Vector Media, known for its digital and static out-of-home as well as experiential advertising, has developed a business model to pull social influencers into the mix that extends the life of campaigns.
Chief Strategy Officer of Vector Media Jim MacCurtain, who recently joined the company from NBC Universal, estimates that social influencers add at least two months to the life expectancy of a campaign.
For Vector and its clients, the strategy required the formation of a partnership with Influential, a technology platform based on artificial intelligence powered by IBM Watson.
Marketers will spend about $10 billion in the next five years on influencer marketing, up from about $5 billion, according to influencer marketing agency Mediakix.
It's Vector's way of connecting digital with the real world, said MacCurtain. “Once we understand the brand’s goals, we work with Influential to pull a brand’s social profile and a list of influencers that would work well with the brand,” he said.
MacCurtain said companies also can use Watson to measure specific metrics across a campaign, such as visits to physical locations and other types of behavior from consumers who saw a brand’s message during an event or through an out-of-home campaign.
If Vector knows that a brand seems to attract women between the ages of 34 and 55 who are interested in yoga and prefer sparkling water rather than still water, for instance, “we can go back to the brand based on the insights created by Watson to suggest partnering with specific influencers to promote an event,” explains MacCurtain.
Rather than viewing media as a one-off campaign, savvy marketers will lead with one type of media and combine others such as cross-channel campaigns, he said.
Search advertising isn’t being integrated into the mix through Vector, but MacCurtain said that adding search could also extend the life of a campaign.
Facebook’s image-sharing app Instagram is the most popular platform for influence marketing, according to eMarketer. In fact, nine out of 10 worldwide influencers use Instagram for marketing campaigns.