October 26, 2020

How Influencer Marketing Can Help You Increase Sales

Looking to increase your sales? Have you tried using Instagram or Youtube influencers to help you do that? If you haven’t tried influencer marketing yet, now’s the time to do so.

With the amount of time people spend on social media these days, influencer marketing is a real, effective strategy for improving sales. In fact, in a survey conducted by Rakuten Marketing, 88% of respondents said they had purchased a product after seeing it promoted by an influencer.

Influencer marketing can definitely be effective, but that’s not to say it’s a walk in the park. Campaign success depends on strategic planning and finding the right influencers. Keep reading to learn tips and tricks about how to use influencer marketing to help you increase your sales.

Define your target audience

Like in all marketing campaigns, you must start out by defining your target audience. Who is this campaign for? Think about demographics like age, gender, location, language, and interests. Decide who are the people who are going to buy your product.

Another important thing to consider when defining your target audience is to consider where your campaign will take place. Each social network has different user demographics, and you want to make sure that you choose the one that best aligns with your target audience.

For example, when considering age, Statista shows that around one-third of Instagram’s user base is between 25-34 years old. The second-highest percentage of users falls into the 18-24 range. Compare that with TikTok. 69% of that platform’s users are aged 13-24, according to Hootsuite. It’s important to consider where your target demographic spends its time online, in order to maximize the chance of your campaign reaching them.

Strategize your sales

In addition to defining your target audience, you need to carefully plan other aspects of your campaign. Outline your strategy for how you will achieve your goal of increased sales.

Time and place your campaign wisely

First, consider if you want to increase sales of a specific product or not. If yes, make sure your marketing campaign syncs up with the schedule of that product. While marketing far ahead of time may work for some highly anticipated items, you generally want to make sure your product is available for purchase when you launch your campaign, and in the geographical area where you target your campaign.

Consider content

Second, think of content ideas you can use to promote your product(s). Social networks offer a diverse array of media types, each with advantages for certain types of content. If your goal is to sell, you might want to try out one of these:

  • Product review – If your product is straightforward, an Instagram post could work. If it’s something more complex that needs a longer or more visual explanation, try Instagram stories or Youtube.
  • Product demo – Again, if your product benefits more from seeing it in action, try out a tutorial or demo. Youtube, Instagram stories, or other video formats will be best for this type of content.
  • Q&A session – Let the audience participate in the discussion! Influencers can host live streams to show off your products and answer audience questions in real-time. Success here depends on the influencer’s ability to spontaneously react and provide information. But when live streams are done well, they can build trust in your brand and its products.

@munchin.withmar reviewing products from @boarshead_official.

Let data help you out

When you’re planning your campaign, it’s also important to think about how you’re going to measure your success. And in order to measure your success, you’ll need to track your results. In order to comprehensively track results, it’s best to set up an analytics program. Google Analytics is a good place to start, and there’s a wealth of how-to information available for beginners.

A great way to track the success of sales is with influencer-specific discount codes. First of all, everyone loves discounts. And if people see their favorite influencer reviewing a product and offering a discount code, it makes the product all the more tantalizing. Moreover, later on you can see how many sales were made with each code, showing you which influencers best performed for your campaign.

Nano influencer @shaelynnco advertising her personalized discount code for @idealofsweden on Instagram.

Another way to track your sales results is with trackable links. You can use UTM parameters or link shorteners to set up links that you can then track in your analytics program. This way, you can see which social network, profile, or item brought the most traffic to your website, and which of those converted into sales.

Find the right influencers

One of the most important, and potentially most difficult, part of an influencer marketing campaign is finding the right influencer. You have to find someone who aligns with your brand, who helps you reach your target audience, and who has the capacity to create content that will help you achieve your goals.

Use an influencer marketing platform

The best way to find the right influencers for your campaign is with an influencer marketing platform. This type of software lets you search for influencers using various filters to help you see the results you’re really interested in. Moreover, an influencer marketing platform provides detailed analytics about influencers’ profiles.

Influencer report by influencer marketing platform Heepsy for fashion and lifestyle influencer @schultzzie.

Measure their metrics

When choosing influencers, it’s important to find someone who aligns with your brand both in terms of message and aesthetics. But it’s equally important to evaluate influencers based on their profile metrics. If you’re using an influencer marketing platform, you’ll have this information ready in the influencer analytics reports. If not, you’ll have to collect the information manually from social media and/or ask the influencer for their media kit.

When checking influencers’ metrics, make sure to look at:

  • Follower count – determines an influencer’s reach and price
  • Follower growth – how the profile has grown over time
  • Engagement rate – shows the level of interaction between an influencer and their audience
  • Audience demographics – reveals who makes up the influencer’s audience in terms of age, gender, language, location, and interests
  • Audience authenticity – tells you which percentage of the influencer’s audience has exhibited suspicious behavior typically found in bots
  • Branded content – shows a sample of content the influencer has uploaded tagged to brands, as well as the average

Heepsy’s branded content metric, showing total likes, total comments, and average engagement for brands @schultzzie has tagged in past content.

The branded content metrics can give you a particularly good impression of how the influencer’s content performs in branded collaborations. And if you see another brand from a similar sector as yours, you can get an idea of how that influencer might be able to make an impact in your campaign.

Follow up on the campaign

After your campaign launches, you can’t just wash your hands of it. You have to diligently follow up on the campaign so you can track your results and measure your level of success.

Use an analytics program to track the number of sales that come in because of your campaign. Don’t forget to look into discount codes and branded links as discussed earlier. If you launched your campaign across various social networks, determine which brought in the most revenue.

Collect the media published by influencers for your campaign, as you may want to reuse some of this content for your own social media accounts. Also, figure out which influencers were most successful in encouraging their followers to buy your products. This way you can bookmark them for future, repeat collaborations.

And whenever you’re analyzing your results, keep an open mind. Even if your campaign doesn’t live up to your expectations, assess what worked, what didn’t, and why. Through analysis you may even come across new opportunities you hadn’t considered beforehand.


Influencer marketing is a great way to promote your brand on social media. It can help you boost brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, or even increase sales. But in order to achieve any influencer marketing goal, you have to dedicate time and resources to the process. Plan strategically, choose influencers wisely, and thoroughly track results to make sure you follow through on your campaign to the fullest.

About the author 

Peter Hatch

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