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Planting The Perfect Seed: How To Run A Successful Influencer Seeding Campaign

Mar 22, 2024

Marketing News

Planting The Perfect Seed: How To Run A Successful Influencer Seeding Campaign

Running a successful influencer seeding campaign is no small feat. 

Yet, it is one of the best, most effective ways to form long-term relationships with influencers and gain authentic brand ambassadors. 

Influencer seeding has become increasingly popular in recent years, with brands across the world shipping out free products to as many influencers as possible. All in the hope that they might love the product enough to advertise it organically. 

However, there is a right and wrong way to run an influencer seeding campaign. How do you make sure that your brand engages with this marketing practice not only correctly, but in a manner that helps you stand out from your competitors? 

Read on to find out. 

WHAT IS AN INFLUENCER SEEDING CAMPAIGN 

The term influencer seeding refers to the practice of brands sending free products to a range of influencers that they are interested in working with. What makes influencer seeding different to other practices such as influencer gifting, is that there are no strings attached. 

An influencer seeding campaign is an act of goodwill. Brands do not expect influencers to do anything in return for the products they receive. They simply hope that the influencers enjoy the products enough that a relationship can begin to grow; a relationship that, in time, will lead to promotion. 

@djerfavenue

Angel of the week @Linsey in Summer Berries🍓🫐 #djerfavenue

♬ Chill Noons – Kronicle

The practice is referred to as seeding as it is a long-term mindset, with the goal simply being to form a relationship with influencers. Anything on top of this, such as organic promotion of your products, is simply a bonus. 

The benefits of an influencer seeding campaign can be instantaneous. Almost immediately, the practice awards your brand product feedback, word of mouth awareness, and influencer generated content that can be used as you wish. Many influencers take to opening up the products brands send them in lengthy videos, offering users a close up look at the unboxing experience, the products included, and the influencers initial reactions. This kind of content is infinitely valuable and incredibly popular with consumers. 

@mianalauren

Such a cool PR box from @kyliecosmetics 💖 What products do you wanna see me try first? Have you tried any already? #kyliecosmetics #kyliejenner

♬ A-O-K – Tai Verdes

Moreover, influencer seeding builds a foundation for credible affiliate programs. This refers to brands paying influencers a commission on sales, finding good content creators, and establishing brand flag bearers. 

Ultimately, an influencer seeding campaign is all about building and nurturing relationships that will benefit your brand in the long run. It is an act of generosity that aims to put your product in the hands of people you know will love it. Catering to audiences’ growing desire for authentic influencer-brand partnerships.

THE BENEFITS OF AN INFLUENCER SEEDING CAMPAIGN 

The key to influencer seeding’s effectiveness lies in its authenticity. 

Influencer seeding allows your brand to find creators and influencers that really connect with and love your brand. When an influencer genuinely adores your product and brand, they are far more willing to join in on campaigns and promote your products. These campaigns, in turn, are far more effective with consumers, as they come off as genuine. 

@skims

This Valentine’s Day is all about you. 💕 This year we sent 100 of our best customers & supporters this special box to celebrate. ✨ #SKIMS #skimsvalentinesshop #skimsvalentinesday

♬ Dance For Me – Angel Cintron

Inauthentic influencer-brand partnerships lead straight to brand death. Consumers, especially younger ones, can sniff out a fake partnership from a mile away. That is why partnerships such as Emma Chamberlain and Levi’s work so well; because consumers can tell that Chamberlain really does love the Levi’s products, and has been wearing them long before the brand established her as an ambassador. 

Furthermore, influencer seeding allows your brand to build strong, long lasting relationships on a large scale. 

Through influencer seeding, your brand can form genuine relationships with dozens, if not hundreds, of influencers incredibly quickly. By sending out products to a large number of influencers, you are communicating to these creators that you love their brand and want to work with them. 

Influencer seeding shows creators that your brand is all in from the get go; you like their content enough that you are willing to send them free products! As a result, influencers are far more likely to agree to working with your brand in the long run. 

HOW TO RUN A SUCCESSFUL INFLUENCER SEEDING CAMPAIGN 

Running a successful influencer seeding campaign is all about choosing the right kind of influencers for your brand, and interacting with them in the right way. 

Make sure to follow our steps to ensure your influencer seeing campaign is as effective as possible. 

@abbybaffoe

This one was so good 😭🤌🏼 truly what is my life I an freaking out 🥹🥲💖 #prhaul #prunboxing #prhaulunboxing

♬ original sound – Abby Baffoe

Identify the best influencers to work with 

Before beginning your influencer seeding campaign, it is crucial to select the right influencers to work with. 

