How To Avoid Influencer Marketing Failure with the Perfect Campaign Brief

by Posted @ Oct 11 2018

You’ve finally done it: you’ve convinced your boss that influencer marketing is an important part of your company’s marketing strategy for 2019. Implementing a process to work with influencers is an important aspect of staying relevant in today’s social-focused society. After all, 67% of marketers increased their budget for Influencer Marketing in 2018. So, congratulations – you’re taking a step in the right direction! But, what’s next?

Collaborating with influencers is no easy task; there are many important steps to take along the way which means that there is plenty of room for error. As my colleague Alex recently shared, one of the silent killers of influencer campaigns is improper communication. But, much of the communication confusion can be cleared up with one simple PDF. Enter the influencer campaign brief, a magical document that can drastically reduce your time spend by outlining every detail an influencer will need to know about your campaign.

A well-designed influencer brief will (hopefully) reduce much of the back-and-forth you might get while communicating with influencers and make the entire process smoother for both you and the content creator. So, how do you properly implement a brief? At Go Fish Digital, we’ve found that following the outline below will ensure that nothing slips through the cracks.

About the Campaign

This is the portion of the brief where you can really toot your own horn. Use this section to provide background on your company as well as your product or service. Where did you get started? What makes you better than your competition? Provide all the information you can so the influencer can get a better understanding of your company and, hopefully, feel a more powerful connection to your brand’s goals. If you’re launching a new product or service that you want to focus on for this campaign, this is also a great place to touch on the features of that offering.

While the most successful influencer campaigns always allow creative freedom and should never provide specific requirements on copy or content, the “about the campaign” section is the best place to include verbiage that you might want the influencer to use, as they may pull directly from this brief when describing your product or brand.

Key Objectives of the Campaign

What is the main message that you want to get across to the influencer’s followers? State that message here. Make it as clear and straightforward as possible. Ideally, the key message should be no more than three sentences. Our influencer marketing team typically pares it down to only one sentence.

This section of the brief should also include an outline of the campaign KPIs. These KPIs should align with the key message. How will you measure the success of this campaign? If you’re hoping to increase brand awareness, for example, you might be measuring impressions, engagement rate, and reach (among others). By stating these KPIs outright and from the beginning, you let the influencer know what results would make you the happiest with the collaboration and potentially lead to future opportunities for them.


What pieces of content are you expecting the influencer to create and share? This should include all social content, blog content, imagery, and any other moving pieces. These items will, of course, need to be outlined in the contract or agreement form for the campaign but should be placed in the brief to keep everything in one place.

Campaign Dates

When are you expecting this content to be published? You can get as specific as exact dates and times, provide a final deadline, or share a span of time. If the influencer is creating multiple pieces of content, you may want to space that content out. For example, if your campaign involves a series of Instagram posts, it would be most beneficial to have the influencer’s posts spread out through a few weeks. The dates might also change if multiple influencers are posting for the same campaign or if there is a specific date that a product is launching. Be sure to mark these dates on your calendar so you know when to follow up with the influencer and when to be expecting the content.

Mandatory Requirements

In this section of the brief, you should outline all of the guidelines that the influencer is expected to follow. Again, these should be outlined in the agreement form, but having all of the details in one place leaves little room for confusion. The guidelines should include details such as the social handles and hashtags to include in the content, whether or not to share a draft with your team and how far ahead of posting this should happen, alert the influencer that they must disclaim the content is sponsored, and any special discount codes or trackable links that you’re expecting them to use. This is also a great place to set guidelines such as making sure that the posts for this collaboration do not incorporate other sponsorships and that your product will be the main focus.

Creativity and Thought Starters

This final section is one that should not be overlooked because it can really kickstart your influencer’s creative process. You can use it to share specific questions that might get the influencer’s mind heading in the right direction. You can also share previous examples of influencer content that you were especially pleased with. One other method for getting the creative ball rolling is to share a mood board.

Following this outline will benefit your ongoing relationship with the influencer because everyone appreciates working with someone who is organized. While this general outline can keep your campaign on the right track, there are a few final tips that you should keep in mind.

  1. Always remember that this brief is there to make things easier for the influencer and to have all of the details in one place, not to limit the influencer or place too many restrictions on the collaboration.
  2. Personalizing these briefs can go a long way. Change the brief a bit with each influencer that you work with and be sure to include their name.
  3. Don’t forget to include the contact information of the person who will be running this campaign so that the influencer will have it on hand.
  4. Make the brief attractive — a bit of color, proper spacing, and images can help grab and keep the influencer’s attention.

Do you have further questions or ideas about influencer campaign briefs? Share them in the comments below!

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