All marketers need some inspiration to generate or create authentic sponsored content. In this write-up, we highlight 10 examples of influencer marketing campaigns that stood out.
94% of marketers the world over swear by influencer marketing; they vouch for its effectiveness in generating ROI. Influencer marketing is essential for meeting marketing goals across all industries,
Getting Instagram, YouTube, and or TikTok influencers that align with your brand to push your marketing agenda endears your target audience to your brand.
The main challenge with influencer marketing for most marketers is creating viral-worthy content without losing sight of your campaign goals.
Below are 10 examples of influencer marketing campaigns that stood out in the last five years. Let them inspire you to create influencer marketing campaigns for the ages.
1 – Old Navy Black Friday Fundraiser for Boys and Girls Club of America (BGCA)
Influencer: Retired baseball top shot Alex Rodrigues
Old Navy is a veteran brand both in the fashion industry and in influencer marketing. The brand often teams with top fashion influencers to push their various clothing lines.
This time, however, they used retired baseball star Alex Rodrigues to help fundraise for the BGCA during Black Friday. BGCA empowers young people by providing them with voluntary after-school programs; Alex Rodrigues happens to be a BGCA alumnus.
The partnership between Old Navy and Rodrigues raised $1,000,000 for BGCA.
Takeaway: Influencer marketing is also an essential tool for corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects. Buyers today are concerned about social responsibility; promoting social projects will endear them to your brand.
Second, influencers you select do not always have to be from your industry; they just need to tell a compelling story.
2 – Sperry: Boat Shoes
Influencers: 100+ Instagram Micro-influencers
Sperry is quite well known for its boat shoes. The brand is also known for using micro-influencers to expand its market reach.
In late 2016-early 2017 created an influencer campaign that included over 100 influencers pushing their boat shoes. The campaign was bound to be a soaring success for a couple of reasons.
First, they mobilized influencers with an authentic connection to the brand; they had bought Sperry’s shoes before. Second, the campaign was set during wet weather hence perfect timing for buying boat shoes. The selection of influencers included fashion-savvy female influencers to help the brand tap into that niche.
The brand garnered 4.7million impressions and a 56% engagement rate during the campaign. Traffic from Instagram to their website also increased by over 66% thanks to influencer posts and UGC. The campaign also won a Shorty Award.
Takeaway: Micro-influencers are as powerful if not better than celebrities in influencer marketing. UGC also goes a long way in complimenting marketing efforts.
3 – Diageo: My Tales of Whisky
Influencer: Actors Nick Offerman
Here is yet another Shorty Award-winning influencer marketing campaign.
Diageo, the Parent company to Scotch Whiskey brands Lagavulin and Oban, teams with actor Nick Offerman to introduce their drink to a younger audience.
Nick Offerman plays the character, Ron Swanson, in the popular TV show, Parks and Recreation. His character, Ron Swanson, among other things loves talking about scotch.
In the 45-minute video shot for this campaign, Offerman sits on a chair by a fireside that is burning “Yule log”. He sips on Lagavulin single malt scotch whiskey without uttering a word the entire time.
Note that young males are the dominant demographic among YouTube video watchers. A YouTube video is the best way to grab their attention. Second, burning the “Yule log” attaches cultural relevance and a sense of association to the video.
The video currently has over 3million views. It earned the Scotch whisky brand almost 20,000 new followers at the time.
Takeaway: Create content that allows your potential audience to experience the product.
4 – Mercedes VR Ad Campaign
Influencer: Loki the WolfDog
In this Mercedes VR video, Mercedes USA teams up with Loki the WofDog and his pet parent to explore winter wilderness in Colorado. Loki the WolfDog is half wolf half dog and has over 2million followers on Instagram.
The ad campaign aimed to give viewers a 3D perspective from Loki’s point of view. 3D cameras were attached to the 2017 Mercedes GLS Loki and his pet parent, Kelly Lund, used to drive through the snowy landscape. The 3D camera’s documented their journey.
Mercedes created a new Instagram account for the campaign. The account received over 173million views while the campaign had an overall engagement of over 2.3 million.
Takeaway: Influencers do not always have to be human.
5 – EDF Energy: New electric vehicle proposition electric adventurer campaign
Influencers: Jim Chapman, Hand Luggage Only, Colin Furze, The Michalaks, Mother Pukka, Camilla Thurlow
EDF Energy is among the UK’s largest energy companies. EDF aimed to create an Electric vehicle (EV) proposition that would popularize EVs.
EDF energy started by mapping out the purchase journey of electric vehicles. They realized that unfounded myths were the main bottleneck to EV prevalence in the car market.
