said campaign. This is how we help you protect your investment and maximize the returns. 

influencer marketing platforms we work with

At Gushcloud, we’ve seen thousands of people rake in followers on key social media networking sites. These influencers guide their followers’ decision-making, ushering them on which products to try or purchase and services to avail or subscribe to.

We work with the following platforms:

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AND OTHER LOCAL SITES

why choose Gushcloud

As an influencer marketing services agency with extensive experience, developing influencer marketing from scratch is never easy. Nowadays, several brands are competing for both market share and influencer attention. Indeed, the digital and social spaces will never be the same again. This is where our role becomes paramount. 
 

Gushcloud specializes in various content platforms. We create bespoke campaigns, monitor and adapt them with the changing requirements to make them successful. We deliver campaigns across these platforms: TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. Our team rises to the challenge regardless of its nature and scope, provided it is within the legal realm.

our influencer marketing process

Our influencer marketing process is pretty straightforward. We worked with thousands of influences from all over the world and in different categories. First, we vet and select influencers based on best fit and then, we develop strategies. 
 

Our goal is to establish a working campaign that efficiently delivers based on the metrics and key performance indicators initially set during the planning stages. Finally, we report comprehensively on the campaign’s performance upon its completion.
 

Our process involves:

  1. Developing a campaign strategy to maximize reach and engagement

  2. Selecting influencers and digital content creators for a particular campaign

  3. Negotiating the rates of the influencers and preparing contracts and other legal requirements

  4. Developing creatives such as marketing collateral or 

  5. Approving collaterals the influencers themselves produced before publication

  6. Running the campaign on chosen social platforms

  7. Monitoring the campaign and capturing essential KPIs

  8. Preparing reports based on post-campaign analytics

reasons to invest in influencer marketing services

Brands and marketers are constantly looking for ways to reach out to potential customers, and influencer marketing services emerged as the solution to tackle this marketing gap. This is helpful because some target markets are notoriously difficult to reach, such as the millennials, Gen Zs, and teenagers.
 

But influencer marketing delivers more benefits than a brand can imagine.

REASONS TO INVEST IN INFLUENCER MARKETING SERVICES
  1. Leverage influencer trust
    Consumers trust influencers’ opinions. As such, this is the most effective way of word-of-mouth marketing today, generating twice as many sales as traditional marketing. Also, more than 40% of online consumers would buy an item after seeing their favorite influencer use it.

    Influencer marketing, therefore, is an effective way to maximize impact on consumers. In addition, partnering with the right influencers amplifies audience trust, which means driving more sales and profits for your business.
     

  2. Generate higher conversion rates
    Tapping the services of influencers leads to new leads and, thus, new conversions. Influencers attract high-quality 5x higher quality leads compared with other marketing strategies. Your brand can increase conversion rates this way.

    Moreover, influencers work to push the leads into the sales funnel deeper and faster. Studies claim that influencer marketing earns new customers faster than organic search. So it would be best to combine your organic digital marketing strategies with paid strategies such as influencer marketing and social advertising.
     

  3. Generate higher ROI
    Among the marketing strategies today, influencer marketing generates the highest returns. For example, a brand can earn up to $6.50 for every dollar invested in influencer marketing, a 650% ROI.

    The investment in influencer marketing is relatively minimal compared with the ROI it offers. This alone makes influencer marketing worthwhile to pursue. Also, the highest returns generated may lead the business in accomplishing certain goals like expanding the product portfolio or targeting new market segments.
     

  4. Boost brand awareness
    Influencer marketing is the most effective in boosting brand awareness. There’s a great fit because 90% of brands and marketers want to improve on this aspect ahead of generating leads, conversions, and sales. It’s because awareness also influences consumer behaviors. So in the grand scheme of things affecting awareness also directly impacts leads and sales generation.

    Influencer marketing helps us in making the brand the top-of-mind choice for any consumer. Couple this with the endorsement of an influencer, who is someone a consumer trusts, then you can build awareness naturally. Influencers appeal to their audience and influence their preferences, which, when it happens, would compel them to take action on what they see, read, or generally, what they have been exposed to.
     

  5. Improve SEO signals
    Influencer marketing is a form of referral traffic and it creates social proof because of the level of engagement on the brand’s social pages. These social page-level activities help the site rank higher when users search for relevant keywords. So influencer marketing generally improves the site’s ranking and traffic.

    Although this may depend on the quality of the content, influencer marketing content tends to have higher engagement points, including shares. They also go viral in some instances. This is also a good way to earn high-authority links to the brand’s website. Backlinks are a ranking factor. More quality backlinks mean occupying the top positions in the search engine results pages (SERPs). All this is because of influencer marketing.

ABOUT INFLUENCER MANAGEMENT

ABOUT

influencer management services

Influencer marketing thrives on networks, connections, and relationships, demonstrating how people-oriented marketing is. Mess that up, and you'll have a lackluster influencer campaign instead of having influencers who should have rallied behind a brand or cause. This is what we do best: cultivating compelling campaigns with influencer outreach at the center.

Gushcloud International is perfectly positioned as an influencer management agency services provider. We are a technology-driven digital talent and media company, focusing on influencer marketing, entertainment, and commerce. One of our goals is to connect brands and audiences with influencers and content creators. Nonetheless, we cater to the nitty-gritty part of the process with our influencer management arsenal from representation to licensing.

what is influencer management?

Influencer management is all about ensuring the success of the influencer marketing strategies and campaign. Since it involves the end-to-end campaign, it involves several processes from the searching for potential influencers to include in the campaign to establishing relationships, content development, and strategy execution. Constant communication with the brand is also essential, coordinating to roll out the campaign effectively.

Gushcloud defines influencer management as the process of managing relationships with brands, platforms, and more. Influencer management includes everything from negotiation to collaboration, content creation, approvals, campaign management, payments, and long-term relationship building. At the campaign level, it involves managing the end-to-end operations of a brand’s influencer marketing campaign.

importance of influencer management to brands

At Gushcloud, talents are offered the services they need to seamlessly operate as an influencer or content creator. Our firm belief is: influencers get the job done. This alone makes influencer marketing critical for brands to succeed in an ever-competitive digital landscape.

With this, there’s more to influencer management than you think.

