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At Online Marketing Rockstars Festival 2019, we were joined on stage for our Masterclass Influencer Marketing Campaign Execution: In-house vs. Outsourced by our customers Douglas, Paul Hewitt, Social Match and [m]Studio to discuss how brands can successfully build up their in-house influencer marketing expertise and create actionable, scalable processes for their teams.

Simona Giarolo, Head of Marketing Communication and Social Media at Douglas and Saidy Elias, Campaign Manager Influencer Marketing at Paul Hewitt, shared their secrets of success and provided valuable insights into their in-house influencer marketing processes.

Panel discussion at OMR19

Big buzz and ongoing heartbeat at Douglas

The perfumery chain Douglas operates in multiple countries with numerous team members working on the brand’s influencer marketing campaigns. Influencer marketing is at the core of the brand’s marketing strategy – Douglas CEO Tina Müller put influencer marketing in the spotlight when she joined the company in 2017 and influencer collaborations have become indispensable for the brand ever since.

To handle the workload and operational challenges, the internal teams at Douglas Germany – Marketing, Social Media, Influencer Relations – are being supported by an external influencer agency and a moving content agency.

Influencer marketing at Douglas, day to day process

Douglas collaborates with influencers for multiple purposes. Next to brand awareness, the beauty company puts a strong focus on conversions. The influencers Douglas collaborates with come from different ranges: The heroes have large followings and a highly engaged audience. The midis enjoy the trust of their followers and micros are close to their followers and transfer the brand’s message on a highly personal level. Combining these ranges enables Douglas to reach a variety of potential customers and converting them into loyal brand lovers.

Influencer selection

In addition to their ongoing influencer campaigns, seedings, and industry collaborations, Douglas also partners up with a selection of influencers for the co-creation of new products. The brand’s famous Kiss Kit campaign was initiated by Douglas CEO Tina Müller and was executed from start to end within six weeks in 2018. Douglas collaborated with fitness influencer Pamela (@pamela_rf) and beauty influencers Farina (@novalanalove) and Julia (@xlaeta) to create three individual kits with lip products. One of the kiss kits was already sold out shortly after the launch of the products.

Combining influencer marketing expertise and data at Paul Hewitt

The founders of watch brand Paul Hewitt started their business in Northern Germany but have expanded the brand across multiple countries. At Paul Hewitt, influencer marketing is a firm part of the brand’s overall marketing strategy. The influencer-generated content is reused across departments and for a multitude of marketing activities, creating an aligned brand message and adding an element of personality to the brand.

Paul Hewitt's countries on board

The influencer marketing team at Paul Hewitt is 14 team members strong. As Paul Hewitt’s Campaign Manager Saidy Elias stated, the influencer marketing expertise was mainly built up by “learning by doing”. Nowadays all team members have a clear understanding of which influencers are high-performers. Combining this knowledge with a data-driven approach and InfluencerDB as their software of choice, the brand grew significantly through influencer marketing. Similar to Douglas’ strategy, the team collaborates with influencers from the nano, micro, and macro influencer range.

Working with nano influencers allows Paul Hewitt to keep 70% of their campaigns unpaid. By collaborating with influencer platforms, Paul Hewitt automizes the nano influencer process and keeps it lean and scalable. The small-range influencers provide authenticity and frequent interaction with their audience. On average, the brand manages to reach 40% of these influencers’ followers. In the micro influencer range, this number drops to 30%, to 20% in the macro influencer range and to 15% for celebrity influencers.

Paul Hewitt's campaign details

To ensure that their influencer marketing activities do not only create branding for the company but also drive conversions, the influencer marketing team has created an elaborate process for campaign measurement. In addition to using InfluencerDB’s Influencer Community Management Software to receive the campaigns’ essential KPIs, the team also uses Google analytics and tracks UTM codes to identify the best-performing collaboration partners and measure their campaigns on a quantitative level. Saidy Elias sees great potential in Instagram’s shopping feature which the brand will possibly use more frequently for their upcoming campaigns.

Douglas and Paul Hewitt – successful influencer marketing pioneers

The cases of Douglas and Paul Hewitt show that influencer marketing is still a valid and successful approach for brands. Both companies are performance-driven and converting followers to customers is one of their main goals and the core of their strategies. Both Simona and Saidy reported that rising CPMs are a challenge for the brands which they handle by collaborating with influencers from various ranges, allowing them to keep a major part of their campaigns unpaid. The teams at Douglas and Paul Hewitt continuously increase their in-house expertise and invest in trend research to keep up with the ever-changing market, making them pioneers in this fast-paced industry.

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