Why Data Matters: Key learnings from Koala Head of Growth & leading influencer Sally O'Neil 4| 5| 1 (1)| 1| 2| 3| 5| 6| 7| 8| 9| 10

The investment of marketing budget into an influencer campaign has the ability to deliver incredible results in a short amount of time. From Frank Body Scrub to the Ice-bucket challenge, the value of the influencer in creating urgency is undeniable., APAC’s largest talent platform has always aimed for agility and  transparency. Therefore, allowing data exchange between both sides of the market-place was a natural progression. That’s why in June 2019, launched a newly integrated analytics feature enabling brands to access AI generated real time data!

To kick off the launch, held an event at CUB Private Business Club and invited key influencers together with brands to an open forum discussion to share, learn and question  - When it comes to influencer marketing, does data really matter?

Facilitating this discussion was our CEO Taryn Williams supported by a panel that included, Bernice Averion from Koala (a popular Australian online bedding, and furniture brand) excelling in the influencer marketing space) and Sally O’Neil of the thefitfoodie (A successful food stylist/photographer and influencer).

The trio shared their unique experiences, exploring the benefits of real-time data in an influencer crazed world.

So what were the key lessons from this discussion?

Relevance matters

Using’s new analytics feature, brands can easily determine whether an influencer is worth the investment.

Case in point, Koala booked a total of 141 influencers during 2018 of which 85% of the sales came from 10 of the talent booked, including one influencer that resulted in $300,000 in revenue for the brand

Clearly, there is a sweet spot between brand awareness and direct sales. Understanding which influencer is better suited to each KPI is essential to the planning process.

One of the key variables that can help determine the best fit is data. This means deep diving into analytics which enables you to clearly see demographics, engagement and topic authority.

Williams agreed, “This isn't a guessing game. Having robust data that illustrates key audience demographics, sentiment, and historic engagement allows you to not only plan ahead but be more targeted with your marketing content and spend.”

Creating an eco-system of tools

All three panelists agreed that an eco-system of tools is the way forward in today's media-centric world.

“It’s a process... Creating content that actually matters to your audience. It’s not just about screen time. It’s about making real connections. This requires strategy aided by effective tools and systems in order to stay in the game, to stay relevant….” Williams says.

Key elements mentioned included:

  1. Putting money behind a post

“ I’m a strong advocate of the paid post. Why pay money to an influencer creating beautiful content when no one sees it?” - O’Neil

02.   Long-term relationships

O’Neil believes in the value of long term relationships with brands over short one term sprints. Why? Engagement with posts featured regularly on her feed has a degree of gravitas she muses. This resonates with her audience within the food and lifestyle space that seek the authentic.

( enables you to safely and securely book influencers for long-term contracts).

  1. Understanding who you’re dealing with means realistic expectations for both sides

“Koala believes in setting relevant expectations,” says Averion. These expectations work interchangeably with data collected about the influencer during the vetting stage. This enables them to decide appropriate spend and action based on intel beyond a simple follower amount.

  1. Creative synergy: trust between the brand and the creator

Collaboration and a mutual exchange of ideas is exciting for both sides. However, this requires an element of trust, especially for a brand booking an influencer for the first time.

All sides agreed that having real-time data about the influencer and their audience allowed the brand to be more fluid with their creativity by elevating the influencer's leverage in the content going out. Essentially giving the influencer more ownership and accountability.

It always helps to have a fresh perspective. A person directly connected to your audience to really drive home that connection” Says Williams.

Keep it real: Balancing risk and KPI’s

You only know what you know, or so the saying goes. So why would you spend money on a lukewarm gamble when you can have all the cards in your hand?

With your target audience expecting more content, more value, more connections, and more everything! It's imperative to choose the right face for the right audience. You can’t do this unless you:

  1. Know your audience
  2. Know your influencer

It’s this realism that has worked for Averion. “We see the ROI because we go all in”. Brand influencer alignment equals return on investment. “We made $300,000 from one influencer”.

But what are your thoughts? When it comes to influencer marketing, does data really matter?

We would love to keep the discussion going.  

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On another note we would like to give a massive shout-out to our sponsors:

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