IMPORTANCE OF INFLUENCER MANAGEMENT TO BRANDS
  • bridges the authenticity gap

Online is a pool of self-proclaimed influencers who have nothing to show for how they can bring the desired results. At times, despite excessive onboarding, the mismatch often shows. No dissing here but no brand should work with these “influencers.” And we should know because, at Gushcloud, we can readily know which influencers would bring value to your business.
 

We have an in-house pool of influencers, each of whom are carefully evaluated based on their reach and other relevant metrics. Additionally, Gushcloud has cultivated good relationships with influencers with suitable metrics to back up influence claims.

  • protects the influencers and brands

Influencer marketing creates unique circumstances for both the brands and influencers. Although the majority of the influencers do not cause reputational or image problems, this happens. The most common mishap is failing to indicate the sponsorship, which is required particularly in the US. Failing to comply results in penalties and other legal ramifications.
 

At Gushcloud, while we provide the digital talents and stars, we also strive to protect the brands we work with anyway we can. That’s why we take the legal aspects of influencer marketing seriously, not just in the content that the target audience sees, but also behind the scenes, including contracts, terms, compensation, etc.

  • generates satisfactory results

Influencer marketing is performance-based. Managing performance can be a bit tricky, though. Since influencers are paid based on performance, they are more than motivated to do satisfactory jobs without the compromises. They do this to protect their own brand too.
 

At Gushcloud, our campaigns thrive on cultivating long-term relationships between brands and influencers. These relationships are more productive than one-off campaigns. We ensure alignment of values, emphasizing the need for onboarding so that the influencers get to know the brand more in-depth.

our influencer management services

Gushcloud International has four units namely Gushcloud Agency, Gushcloud Entertainment, Gushcloud Solutions, and GC Live. Gushcloud Agency is our marketing and advertising unit responsible for influencer management. A leader in influencer marketing, the agency's goal is to deliver value from brands to the consumers with influencers and content creators bridging the gap between the two entities.  
 

Our influencer management services include:

  • Exclusive Talent Management and Representation

  • Booking of Deals and Endorsements

  • Content and Channel Production and Management

  • Cross Border Into China Talent Management

  • Legal and Communications

doing influencer relationship management effectively

Influencer management is not your typical day’s work, starting with influencer discovery up to collaboration. Several things go into the management aspect. Nonetheless, influencer management is not an exact science. Gushcloud lays the foundation of a solid long-term collaboration.

  • Relevance
    An effective influencer management starts with selecting only the most relevant influencers for brands. Then, of course, influencers also vet for brands who they like to work with, prioritizing how the brand may resonate with their audience or following.

    Our influencers receive too many brand collaborations pitches. However, we choose relevance when responding to these brands. There would also be a strong relatability of storytelling that works with the chosen influencer’s audience.
     

  • Fairness
    Influencers expect compensation for their performance of the contract. Such a strategy is often mistaken as ‘freebies,’ but this easily makes for the major setback that unknowing brands often make. To emphasize, there’s no room for inadequate compensation in influencer marketing.

    We, at Gushcloud, do not short sell our influencers. Instead, we strive for competitive compensations commensurate with the amount or extent of work expected from the influencer. This shows how we value our influencers.

  • Freedom
    Providing influencers with sufficient creative freedom can also make influencer management as effective as it can be. Leaving no space for creativity with their content, the brands run the risk of compromising the quality of the content and the quality of the results that this content may generate.

    Our advocacy at Gushcloud is to provide the influencers with the creative freedom they need because 1) it is their platform and 2) it is their audience. The influencers know their audiences better than us nor any brand. Also, the audience has expectations and who better to gauge their audience than the influencers themselves. Therefore, respecting their ideas is paramount to us.
     

  • Time
    Aside from the space they need, influencers must also be given the sufficient time to create their content. Having adequate time applies to the entire influencer campaign wherein a long-term strategy is more important than a short-term one. Authenticity is not built in; this should be developed over time too.

    Because we know how misconstrued the perceptions of the brands about content creation, our agency educates the brands about the effort required to create content that engages the influencers’ audience. Some of these influencers also have part- or full-time jobs. Thus, respecting their professional lives also goes a long way.

building long-term brand-influencer relationships

Our influencer management services are geared towards long-term success. Influencers themselves build long-term relationships with their followers, so they need to do the same between brands and influencers. The fruits of these relationships are strong brand awareness, increased audience engagement, and first rate content.
 

Gushcloud’s business case is anchored in:

recognizing influencers’ value

Brands should see influencers as an extension of their marketing arm as brand ambassadors, not necessarily promotional tools. Indeed, how a brand treats the influencers and content creators affects the quality of their content. Influencers need not feel special, but valued so they create amazing content and boost audience engagement.
 

A meaningful way to recognize the influencers' value to a brand is getting them involved. Their voices matter, allowing them to share their opinion and suggestions. Their feedback must be treated with respect and value because these influencers have direct connections with their followers.

earning lasting relationships

Brands, influencers, and the agency that binds them together must get the relationship right. This requires time and effort from all the parties involved. Nonetheless, relationships are earned through trust, communication, and transparency.

The damage is done if the relationship between the brand and influencers is not nurtured at the get-go. This is how you lay the foundation of a more robust connection, which is the formula for a successful relationship. Authentic gestures count too, separating your brand from other brands.

safeguarding relationships and reputations

Balance is also critical in influencer management. Both entities have goals to achieve, and the intersections of these goals must be accomplished by both teams. This will be a differentiator that will lead the campaign to its success. If not taken seriously, however, the reputations of both are at risk.

The most important aspect is being on the same page. Efforts must be synergized; otherwise, inconsistencies and incongruencies may stall the growth of both the brand and the influencer. For one, if the influencer does not with the brand’s narrative, no one can expect the relationship一and the campaign一to bring the desired results.

Why hire us as your influencer management agency?

Gushcloud Agency has Talent Units across 11 countries (US, Australia, North Asia & Southeast Asia) and commits to building long-term and sustainable career opportunities for digital stars on the one hand and nourishing brand campaigns on the other hand. Gushcloud purports to bring value to any business through:

  1. End to end campaign management
    Gushcloud handles the influencer campaign from start to finish一from vision to execution.