They set out to create a series of standout videos with two main objectives to popularize EVs. First, the videos would address and bust false myths about EVs. Second, the videos would address user concerns and offer practical advice on the efficient use of EVs.
EDF energy recruited six highly engaged UK influencers from travel, tech, lifestyle, and family marketing niches. Each influencer was to travel cross-country in an electrical vehicle.
The influencers, supported by a videography team, completed a popular Britain road trip each one driving a different EV. They took photos and videos to document their journey and experience. The videos were supplemented by blogs for SEO.
The videos reached 1.1 million people and had an average view time of 2.3 minutes out of the full 3 minutes. The campaign was nominated for 5 marketing awards.
6 – GAP: by Campaign
Influencers: Fashion Bloggers
GAP collaborated with six fashion bloggers in the Styld.by campaign to showcase their spring catalog. Each blogger was to create several looks using at most two items from the GAP spring catalog for each look.
A compilation of the GAP lookbook was uploaded to the styld.by website. Shoppable links were attached to each look. Sharable links were also embedded in each look allowing site visitors to share the looks they preferred on their Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest pages.
The bloggers too shared the looks on the social networks and snippets of the catalog photoshoot. The campaign had a resounding reach.
Takeaway: Blogs are not dead; they are invaluable tools especially regarding SEO ranking. Guest posting is a practical way to reach out to a new target audience.
7 – Subaru: #MeetAnOwner Campaign
Influencers: 20 YouTube and Instagram Influencers
The American carmaker wanted to attract a younger audience to their brand. They also wanted to position their brand as fun and adventurous.
The brand created the meettheowner.com website where avid Subaru lovers narrated their experiences with Subaru cars to interested audiences. They answered all the queries they could about Subaru cars. All UGC from the campaign was posted on this website.
Owners had to have had more than two Subaru cars and were not paid for their opinions.
The campaign also included 20 YouTube and Instagram influencers. The influencers created fun and adventure-themed content that reiterated that Subaru cars are the perfect companions in life’s adventures.
The brand also leveraged the campaign to launch the 2017 Subaru Impreza.
The campaign generated 1.9million likes and 9000comments.
Takeaway: Meet the perfect mix of emotional appeal and hard facts.
8 – Microsoft “Make What’s Next” Campaign
Influencers: Women Innovators
Microsoft leveraged on International Women’s Day to launch their “Make What’s Next” campaign. The tech giant launched the campaign to reach out to girls and encourage them to study and pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
The campaign was part of Microsoft’s outreach program.
The campaign featured videos asking girls the problems they would like to solve and documented their answers. It also featured clips of the girls viewing their STEM passion areas through AR and VR technology.
National Geographic also jumped on the campaign and showcased 30 photos of prominent women innovators by seasoned wildlife photographers. The photographs were posted on National Geographic’s social media pages.
Due to the campaign brand sentiment for Microsoft was at 83% while searches related to women innovators tripled.
Takeaway: Standing up for prominent social issues and social justice is a key subtle marketing angle.
9 – ExxonMobil Ad Campaign
Influencers: Youtube Duo What’s Inside
The gas and oil giant partnered YouTube father and son duo from the YouTube channel “What’s Inside” to promote Exxonmobil’s Annual Protection motor oil.
“What’s inside” YouTube channel features videos where Daniel and Lincoln Markham cut things in half to establish their components. The duo has also partnered in an influencer marketing campaign with Nike.
While working with ExxonMobil, the duo cut a car engine into two halves. A bottle of Exxonmobil’s Annual Protection motor oil was inserted at the core of the engine. This allowed discussing its outstanding product features.
The YouTube video has over a million views.
Takeaway: Allow influencers to stick to their creative style while creating promotional content. Second, consider influencers with cache phrases and creative styles that align with your campaign themes.
10 – Blue Apron
Blue Apron is among industry leaders in the meal kit industry. Blue Apron has delivered fresh ingredients to over 500 million customers.
The brand is only eight years old yet it commands a 40% market share in the meal kit industry. The key to its outstanding performance is influencer marketing.
Blue Apron also commands a 13% influencer voice share in the industry. It has worked with over 2000 influencers in its lifetime. Influencer marketing has worked for Blue Apron’s acquisition strategy.
Apart from influencers, UGC also compliments its online marketing strategy.
Takeaway: Consistency is key.
When it comes to influencer marketing, the possibilities are limitless. Have a clear end goal, think outside the box, get a fitting influencer(S), and be authentic. We hope the 10 examples of influencer marketing campaigns above inspire you to create a campaign that will feature in our next roundup.