Much like influencer marketing in general, it is important to select influencers based on your target audience’s tastes. Be sure to choose influencers who speak to your audience; influencers who are either already popular with your consumers, or who align closely with their tastes. 

By picking influencers who speak to your target demographic, you are ensuring that any content they may create in the future will be of interest to your consumers. On top of this, it will make your brand partnership feel far more natural and authentic; and, by extension, more effective as a result. 

Gauge influencer reactions 

Next, it is important to test the waters with the influencers that you are interested in working with. 

Reach out to your list of influencers and introduce your brand to them. Be personable and up front – show them why you are interested in working with them specifically. This is the moment to sell your brand; why are your products worth it and why are you so sure they are going to love them? 

Be sure to follow up with influencers who do not reply, to show them just how interested you are in their content. 

Get personal 

Influencer marketing is a booming industry, and this means that many of the influencers you reach out to will have dozens of offers from other brands waiting in their inbox. 

It is imperative that you show why your brand stands out from the rest. The best way to do this? Get personal. The more personable you can be with not only your emails but your products, the better. Create an absolutely unmissable boxing experience, with hand written notes and products selected for the influencer’s niche; maybe a specific shampoo for their hair type, or a perfume you just know they will love. 

Little quirks such as these make your brand memorable. Influencers are far more inclined to work with brands that put the effort in and seem to really understand their personal niche.

@kiramackenz

The 3 golden rules nobody wants to hear but everyone needs to know 😬 #influencermarketing #brandstrategy #influencergifting

♬ original sound – kiramackenzie

Track Results 

Whilst influencer seeding does not require influencers to post or generate any content, there is always the chance that they like your product enough that they will mention it on their socials anyway. 

As previously mentioned, many influencers do PR unboxings on their channels, and there is a good chance your product could be included. In these instances, it is essential that you track what the internet is saying about your brand in response. Is your audience engaging with the influencer in the manner you foresaw? Did the influencer’s mentioning of your product bring you more brand awareness or even virality? 

Keeping track of results allows you to determine which influencers are worth nurturing a relationship with and which ones may not be. 

Analyze and improve 

Finally, much like all other marketing practices, the key to successful influencer seeding is to never stop improving. 

Be sure to take note of what is working and what is not. Are influencers responding to your emails or sending them straight to spam? Are they enjoying the unboxing experience or does it need to be adjusted? 

Staying on top of how influencers are reacting to your efforts allows you to be consistently on your A game. 

EXAMPLES OF GREAT INFLUENCER SEEDING CAMPAIGNS 

One of the best ways to ensure your influencer seeding campaign is the best it can be, is to take note of what your competitors are doing. Take stock of what they have done right, so that you can go above and beyond in your own campaigns. 

To help, here are some examples of great influencer seeding campaigns. 

Rare Beauty 

@rarebeauty

IN STRONG WE TRUST 😤 Pro Artist Britt wears Kind Words Matte Lip Liner in Strong and Soft Pinch Tinted Lip Oil in Honesty #rarebeauty #softpinchtintedlipoil #rarebeautylipoil #rarebeautylipliner #stronglipliner #kindwordslipliner #lipcombo #brownlipliner #brownlipcombo

♬ original sound – The Voice ✅

Rare Beauty is an internet sensation. 

The brand is beloved by internet users across the globe, and this is reflected in their marketing and influencer seeding campaigns. Rare Beauty typically sends their products to influencers who have a large digital presence, and are known for makeup. 

Trixie Mattel, for example, has been sent several Rare Beauty PR packages. Mattel is an intelligent choice for Rare Beauty, as she is popular among Rare Beauty’s Gen Z target audience, frequently unboxes her PR on YouTube, and is a drag queen; tapping into Rare Beauty’s diversity philosophy. 

BookTok 

@exlibrisjessica

This book is Bubbles approved so far!!! (Gifted copy) #theghostcat #literaryfiction #booksaboutcats #BookTok #bookrecommendations #booksynopsis

♬ Golden Hour: Piano Version – Andy Morris

BookTok is a marketing goldmine, with millions of users logging onto TikTok daily to see what their favourite BookTok creators are up to. 

Many publishing houses have caught onto this, and thus have begun sending popular BookTok creators free editions of their latest books. These companies encourage influencers to give their honest opinion and reviews of the novels, which many abide with given that it allows them to create more content for their followers. 

The result? Authentic content that advertises the novel and draws in more readers. 

So, there you have it! Influencer seeding 101. Remember, the key to a fantastic influencer seeding campaign is authenticity. Champion that, and you are sure to succeed.

Our influencer marketing agency and social agency are located worldwide, with our agency network based in the USA, UK, UAE and China.

If you want to find industry insights, visit our influencer marketing and social media blogs.

@sociallypowerful

Author

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Ella Proctor

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