  2. Well-executed relationship building
    We establish common grounds between a brand and relevant influencers.

  3. Effective influencer communication
    Our team ensures that the influencers receive detailed information and feedback.

  4. Mindful team coordination
    Gushcloud supports both the brand and the influencer  to ensure milestones are met.

frequently asked questions (FAQs)

  1. What is an outreach campaign, and should I implement it for my brand?
    An outreach campaign is the practice of determining the target market ‘s influencers, reaching out to them, and getting their services to promote your brand and its products and services.

    With this, your brand may capitalize on and implement an outreach campaign to build and increase brand awareness. About 75% of brands are doing influencer marketing to a degree, allowing influencers to spread their brand’s message to their target audience. Brands that tapped the services of influencers and generated 89% ROI compared to other marketing channels.
     

  2. What is the difference between collaboration and sponsorship? Should I do a collaboration?
    The terms collaboration, partnership, and sponsorship are increasingly blurry一a thin line separates the three. And that line pertains to whether the work is paid in cash, in kind, or both.

    Collaborations started as unpaid, though the brands typically offered the product or services. Then again, it can be a paid collaboration, which means monetary compensation is provided. The term partnership is often used for paid or non-paid collaboration expected to last several weeks or months. Sponsorships are generally paid.
     

  3. How to manage an influencer campaign effectively?
    An effective influencer campaign can be managed in several steps. First, careful planning and strategizing is crucial followed by finding relevant influencers, which Gushcloud is here for. Since we have a pool of influencers, we do the shortlisting and reaching out  for your brand. The necessary next steps are coordinating the campaign and measuring its results.
     

  4. How to establish connections with real influencers?
    Establishing solid and scalable connections with influencers can be a real challenge. But Gushcloud finds the relevant influencers and content creators from the rosters of our digital talents.

    Matching is crucial at this point because we want to include only the influencers who have a genuine interest in your brand. Expectations must be guided, so these will be talked about openly. The campaign will be discussed, including its goals and what the brand and influencers expect to get from the campaign. All these ensure a long-term partnership, which is what we want for both the brands and influencers.
     

  5. How can Gushcloud assist in influencer discovery and management?
    Gushcloud has 11 offices worldwide: Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, Greater China, and the United States of America. We are 250 employees strong. Gushcloud Agency is perfectly positioned to learn about the rising stars in various niches. We tap into their representation and management, including providing content production assistance.

DIGITAL CONTENT CREATOR

ABOUT

what is a digital content creator

Unquestionably, the digital world thrives on content. It’s the first thing you’ll see when you visit a page, compelling you to act on the information encapsulated in the content. Indeed, content is powerful enough to attract the attention of the right people. This is why you need to direct the users to your content, and who better do that than digital content creators?

Sure, you are asking: Who are the digital content creators? What value can they bring to my brand? Where can I find them? Are they the same as influencers? A digital content creator makes content for a target audience. The content these creators produce can be educational, inspirational, entertaining, and awe-inspiring. Definitely, the content should be appealing, interesting, and impactful.


When the service of a digital content creator is commissioned, it is understood that she’d be making content based on ideas that will affect the purchasing decision-making process of the target audience. It all boils down to the narrative and the storytelling, and of course, the relativity of the content creator that drives this audience to take action.


Now, the challenge lies in finding suitable digital content creators who can spread good quality content about your brand. Gushcloud Agency has a pool of hirable digital content creators.

differences between content creators and influencers

Virtually all influencers are content creators, but not all digital content creators regard themselves as influencers. Evidently, there is a thin line that separates an influencer from a digital content creator. 


An influencer influences his throngs of followers somehow, some way, in his chosen niche. Then, he uses that influence to convince others to do something on behalf of a brand such as following its social pages, sharing a post, or making a purchase. Therefore, an influencer has three things: influence, following, and niche.

A digital content creator creates content for various platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, WordPress, and more. The goal of the creators is to contribute new information that is consumed through the chosen digital platform. So the content these creators generate is contextual. A digital content creator targets a defined audience or end-user to engage them using content.

Content is their intersect, though the intentions of the two generally vary. As such, working with content creators and influencers will produce different marketing outcomes. Bottom line, creators are as effective as influencers. 

digital content creation framework

Digital content creators don’t just create for the sake of creating. Instead, creators follow a content creation framework.

DIGITAL CONTENT CREATION FRAMEWORK
  • plan

Online is a pool of self-proclaimed influencers who have nothing to show for how they can bring the desired results. At times, despite excessive onboarding, the mismatch often shows. No dissing here but no brand should work with these “influencers.” And we should know because, at Gushcloud, we can readily know which influencers would bring value to your business.
 

We have an in-house pool of influencers, each of whom are carefully evaluated based on their reach and other relevant metrics. Additionally, Gushcloud has cultivated good relationships with influencers with suitable metrics to back up influence claims.

  • create

Creating is the primary process. During this stage, the created content is checked and rechecked before publishing or going live. This process entails going back and forth until the brand requirements, for instance, are satisfied or when the content satisfactorily passes platform-specific reviews. Content can be created or co-created.

  • distribute

Distributing the newly created content is necessary for amplification. Some content is designed for a particular platform (e.g., YouTube videos, Pinterest pins, tweets, etc.). Other content can be cross-promoted (i.e., Facebook and Instagram). This is where the role of influencers comes in, pushing the content to their followers if it’s relevant to do so.

  • measure

Monitoring and measuring the results is the last stage, the goal of which is to track the impact of the distributed content. It will be measured against the metrics set during the planning stage. How the content pares against these metrics will define the success of the content. This also allows for iteration.

different types of content a digital content creator can create

There are several forms of digital content. Nonetheless, the three most popular types are social, vlog, and blog.

social content

Social content is intended for social sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Social content is the most diverse, whereby content creators may distribute images, videos, blog links, and more. Additional features such as accompanying captions and hashtags are provided free of charge. Users can consume social content 24/7, and so it should be as appealing and engaging.

vlog content

A portmanteau of video and blog/log, vlog content is a blog but is in video format. Topics are endless, although expert commentary, product review, tutorial guide, and music performance are most common. New categories such as prank and lyric videos are constantly emerging. This content is typically hosted on video-sharing networking sites. YouTube is the most popular site where channels and videos can be monetized.

blog content

Blog content is textual content hosted on a website or web page. It was originally referred to as a personal homepage where one documents his whereabouts a la diary or journal. Today, blog content serves a personal or business purpose.

different types of content a digital content creator can create

There are several forms of digital content. Nonetheless, the three most popular types are social, vlog, and blog.

visual content creators

These content creators use visuals in conveying a message or telling a story. They start with a conceptual idea, which could be a written manuscript, with which they will base the visual. Embracing the designer’s eye, some visual creators repurpose written content graphically. Since they mainly create visual communication, they are generally out-of-the box thinkers.
 

