Apply the Secrets of Influencer Marketing

September 29, 2021

Sara Hopkins, Buffalo Wild Wings

Session Recording and Slide Deck


Sara Hopkins is the manager of influencer content and sub-culture at Buffalo Wild Wings. She will discuss where to start and how to find the right creators, what the best practices are for working with creators, and understanding KPIs to effectively showcase influencer value. 


Establish Campaign Goals (5:45) 

Where in the funnel do you want your influencer campaign to hit? There are three stages to consider: awareness, interest, and action.

Awareness: Get in front of as many consumers as possible in your target audience 

Interest: Start conversations and generate web traffic 

Action: What action do you want users to take? Examples are app downloads and purchases 


Choosing the Right Creators (6:52) 

Who is your target following? Here are key factors to keep in mind when searching for an influencer to work with:

  • Engagement rate
  • Audience size 
  • Audience location 
  • Influencer type (creator, celebrity, athlete) 
  • Relevance 
  • Activity
  • Conversion rate (action campaign) 
  • Reputation 
  • Bot account percentage 


Best Practices (15:38) 


Tell the influencer exactly what to post. This is inauthentic for the creator and their brand. Treat the influencer like an agency. Treat them like a brand.



Get the influencer/agent excited to work with you

Give the influencer a brief 

Have a contract 

Give the influencer a point of contact 

Be flexible with timing 

Lean on the influencer creatively 

Meet the influencer at his/her experience level


Give Your Influencers Content Opportunities (19:17) 

Give your influencers content opportunities. Foster environments where they are able to naturally be creative and create content. Here are some examples of how you can create the environment: 

  • PR Packages 
  • Comments on posts 
  • Send them somewhere 
  • On-site activities 
  • Bring influencers together 


Influencer Brief (20:30) 

Do not underestimate the brief. This is what creators will reference while making content. Give the influencer a clear construct of what you want them to do. Include a campaign objective, key messaging, content requirements, and deadlines.


Understand Campaign KPIs (21:27) 

Define your metric prior to the campaign, and make sure everyone is on the same page and speaking the same language. 


KPIs for…

Awareness: Brand lift, Reach, Engagement 

Interest: Click through, Engagement, Website traffic 

Action: Website traffic, Installs, Sales, Cost per acquisition 

Content: Quality, Speed, Cost per asset 


Unit Costs for…

Awareness: Audience reach, CPM

Interest: CPE, CPC

Action: CPC, Target cost per acquisition 

Content: Cost per asset 


There is no “official” Instagram engagement rate formula, but there are methods to compare different Instagram accounts, social networks, and performance on Instagram. 

DO THIS: Look at your own brand and determine which KPIs make the most sense for your business. Use these as a guide to determine the type of campaign and success benchmarks for working with an influencer.