“Influencers are not as concerned about price as you might think,” stated GameInfluencer’s Head of Influencer and Campaign Managment Michael Albertshauser at Casual Connect Europe 2017. In this lecture, Michael highlighted the results of their survey involving 500 influencers. With insights on influencer perspectives and marketing deals, Michael educated publishers and marketers on how to be a better business partner for influencers and secure better deals and content.
Michael Albertshauser is Head of Influencer and Campaign Management at GameInfluencer, a company he co-founded in September, 2016. As the leader of the campaign and influencer marketing teams, Michael is responsible for everything that takes place once a deal has been signed. This includes planning the campaign for maximum effect at just the right time, bringing influencers on board, monitoring and optimizing campaign performance and reporting back to the client.
Also, he assists with sales and business development through helping the clients understand the process and what is needed for an effective influencer campaign. Some of his successful performance based influencer campaigns have been for clients such as Com2us, Nexon, Wargaming and Spilgames.
Michael describes influencer marketing as an area of explosive growth, one where he particularly enjoys working with the young, creative minds involved.
Where Influencers and Publishers Meet
Before co-founding GameInfluencer, Michael worked in community and social media for a number of game companies, learning what works on an influencer’s channels and also what a publisher needs to see happen. In order to successfully run influencer campaigns, he must understand both sides and negotiate between the two.
The biggest challenge, Michael emphasizes, is finding that middle ground; not surprisingly, both sides are looking for the greatest safety and the highest financial benefits. Influencers would prefer to work for fixed fees without guarantees about the performance of their content. And when publishers are paying, they want to see trackable results, even though influencers do much more than generate clicks on tracking links.
So what GameInfluencers needed to do was find a way for influencers to get fair pay for their work and efforts while ensuring that publishers do not risk investing major budgets without getting tangible results. They managed to do this by educating both sides about what the other needed and establishing performance based payment models acceptable to both influencers and publishers.
The Untouched Potential of Micro Influencers
Although these days, people are not questioning the importance of influencer marketing, Michael points out, “There are only so many big influencers and they can only do so many sponsored deals before their fans start to question their integrity. So publishers and marketers will have to look for new influencers and channels on which they can advertise.”
The solution is what he calls micro influencers. These are small influencers who have perhaps a few hundred or thousand fans. Unfortunately the small influencers are not scalable on a one-to-one basis. But if you can reach thousands or even hundreds of thousands of these influencers at once, you can have even greater effect than when working with a superstar; their engagement rate is usually much lower than that of a micro influencer.
So Michael’s solution would be to build up a platform with a vibrant community of micro influencer to tap into this untouched potential.
Focus on Relationship and Trust
Changing technology is a continuing challenge but the important thing, Michael maintains, is the relationship with the user base. “As long as you focus on relationship and trust, you don’t care what technology is currently the hottest thing. A good influencer is not a YouTube, Twitch or Instagram star, but a star. And his or her fans will follow them to whatever platform comes next.”
The same thing is true for GameInfluencer as an influencer marketing company. The users Facebook will have in five years is not important. GameInfluencer will continue to run campaigns with the influencers they have been building relationships with on whatever medium is most effective at the time.
There is a certain dichotomy involved in setting up tools to create efficiency and scalability while running a business like GameInfluencer that is all about trust and relationships. As Michael says, “How do you make an influencer feel special while also staying efficient when setting up and launching global campaigns with hundreds of videos going online at the same time?” Their challenge was to make trust and relationship scalable. To do this they needed a very smart database, platform, marketing tools, and, of course, even smarter employees.
When Michael is not working, he enjoys hiking with his wife, talking about anything and everything. He claims, “These hikes have led to some of the greatest ideas in my life.” And, of course, he is still gaming.
Catherine Quinton is a staff writer for www.gamesauce.org. Catherine loves her hobby farm, long walks in the country and reading great novels.