Examples: Vloggers, designers, graphic artists, illustrators, social media influencers, latte artists, muralists, tattoo artists, DIYers, crafters, YouTubers

textual content creators

Textual content creators thrive on the written text in sending a message across. They are wordsmiths, explaining a topic verbally and covering it in greater detail and depth. Thus, research skills are fundamental to their skill set. 

Examples: Bloggers, captioners, writers, novelists, journalists, data scientists

professional content creators

Professional content creators are experts in their field or niche. People seek their content because of its value, solving their struggles and pain points. Professional creators provide practicable perspectives and insights. They thrive on opportunities to share invaluable knowledge with others. 
 

Examples: Networkers, speakers, marketers

curated content and how it differs from content creation

When it comes to digital content creation, there are two major approaches: original content and curated content. It boils down to creation versus curation.
 

  1. Original content
    Original content is what it is一content that is created from scratch. Original content highlights what you or your brand can offer that other brands cannot. You want to share your body of work with others because they will benefit from it. With this, original content creation requires expertise, time, and effort.
     

  2. Curated content
    Curated content is all the content owned by others that you shared on your digital assets. The key term here is curated, which means the content you intend to share aligns with your brand and its products and services, among others. Curated content requires no effort on your part whatsoever. Nonetheless, if you want to share your insights about the content you want to share, this is known as creative curation.
     

Created and curated content can be combined to give more dynamics to the brand’s digital assets.

content creation skills that brands are looking for

Whether the digital content creator works with a brand or not, she must possess the necessary skills to make her content game stand out. Successful content creators have these.

  • Data analysis

  • Technical

  • Planning

  • Organizational

  • Research

  • Editing

  • Optimization

  • Promotion

frequently asked questions (FAQs)

  1. What content do creators create?
    Content creators create just about any content type you can think of. They think differently, thanks to their creative juices.
    Some of the content types creators tackle are: 
    Artwork • Article • Blog posts • Podcast • Brochure • Catalog • E-book • Chart • Short film • Graph • Graphic Photo • Infographic • Product copy • Social update • Video • White paper • Series • Longform • List • How-to • Template • Kit • GIF • Meme • Many more
     

  2. What is cross-purpose content, and should I use it for my brand?
    Cross-purpose content refers to content that can be used or published across multiple platforms. For example, it may start with an article, which is then turned into an infographic or podcast and published on another platform other than the website or blog.

    Cross-purposing content aims to maximize the production cost per content, reaching more of the target audience at a minimal cost as possible. With this said, brands should be using more cross-purposed content instead of creating new content from scratch every time. In fact, it can use one main content that is transformed into different content types and distributed staggered throughout the campaign.
     

  3. What is the desirable followership of a content creator to hire?
    Digital content creators need not have followership, although they should if they double as influencers. When this happens, the content creator must have at least 6,000 followers to be considered a micro-influencer. Even this number is not a hard rule, only a guide.

    Nonetheless, the higher the volume of followers, the better.

     

  4. How are digital content creators compensated?
    Digital content creators are compensated differently, depending on their work arrangements. Independent content creators earn commensurate with how their content performs. For example, if you distribute podcasts, the CPM is about $18 to $25 per 1,000 listeners. On the other hand, YouTube creators earn between $2,000 and $4,000 per 1 million views.
     

  5. What is Gushcloud influencers’ content creation process?
    The Studios team of Gushcloud partners with our content creators to strategise and create content relevant to them and to their audience. Together, we look at their demographics and past content to see what resonates with their viewers the most. We also look at where they can grow and get new people to enjoy the content that they make. From there, we make a content strategy that takes into account our content creator’s interest, persona, and growth. In some cases, the team also helps shoot content aside from the usual post-production service. This occurs when a local Studios team is in the area as one of our content creators.
     

  6. Should I hire a digital content creator freelance instead?
    If you constantly need fresh quality content, it would be wise to hire an in-house content creator or outsource to an expert. Nonetheless, make sure that who you hire will perform and deliver. At Gushcloud, we ensure that our digital creators will do that. Moreover, we provide them with the resources to finish the content needed.

BRAND INFLUENCERS

ABOUT

ultimate guide to brand influencers 

Gushcloud works with brands on their influencer campaigns and works with various brand influencers. While there are many categories of brand influencers, their purpose is to sway the consumers’ buying decisions. Therefore, the influencers’ target audiences are a part of these different consumer groups.


Google defines a brand influencer as a person who discovers (or discovered by the brand, understands, and implements branded marketing. A brand influencer may work consistently with one or with several campaigns simultaneously.


Today band influencers are omnipresent in our lives. Love them or hate them, their presence would only get phenomenal by the years. Brands trust them because they make marketing campaigns work, and every marketing dollar worth it.

types of brand influencers

The types of brand influencers are equally diverse. Also, the definition of a brand influencer will depend on the source. Nonetheless, one common way to categorize brand influencers is through their reach.

TYPES OF BRAND INFLUENCERS
  • nano brand influencers (10K followers or less)

Nano brand influencers tend to be locally famous. They create quality content that achieves the highest possible engagement rates. Their influence and reach may be low, but their impact can be huge.

Brands can capitalize on the levels of intimacy between the nano influencers and their followers. Not to mention how these influencers invest in creating relatable content. Consumers want to connect with people who share the same experience and can empathize with them, and these are the nano influencers.

However, brands must work with nano brand influencers who already have collaboration experiences because of their limited reach. The brands need to guide the nano influencers also as a way to ensure that the campaign aligns with their identity, values, and goals.

  • micro brand influencers (10K to 100K followers)

Micro brand influencers are the most common influencers on social media right now. Their smaller reach makes it possible to specialize content, making them more trusted by their followers. And their followers are usually extremely loyal and highly engaged.

