It’s the season of the Golden Globes, the Grammys, the Academy Awards, and more. With actors and musicians filling up the newsfeeds of billions worldwide, the awards season is a ripe opportunity for companies to invest in a strong influencer marketing strategy. Although influencer marketing campaigns have been shifting toward micro-influencers, the reach and impact of major celebrities cannot be ignored. Furthermore, many luxury brands continue to work exclusively with global figures. Today, we’re using social listening and audience analysis to look at the influencer marketing potential of two major female artists: Ariana Grande and Lizzo.
1) Develop an influencer marketing strategy that begins with social listening.
Before investing in an influencer marketing strategy, brands must first conduct social listening on an artist’s image, fan base, and reach. We’re starting with Lizzo, who received eight Grammy nominations this year, the most out of any artist, and left with three Grammys last night. Ariana Grande, who wowed the crowd with a three-song performance last night, was close behind with five nominations. We used social listening to take a macro look at the conversations surrounding the two artists online.
Given her long-standing popularity, it’s not surprising that Ariana Grande generates a significantly higher volume of conversations than Lizzo, who is a relative newcomer. However, this alone doesn’t tell us the full story. What are people saying about these artists? What do people think about them?
2) Use sentiment analysis to get a bird’s eye view of an influencer’s online reputation.
First, we looked at how positive and negative conversations about Ariana Grande develop over time.
For the past three months, online conversations about the pop star have been overwhelmingly positive. Props to the pop star!
Next, let’s look at the sentiment timeline of conversations about Lizzo.
Lizzo, who was named TIME’s Entertainer of the Year in 2019, receives mixed reactions from audiences. The trend lines indicating positive sentiment (in green) and negative sentiment (in red) often overlap. Generally, positive feelings outweigh negative feelings, with a few exceptions. Let’s take a look at one of these exceptions.
We clicked into the data point on December 8th, 2019, where negative sentiment sharply rose, to quickly discover the context. The report and mentions stream give us a story of what sparked the outrage.
That night, Lizzo reportedly twerked courtside at a basketball game and exposed her undergarments.
The incident caused a social media firestorm, in which some accused her of inappropriate behavior, while others said critics were body-shaming the star.
3) Understand what each public figure stands for.
While keeping this incident in mind, let’s look at some keywords that revolve around Lizzo.
The second and third keywords are Jillian and Michaels, respectively, referring to Jillian Michaels from popular TV series The Biggest Loser. Michaels had commented on Lizzo’s weight and health, prompting intense backlash. Since rising to fame, Lizzo, who is plus-sized, has received widespread attention for her body and weight. Pay attention to the keywords lower on the list, including body, weight, and fat.
In her own words, Lizzo’s music and public personality pushes a message of body-positivity and going after one’s goals, regardless of physical limitations. Above all, brands who want to sign Lizzo on as a brand ambassador must first understand her personal mission and evaluate whether the brand’s values are aligned. On the other hand, an ill-fitting match is bound to spark negative or, at best, apathetic responses and waste precious marketing budget.
4) Use audience analysis to evaluate existing fan bases.
A strong influencer marketing strategy should target a wide audience that includes the influencer’s fans. This means that, in our example, Lizzo’s fan base should be included in the larger target audience, not the other way around. So let’s dive into the star’s fan base.
Using Profiler, our audience analysis tool, we found that over 75% are female, over 40% are between 25-34 years old, and likes Jay-Z.
But what about the physical location of these fans? Fortunately, Profiler also lets you take a look. Cities in green represent areas in which audiences like Lizzo, while those in red indicate areas where positive affinity is low.
With these basic demographics in mind, you can start pulling together the different pieces of your influencer marketing strategy. Consider whether an influencer’s active fan base overlaps with your target audience. If much of your brand’s revenue comes from e-commerce, first consider the shipping capabilities of your company’s courier.
5) Craft your influencer marketing strategy by diving deep into the audience’s interests.
We wanted to take a closer look at the interests of Lizzo’s fans. We found that this population is interested in hair care, wigs, hair straightening, and nail care. Beauty conglomerates and even smaller e-commerce companies (depending on budget) will find success in partnering with Lizzo to promote hair care products or tools.
The brands in which this group has demonstrated interest are ULTA Beauty, MAC Cosmetics, Sephora, L’Oreal, and Kerastase. This provides further evidence that (1) this population has a high interest in beauty products, and (2) large beauty conglomerates can benefit by partnering with Lizzo.
For influencer marketing campaigns, brands need to determine the platforms and press outlets where the marketing campaign will be published and promoted. In order words, the target audience’s most-used apps and websites must overlap with Lizzo’s fan base.
Lizzo’s fan base tends to use Twitter, Flickr, Tumblr, and Instagram, which most brands are already active on.
After identifying the platforms on which to execute your influencer marketing strategy, you’ll have to plan out the timing of the campaign. Now, you can jump back into your social media monitoring platform. Synthesio’s platform analyzes volume and interactions to determine the best times to publish. Organic conversations about Ariana Grande peak on Tuesdays, while those about Lizzo peak on Wednesdays. Naturally, brands hoping to work with these music stars should take this into careful consideration.
Develop an influencer marketing strategy that considers all aspects.
Although the cost-effectiveness of influencer marketing makes it tempting for many companies, teams often don’t know how to approach it. How do you choose an influencer or celebrity that makes an impact on your brand? What kind of content should you and the influencer work to create? Where should you push out content? A combination of social media intelligence and audience analysis considers the nuances of specific influencers and stars, as well as those of each particular brand. Above all, understand the mission, public reception, and fan bases of potential influencers before finalizing a strategy. We explain how one global camera brand does social influencer marketing in our newest case study.