Commentary

Can Marketers Measure Influence Of Influencers?

In a world filled with influencers, how do you find one who might be productive for your product, specifically hotels? And if you could gain that knowledge, how would you act on it?

Curacity, which for the last two years has honed its publishing product measuring the impact of printed articles and how much revenue they generate for hotels, has extended its reach into the world of measuring Instagram influencers. 

Curacity is partnering with CitizenNet, a Condé Nast company that focuses on audience prediction technology. With that alliance, Curacity is introducing a new product, turning influencers into a quantifiable, revenue-driving channel for luxury hotels. 

Curacity says it is able to measure the power of a post based on direct hotel bookings made over six months after followers viewed that post and made the booking. The result is smarter investments in social media influencers, allowing hotel marketers to work with the most impactful and proven influencers for their property.

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”We’re cracking the code of turning the demand that influencers on Instagram create into an investable and measurable revenue channel for hotels,” said Mike Keriakos, founder and CEO of Curacity. 

Curacity finds influencers in a number of ways: 1) those already using the hotels and posting; 2)through a feedback loop of discerning which influencers staying in a certain hotel actually generate revenue; and 3) hotel guests themselves who post on social media. 

Relevant influencers are offered free stays. Influencers who prove unusually productive might enjoy, say, a suite for a week. 

Bashar Wali, president of Provenance Hotels, a Portland, Oregon-based group of boutique properties, having achieved success with Curacity’s original product, is giving the extension a try. He said that with CitizenNet as a partner, Curacity’s product “has the mathematics behind it and will help us decide which influencers make sense to work with.” 

He said his company tends to like influencers with smaller number of followers but with high levels of engagement with those followers. Ultimately, said Wali, Provenance has to be sure the message the influencer is putting out is on-brand. However the message should be in the influencer’s own voice, so s/he does not appear to be a mouthpiece for the brand. 

According to Curacity, luxury hotels spend less than 1% of their customer acquisition dollars on social media because hotel operators cannot see how their media investment translates to bookings. The company believes its product will correct this divide for two main reasons: 

1} Time: Current attribution windows for Instagram and Facebook allow data analysts to measure results against 30 days. Curacity has proprietary data it can share that shows it takes 72 days, on average, to read about a hotel, then book it. Curacity will be able to measure for up to six months.

2} Omnichannel: Social conversions account for some, but not all, of the bookings inspired by social. Curacity captures all bookings inspired by Instagram (including by phone, travel agents, through corporate programs, and more). 

If this influencer measurement tool proves successful, it could prove influential in itself in how travel is marketed.

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1 comment about "Can Marketers Measure Influence Of Influencers?".
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  1. James Smith from J. R. Smith Group, April 11, 2019 at 5:14 a.m.

    Harvey, a few questions.  Where do Trip Advisor and similar channels fit into this research/mix?  Also, regarding the 72 days from journey initiation to booking, how much of that time can logically be attributed to "shopping for price deals?"  Finally, why is it so difficult to track "guests" actually staying and then posting on social...in terms of ROI?

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