Because their target audience is highly particular, their campaigns are very intimate. That’s why they are more likely to generate convert-ready leads than macro and mega influencers.

Brands must look into their campaign requirements before collaborating with micro influencers. There’s a good chance of working with several micro brand influencers simultaneously for maximized results. This may mean extra work for the brands due to varying briefs and review cycles.

  • macro brand influencers (100K to 1M followers)

Macro brand influencers have nurtured strong followership over the years. They know these followers on a relatively personal level, spending years understanding what their followers like and don’t like. Since they prioritize the connection they have with their followers, they are usually careful with their collaborations.


If your brand operates within a targeted niche with a very targeted audience, it is best to work with macro brand influencers. Their engagement rates are high enough to drive awareness and conversions. They also create content that resonates best with their audience.


Brands must understand the influencers’ niche and audience. So they can build a campaign that aligns with what their followers want to see from these influencers.

  • mega brand influencers (1M+ followers)

You’ve probably encountered a mega influencer一they usually have celebrity status. Mega influencers are perfect for influencer marketing whose goal is brand awareness. They can reach a massive audience almost instantaneously.


Aside from the vast audience’s extensive impact, mega brand influencers render a level of exclusivity to the brand. Mega influencers are also the most professionals who have collaborated with many brands before.


Brands must read carefully when working with mega brand influencers. The majority of them have no intimate relationship with their followers. This makes them less trustworthy than their macro, micro, and nano brand influencer counterparts.

working with brand influencers

A brand may devise a plan on how it wants to work with influencers. Better yet, it may tap the services of a dedicated influencer marketing agency such as Gushcloud, which can create one-off or long-term collaborations with its pool of brand influencers.

understand how brand influencers can help reach marketing objectives

Like any marketing plan, influencer marketing must also set goals and KPIs (key performance indicators). As a band, you need to ask yourself: what do you want to achieve with influencer marketing? For example, reach a new audience, broaden brand awareness, drive engagement, or generate conversion?

This process is foundational in determining the success of the campaign. It is also essential to better manage the said campaign wherein the brand influencers reach the set goals and KPIs.

design a brand influencer collaboration plan

The plan is the blueprint of the influencer marketing campaign. Brands must have an influencer partnership execution that aligns with the marketing budget.

The brand cannot move on to the next step: finding the right brand influencers for the campaign if it hasn’t outlined the campaign plan yet. Important things to decide on are the type and number of influencers it wants to collaborate with, the channels the brand wants to gain exposure in, and the length of the campaign.

research and create a shortlist of brand influencers to work with

You can narrow down your search based on what you’ve determined during planning. For example, if you want to concentrate on Instagram, you should search for Instagram influencers to work with.

Finding the right influencers is not all about identifying names. A more critical approach understands whether the influencers’ interests and areas of expertise are aligned with your brand values and ideals. For more substantial parts of the partnership, you want to know if the influencers’ followers and target audience complement yours. There should be a fit!

connect with the shortlisted brand influencers

Reach out to the influencers. But, of course, you must be aware of how to work with your chosen influencers. For instance, some influencers are handled by an agency, while some work independently.

Formalize the entire process by sending an email. The email doesn’t have to be impersonal. A concise message that offers details about the campaign and asks questions about their collaboration experiences will do. Communicate the partnership terms and the goals and expectations.

launch, monitor, and measure the brand influencer campaign

Once the influencer agrees and signs the partnership agreement, it’s time to work up the partnership. There are several routes to do this, like creating the content and asking the brand influencers to post them on their social account or produce the content for publishing on their platform. 

Whichever route you choose, the most important part is to track the performance of each sponsored content and analyze them against the campaign goals and KPIs. Then, evaluate the metrics to determine whether the collaboration is successful or not and gather relevant insight to optimize future campaigns.

examples of brand influencer campaigns

Gushcloud has extensive brand influencer collaboration examples. Here are some of how we’ve helped brands on various social platforms.

frequently asked questions (FAQs)

  1. How do you become a brand influencer?
    At Gushcloud, we are particular about working with influencers who have garnered a huge social following naturally. Nonetheless, suppose you want to become a brand influencer. In that case, you have to start with choosing a niche that you are passionate about, creating a compelling profile, especially a noteworthy bio, and posting original and creative content consistently on your main platform or platforms.
     

  2. What is the job of a brand influencer?
    A brand influencer is a person who leverages social media proficiency and prowess in engaging and connecting with audiences in the most authentic manner. Brands tap the services of these influencers to achieve their marketing goals and objectives. As such, the job of the brand influencer is to drive marketing activities around a particular brand through the content they create and publish on their social profiles.
     

  3. Do influencers get paid?
    Yes, brand influencers are paid. There is an unspoken rule that friend influencers can expect to be paid from $10 for every 1,000 followers in influencer marketing. Aside from being paid directly by the brands, influencers can also make money through the monetization tools on the particular platform they are using, selling merchandise, and earning commission through affiliate links.

our roster of brand influencers

Gushcloud has a rota of brand influencers who have successfully collaborated with companies and organizations throughout the years. These names are worth remembering and working with.

 LIVE COMMERCE

ABOUT

introduction

The e-commerce realm is continuously evolving. Today, we are completely taken aback by the ingenuity of online sellers through live commerce. Some call it live shopping, live selling, or live streaming, but the fundamentals stay the same — selling products digitally, allowing buyers to interact with the brands, sellers, and products in real time.

what is live commerce?

Live commerce refers to the act, practice, or process of selling products or services online through live video. There are at least three factors for live commerce to occur: 1) online selling/buying, 2) live video, and 3) consumer participation. The idea is to allow consumers to watch and buy simultaneously.

To make live commerce more successful, there is also a need to integrate shopping tools such as a shopping cart, live chat, and payment gateway. The combination of these factors contributes to the overall shopping experience. We are indeed in the midst of the latest wave of the e-commerce revolution.

a. origin of live commerce

Traditional live shopping was prominent in the 1990s as made famous by home shopping networks. These free-to-air television networks primarily targeted households to buy mass-produced items — from knife sets to vacuum cleaners. Hotline numbers were open while the demonstration was ongoing.

