What Does Influencer Marketing Success Look Like for Media and Agencies?

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Consumers use social media for a wide range of activities, from networking to shopping to catching up with friends and family

But above all, today’s most popular social platforms are a place for entertainment. In fact, 41% of U.S. consumers spend more time watching user-generated social content than streaming TV or movies, according to Deloitte.

That might sound like bad news for the media and entertainment industry—but not when you consider creators’ proven track record of turning TV shows, movies, and songs into viral sensations. From the #EuphoriaMakeup trend to the #GentleMinions craze to “Running Up That Hill,” online creators are responsible for some of the entertainment world’s most notable recent successes. So it’s no surprise that media brands, particularly in the high-growth streaming space, are putting a greater emphasis on influencer marketing.

Of course, executing a hitmaking creator-led campaign is a full-time job. As creators play an increasingly integral role in companies’ overall marketing strategies, organizations both in and outside of the media industry are leaning on the expertise of specialized agencies to stand out. But like the brands that hire them, agencies face competition, and are under heavy pressure to deliver results. To stand out, agency teams need a clear roadmap for influencer marketing success.

Let’s take a look at a few of the winning media and agency campaigns that we spotlighted, and what influencer marketing professionals at organizations of all types can learn from their effectiveness.

Netflix Strikes a Balance Between Earned and Paid Advocacy

Streaming juggernaut Netflix has a knack for launching series that creators can’t get enough of. Earlier this year, the online beauty community glowed over the Regency-era glamor of “Bridgerton,” as makeup and hair gurus raced to recreate looks from the show. Meanwhile, “Stranger Things” fandom exploded on TikTok (and it wasn’t all “Running Up That Hill” videos). Altogether, #Bridgerton and #StrangerThings featured in a respective 1.5k and 3.4k posts from 731 and 1.2k creators.

With such a wide organic footprint, Netflix might have avoided paying for influencer marketing altogether. However, the brand strategically leveraged sponsored promotions to drive viewership for more niche titles, like feature-length thriller “The Grey Man.” This combination of earned and paid activity helped the brand inspire 172.2k posts via 24.0k creators from Q1 to Q3 2022, resulting in 163.0M engagements.

The Takeaway: Use your budget strategically. Embrace organic enthusiasm, while reserving paid campaigns for initiatives that require a boost.

Prime Video Has a Sense of Humor

Memes aren’t just for Gen Z, and no one knows that better than Amazon’s Prime Video. The streaming service has secured ongoing partnerships with some of social media’s most beloved comedians, including Elliot Tebele and Overheard LA, each of whom put their own offbeat spins on upcoming and recently launched series. Thanks to its lighthearted approach to influencer marketing, Prime Video scored mentions from 6.3k creators during the first three quarters of 2022, with a collective 33.2k posts representing a 36% year-over-year growth in share of voice. Altogether, this content accrued 2.8B impressions and 163.0M engagements.

The Takeaway: Let brand partners take creative liberty with their content. The results will resonate more authentically with audiences, and garner stronger engagement.

Media companies and agencies may be leading the charge when it comes to launching high-impact, creator-led campaigns. But influencer marketing is playing a central role in overall growth for brands across categories. As organizations of all types aim to take their creator strategies to the next level.

For more influencer marketing inspiration from the brands spotlighted in this post, download our full report here, From Good to Great: How Media Brands and Agencies Unlock Next-Level Growth With Creator-led Marketing.