Furthermore, the modern take on live shopping was considered to have started in China. Alibaba, which was founded by Jack Ma, was a technology company specializing in online retail operations. Thus, in 2016, it successfully implemented the first live shopping event via streaming. However, it was in 2020 that Alibaba was able to rake in $7.5 billion in just 30 minutes of going live. In the same year, a survey of Chinese consumers revealed that one-third of the population bought an item through a live stream.

If live commerce experience in China is an indication, there is nowhere for live commerce but to move forward.

b. statistics on live commerce

  • Brands that embrace live commerce report up to a 30% increase in conversion rates

  • Conversion rates of live commerce are 10x higher than that of traditional e-commerce

  • Sales through live commerce are expected to reach 10% to 20% of all e-commerce sales by 2026

  • Approximately 265 million individuals use live commerce (30% of whom are Chinese)

  • The majority of the viewers of live shopping are younger audiences, comprising up to 20% of the entire audience share

  • Gen Xers and Gen Zs spend more on live shopping than other demographic groups

  • About 44% of Gen Zs are converted through a live stream of an influencer

  • The top categories include apparel/fashion (36%), beauty products (7%), food (7%), consumer electronics (5%), and home decor/furnishing (4%) (McKinsey & Company)

  • Taobao currently has the largest market share at 35%

  • About 25% of Chinese adult consumers would like to discover products online through live selling that features a brand representative or influencer

TYPES OF LIVE COMMERCE

a. marketplaces

Amazon, Alibaba, and eBay are examples of marketplaces that empower consumers to transact with stores and merchants in the comfort of their homes. In addition, some marketplaces host their own live selling. Other marketplaces such as TikTok, META, and Shopee allow brands to host their own live shopping, providing them with the tools they need to conduct the live.

b. auctions

Bidders come together through a tool, app, or platform to conduct live selling (or bidding). Unlike marketplaces that sell common goods — from apparel to household items, live auctions offer unique collectible products like books, comics, toys, and sports cards.

c. streaming

Influencers who are either promoting their own products or that of their sponsors are common nowadays. They do live streams, relying on their personal brand and, of course, their extent of influence. In some countries, influencers are known as experts or KOL (key opinion leaders).

d. tutorials

Tutorials have become their own category, although the beauty and cosmetics industry is the primary user of this live commerce strategy. While tutorials are the crux of live videos, skin routines, product reviews, and makeup trends are some other live video content.

e. events

Live events overlap with other types of live commerce. However, the unique feature of live events is, of course, the event. These include Black Friday lives and Singles’ Day in China, which happens every November 11 (the original 11.11). Both kickstart the Christmas shopping season in countries where these events are celebrated or observed.

BENEFITS OF LIVE COMMERCE

  • How live commerce creates value for the brand?​

     

    There are many ways by which live commerce creates value, not just for the brand but also for marketplaces and retailers, big or small. 
     

    • Brand awareness

      • Live commerce puts a face behind the brand and its products and services. This is more so if that face is equally recognizable such as a celebrity or influencer. The more they see these people using the products, the more they will be recognized by the people.
         

    • Brand differentiation

      • ​Some brands have yet to embrace live commerce. However, those brands that started live streaming years ago (even before or during the pandemic) are reaping the practical and financial benefits. Moreover, live shopping gives brands a distinctive appeal, positioning themselves firmly among consumers’ recall and attracting new customers.
         

    • Customer engagement

      • Live commerce utilizes videos, which are considered to bring better engagement. In fact, users are twice more likely to share videos than other content formats. This is more so compared with static advertisements. In addition, live videos are immersive, compelling viewers to finish the live.
         

    • Sales acceleration

      • ​Live commerce generates sales faster than traditional sales channels, including e-commerce websites. It is because as the products are shown to the audience, they can instantly ask for and receive feedback. Some participants specifically join live shopping for limited-time discounts and other promotional offers. Such a tactic creates a sense of urgency while tapping into the consumers’ fear of missing out (FOMO). As such, it is not surprising that brands doing live are reporting up to a 30% increase in conversion rates.

  • How to integrate live commerce into your strategy?

     

    Implementing live commerce is challenging. This is why experts recommend matching the strategy with the brand or company’s understanding and acceptance level of this newest e-commerce tool.
     

    • Product

      • Not all products are salable through live commerce, especially if the brand intends to sell products to boost brand loyalty. Brands need to consider the product lifecycle before implementing this strategy. For example, a live video can prompt trial, generate feedback before a hard launch on Instagram, or boost sales of best-selling items on the catalog. Whether a seasonal campaign or exclusive deals-only live, the goal is to position the products as good value for money — products worth splurging.
         

    • Audience

      • ​For brands intending to do live, it pays to know the target audience ∼ more technically, the target demographic ∼ for live videos. They need to look at this matter in more granular terms. Brands must at least have an idea of their potential customers so they may create lives that are relevant to the right segments. Additionally, they should know what matters to these consumer segments and how to attract and keep them engaged during the live. Once you know your audience, you will also understand what and who influences them the most.
         

    • Format

      • Historically, live shopping with immense interactions includes a KOL, which is usually an influencer. A key opinion consumer (KOC), such as a long-time fan or product reviewer, is an alternative option if a KOL or an expert is unavailable. Some sales-triggering tactics include tutorials, BTS (behind the scenes), and interviews. Interactive elements must be present, and some great examples are exclusive voucher codes, giveaways, and games and quizzes with you-will-not-find-anywhere prizes.
         

    • Enablers

      • ​When doing live selling or events, technology is critical. Facebook and Instagram, collectively known as META, are great ways to start. However, brands still need to invest in equipment. Some creative agencies take care of these things. Of course, brands must also have a website or e-commerce platform that makes sales and chats possible. Another enabler is the dashboard that provides data and insights on whether the live is successful. There are tracking tools that can be used straight from the dashboard. Some technologies allow the brands to send the link of a product that a consumer views live and offer a coupon code to trigger the purchase. Again, a brand or company must have an omnichannel mindset to tap into every sales opportunity.
         

    • Platforms

      • ​Choices of platforms generally vary. For example, brands may choose social media and applications.
         

        • Social media
          To make live shopping experiences possible,
          brands may use the tools available on social media platforms.

        • Dedicated live shopping apps
          There are also dedicated off-the-shelf platforms like Livescale, a live shopping application specifically designed for brands and merchants. These applications even allow viewers to buy using the same link.

live commerce trends to watch out for this 2023

Live commerce is just starting, but by the looks of it, it is here to stay. Nonetheless, here are some trends that will take shape this 2023.

a. virtual reality (VR) shopping

At present, the word metaverse, which is technically a virtual environment, has entered the vernacular. However, such a well-hyped buzzword makes VR shopping a more practical experience. With this, brands have found a new way to stay relevant. For instance, IKEA launched its room design app made possible by augmented reality (AR). Now, shoppers can design their rooms long before they head to the website or an actual store to buy what they have pre-decorated their space with.

b. omnichannel live streaming

Omnichannel marketing allows customers to buy on the platform or channel they are most comfortable using. They may start with your Facebook live and end up buying from your Instagram or TikTok store. Wherever they wish to complete the transaction, the goal is to make the shopping experience as seamless as it should be. Live commerce is an omnichannel strategy in itself that brands should take advantage of.

c. one-to-one live demo/shopping

Live shopping does not necessarily need to be a one-to-many endeavor. Live shopping can be prearranged with a person or group of stylists, makeup artists, or personal shoppers. One-to-one live videos are perfect for high-ticket and luxury item purchases. This may not necessarily lead to instant buys, but one-to-one live commerce builds value for the target customers or clients.

d. live collaborations

Live commerce integrates seamlessly with other marketing methods, such as influencer marketing. Including influencers in the video is a great way to drive interactions and, thus, conversions. The influencers themselves may host the entire live event. Since most viewers are younger (millennials and Generation Zs), it makes sense to hire influencers with whom the audience would relate.

e. live Question and Answer (Q&A)

In some instances, the brand sponsors a live Q&A featuring their endorsers, which may also include influencers and other Internet celebrities. This strategy could be a pre-recorded or one-to-many live video featuring the influencer or a group of influencers at one time.

f. active live chat

Live shopping or streaming cannot do without an active live chat. This is the third component of live commerce, wherein the audience can ask questions and receive real-time answers informing them whether to make a purchase. Fundamentally, live chats promote conversational marketing in actuality, where they can receive links to the FAQs page or be connected to other customers who have bought the same items previously.

future of live commerce

Live commerce will continuously thrive. At least three components would contribute to the ongoing success of live commerce.

a. innovative formats

AR and VR are key enablers that allow brands to create a shopping experience that delights their target consumers. These technologies are exceedingly immersive, giving users the opportunity to see a product from every angle before deciding to buy. These technologies eventually allow a one-to-one conversation that further elevates the shopping experience.

b. micro and nano influencers

Influencers are endowed with hosting capabilities and skills. However, tapping big-shot influencers to do live events requires a hefty budget. This is where the role of micro and nano influencers becomes critical, especially for small businesses that want to harness the power of live commerce.

CREATOR ECONOMY

ABOUT

what is creator economy?

Also known as the influencer economy, the creator economy is software-facilitated. With online sites, tools, and applications, creators – typically influencers – can create content that matters to their target audience and earn revenues from their content. Virtually all social media platforms are utilized in creating content, and a handful offers marketing and promotion, thereby monetizing content.

 

Paul Saffo, a technology forecaster, was the first person to use the term creator economy in 1997, referring to animators and illustrators. In 2011, YouTube used the word creator to refer to their rosters of stars. These are individuals who have thousands to millions of subscribers. Each creator and the content they produce have distinct economic potential. The more subscribers a YouTube creator has, the higher the chance of earning.

the rise of the creator economy

Creatorship, at least from the digital tangent, is in its infancy. However, changes have fueled the rise and growth of creatorship.

  • Global

Internationally, it was the ongoing sentiment of the people, particularly the millennials to Gen Zs, to attain a sense of fulfillment in their actions. The social consciousness dramatically shifts to the yearning to do things at one’s own pace and not being tied to their 9-to-5 jobs or office cubicles. Having control over things that matter – things that directly affect the quality of life and well-being – has been the mantra ever since this yearning crept into the minds of the young.

 

Another significant global trend is thanks to technological innovations and how we embraced such. Search engines and social media have become industries of their own. There was an inflection point to ponder, wherein a person only needs an idea, a piece of technology, and the bravery to face the public’s scrutinizing gaze to create content that matters.

  • Asia

In Asia, the driving forces behind the creator economy are different. First is the ever-growing figures on the monthly active social media users. In Southeast Asia alone, there are 482 million users who spend at least 2 hours on social media using their mobile devices. So the influencer marketing industry is expected to grow to a billion industry by 2024.

 

Second is the diversity of content. Southeast Asia's most popular content includes reviews, tutorials, unboxing, social feed, and entertainment. The relatability of the content is the #1 reason Asian creators are sought-after by brands.

who are content creators?

Creators defined

A creator is a person or group who creates informative, educational, or entertaining original material as a form of expression. A creator uses a medium or channel to create content for a specific or targeted end user. Still, most use digital channels like websites and social media. Digital content is mainly produced nowadays due to its high demand. Digital content is where the money is if you are planning to generate revenue from your content.

Creators demographics

While it may be challenging to assess the actual numbers, the creator economy is 50 million content creators strong and counting. Unfortunately, only about 2 million creators are able to make a stable career from their creations.

 

Rush Fam, Bella Poarch, Charli D’Amelio, PewDiePie, and Addison Rae are prominent names in the creator economy. They have earned millions of dollars on their chosen platform. PewDiePie, for instance, is estimated to have earned $124 million on YouTube since 2010.

Sample creators - from Gushcloud talents

Gushcloud is proud of its content creators. They aspire to get their message across through their content, and now they make a living out of it.

Creator economy platforms

These are the major creator economy platforms today. Some of these platforms have set up funds for the sole purpose of paying content creators. Nonetheless, all these platforms use AI and algorithms to curate and recommend content for user consumption. These platforms need no introduction, but some of their worth-knowing features that allow creators to earn more are here.

  1. YouTube - Ads, paid sponsorships, affiliate program, channel membership, patronage, merchandise, Super, and Shorts

  2. Twitter - Amplify Pre-Roll, Amplify Sponsorships, Super Follows, and tips

  3. TikTok - Ads, branded content, Series, Marketplace, Next, video gifts, and tips

  4. META: Facebook and Instagram - Reels, in-stream ads, fan subscriptions, branded content, subscription groups, badges, profile ads, and shopping

  5. Twitch - Bits, subscriptions, in-stream ads, affiliate program, Amazon affiliate, and sponsorships

  6. Others: Discord, Behance, Spotify, OnlyFans, eCommerce sites (Shopee, Lazada, and TikTok Live)

 

A creator typically gains traction and grows their fanbase through the virality of the content. Engagement is the currency of the creator economy. Having more followers could mean more frequent and higher levels of content consumption and possibly engagement. Since there are more users on the platform, this, in turn, translates into the platform’s revenues. Thus, it is a win-win situation.

Creator economy platforms

Creator economy tools help content creators and curators make quality content and, thus, grow their followership for monetization purposes. Tools are indispensable, so having these in your arsenal is best.

  1. Content creation tools
    Each platform has its own library of tools and features accessible to the content creators. For example, Instagram has filters, whereas TikTok has options for video effects.

    Then again, creators may use out-of-platform content creation and enhancement tools. For example, Adobe Creative, which includes Photoshop and Illustrator, is an on-the-go content creation tool for professionals, businesses, and individuals.
     

  2. Community engagement tools
    Creators build communities around their content. It will only grow bigger in time, so if you are one of these creators, you will need handy tools to increase conversion rates. For instance, a contact detail-sorting tool can assist you when sending an SMS, emailing your fan for updates or exclusive content, or chatting with all of them in one go.

    Engage them more first before planning to sell anything. Otherwise, your community will turn its back on you. 
     

  3. Finance-related tools
    Upon diversifying your income stream, it is also essential to use finance management tools. Since everything is digital, financial exchanges are done virtually, if not paid in check or in kind (ex deals).

    Interestingly, the creator economy is not just above the exchange of payment. There are also auxiliary financial services to consider, including preparing income and taxation documents. Aside from the already-available tools, agencies such as Gushcloud can also help in this aspect.

Creator economy platforms

Content creation is regarded as the fastest-growing business for individuals. As a matter of fact, more children want to become a YouTube star than an astronaut (29% vs. 11%).

Creators earn money in several ways. This is by far the most significant trend in the creator economy – creators and influencers being funded by their communities (of fans, followers, subscribers, etc.).

Beyond ads, though, content creators favor multiple revenue streams.

  • Revenue-generating activities
     

  1. In-content advertising
    Ad revenue shares are the most basic way to earn through the content one produces. Platforms such as YouTube and Facebook, which both have well-built advertising programs, allow creators to make on a cost-per-mille basis. Some pay creators through the extent of engagement on a particular post or upload.

    Lately, though, creators are veering away from the platforms more so because excessive dependence on them is unsatisfactory in the long run profit-wise. For one, changes in features and tools are beyond the control of the creators. So they look for other ways to earn.
     

  2. Live streaming
    Live streaming is the most flexible of all income-generating aspects of creating content. While it is mainly used in live shopping, where they can sell their own merchandise or from sponsor brands, streamers may also accept payments, tips, and donations while the stream is ongoing. In addition, some creators feature products they buy for review and post links to the shop where they got the item for affiliate commissions. 
     

  3. Podcasting
    Monetizing podcasts is an opportunity that not all creators or influencers have explored. Podcasters earn in various ways: through sponsorships, subscriptions to premium content, merchandise sales, affiliate sales, consultations, coaching, crowdfunding, and events. Podcasters typically combine these earning tactics.
     

  4. Merchandising
    Selling merchandise or merch is a lucrative business for creators who constantly churn out new designs for a shirt. However, this can be limiting for merchandise that requires no repeat purchase. So if pursuing this direction, you need to have a few pieces in your collection and launch new ones from time to time.
     

  5. Sponsored content
    Content that is paid by advertisers and intended to promote the brand or company’s products and services to the creator’s target market. Sponsorships are among the most lucrative ways for creators. However, the pay will depend on the chosen content creator or influencer’s reach (or influence). Macro influencers demand higher compensation than micro-influencers. Some brands pay commissions depending on the engagement and conversion rates on top of the upfront payment.
     

  6. Product placement
    Product placement is a merchandising strategy that started with television. As the name suggests, the product is strategically positioned as organically in the scene or script as possible. Product placement was also seen in music videos and, today, on branded content. Video content creators mostly interact with brands where the actual product can be shown to viewers directly or indiscreetly. As with other strategies on this list, pay generally varies.
     

  7. Fan engagement
    Fan engagement is different from the typical revenue-generating route. However, some creators and influencers amass a fanbase that allows them to monetize further. For example, a paid video shoutout, a curated wedding playlist, or a birthday greeting. This will enable creators to showcase their talents and capabilities without shortchanging what they can do for their fans.
     

  8. Affiliate marketing
    Affiliate marketing is evolving. The basic premise of affiliate marketing is recommending a product or service to fans, followers, or subscribers and providing a unique link from which they can purchase it. Commissions are paid based on the number and amount of sales. Nowadays, creators and influencers are given unique hashtags or codes that can be used to track sales.
     

  9. Direct selling
    Another way to earn is to directly sell content such as newsletters, ebooks, webinars, and online courses. Aside from apparel, accessories, and novelty items, content creators can sell virtually anything possible. As noted above, they can do live selling to raise earnings through engagement and actual sales of the products.
     

Content creators substantially adapt their content based on audience expectations. Thus, they also constantly adapt their monetization strategies. In the creator economy, what works will depend on extensive research, analysis, and experimentation. Otherwise, it will be a waste of precious time and resources.

How to succeed as a creator

Content creators need to do a lot of considering and balancing.
 

  1. Diversify your platform
    Platforms exist to cater to varying needs. This is true for both content creators and content consumers. For the creators, there is always a risk of becoming platform-dependent. But they don’t have to.

    The next best thing is to diversify your platform and be where your target audience is. Innovative creators spread their influence and do not dilute it. They cross-promote so that they would not be vulnerable to platform risk. True enough, there are no two platforms alike. Some will eventually decline or saturate.

     

  2. Never sacrifice quality